I’ve had quite a break over Christmas and New Year but back now and kicking the year off with a project from one of my favourite designers… Mixing pattern, textures and materials are the key to Studio McGee’s designs, for example juxtaposing a leather sofa next to a linen sofa. A dark almost black buttoned […]
Another fabulous project from Studio Mcgee, contemporary meets traditional… What’s not to love about this space, a mix of contemporary pieces and traditional give it a modern look with a heritage nod. Textures are big with Studio McGee and if you look closely at the coffee table in image 5 you will see it has […]
Crib Creative If we want to make a personal good impression we will want to dress our best, this can also be said of the first impression one receives as they step inside our home… When someone visits our home for the first time, it gives them an impression of the person we are, it […]
Described as “Cape Cod meets West Indies”, another fabulous project by one of my favourite design companies. The exterior architecture of this new build leans towards Hamptons, however Black Band Design have also injected a tropical feel inspired by quote, the “vibrant waters of the Caribbean”. When planning a new build by oneself with no interior designer […]
1. Image via Mercer Interior The word, ‘boho’ may conjure up a riotous mix of colours and patterns, muddle these together in a messy but creative way and throw in some greenery and you may have the boho of the past. However, today boho can be far more chic, in fact…..’boho chic’. ‘Boho’ stems from the word […]
“Casual and sophisticated, modern and timeless, serene but colourful” is how the designer describes this relaxed, South Carolina home. The designers, Guest House Studio, have used varying shades of blue for this project, with paint, soft furnishing and artwork. Blue is ‘cool’ on the colour charts but can evoke a moody or calming affect when you […]
Peek inside a gorgeous cottage of blue and white with the addition of a few surprising colours. Designed by award winning interior designers and home builders, Cottage Company of Harbor Springs, this sweet home has the perfect balance of style for coast or country. Specialising in creating “beautiful, classic cottages where generations of families can […]
Breeze Giannasio is an interior designer to the stars and I literally have stars in my eyes when I see the transformations she makes to these Hollywood homes. I’ve been in love with the distinctive style of designer, Breeze Giannasio since I viewed a video of her transformation of Mila Kunis parents condo on Houzz. Breeze takes […]
No ice cream maker needed for this delicious treat and if raspberries are not in season in your part of the world, you could use ‘freeze dried’ or frozen raspberries (defrost them first). Recipe via Bromer Bakery…click here for instructions. More inspiration….
Ever wondered how to achieve a faux metal look, ‘Love, Create, Celebrate’, shows you how with easy DIY instructions.
Above: I love those chunky tassel throws but why spend hundred’s of dollars when you can upcycle one yourself for next to nothing. This idea comes from ‘Bre Purposed’ where you will find instructions to make these fab tassels.
And some Coastal inspiration…
Above: Wood, soft shades of grey, nautical print and layering are all elements of a peaceful, coastal retreat
Above: Circular mirrors are a better shape for a coastal look
Above: Glass pendants grouped together look fabulous suspended in an open space such as above a stairwell or a vaulted ceiling
Above: Mix up blue and white cushions for a coastal look and use plants such as palms which have a tropical feel
I used to feature weekly inspiration with recipes, diy and inspiring interiors, but somehow this post seemed to have been put on the back burner so I am bringing it back, yet again, and mixing it up with plenty of inspiration to fill your weekend.
I have always loved the beauty of coral but don’t believe in encouraging people to raid our delicate reefs for the sake of decorating our homes, coral is far more beautiful in its natural surroundings and that is exactly where it should remain. However, that said, it can really enhance a room so Faux coral is a great option but is usually very expensive to purchase. So, Heather from “Setting for Four”, has come up with a 10 minute makeover (why didn’t I think of it), using plastic aquarium coral that when it is finished, looks as good as the faux coral from Pottery Barn.
Easter wouldn’t be Easter without an Easter cake and a bunny or two…
Surprise your family with this cute Easter cake, they won’t see the bunny till you cut a slice. Recipe and instructions at Mojewypieki (click on the ‘translate’ button at the top of the page for the recipe in English)
Above: Be creative with mini Easter eggs, instructions over at The Gunny Sack
A couple of years ago I made some individual Easter meringue cakes which took no time at all, but this year I would like to bake and decorate a special cake and I hope I have inspired you to bake or make something special for your family this Easter.
Above: You will find a link at the end of this post to see more of this lovely home by designer Melanie Turner
I hope you enjoy this week’s Tuesdays mix a couple of easy recipes including how to make coconut whipped cream which has got to be healthier than dairy and it tastes delicious. Also a recipe for 15 minute mint thins, (vegan and ‘no bake’), now that’s what I like! I have also included a couple of DIY ideas for the home and a glimpse of a designer’s makeover.
Many of the ideas I come across are from very creative bloggers, so I do encourage you to look around their blogs if you are hopping over for a recipe or tip.
Above: Ebay don’t just sell things, they also have tips and recipes including this one for Coconut Whipped Cream published by leealicious. This is definitely a healthy alternative to whipped cream or butter cream icing
Above: I love a recipe that requires no baking, only 3 ingredients and is vegan to boot, although these are not gluten free they fit the vegan category and these sweet morsels take only 15 minutes to make…. Find the recipe instructions at Izy Hossack’s blog, Top with Cinnamon
Above: I seem to have chocolate on my mind, but who couldn’t resist these cute Chocolate, Blackberry Cupcakes… Recipe, at Pastry Affair
Above: If you can’t find that perfect Duvet cover, why not make one yourself, you may be surprised how easy it is to do. At ‘Hey There Home’ a very crafty blog with lots of ideas you can find simple, visua and written instructions on how to make your own duvet cover
I also wanted to share a home tour, the work of Interior designer, Melanie Turner. Melanie has used colour and pattern in a wonderful way. Here is a link so you can read the full post and see more images of this delightful home at Cococozy
I hope you have enjoyed this weeks mix as much as I enjoyed discovering these lovely recipes and ideas.
