Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Guerrilla Knitting in Ranelagh

The streets of Dublin can be pretty grey and drab. Time to add a splash of colour!

The biggest needles stocked in your local craft shop
Several obnoxiously large & colourful balls of wool

The last time a knitting project dwarfed me this much, I was 5 years old. Learning to wield the giant needles was a struggle in itself. Anyone sitting next to me risked being on the receiving end of jabs from rogue needles. 

That said, the monster needles ensured the piece knitted up stupidly quickly- I'd say the whole thing only took me a couple of hours.

Joan and I headed out in the cover of darkness to sew the piece onto the bike rack. This is probably something that you could do in the daytime, but sneaking out in the middle of the night definitely added a measure of excitement. Also probably minimised the amount of strange looks we got.

It was so great coming down to see it in the daylight. It's immensely satisfying to watch on anonymously as people stop to look at the splash of colour. 

I thought for sure the thunderstorm that hit Dublin last week would have disintegrated it, but last I checked it's still going strong. Also quite heartening that no rowdy drunks have wrecked it yet! Definitely didn't expect it to last this long.

Such an easy and rewarding project- could not recommend it more.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Butter. But Better

Hello readers,

Here at Crafty Students we have our eye on a new food business in Dublin. We reckon it's going to be the next BIG thing. Let us introduce you to IMPROPER BUTTER. "Improper?" I hear you ask. "Improperly good" we shout!

We all love a bit of butter slathered on mash, thrown around a pan with some fresh, crisp veggies or plain and simple on a thick slice of toast. Elaine Lavery and Hannah O'Reilly of Improper Butter have been whipping up a storm with their new range of FLAVOURED butters. Think fillet steak with roast garlic, lemon and thyme butter, grilled salmon with moroccan spice butter or French toast with cinnamon and honey butter. Enough said really. Salivating yet? We are...

Improper Butter are committed to using fresh, real, Irish ingredients.We chatted to Elaine from Improper Butter who described her product as "a range of improperly delicious Irish flavoured butters that inspire you to be creative at meal times. Creative. Convenient. Customised."

A REAL food concept delivered by two young Irish entrepreneurs, who have pledged 10% of their profits to providing a leg up for other university / young entrepreneur start-ups. They're clearly good guys. Help Improper Butter get where it deserves to go by voting for the concept here!

You can pick up Improper Butter on Saturdays 9.30am - 4pm in the Honest2Goodness Market in Glasnevin. A 120g slab of heavenly dinner potential costs just 3 Euro.

Improper Butter have a range of recipes to spark your creativity, check one out below!

Enjoy! Natalie Voorheis :-)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Knitted Kitteh

Awww! Look at the little kitteh! It's rather adorable isn't it? I knitted this little fellow for my friend Beth. It is an incredibly easy pattern both to knit and to sew up. I made the entire thing in less than two hours. Awesome eh?  

Here's a link to the pattern if you would like to try it out! It's so very quick and easy that I would strongly recommend it. I used googley eyes and a little heart button for the nose but there are other ways of doing his face as you can see here. It's a very versatile pattern and you could quickly and easily make a whole family of kittehz. Oh yes.

This pattern is perfect for beginners. Aside from a little bit of shaping for the head, it's just straight up knitting. It's great if you're new to knitting and want to graduate beyond the scarf. Take the leap I say, knit a cat!



I hope you're all having a lovely week so far and enjoying the summer sunshine!

B x

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Fool's Macaroons

These coconut macaroons are so simple, any fool with a bowl and an oven could make them. Sweet and light, they're the perfect thing to have after a meal with a cup of tea. Or to bring to a party, or to have for breakfast....whatever you're into. I've forgotten where I found this recipe, but I've been making them for years, and thought it was one worth sharing!

                                                For about 16 macaroons you will need

                                                                   4 egg whites
                                                                200g castor sugar
                                                           320g dessicated coconut

Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees (C)

Whisk or stir everything until the three ingredients come lightly together.
With wet hands, scoop up half a handful of the mixture and roll it into a ball in your two hands.
Continue making the balls, placing them on a baking tray as you go.

Bake for 15 minutes, until the macaroons are just starting to go a bit brown. If you take them out at this stage there will still be nice and soft inside.

Cool. Store. Eat. Repeat!


These are quite sweet, but you can adjust the recipe to your own taste, i.e. using more or less coconut.
In Dublin I like to buy dessicated coconut in asian food shops, as you can usually get pretty big bags of the stuff there (500g, 1000g) for under a fiver.



Sunday, July 21, 2013

Knitting On Holiday

Hello readers,

Brid and I are in Cambridge visiting my parents at the moment. We're having a glorious time sitting, reading, knitting, chatting, writing letters and generally rampaging around eating everything in sight.

We've also just discovered "Vine" see below.


Natalie V