Thursday, 30 July 2015

From left over Frosting to Hydrangea Cupcakes

I always make too mush frosting. I am constantly paranoid of running out while decorating a cake. This results in the top shelf of my fridge being devoted to tubs of different colours and flavours of frosting. Sometimes I get around to using it up and other times it goes too hard and has to be thrown away. Most of the time the latter is the case.

With my recent Chalkboard cake, I had a little left of each colour used along with some white vanilla frosting from a previous project before that.

It had crusted over so a good mix and a little water was needed to bring it back to life. I mixed the white frosting in with the purple and had plenty to make a batch of cupcakes with.

One of my earliest pins was this.

I discovered Glorious Treats from this one pin and I have been a fan ever since! If you haven't already seen Glory's blog, check it out here.

I have wanted to recreate these for a while. Here is my version of Glory's cupcakes.

I didn't blend my colours like Glory, however, I used the same tip for each colour so that there was a little transfer on a couple of the cupcakes. I used Wilton tip 129 and filled my bag half way with frosting. Using a 90' angle (straight up) I began by piping a flower in the middle.

I then piped a couple more either side of the first one, and continued around to the edge.

This can be a very random technique and you can over pipe.

I filled the whole top of the cupcake with flowers to achieve the look of a Hydrangea.

I did the same technique for each cupcake. This is so simple and quick. They would make a lovely gift for a Mum, Grandma or friend. Perfect for birthdays, Mother's Day, or just to say Thank you!

Beautiful and bright!

They look equally nice if they are all the same colour.

I hope you like these and have a go! Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Nail Polish Rack DIY

A couple of months back my friend introduced me to a warehouse housing all manner of vintage, recycled and new items called Molly's Den. Check out their website here. It is a giant treasure trove housing pretty much anything you can think of! It was very hard to choose what to buy! I did go with a purpose but that soon went out the window when I saw how much was there.

I just loved the metal key shaped key holder!

Pretty bottles and bowls.

This was one of my favourite things, so naturally it had to come home with me!

Here it is looking pretty on my shelves in my reading corner.

I also picked up a wooden seed tray to make a nail polish rack.

I liked the rough feel of the seed tray and the stamped sides. I did want to pretty it up though, so I began by giving it a clean and then painting each compartment.

I decided to leave the sides of the box as they were.

The wood soaked up the paint so 3 coats were necessary for complete coverage.

I then cut some squares of Decopatch paper for the inside of each compartment.

I used this bright pink and light teal paper which I had previously used on my jewellery box.

I measured the squares and cut the paper to fit.  I applied glue to the back of each compartment and fixed a piece of Decopatch paper to it.

You can see that I didn't bother with as many coats of paint for the back of each compartment as I planned to cover with the paper like so. The sides have a more solid look of colour.

I continued to do this for each compartment, and once dry I painted over each stuck piece with glue to seal it.

I had originally decided to leave the edges like this, unpainted. However, a little off white paint soon changed my mind!

All finished, now to fill it up with nail polish!

Admittedly you can't see much of the back but there is a little hint poking through. 

I took these photos before we made over the master bedroom. The plan is to affix hooks to the back of the rack so that it can hang on the wall. It's one of the many little jobs left to do to make the bedroom even prettier!

Hope you are enjoying the school holidays!

Thursday, 23 July 2015

One Pan Gnocchi with Chorizo and Spinach

Schools out!! Weather is looking yucky for the next few days but we are still determined to have some fun, meeting up with friends and spending long lazy days doing pretty much nothing!

When it comes to dinner I still want to be able to churn out something tasty and delicious though time is a bigger factor for me during the holidays. We can potentially be out all day which leaves me with very little time when we get back to prepare something (or indeed the inclination!).

I have a lot of quick and easy to prepare meals that I use in rotation and they will be used a lot over the summer holidays. It is nice though to discover new recipes and to create a new tasty favourite to add to the mix.

One of the things we all enjoy eating is gnocchi. I must admit I have yet to try and make it myself, but Sainsburys do a very nice fresh gnocchi which means less time making dinner!

This recipe I am about to share came about when we were on holiday in France last year. We had a self catering mobile home, so we popped up to the onsite shop and picked up fresh gnocchi, vegetables, cheese and a large piece of chorizo. I threw it all together in a pan along with some of the items I had brought with us, and created a quick and tasty meal that could be ready in about 15 minutes!

One pan Gnocchi with Chorizo and Spinich

Serves 3-4


500g Gnocchi
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 red onion chopped
2 cloves garlic (chopped or minced)
1 red pepper
3 large mushrooms or 200g button mushrooms (chopped or sliced)
500g chopped tomatoes (I used Sainsbury's chopped tomatoes with basil)
A handful of fresh basil roughly chopped
A large handful of spinach
Diced chorizo (I use half of the Sainsbury's cooking diced chorizo pictured below)
Salt and Pepper


1. Set a pan with water to boil.
2. In a large pan or skillet warm through the olive oil. Add the chopped onion and cook until the onion starts to go clear, about 2-3 minutes.
3. Add the chopped/minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds.

4. Add all vegetables except spinach and cook until softened and cooked through. Once your water is boiling, add your gnocchi to the pan to cook for 2-3 minutes.

5. Add in the chorizo and continue to cook on a medium/low heat.

6. Add basil, chopped tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. You can add a teaspoon of sugar to the sauce if it tastes a little sharp. Once these are cooked through add your spinach.

7. Once spinach has started to wilt add the cooked gnocchi to the pan. Mix the gnocchi in well so that it gets covered in the sauce.

8. Once mixed, remove from the heat and serve. To make this a more substantial meal for 4, serve with bread and a side salad.

Doesn't that look tasty?

All done in a few minutes and provides a very flavourful dinner.

Have a great weekend!