DIY: McCall’s M7313 Knit Dress

McCall's M7313 Knit Dress

McCall’s M7313 is a knit dress that I sewed out of a brushed cotton knit fabric. It was the second time I sewed with knits, so I felt it went better than my first. I used a grey-beige knit with a floral print, and it is a really soft and cozy fabric.

McCall's M7313 Knit Dress

To achieve a sharp hem, I added strips of knit stay tape to the hems of the sleeves and skirts. I also added it to the shoulders to prevent them from stretching out.

I sewed a size 16 bodice and skirt in view D. The only alteration I added was lengthening the bodice by one inch. I’m glad I did, since now it hits at my waist; I think the dress would look like an empire-waist if I had left it as-is.

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Rum Crème Brûlée

Rum Crème Brûlée

Kiku Corner is on a crème brûlée roll, and for our dad’s birthday I made another version: rum crème brûlée. Instead of the plain vanilla or maple-flavoured crème brûlées of the past year, this time I used brown sugar and Kraken dark spiced rum to give the creamy dessert a Caribbean twist.
Rum Crème Brûlée

I’m more and more getting the hang of using the blowtorch. Once again, crème brûlée is quite easy to make if you’ve got a blowtorch at hand. The custard is easily mixed together and then baked in a water bath, which helps keep the custard at an even temperature. This allows for a bit of baking wiggle room so that the custard doesn’t curdle into scrambled eggs.

Rum Crème Brûlée

The crème brûlée can be prepared and baked a day or two in advance; just caramelize the sugar at the last minute. If you leave the sugar crust for too long, it will melt and turn into more of a crème caramel.
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Cinque Terre: Dinner in Vernazza

Cinque Terre: Dinner in Vernazza

We fled the crazy crowds at Monterosso and headed to the next village in Cinque Terre, Vernazza. Unfortunately we didn’t get to visit Corniglia, the fifth village, but we ended our trip to Cinque Terre on a high note.

Vernazza has the only working port (albeit a tiny one) where captains go fishing or take tourists out for tours, and the fishermen wear crocheted, pom-pom berets.

Cinque Terre: Dinner in Vernazza Cinque Terre: Dinner in Vernazza

 

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DIY: Roll-Neck Collar with Felted Hearts

This roll-neck collar project was created from leftover scraps from my arm warmers and the small ball of wool remaining from the crocheted beret Meinhilde made for me. When I found this shrunken cashmere sweater on a thrifting expedition, I really wanted the arms and body of the piece, but didn’t have any plans for the neck.

After some heavy Pinterest research, I discovered the roll-neck collar and decided to give it a go. To add a DIY twist, I decorated the collar with little turquoise hearts. This was my first attempt at felting and it was very easy. Using a small heart cookie cutter, felting needles, and a felting mat (or you could use a big plastic brush too), I created three hearts in the front and one in the back. I’m really happy with the results of these cute little embellishments.

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Cinque Terre: Monterosso

Cinque Terre: Monterosso

After picking up our car in La Spezia, we parked and hopped on the train to the next village in Cinque Terre, Monterosso. We had seen lots of people getting off at the Monterosso train stop, so we thought it would be a great place to explore. Monterosso was soooo busy! It had a long sand beach that was wall-to-wall full of beach chairs and sun umbrellas.

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