We are only just into Autumn and it is now legal to drink hot chocolate!
But I have a couple of very dear friends who are allergic to cocoa solids - my thoughts are with you guys at this difficult time so I thought that there must be a way that they can join in the hot chocolate fun!
And then, because this is primarily a sewing and patching blog, we have to have a nice mug rug to enjoy it on! My favourite animal (well one of them) at this time of the year is the good ol' deer. And that deer features quite heavily in this week's post. It is on the fabric and on the handles of my favourite spoon.
This is my lovely bronze life sized deer head that my Mum bought me. Fine antlers, the lot. I have a beautiful set of deer antler cutlery from Germany too and I bring it out too at this time of year.
I have had one person inform me that animals are harmed when this cutlery is made and I would like to take this moment to say they are absolutely NOT! I would never buy it if it hurt an animal. I do hope that this has been cleared up now - I am looking at you Tara!
Rant over but I felt that it needed to be said. Thank you for listening. Okay, what are we doing again? Chocolate - how COULD I forget!
Let's make the chocolate first and then you can sip indulgently while you read the sewing tutorial....
Gather these supplies:
-good quality white chocolate
-vanilla paste or a vanilla bean
-small marshmallows - white of course!
Here's how to do it:
Break up the chocolate or, better still, grind it to a fine gravel if you have the equipment.
It won't make powder as such because of the fat content but it will melt quicker in smaller pieces.
Put 200ml into a small saucepan and two generous tablespoons of white chocolate bits (easier to measure if it is chopped up). Put in a quarter teaspoon of vanilla too. Gently melt all of this together stirring constantly and bring to the brink of a boil without letting it actually boil.
Tip into your favourite mug and top with white marshmallows.
You can make cappuccino type milk foam too instead of marshmallows and I have added another dimension to mine with a sprinkle of cinnamon powder. Bliss!
Go somewhere quiet and enjoy this treat! Store any leftover in the fridge (yeah right!) so that it stays fresh for longer.
It is really simple and it is delicious if a bit sweeter than 'normal' hot chocolate. But I do raise my (now empty) mug to my friends and hope that this makes them smile.
Let's get on with the sewing while you are sipping that delicious brew. If Autumn had a face, surely this would be it and it is a nice way to use the scraps too. It is quite possible a little larger than the usual mug rug size but that doesn't matter. So what will we need?
-10" squares of pretty Autumn fabrics - make sure that the deer puts in an appearance!
-grey/tan melange felt
-wadding. I am using 272 Thermolam from Vilene.
-something nice for backing
-dark grey thread for the free motion embroidery
-label making things. I will not go through the ins and outs again but you can find out what you need to know from an earlier post here.
You can make a faux leather one too and they also look good at this time of the year.
This is going to be a raggy edge applique project with free motion embroidery (FME) so you will need a darning foot or similar for your machine to achieve this. All models are slightly different so I ask you to consult your book for the details.
Here is the pattern. When you print it off the deer head is 8cm long without the antlers.
Cut the deer head only from your felt
From your chosen fabric for the top, cut a rectangle 25cm x 15cm.
Glue the deer's head to the bottom third of the fabric that you have chosen for the background (makes room for the antlers).
You will see a crease down the centre? That is the best way to align the head perfectly.
Cut four strips of fabric for the outer border, measuring 6cm wide. Don't worry about the length, trim that off as you go just make sure that they are long enough. Attach the top strip, trim it and iron it, then do the bottom one and iron and trim that....
Now do the two side ones.
Draw the antlers on with a water soluble marker using the line drawing as a guide.
As you can see, the antlers overlap into the top panel.
Take a piece of wadding about 2 cm all around larger than your top and pin it well. Set your machine up for FME and then embroider the antlers. Now you have something that looks like this....
Snip all of the threads away and remove the water soluble maker lines with water and it will look a little more promising!
Lay the completed top onto the backing fabric and pin. Quilt along either side of the seams and pieces that you have sewn....
add a label.....
Machine sew around the label to secure it. Now trim the outside of the mat so that wadding, top and backing are all the same and then bind it with your bias binding. Now you have something like this...
Cool! And just perfect for enjoying a hot cup of white chocolate so make another cup of that too! This mug rug is a little larger than normal but that is okay and if you want it a little smaller, trim it back. Actually, mine is sneakily larger for a very good reason....it also takes a plate of macaroons!
Ahem. Avail yourself of some of these very nice fabrics. Here is the link to the Makower site so that you don't miss out on yours. You can find a retailer where you live.
Fabulous! Thank you so much for stopping by.
Love and hugs