Saturday, 31 August 2013

Simple DIY Fondant Ribbon Bow Cake

Ok so this was the latest family birthday cake I made in June and the brief, from the 16 year old du jour, had something to do with a Manga series called The Death Note - charming!!. So I did my best to incorporate two elements from the series and wrapped it up in a fluffy fondant bow... it went down a treat!.

To make your own fluffy fondant bow you will need  
1. fondant 
(for the circles and the bow I used approx 500g of fondant in total)
2. rolling pin or pastry cutter 
4.baking paper 
5. (optional) white choc melts

Step 1.
Roll out your fondant to about 5mm thickness
Step 2. 
Cut even lengths in your fondant as shown below, these can be any length... I used approx 9 inch lengths you will need approx 16 strips to complete your bow (that way you should have two or more spare just in case).

Step 3.
Now you have your strips, take 5 and fold them over as shown below, then flatten slightly so they are a bit flatter then the two loops shown in the image below - these will form your base ribbon loops.
Step 4.
Take three strips and loop them as shown below with a nice rounded center and pinch together tightly - try and make pointed loop ends if possible, this will make assembling much easier.
Step 5.
Take another two strips and cut them down by about a third or slightly more and form round loops again, these will form your top loops and then take another one or two strips and cut them in half and loop them again.
Step 6. (optional)
Take two strips and cut them in half them place a small marble or marshmallow under the half way point of the strip to elevate the middle and cut a v shape at one end - this will form the ribbon tails (see image below this one) 

You will now have a collection of loops in graduating sizes, leave them to dry out and harden for some hours or overnight.
So FYI I'm definitely no cake decorator, I just have a bit of fun with it all so excuse the uneven cutting and cracked lines in the fondant!!

Step 7.
Create Your Bow
Melt some white chocolate pieces in a bowl and place on the top of the cake or take a ball of fondant wet it slightly and place in the middle of the cake or on top of a round piece of fondant as shown below... you are basically going to stick the pieces of the bow to this ball/ melted chocolate dot 

Starting with the 5 flattest loops (or you could start with the ribbon tails you made and then continue with the flatter loops from there) stick them to the ball/ or melted chocolate and set in place, then add the the 3 round medium loops, then the 2 small loops and finish on top with the smallest loop. 

Your bow will look best of you can place the loops between one another... so place your first 5 loops on then try to place the next level of loops over lapping the spaces between the bottom level and so on.  

So I kind of forgot to take pics of this bit (very silly as this is the most important part to get right) so the above images here are two great examples of how to create this design as found via Adventures in Savings

happy baking!

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Laduree - For The Love Of Macarons

I'm yet to find a person, nut allergies aside, who would turn down a Macaron. I'm a devotee hook, line and sinker so when my husband popped over to Sydney for work he was sent straight to Laduree with instructions to bring home the bacon and some Macarons!!. As usual my instructions were kind of lost in translation and the result was about $80 worth of Macarons (18 in total) - seriously I'm not joking - $80 worth of macrons, but I was thrilled to have sampled a box from the Sydney store and the additional lilac and green boxes were given away as thank you gifts.

Last year I posted about our visit to Laduree's first patisserie/cafe which opened 1862 in Madeline, Paris and it was a taste sensation, so when I heard there was new Sydney cafe, I had to sample the goods. I can't say it was the taste explosion I had remembered but it was worth trying and the packaging is certainly just as beautiful as I had remembered. In 2010 I bought the Laduree recipe book and it's filled with some gorgeous tips to making some of the worlds favorite French desserts, so this is definitely something I would recommend checking out, if you happen to pop by.


Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Vintage Inspired Work, Home Office & Study Spaces

lovely desk area

Here are some vintage inspired work spaces I found on pinterest and filed away for future reference on my "Work It, Baby!" board. I need to create a bit of a space for my computer and other bits, but our tiny unit is very unforgiving and finding the right space near the right electrical sockets is proving difficult... also finding the right table is the other thing - I'm thinking aged reclaimed wood on trestle base - not very original but I love the look... failing that I could settle for the table below - ikea legs and what I think may be an ikea top hmmm....

Kelli Murray /

Gorgeous Natural Bamileke Feather Headdress (Juju hat) above a desk.

Pipe shelves and desk

Love the chair


Art Wall on pegboard, fabulous.

Camilla Krishnaswamy #studio

bri's #office #interior #design

Work space

living room with a desk and bar

How old school is that - drinks bar/office combo -love it!

