Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Tuesday Tutorial: Making Giant Flowers for a Party!

Been quite busy with a lot of things and events the last couple of weeks.
One of them was a coffee evening that we hosted yesterday.
Now Coffee Evenings or Coffee Mornings in layman terms is like ladies club event...
i.e. a get together of Army wives with some good eats, some chit-chat and an occasion to dress up!
Usually there is a theme- for the decor and dress code and a maybe a couple of games.
Yesterday's evening soiree was flower themed and though I will be posting a full post dedicated to throwing a Flower Themed Party- complete with the invitation and the games...
But for today-here is the first tutorial for the event- how to make a GIANT flower as backdrop for any party... maybe even a little girl's birthday party.



Sorry about the scotch tape peeking from the walls but as the desert air here is very windy and would have torn my beautiful delicate flowers to shred in no time- we had to tape them to the pillars!!
We had two BIG flowers at the entrance pillars and a lot of smaller tissue flowers on the gifts and decorations.
will give tutorials for those as well, but for now this tutorial is for giant colorful flowers.

Things needed for one flower:
-10 sheets of bright tissue paper or kite paper as its known in India (I have taken pink)- for the main petals.
-4 sheets of contrasting tissue paper for the centre color (I have used yellow).
-a piece of floral wire or any other bendable wire that you can get your hands on.
-Scotch tape and a stapler.
-A pair of sharp scissors.

STEP-1
Lay the layers of 10 sheets on a flat surface- (remember to stack them together -dont fold)
Draw three different sizes of petals on them and cut them out (like shown in the picture below)
If you have to make quite a few flowers- it would help if you drew the shapes on a stiff paper as a stencil and then just trace them on different colors of stacked tissue papers.




STEP-2
Now take the 4 sheets of centre color, stack them one on top of the other, fold in half.
Now cut the sheets in half so that you get two stacks of papers.
Take one stack of paper and fold in a fan shape.
Tie the centre with the floral wire, leaving about 3 inches of wire free- like shown in the picture below.
cut both ends of the fan in thin strips 1/2 way down the length.
And fluff up the ends (a little carefully so as to not tear the strips) so the they become fluffed up like a ball.





STEP-3
Take 3 petals of the smallest size... scrunch the smaller ends and either tape them together with scotch tape or staple them. Take care to fan them out like shown in the picture below.




STEP-4
Take the centre colored paper (yellow) that you have folded and tied onto a wire in step 2.
The tied up paper should have been fluffed up by gently pulling apart the various layers so that it resembles a ball.
Now carefully tape the bunch of 3 petals that you had taped together in the previous step to the wire as close to the yellow papers as possible.





STEP-5
Now attach the next set of stapled small petals to the flower.
Keep attaching the petals in different layers (beginning from the small to the big) all around wire of the centre ball of yellow color....



And your Big, Beautiful Giant Flower is ready to hang or attach anywhere you like!



The full Party idea of flower theme will follow on my blog real soon!!
As well as tutorials of the other flowers that I had made for the event...given below!










Saturday, September 20, 2014

Saturday Art School: How to Draw Tinkerbell- a fairy from PeterPan

Tinkerbell is one of my favorite cartoon characters...cute, sassy and tiny and so much fun to draw!
Today's Art Tutorial we will larn how to draw this adorable little fairy and use her on cards and invitations for parties... or maybe draw her and put her up on the wall!



so, pick up your drawing pad and lets get started!!

STEP-1



 STEP-2



STEP-3



STEP-4



STEP-5



STEP-6



STEP-7



STEP-7



STEP-9





Saturday, September 13, 2014

Saturday Slurp! Easy Chocolate Fudge/ Brownie Cake

Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers



OMG- these little cakes disappeared in the blink of an eye, that I wasnt able to photograph/decorate them quickly enough!
Not really happy with the photos but as I am being repeatedly blackmailed to make them again, I think I should have a few good pictures to put up soon. 

 Ingredients:
(makes 4)
broken chocolate chunks-125 gms
refined flour- 1/2 cup
unsalted butter- 9 tbsp + for greasing the tin
4 eggs
powdered sugar 6 tbsp
cocoa powder 1 tbsp
baking powder 1/2 tsp

1- Preheat the oven at 180 C
2- Grease the muffin tray or ramekin bowls (like I used)and dust with flour-shake out the excess
3- take chocolate + butter in a bowl and melt in the microwave for 1 minute on HIGH
4- Break the eggs in a mixing bowl + powdered sugar and beat till light and frothy.
5- Add the cocoa powder to the egg bowl- mix well.
6- Now add the melted butter and chocolate mixture, and blend well.
7- Sieve the flour and the baking powder together and then add to the bowl, spoon by spoon and keep beating with the blender till well combined.
8- Pour into individual Ramekin bowls or muffin tray (if making for a gathering) leaving a little at the top for it to rise.
9- Bake them at 180 C for 10 minutes.
10- Take the bowls/ tray out of the oven and loosen the edges with a knife.
11- place a plate on the bowl and flip it over- the little, moist cakes will pop right out.
12- Serve warm with Vanilla Ice cream and a drizzle of Chocolate Sauce.









