Monday, July 12, 2010

Button Cookies

I hosted another women's craft day this past weekend and baked up a batch of shortbread buttons for the occasion.

Here are the ingredients roughly converted to US measures:
1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon + 1/2 tsp cornstarch
2 sticks unsalted butter
3/4 cup powdered sugar
Vanilla extract
Food coloring

I used a 2" biscuit cutter to cut out the circles and a #3 cake decorating tip for the button holes. I used a tea ball to stamp the smaller circles. You can get creative, pretty much anything round will do the trick. The dough was a bit difficult to roll out, but the cookies turned out delicious. I attribute this to the two sticks of butter holding them together.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Dolly Donations

Dolly Donations collects handmade dolls for children in need. The current doll drive is for an orphanage in Haiti. The goal is to collect 132 dolls by November 1st. There are free sewing patterns and step-by-step tutorials on the Dolly Donations blog if you'd like to participate. I'll be sending my doll off soon!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Monster Softie

For those of you who don't know what a softie is, it's basically a soft toy, often made out of felt. It's no secret I like working with wool and felt, so I decided to make our cousiphew Mason a monster softie for his first birthday. I liked this design by Nina but changed it up a bit so it looked more like a monster and less like a cat. I added all the facial features and heart before I sewed the two body pieces together. That way I was able to use my sewing machine for most of the work. I hand embroidered the mouth with a split stitch and the pupils using colonial knots. At first I tried french knots, but the colonial knots were a little larger and looked better.

One of the most helpful tips when sewing a softie is to cut your shape out after you sew it. Also make sure you have a fabric turner (basically a wooden chopstick). These usually come in bags of polyfil. You'll need that to poke out and stuff all the little spaces, like the tail and ears.

Happy Birthday Mason!