Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Hand Stamped jewellery

When I create, I do it good and proper. Would you just look at all this mess? I'd be stressed out by it, but I can't help but be in awe of the gorgeous Czech glass beads that arrived today.

I have started making metal hand-stamped jewellery, and I am fit to burst with all the ideas I have. At the moment I am making a 'mummy' bracelet on behalf of my brother for his wife.

On a sadder note, I also made this necklace today. This necklace was made for a girl I went to school with, and have known since I was 7. Unfortunately, her 14 month old daughter lost her battle with life from the devastating meningococcal disease just last month, and I cannot begin to tell you how shocked and devastated I am for her and her family. To have your baby admitted to hospital thinking they are just unwell, to going home without her less than a week later is something I cannot even concieve of. 

Just hug those babies of yours a little tighter tonight. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Cake Balls

Cake balls and cake pops are huge right now. OK, you're probably about to say they have been for a long while, but down here in Australia we are always late catching that train. So let me repeat that...
Cake balls are huge right now :)

I love to whip up a batch when we are invited out to someone's house. They are huge hit with kids as well as adults. Mostly, when having a social dinner, us Italians have a knack of over indulging, so when it comes to dessert, (and there is normally plenty on offer) we are fit to burst.
This is where I love cake balls. I can't fit in a big slice of cake after a huge dinner, but a cake pop, or two is perfect....especially when wanting to sample everything else. They are even great to have as a little indulgent treat with an afternoon cuppa :)

I thought I would share with you how I make cake balls.
Gather your goodies, and get ready to roll....

1 packet cake mix of your choice, cooked and cooled completely. (I used Gluten free for these, so the Coeliacs in our family can enjoy them too)
1 x 225g block of Philladelphia Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup pure icing sugar
1 tablespoon butter
1 +1/2 packs of White Melts (375g packs) (Candy melts work better if you can get them, otherwise melt a teaspoon of vegetable oil with the melts for smoother consistancy)

Make sure your cake mix has cooled entirely. WIth your hands, crumble the cake into fine pieces, rubbing it between your palms for a finer result.
In a seperate bowl, mix philly cheese, icing sugar and softened butter. You can use your electric beater for a couple of minutes if you want.
Now, add the cream cheese mix slowly to the cake crumbs. DO NOT add the whole lot at once! I find cake mix sizes vary, so you may end up with mush if you pour in the whole lot. It should feel like cookie dough.
Mix in very well with your hands.

Roll into firm balls, place on a cookie sheet on a tray and place in the freezer for 20 minutes, or in the fridge until firm if you have more time. DO not freeze them through, or your coating will crack.

Using a double boiler method, stir your candy melts until totally melted, add the oil and stir through thoroughly.
Drop your first ball in. Some people choose to use a kebab stick to hold the balls, I find juggling the ball between two spoons once or twice works for me.
If using a stick, tap it gently on the edge of the bowl to remove excess melt.
Drop onto a fresh cookie sheet and decorate how you wish.

If you're wanting to make cake pops, dip the end of the stick into the melt before placing it into your ball. Only push it half way up.  Decorate and stand them up on a styrofoam block to set.

Remember to work quickly and make sure the entire ball is fully covered.
They sure don't look pretty the first time, (or in this case, the 10th time) but they taste too fab for anyone to care ;)

To see the queen of Cake Balls and Cake Pops (and for a virtual sugar rush) visit

Clara for Christmas

This little one is my latest, and possibly last, for Ebay this year.
She is 7" long and has sparse strawberry blonde hair. Unfortunately she is also a 'booboo' baby. Parts of her toes and hand are darker in colour compared to her head, and she has some marks in the clay on her left thigh.
She's on right now, with no reserve for this one.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Colliii Awards

Another year, another Colliii Awards competition.
For those of you who don't know about the Colliii awards, it's an annual competition that artists from all over the world enter. There are so many categories like reborns, reborn kits, fantasy dolls, one of a kind mini babies, one of a kind newborns ect.
Last year was my first year of entering, and I was very surprised to have won the category for Best Mini Baby. I had a lot going on at that time of the year, including my beloved grandfather's passing. I had totally forgotten about it, so it was even more exciting to find out I had won.
I wasn't too sure about entering this year. Everything has been up in the air for our little family over this past year, including selling our house, so my heart wasn't in it. But I decided to enter the very last minute, and I am happy to say I won the category for Best Mini Baby once again this year.

This is the little one that nabbed me my prize :) If you follow my auctions, you will know that it is 'Willow', my last baby doll I had Ebay.

As usual, there was so much talent this year!  Congrats to all the nominees and winners.