Thursday, September 11, 2014

Thursday Thought: The love for Reading...

Today's Daily Drawing: a Thought for your Thursday...


yay it has been voted:

Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers

The Free Desktop Calendar of September 2014

The Desktop Calendar for the month of September is here for you:
tried a little atmospheric illustration- a little different from my usual style and am not really very happy with it.... but I am working on it...

its blissful monsoon time and even in a dry state like Rajasthan... we do manage to have an occasional shower or two that makes me go all mushy and sentimental... and do the happy dance!
the incomparable smell of wet earth after baking in the hot sun for two days....
and the typical romantic monsoon songs playing in the background while I feel the soft raindrops on my upturned face...
my little modern take on "pyar hua, iqrar hua hai.... pyar se phir kyu darta hai dil...." for you!

Hope YOU enjoy it!


please right click+save, and then save as desktop background. 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Fashionable Friday: inspired from the Emmy Awards 2014


Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers

My computor illustrations have come to a standstill these days (some technical glitches) so am reverting back to the watercolors...
did some fashion illustrations inspired by the Emmy Awards that took place a few days back...
from these vibrant dresses-






and a few close-ups :-)




Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Tuesday Treat: Sweet Orange Rolls and yummy Strawberry Rolls



This is one of the yummiest rolls I have had, and though my husband says its bready, my kids love them and I also sneak in more bites than I should... seeing that its so bready and bad for weight!!  :-D
and if you've tried my delicious Stuffed Pizza Buns (click here)
the dough of this roll is the same.
the same amount of oil,+yeast+eggs+flour etc.
so I'll just repeat it here:
If you want to see pictures of the dough-making steps, I would request you to visit the page link given above, because it really helps. 

ingredients for the dough:
2 tbsp dry yeast
1 and 3/4 cups of luke-warm water
1/3 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup butter
5 cups flour
1 tsp salt

1- soak the yeast in the luke-warm water and 1/3 cup sugar for 15 minutes.
2- Take flour, eggs, butter and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add the yeast mixture and beat with a dough beater for 3 minutes at medium speed.
3- Cover the dough with a cloth and let it rest for 10 minutes.
4- Now the dough would have doubled up in size in these 10 minutes...Kneed the dough again for 3 minutes and rest it for another 10 minutes.
5- It rises again after 10 minutes, so you kneed it once more for 3 minutes, and rest to rise again for 10 minutes.
6- in the meantime get these ingredients together and mix them well:

1/2 cup butter softened
1/2 cup sugar
zest of 2 large oranges

7- Now take the dough, kneed once more and divide into two balls.
8- Lightly flour your countertop and roll each dough ball into two rectangles pressing and stretching with your hands and NOT the rolling pin.


9- Spread the orange zest+butter+sugar mixture evenly on this dough rectangle


10- Roll up this rectangle into a long tube.


11- Use a sharp serrated knife to cut the dough into 1 1/2'' sections. Place each small dough round onto a greased baking dish.


12- Leave the rolls to rise some more for another 30 minutes. they will probably double up in size.
(you can see the difference in the pictures)


13- Bake at 400 F or at 200 C for 10 minutes.
 While the rolls are baking prepare the orange glaze.
mix 2 cups powdered sugar, 1/2 tsp grated orange zest and 2 tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice.
Mix well till its of a think consistency but not runny.
14- take the slightly golden rolls out of the oven and drizzle with the glaze.
(unfortunately mine got browned and not golden!)





and now for some tips... what I usually do is when oranges are in season, I save the peels.
after removing/scraping the white part of the peels which usually has the bitter taste, I cut thin strips of the peel, sprinkle sugar and then cook it in that sugar.
this candied sugar peels are then frozen and used in various desserts when fresh oranges are not available 
Like for this orange glazed rolls, you can use the candied orange peels if fresh orange zest is not available- just powder the frozen peels and use instead of the orange zest.

One can also make various varieties of these rolls:
Sprinkle cinnamon powder+butter+sugar instead of orange-zesty  sugar and you will get the famous Cinnamon Rolls (mayb even sprinkle some raisins if you like)


or spread some mixed fruit jam or strawberry crush to get strawberry rolls!



I made these strawberry rolls using strawberry crush and putting the rolls in a muffin pan...hence the shape!




Dripping with Strawberry Glaze (sugar and strawberry crush)


enjoy with some hot lemon tea!


 and be ready for some repeat requests because your kids are surely going to love them!!


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