19 September 2012

Floral Chocolates

Many advantages come with being crafty.  The self-satisfaction of being able to smugly look at a beautiful end-product, knowing that the wonderful result was brought about by your own expert hands.  The knowledge that one-day, when you are finally able to retire from the drudgery that is your everyday working life, you can look forward to endless days of creating and crafting (that's my dream anyway).
These come from the files of:
"I made it myself".
And the handmade gifts that you often receive from friends who know that you will appreciate the work put into them. You are delighted that the giver thought of you when making their carefully selected purchase whilst simultaneously delaying the impulse to pull it apart in their presence just to see how it was made and to work out "could I also make one of these?".

I recently received a bunch of Chocolate Flowers from a friend who thought that I would love them because I would want to work out how they were made.  Ahhh, I'm just so transparent.
Below is a quick "how-to" on making a bunch of floral chocolates.  It's basically all in the first piece of papier, it's measurements and how it is folded.  After that, any imperfections can be obscured by more tufts of tissue papier.
First, impale your selected chocolates onto a bamboo skewer.  These skewers measured 25cm.

Take a 24 x 24cm square of linen-look papier and fold in half, off centre, just like the above picture.
Place chocolate stem on the left hand side of the papier and roll up to about half way along.
Once you are half way along, fold the remainder of the rectangle upwards.  (Don't be tempted to roll it all the way to the other side of the rectangle.) The right hand side of this rectangle actually flips upwards and ends up becoming another point of the flower petal.  Wrap a small amount of sticky tape around the bottom 3cm of the papier holding it into place on the bamboo skewer.

 The chocolate now forms the centre of my flower.

Here is a completed set of twelve flowers.
The bunch viewed from above.
Wrap some coloured cellophane around the base
and secure with a matching ribbon.

Pass on to another delighted recipient.

From what we get, we can make a living;
what we give, however, makes a life.
- Arthur Ashe -

13 September 2012

Butterflies for the Boss

I just love getting my hands dirty - sometimes.  In making this card I was reintroduced to the media of Mungyo Pastels.  The right hand side of the card was dry embossed, using the Sizzix BigShot, then a chalked up index finger was gently swirled around the impression made, gradually bringing the colour up to the depth I wanted.  Lots of control and lots of fun.

The papiers used on the card came from a set Sally Cakes bought me for my birthday from Scrappy Hollow.  "Hello" to all the very helpful ladies who work there.  The set is called Serendipity and is produced by Basic Grey.  It is full of timeless papiers reminicient of my childhood.

Happy Birthday Jenny.  Hope you had a lovely day.
A post on the floral chocolates, that accompanied the card, will follow shortly.

09 September 2012

Salade de Fruits

It was on for young and old (especially the old - namely yours truly).
Following a class excursion to the Queen Victoria Markets in Melbourne, we had a "bake off" of sorts between all the various groups that attended said excursion.  The brief was simple.  Create a Fruit Salad that was both pleasing to the eye and delicious to eat.
Our "second" prize-winning entry . . .

I must confess that my competitive instincts took over, dictating to those unforunate enough to be in my group, what they should buy and how we were going to arrange the salad. Desperately sad.

. . . the Lollipop Garden.

06 September 2012

White on White

Butterflies have landed on the indoor tree.

Please cast your eyes over the sea trunk at the bottom of the photograph.  It arrived in Australia nearly 60 years ago along with my in-laws on the Johan Van Oldenbarnevelt from a port in Europe. (I was originally going to say from Switzerland - for that is from where they hail - however it is a landlocked country?)

The butterflies originate from a less exotic location.  I bought them at the Craft & Quilt Fair which was held recently at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre.  I thought they were an ideal decoration for the tree when it wasn't in celebration mode.

One astonishing find at the Fair that I would love to share with you is the inspiring work of Cheryl Bridgart.  It is one thing to be a talented artist who can represent depth, perspective, shading and colour using paint; but to utilise a sewing machine as your medium is beyond my wonderment.  So I'll just finish off with a splash of colour, if you don't mind . . .

Butterflies are self propelled flowers.
- R L Heinlein

03 September 2012

Lots of Zots

What's a Zot?  In a nutshell, it's a Sticky Dot on steroids.  A perfectly formed disc of immeasurable adhesiveness that allows you to fix paper to other products.  The benefit of the Zot over the Sticky Dot (which will never be replaced) is that it can add dimension due to its "thick" nature.
Using my new found method of cutting papier into ribbon and then curling it, this present (of  Glenfiddich Single Malt Scotch Whisky) was embellished and presented to my tepidly impressed dad, yesterday, on Fathers' Day.

On Saturday I spent an incredibly enjoyable day in the company of like-minded papier zealots at the Paperific Expo held at the iconic Melbourne Showgrounds.  We took part in a flower making class run by the boundlessly patient Leanne of Passion 4 Paper where we learnt two new techniques.
The one that really caught my attention was that of twirling a spiral cut from a die, into a perfectly formed flower.  It was here that I was introduced to my new friend the Zot.  Welcome to the craftroom buddy, we're going to get along just famously I can tell.

Treat your parents with loving care,
you will only know their value when you see
their empty chair.