Monday, 29 June 2015

Frugal gluten and dairy free pudding

Yesterday after lunch everyone was about to have desert except for me because I usually don't bother now. ( being gluten free means there isn't much I can have unless I bake it or get ripped off with the price!)
I really fancied a desert though so I decided to make one. I had to pop out to get Alpro custard but the shop is just down the road.

I made bread and butter pudding using the genius bread I had in the freezer. ( just a couple of slices)
It was really easy just butter your bread using dairy free spread, cut in to triangles, sprinkle on some raisins, add cinnamon if you like it, pour over half a carton of the custard and drizzle a little syrup over the top.

Here it is before it went in the oven I forgot to take one when it came out but the bits of bread sticking up went nice and crunchy.

It worked out to 70p a portion but that was because the bread  and ready made custard were expensive. If you can get  them on offer or buy cheaper versions it would be less.  Still I thought that was ok considering the cost of a GF ready made desert. 
I may add jam and no syrup next time or vary the fruit.

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Alterations, Books and Silence

  This week I had to alter a ball gown for a friend, it was very long and bias cut. Those of you that sew know that this is not great if you trying to make alterations as the fabric develops a mind of its own.  It needed shortening by about 9 inches, taking in under the arms and the straps shortening.
The first job I did was the hem and I decided to overlock this so that the slight curve in the bias fabric was not lost. Turning up a hem on this would not have worked plus my friend goes dancing and this looked much better to twirl in!
Now whenever I am making a dress I avoid bias cut patterns I made one years ago and have altered a few and they just annoy me really.  I like to sew for pleasure and bias cut does nothing for my well being. (I'm just saying!)



I also had to sew on some of the roses as they were coming loose around the top. My friend got this dress from a charity shop as she wears lots of dresses to various dance events.

This week has also involved lots of reading, I like to read and often have a few books on the go that may sound strange but you don't always fancy reading the same thing do you?  I am re-reading a motivational book by Tony Robbins which I already had, I don't agree with everything in there but there is lots of good advice  eg 'its up to you to make things happen' I like that.  I have also read three library books...
This one I read in one sitting, a quick read, mildly entertaining but also a bit contradictory in places.

Now this one I enjoyed, it describes how silence is used across the religions with varying success, how we live in a state of constant noise pollution and have forgotten how to just sit in silence and enjoy.  I have recommended it to others and have ordered another book of a similar nature.

This was another great one, lots of clear examples and I love that all of the models used were over 40 many of them into 60's and beyond.  Also has exercises for people with joint replacements or medical conditions, so something for everyone.  I think often older people are put off by the young models in the book as they think they can't do that. This is a great example that you can.

So all of those completed and I'm now reading a book by Seth Godin after listening to an interesting Podcast by him last week.  You can find it here at farnoosh.  More on the book later.







  



Sunday, 21 June 2015

What to do with stripes

Stripe fabric, it can be a bit of a pain, they do say not to wear the stripes horizontally as it is unflattering.  There is also the issue of matching them up as depending on what you are making matching around a curve can be troublesome.  I had bought this stripe jersey fabric a while ago and to be honest I was disappointed when it arrived as the colour was not what I expected.  I thought it was a black and white stripe but when it arrived it was more of a very pale peach colour. This colour does nothing for me so it sat on my sewing table in the bag for about two  months making me feel like I had wasted my money!
Then there was the issue of what to do, I had thought a dress  ( I know another one!) but I wasn't sure how I would lay the stripes on it.

So today I decided to just get on with it because waiting for inspiration was getting me nowhere,  I decided to do the back and front pieces of the dress with a centre seam so that I could have the stripes meeting at the middle in a point. This meant I laid the stripe on a diagonal as I cut out each front/back half.  There is probably a technical name for this but I don't know it, being a self taught get on with it sort of dress maker.
The bottom of the dress I laid the fabric vertical, this way I feel the dress looks more interesting than if all of the dress fabric was used in the same way.

I have to say it was a nuisance to work with, I bought some ball pointed needles but they did not help on this very stretchy jersey, the first one broke after ten minutes. I had to just ease all the seams and go slowly, I overlocked afterwards otherwise all the seams would have just snapped.
I am now really happy with how this turned out despite much unpicking when seams moved and did not line up and the overly bouncy fabric!

When I came to face around the sleeves I did  not have enough fabric left, this was mainly due to the fact that in laying out my pieces in a different way to get the desired effect on the dress, I did not have long pieces left to making binding. Argh!

So a quick look in my fabric box and I had a bit of the lace from the evening dress I took up for a friend ages ago.  I also used some of that on my Christmas  party dress hem and still I have some left.  You see  these little bits do come in handy, so I faced around the sleeves using that.
You can see in this picture that the fabric is peachy not white but in the main picture it looks white.

Anyway this solved my problem of facing the sleeves, I did think of adding some around the neck too but my husband said that may be too much so it stays as it is.  Another bit of bother with the hem that got partially sewn then unpicked three times! Then hand stitched as it would just not lay correctly under the machine without twisting and missing stitches.  Sometimes doing it by hand is just better and it's invisible.

A little note about my overlocker, it has been a bit funny to work with the whole time I've had it, I recently got it working and changed blades/ sorted tension etc. Still it did not like the right hand needle, I took it out, removed the cotton for that needle and now it works great on just three threads.  It uses less cotton this way anyhow but still gives a good effect.  If you are having this same trouble just try it.