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Vintage Shopping - Thrifty Saturdays

Though I'd share a couple of vintage thrifty buys today... a few weeks ago I went treasure hunting and found a few cute items that I snapped up for under $15. The first was a teak deer head and the second a chalk ware Mary and Jesus - I had visions of coupling it with a shell encrusted cross and a Mexican day of the dead skull but as soon as my mum saw it she was in love, so it is hers, she has just handed over some Barsony and Bitossi (thank you Mother!) so it is the least I can do...

There were many things to see and buy at the warehouse space we visited and my girlfriend bought some gorgeous treasures as shown below - love the Bumper Book for Boys and the Venetian tray both about $10 each.

Should have bought the amber bottle top right as well...

retro tiki chic anyone???

Liv's buys

My husband is obsessed with these old scales... he is convinced they will be the thing to have one day and while I think they are cool I'm just not so sure myself but I took this pic for his benefit anyway.

happy thrifting everyone!!

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

When The Seasons Change - Cherry Blossom

Do you have any little, incidental things you are grateful for?? Well for me, Cherry Blossoms in spring are one of the little things in life that I like having around and is sure to make me smile... I love it when the streets are beaming with blossoms signalling the start of spring and I noticed some gorgeous trees in full bloom on the way home from my the local park yesterday, so I picked two small branches!.

Think I'll do something like this with them

cherry blossoms
Source pinterest


Saturday, 10 August 2013

DIY Chevron Lamp Shade Upcycle - Using Paint And Gold Leaf

My mum has a fave antique center she refers to as "Pigeon Palace" because it's based in an old leaky country warehouse with pigeons roosting in the saw tooth roof and random splodges of pigeon droppings here there and everywhere... a little while ago this magical place relocated to the Melbourne suburb of Glen Waverley and I recently popped in for a girls day of midwinter vintage shopping... It was a treasure trove of industrial vintage, shabby chic and retro and I found this beautiful crystal based lamp for $30.

The shade was already painted when purchased but I decided it needed something bold and eye catching in the form of chevron stripes so I DIY-ed it and wanted to share my simple how to...

Before - the shade was cute but I wanted something punchy!

Love how the facets reflect the light!

How To
Creating you own painted chevron lampshade is super easy... I'm a freehand kind of gal so I apologise if the rustic appearance of my stripes are driving you mad, as it does my husband.

To mark my chervon lines I used 3m painters tape left over from my DIY painted rug project 
Frog Tape or cloth tape would also work, basically anything that has a good amount of glue to stick to the shade.

1. Place a cross over the top of the shade as seen below dividing in half horizontally and vertically this will form the template for your chevron V's.
2. Start at the top placing strips of tape in a zigzag pattern as deep or shallow as you like until you have completed the first row as shown below.
3 Using the first row as a guide space out the rest of your rows with tape... I tried to stick to a 1.5" gap for my shade.

 4.Once you have finished taping prepare your paint and work surface and paint away, then leave to dry out before removing the tape.

I got impatient and peeled the tape off too soon! Lucky for me I'd already planned to add a contrast colour so I painted the blue stripes by hand.

At this stage you are done BUT if you want a little more bling for your buck why not add some gold leaf for a  bit of Palm Springs kitsch!.  

To adhere the gold leaf I used double sided tape and a small paintbrush.


My shade could do with some trim added to the top and bottom, when I find the right one I think I'll add it.


Wednesday, 7 August 2013

All The Loveliness - Hello Again

It has been too long, and by too long I mean ridiculously long between posts and all I can say is I'm back!. Where pray tell have I been? Well, apologies if this is too much information for those that prefer non personal blogs, please allow me this pass - I do promise to keep it short and provide some gorgeous Pinterest pics in return!!.

My husband and I are battling to start a family, in plain language battling to sustain a pregnancy aka dealing with recurrent miscarriage... life is throwing us some curve balls and answers are not presenting themselves at this stage. All up I have had 3 miscarriages, the last coincided with my last post in May, so there you have it, that is the reason behind the silence... but the show must go on and now is the time!!!. We are in a holding pattern at the moment while the Dr's run further tests before heading back into the "family planning trenches" later this year - wish me luck!.

For now though I have some beautiful bits I found on Pinterest... looking forward to sharing some vintage treasure and a simple DIY over the next week as well. xx Tina

Foley and Corinna - Brooklyn Interior Design

I am loving the pin above... simple but so effective using vintage finds such as postcards, cut outs of vintage vases, mirrors, necklaces and artificial flowers - lovely!

How To :: Vintage Make Your Bar Cart Beautiful
Loving this bar cart too... the customised wine bottle labels are a nice touch... must consider doing this one day!

Glassons x Petra Collins
If I ever had a pool...

I want to live here now!