Inspired by my last post about The Printed Square, I've made some hankies of my own. They were super easy to make and a nice use of a small piece of some beautiful fabric (from the sewing cafe as ever).

1) Gather supplies: fabric, ruler, rotary cutter, scissors, contrasting thread.
2) Cut squares the size that you want your hankie to be. I cut a fat quarter into 4.
3) Sew around the edge of the square with a pretty stitch. I chose a scallop.

4) Trim as close to the stitching as you dare!
5) Repeat and admire your lovely new hankies.

They make me smile every time I get one out of my pocket and they're better for the environment too! huzzah!


The printed square

I have to tell you about two things that I'm a bit in love with at the moment:
1) The Printed Square by Nicky Albrechtsen: A book full of pictures of vintage handkerchiefs
2) This "Light Ditsy" print by Caroline Gardener: I seem to want everything I own to be covered in this.

Now, I'm no stranger to books (see my living room):

But it's not very often that I pick up a book in an actual bookshop and can't bear to put it back on the shelf. I'd normally at least wait a bit and see if I can buy it second hand. but I just could. not. put. it. down! It's like someone crawled into my brain and made a book especially for me of something I didn't even know I liked!

Just look how pretty it is! Oh man! And every page is like that! There are a few pages at the beginning about the history of hankies but all the rest are just beautiful picture after beautiful picture. Yay!

Anyway, a bit off topic but you just had to see how awesome this book is! I am super inspired to get doodling/painting/embroidering!


How to make a wedding cake

Alex and Pippa got married! For those of you who don't know them, they are they awesomest, craziest, loveliest, generousest couple in the world. Their wedding suited them absolutely perfectly. It was mental and amazing and so. much. fun. And to top it all off, they let me make their wedding cake! Here's how I did it:

1) I borrowed 3 cake tins: 11", 9" and 7".

2) I filled them with my go to fruit cake mix. 2x, 1.5x and 1x mix respectively. I baked them FOREVER and then had my mum and dad looked after them and fed them with 1tsp brandy every week for the next month.

3) When I came back home a month later it was time to decorate! First I levelled them off to the same height. I made a big cardboard loop which was as high as I wanted the cake to be, then took a knife and levelled them off to that height.

4) I then flipped them and put them onto cake boards. For the small layers, make sure that the board is exactly (or as near as you can get) the same size as the cake so that it doesn't show when you stack them.

5) Coat the cakes with runny, sieved, apricot jam. The sieving part is very important! Otherwise you get lumpy icing! Just put a few tbsp of jam into a little bowl, microwave for a few seconds and pour it through a sieve into another bowl.

6) Now comes the tricky part: covering the cake with marzipan and fondant! eek! I was super scared of doing this bit so I did some research and found this thing called THE MAT. It's basically two massive sheets of plastic that you roll your icing between and makes it easier to pick up and move around. whilst it didn't work perfectly (the icing would often stretch out into a funny shape when I was peeling the back layer off, or it would stick to the mat a bit and ruin the smoothness) it did help a lot! Maybe it just needed some more conditioning? It was the first time I'd ever used it, so maybe that was it? Anyway, I rolled it out, plopped it on, trimmed it and smoothed it x6. It was hard work. My back and abs caned the next day!

7) I gave the icing a chance to harden over night and then piped the decoration on! Alex and Pippa had a crazy hat themed wedding so I doodled crazy hats all over the cake. I then realised that piped writing looked much nicer that hats so I filled in all the gaps with their names. I just used a piping bag and royal icing made up like it says on the box. Defo do a practise run before you pipe onto the cake!!!

8) Then I put plastic dowels into the cake to support the upper layers. Learn how to do that here.

9) Then for the really nerve-wracking part: transporting and assembling! My amazing daddy bought me some proper cake boxes and drove me all the way to Cambridge so that I could sit in the back making sure that they didn't slide anywhere and get crushed. fortunately the cakes are super heavy so it wasn't really a problem. then I just stacked them up! I used a knife to help me get my fingers under the boards- they're very hard to lift otherwise. I made sure that all the good bits were at the front and any mistakes were at the back. Pin some ribbon around the base of each cake and bob's your uncle! I actually made the ribbon myself from some red fabric so that it was exactly the width I wanted it.

I also made some other cakes (above) as did other people (below) nyom nyom nyom.

All in all a very cakey day! (btw, all of this cake was gone in about ten minutes of bringing knives out to cut it with!)


p.s. sorry about the terrible photos, I took them all with my phone not my massive camera.
p.p.s. It looks like my mum is growing out of the cake in one of the pictures! hehe!