I work in an office full of foodies ... we love food, we talk about food, we swap our best recipes, we share leftovers (and our tips for hiding said leftovers from hungry housemates!). Given our common love of food, we are working on setting up some potlucks - the first is going to be Christmas desserts. I cannot wait. Anyway, this is beside the point, I guess! Well, the point is when Sarah & I decided the challenge of Co-Workers Gifts, I knew that my project had to involve food in some way!
Here it is ... for Challenge No. 8, I combined my shared interest in food, with an itch to make something out of oilcloth, and my favorite holiday colors - pink & red! Hence, the oilcloth goody bags ... my goody bags will always be filled with homemade peppermint bark (because it's yummy and it matches!). Yes I am a dork who thinks it a bonus to have the candy match the bag. I admit it.
The oilcloth is Heather Bailey's Lindy Leaf - from my favorite local fabric store, Scrapbooks Etc (dangerous place)!
|close up of chocolate & peppermint layers, there are 2 of each!|
|i used some of my embellished mini clothes pins from the last challenge for bag closures|
|these little pins came in doubly handy ... you can't pin oilcloth because it'll leave a mark, so i used these handy pins to "pin" my work while sewing!|
After conducting a lot of research on sewing with oilcloth, here are my conclusions ...
1. increase the stitch length - i had my machine at 5; and
2. use tissue paper whenever you are stitching with the oily / shiny side up! I did not have any problems when sewing RS together, but the minute I started to top stitch, the oilcloth wanted to stick. And that was a problem (especially since you cannot rip stitches because it'll leave a mark)! To prevent the sticking, I put a sheet of tissue paper right over the shiny side, and literally sewed it onto the bag ... see:
|when you're done top stitching, it'll look like this - it's kind of fun ripping all the paper off |
Also, the Sew Mama! Sew blog has good information on sewing with oilcloth.
I used this tutorial from Skip to my Lou for the bag. Easy instructions and simple to follow. There is not much to making a bag like this - give it a try! I have the Martha Stewart Encyclopedia of Sewing & Fabric Crafts, and I L-O-V-E it. Originally I planned to make oilcloth bags from her pattern, but it seemed more complicated than necessary. Google entered the picture, I found this tutorial and it was a go!
Okay, onto the Homemade Peppermint Bark ...
If you know me, you may know that I have a
slight huge obsession with the combination of chocolate & peppermint. Like so bad that I am freezing the Peppermint Mocha creamer right now so I can drink it next summer obsession (why is that seasonal anyway)? And as soon as the Millstone Seasonal Peppermint coffee goes on sale, I'm stocking up on that too!
Anyway ... it's really easy to make and I used up some chocolate I had on hand to make this! I think what made this batch super good was the 2 layers of peppermints. It goes: dark chocolate on bottom, top with crushed peppermints, top with white chocolate enhanced with peppermint extract, topped with more crushed peppermints. The only other ingredient was some heavy whipping cream mixed into the chocolates to make them smoother and easier to spread (and well, a little HWC never hurt anything in my opinion).
This picture (above) is a little sad to me because I had to melt the bunny. Oh well I am over it. My sister in law works in an amazing & historic candy shop in downtown Davenport, Iowa. She sends us lots of choclate. My husband does not eat it, so yours truly polishes it all off. This is not a good thing. SO ... last Easter, I hid the bunny from myself in the freezer. Luckily I didn't hide it too well!
|I don't have a double boiler, but the glass bowl on top of a pot of boiling water works wonders!|
One more close-up, isn't it so pretty?!
Ok, I'm off to the fridge. It appears that in order to actually gift this, I am going to need to make more!
Now, hopefully you are off to vote!