Saturday, 31 May 2014

Jamie's Epic Hot Chocolate - Make Your Own

There is something about the smell of hot chocolate that evokes the best memories of toasting marshmallows, wrapping yourself in a warm blanket and sitting by an open fire. With the cooler months upon us here in Australia this delish Jamie Oliver mix is sure to bring oodles of comfort this winter. 

FYI If it's warmer in your neighbourhood you can still enjoy this recipe as an iced drink by simply creating a smooth paste from your chocolate powder mix and adding chilled milk and ice cubes - yum!.

For the mix
2 Tbs Horlicks (or any malted milk)
2 Tbs Cornflour (this adds the best texture to the mix!!)
3 Tbs Icing Sugar (Powdered Sugar)
4 Tbs Cocoa (I use Dutch Cocoa)
100g Chocolate (70% cocoa solids) finely grated
1 Pinch sea salt
1 Pinch cinnamon

Place in a bowl and whisk to combine the dry mix. Then place in a jar.

To make your hot chocolate 

Place 1 litre of milk in a saucepan and heat till almost boiling point. 
Add 10 heaped tablespoons of the mix and whisk to combine. 
Allow the mix to bubble, heat and thicken slightly (this will take a few minutes).
Serve and enjoy!

(*you could also add a very small pinch of chilli powder for a kick or some orange zest once you have made your mugs of hot chocolate, simply stir through the hot mix and serve immediately).


Saturday, 24 May 2014

Vintage Peacock Chair Mini DIY Makeover

I love good peacock chair, they seem to be having a decade long comeback and I have always kept an eye out for a vintage version in my travels but never found the bargain I was looking for - until this week!. I found this beauty online and while it's not the super large ornate style I had in mind it was a fab find and I'm thrilled to finally have one in my collection.

I love the natural cane look but I am also obsessed with painting anything and everything around my home so I decided to white wash this chair by simply watering down some water based white paint. I added just under equal parts paint to water, stirred it through and painted away... it gives a chalky, lime washed finish. I started by adding 1/4 cup water to 1/2 cup paint then gradually added water to achieve the look I was after.

Raspberry Cockatoo Cushion (Bonnie and Neil), Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree, Morrocan Boucherouite Rug, Morrocan Leather Pouffe (Ada and Darcy), Triangle Pot plant DIY - here


Saturday, 17 May 2014

DIY Polka Dot Painted Pot

A few weeks ago, while shopping at my local craft store, I stumbled across a stippling sponge set. It was about $7 and has paid for itself ten fold!. I've been polka dotting everything from canvases to pot plants and this simple DIY demonstrates how to revamp a tired old or ugly pot into a super cute window sill feature.

DIY Painted Pot
*For outdoor use you will need to use outdoor paint to ensure your work is weatherproof.

You will need:
Drop sheet/ garbage bag to protect the floor from paint spills
Stippling sponge set (available at craft stores) or a sponge cut to shape
Paint in two different colours
Paint brush

1. Start by painting your pot/s with your base colour and leave to dry then paint a second coat. Make sure to paint the inner rim of the pot to a level that will meet the soil - about two inches down.
2. When the second coat dries take your second colour and pour a small amount onto a dish then dip the sponge in the paint and press against the pot.
3. To create the polka dot pattern you want to place your dots at even intervals starting at the top of the pot and working your way down in vertical rows.
4. Leave to dry


Saturday, 10 May 2014

DIY Fox Felt No Sew Cushion

For Easter this year I wanted to give my nephews a little something they could keep rather then loading them up with chocolates and sweets - as you can imagine they were wrapped about that!!.  

So these $13 foxy cushions were their chocolate substitutes and they were very easy to make.

I purchased these fabulous little felt fox bags at the Reject Shop for around $6, you can also find similar here or you could cut out the shapes using orange, white and black felt pieces. I then chose a ready made $10 cushion from Kmart and set to work.

*You may want to wash the cushion covers before hot gluing as once the felt is attached you can probably only gently hand wash the cushions. 

Start by cutting the fox from the bag as shown below. Heat your hot glue gun and establish where you want your fox to be placed making sure the zipper is at the bottom. Glue the fox in place using enough hot glue then adhere the felt to the cushion and enjoy!.   


Sunday, 4 May 2014

DIY Staghorn Fern Mount Backboard

The plant obsession continues for my hubby and I... lately our weekends have been spent collecting cacti and bargain pots from around town and week before last we added a pair of 15 year old stag ferns to our collection. We knew they needed work when we acquired them and that included new mounts for the back. So we started brainstorming options.

We live in a tiny low roofed space that we hope to leave in a year or two (fingers crossed!). I have only lived in and absolutely adore older homes from Edwardian to Art Deco and Mid Century but this mini Ramsay Street inspired complex is not for us, the spaces are a bit awkward and it's the kind of place where you step outside your door and can see little silhouettes behind lace curtains stalking watching as you go about your day - Gladys Kravitz style!!.

So when at home we lay low and potter around our little space the best way we know how - DIY'ing!!!

In order to hang the Stags we knew we needed a portable backing mount that could move with us. So we collected an old door from my sister and brother-in-law, bought some large screws and bolts and my hubby set to work. I am not joking when I say that this was the outfit he choose to work in (see below)... The vintage top is one thing but suede loafers - seriously... made him change after this pic was taken.

We haven't attached ferns to mounts before and while the stags are looking fine a month later I'd always consult with a nursery to ensure this method will suit your plant.

To attach a board using this method:
1. Decide how many rods you will need to support your fern.
2. Drill holes in the backboard to the size of your screws.
3. Place the screws in the fern at these intervals (you want them to penetrate the fern and reach the back board holes as shown below) Aim to pierce the fern under a few of the layers so that the screws are not visible from the front.
4. Place and fasten the nuts and bolts on the screw at the front and the back and trim away the excess metal at the back so the frame can sit flush on the wall.
5. Then sit the fern up and attach wire some or heavy duty string through the back attaching and supporting the top part of the plant to the board. It's very important to make sure the fern is well held and supported right around and right against the board before trying to hang. We were lucky to have inherited the ferns with some old hooks attached and we bent them over the board and hammered in place.
6. Then place on your wall as you would a framed artwork. Please ensure the nails and wall will hold your fern - once mounted they are very heavy!.


Friday, 2 May 2014

Up-cycling Vintage Enamel Ware!

Wishing everyone a wonderful end to the week... while perusing Pinterest today I found a gorgeous macrame up-cycling project using vintage enamel ware by Kotivinkki and had to share.

Hope you love this super cheery and gorgeous project as much as I do... it certainly inspired a grin from ear to ear in this Melbournian household!.

For the macrame hanger you will need two bowls, string, beads and masking tape instructions - here (simply translate to english).