Hi everyone, recently I mentioned that I was attempting a cake for my son’s wedding, last week I made a trial, naked cake and thought I would share the recipe, some images of my cake and a few great video instructions I discovered.
I have to admit, I am no pastry chef and I knew it was going to be a bit “hit and miss” but for a first attempt I was really pleased. Thankfully I have a reprieve as my sons partner’s boss, is a pastry chef and she is now going to make the wedding cake as a present for them. My recipe is simple and although the cake might look impressive using my foolproof chocolate cake recipe you can’t go wrong.
Naked Wedding Cake Instructions:
You will find my chocolate cake recipe below:
1 cup caster sugar (extra fine granulated)
1 cup of plain yogurt or milk (I like to use half and half as all yogurt makes the cake a little heavy)
3/4 cup cocoa
200gms soft butter
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 and a half teaspoons vanilla essence
1/4 teaspoon of salt
3 cups self raising flour
1 cup coffee (strong)
8″ or 20cm diameter cake tin with deep sides (spring bottom is best to be able to get the cake out easily after)
Place all the above ingredients into a food processor or large bowl and mix well
Turn into a loose bottom cake tin which is pre greased and lined with baking paper so that it extends about 3″ above the pan
Bake for 1 hour and 15 mins at 160 degrees Celsius (320 Fahrenheit) (check with cake skewer in the centre after one hour then again at 1 hour 10 mins to make sure skewer comes out clean, cooking time can depend on your ovens temperature)
Turn off the oven when cooked and allow to cool inside the oven
Allow to stand until fully cooled before removing from cake tin
For the Naked cake:
You will need to make 3 eight inch cakes. This means making the chocolate cake recipe with three times the ingredients and pouring into three 8″ cake tins, you could use 10″ tins as this recipe does rise up high but it may take a little less time to cook in a 10″ pan so you would need to keep an eye on it
I cooked two at once then baked the third one alone
Once the cakes are cooked, allow the cake to cool fully before you remove from the tin. I use the spring form tins that you can unclasp the sides as it is much easier to remove
You then need to make your butter icing, basically I used a method of one part butter to two parts Icing sugar (powdered sugar). Allow your butter to soften at room temperature and beat for 5 mins until light and fluffy. Then add your icing sugar one cup at a time beating slowly in between, you will need to turn down your beater so the powder doesn’t fly everywhere. Give it a final high beat for a few minutes once all the icing sugar has been added. If it is too thick you can adjust by adding a teaspoon of milk and beating and another one if still too thick. It should be thick enough to stick to a spoon upside down but shake off the spoon if you shake really hard. Once it is made you can add a few drops of flavouring and quickly mix again. I used orange essence as I thought orange icing and chocolate cake would be a nice combination
You then need to slice your cooled cakes. Just slice off the crown of the cake so that they are all level and equal in height
I used a cake slicer, (see this great video below from Wilton on levelling your cake for layering). If you don’t have a slicer, Wilton also show you how to do it with a knife
Once you have your three cake slices and your butter cream made, put a dollop of butter cream onto an 8″cake board and place your cake on top, press down firmly with a flat hand, this will keep your cake stuck to the board
Place four plastic straws or dowels into the cake to support the next layer. These should be cut off at the level of the cake
Using a spatula or piping bag, pipe or spread on your first layer of butter cream
Then add your next cake layer, using one straw in the centre pierce down to the bottom of the cake layer beneath, this will hold the cake in place. If you are moving the cake to a venue you will need to place three straws or dowels between each layer and an 8″ board in between each layer (remember to apply a little butter cream in the centre of your board first so the cake will stick to it
Spread your second layer of butter cream onto your second layer of cake and put your straws or dowels in place then add your final cake layer (to do this properly you would have another board on the base of your final layer). You can sprinkle a 4″ diameter of fine coconut in the centre of your cake layer below before placing your next layer. This will enable the layers to be easily separated without pulling all the butter cream away from the layer below
Once you place the final layer, cover the cake with a thick layer of butter cream and using a spatula or large flat cake scraper smooth the surface. There are some great instructions in this video below on how to ice your cake…
Use plenty of buttercream in between your layers, don’t be stingy with it. Better still use chocolate ganache filling in between and buttercream on the outside.
I allowed a more rustic look to my cake by letting the chocolate cake crumbs show through, however to get this look you can do your first layer of thin butter cream, then place your cake in the fridge for 20 mins then remove it and do another layer of icing to hide the crumbs beneath. Obviously a chocolate cake will show the crumbs more than a light coloured cake
Your Cake Topper:
Form a dome shape with white fondant icing, you can buy ready made in the supermarket
Fresh flowers or fruits are the simplest method of decorating, Roses work great, I used Freesia’s on my cake which look very pretty and have a wonderful scent
Place your flowers however you want to arrange them into the icing and then use some butter icing to glue it to the top of your cake and voila!
Impress your friends with this simple cake. If I made it again I would slice each layer yet again to make it a 6 layer cake and put lots more butter icing in between. Naked cakes are much the in thing and you can fill them or decorate them with anything. At a blog called ‘A Tea with the Queen’I spotted a recipe for mascarpone cream filling which blogger, Sarah used in her naked cake. I encourage you to visit Sarah’s blog as she is very talented.
For more cake ideas and links to recipes, please visit my Pinterest Board