Hello Kitty fabric in the mail

As someone who loves Hello Kitty and pretty fabric I was excited to hear that Liberty of London and Sanrio were collaborating. Unfortunately by the time we visited the UK and went to Liberty's they had sold out of everything in the range except a huge mound of memo blocks! I managed to find a nice Hello Kitty and Liberty pen in a Waterstones bookshop in London so I left the UK happy that I had at least one thing from the Hello Kitty, Liberty collection.

When I got home I had a look to see what, if anything, from the collection was available to buy online. I found a cute plush Hello Kitty in a liberty print dress on ebay, but nowhere seemed to have the fabric. Every website had sold out. So I then searched on Etsy for Hello Kitty Liberty fabric and came across Colchique. She makes bags and children's clothes including this baby kimono made with Hello Kitty Liberty fabric. I wrote to her to ask if she had any offcuts of this fabric that she didn't need and she replied saying that she did. I bought her offcuts and they arrived today in the post making me the proud owner of the above selection of Hello Kitty fabric!

Cookie Dough Brownies

Don't they look good? I made these last night. I got the idea from a recipe on www.chef-in-training.com, but I didn't stick exactly their recipe. I decided to use my own favourite brownie recipe for the bottom part, and because I use a smaller baking tin I changed the amounts for the topping. I also converted the recipe to European measures. If you want to try making it my way, here's how:

140g butter
280g sugar
120g cocoa
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 eggs
62g flour

Preheat the oven to 160C and line a 20cm x 20cm baking tin.
In a microwave safe bowl put the butter, sugar, cocoa and salt and then put in the microwave until the butter is melted. Remove from the microwave and mix it all together until it is all combined.
Add the vanilla and mix well.
Add one egg and mix it in completely, then add the second egg and do the same.
Add the flour and mix well until all ingredients are combined and then mix a bit more for good measure.
Pour the brownie mixture into the pan and place on the middle shelf in the oven for 20-25mins.

Cookie Dough Filling:
113g butter
100g brown sugar
56g sugar
2 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
125g flour
80g chocolate chips (or 80g chocolate bar cut into small pieces!)

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar.
Beat in the milk and vanilla.
Gradually add the flour and mix well.
Finally add the chocolate chips.
When the brownies have cooled, spread this mixture over them and refrigerate until the cookie dough is firm.

160g chocolate
15g butter

Melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave and mix until combined.
Spread over the cookie dough and leave to cool.

Once the topping has hardened you can cut the brownies into squares and eat!

Blanket Stitch and Monsters

We're having another Craft Party on Monday night and one of the things available to make will be Felt Mistress's Monster from Issue 7 of Mollie Makes. I made this one as an example for people to see. People always compliment me on how neat and intricate my amigurumi dolls are - and I guess they are! But when it comes to sewing and cutting material my ability to be neat and intricate just goes out the window! Straight lines are not my thing. I like how this guy turned out, but if you could see him in real life you would see how inaccurately I cut the shapes and how wonky my sewing is! And for those of you who are into sewing I have a question... How do you start off the first stitch when you are going to use blanket stitch? When I do it the first stitch always comes out wonky. Answers gratefully received!

I love getting parcels!

I love getting parcels, and this one made my day! Those of you who have been following my blog will know that the pipes in our house have been frozen for almost 2 weeks now, and as a result we have been without a toilet and shower and all those other things that need water! As you can imagine this has been quite annoying, so getting this parcel today was even better than getting it on any normal kind of day.
What is it? Who is it from? you ask. This parcel is from the wonderful Abbydid who drew my name in the Plush Team leap year plush swap! When I saw her name on the outside of the box I was already excited about what would be inside... was I about to become the proud owner of a Wibbly Woo?
Yes! What is a Wibbly Woo? According to verified sources, the Wibbly Woo is a legendary creature located in the peat bogs of Northern England. Harmless, happy, helpful little scamps, they make excellent companions (especially at bedtime). Wibbly Woos have large, soft mouths perfect for safeguarding treasures. 
So I opened the bag and inside was not just a Wibbly Woo in my favourite colours - but also a little box...
And inside the box was all my favourite food! Wibbly Woo was hungry from the journey (it's a long way from Cincinnati to Bosnia and Herzegovina) so I let him tuck in.
There were also some very lovely promotional materials from Abbydid.
And two bags of fabric scraps which have arrived just in time for our Craft Party on Monday! Thank you so much Abby :)

And on the water front - we got a new toilet put in today (the old one had cracked because the water froze in it :/) and although we still don't have any water in the bathroom, we can use the toilet and use the bucket of water method to flush it! Today has been a good day.

What are you working on?

This is my current 'work in progress'. I'm quite excited about how she's going to turn out. What are you working on at the moment? Post a link in the comment section so we can all see!


This has been a good week for me and Etsy! I made 2 sales, and one of the dolls sold just minutes after I listed her!

I've been adding something new to my shop everyday this week - and there's more to come. So if you like what you see here, why not pay me a visit at outoftheframe.etsy.com :)

Making hamsters

Some of the Hamsters we made last night at Novi Most Jajce. The pattern can be found in MollieMakes magazine issue 5 or here on the MollieMakes website.

Red Velvet Brownies with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

We've been back home in Bosnia and Herzegovina for 5 days now. It's cold and there's lots of snow. Everything looks beautiful but whilst we were away the pipes froze in our house which means we have no water except in the kitchen. As well as the pipes freezing, the water in the toilet froze and cracked the toilet bowl! All of this means that for the last 5 days and probably for at least the next 5 days we have no toilet and no shower. At first it was kinda fun, but now as there is no sign of a thaw coming the reality of it is annoying. To make up for the annoying-ness I decided it was time to do some baking. 

Red Velvet Brownies with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting:
The recipe for the brownies I got from smells-like-home.com Here it is converted into European measures:

3 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tbsp red food colouring
2 tsp vanilla extract, divided
113g unsalted butter at room temperature
340g granulated sugar
2 large eggs
160g all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Line a 20cm x 20cm tin with baking paper.
In a small bowl, stir together cocoa powder, food colouring and 1 tsp vanilla to make a thick paste and leave to one side.
In another bowl cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Then add the eggs, one at a time and keep mixing. Add the remaining 1 tsp vanilla and mix.
Now add the cocoa paste and mix until the mixture is one uniform colour - red!
Slowly add the flour and salt, mixing until everything is combined.
It should look like this:

Pour the batter into the already prepared tin and cook for 30-40mins, until a toothpick stuck into the middle comes out clean.

Leave to cool in the pan for 30mins. Take them out of the pan and add the frosting, then cut into squares as desired.

I got the recipe for the Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting from chaosinthekitchen.com. I halved their amounts and converted it to European measures:

100g cream cheese
60g butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 vanilla bean pod
375g icing sugar

Slit open the vanilla bean with a sharp knife and use the tip of the knife to scrape out half the paste.
Beat the butter and cream cheese together in a bowl until they are combined.
Add the vanilla pod paste and the vanilla extract and mix well.
Add the icing sugar slowly and keep mixing until you have the consistency you like for frosting. It should end up looking something like this:

Another snowy day

Modamo.kreARTiva is still being talked about

There's a short article about the Modamo.kreARTiva craft fair that I was part of in December in this month's edition of Crna Ovca magazine - and the picture in the bottom right hand corner shows my table! Click on the link to view the magazine online.

Back from my travels

I've been in the UK for the last 3 weeks visiting friends and family, something I do every year, but this year all my outoftheframe amigurumi dolls came too! I took them to Brighton Craft Fair and to 'an evening with Matt and Rowan' and as a result a good number of them found new homes in the UK.