The Brave Cook

My first steps into sewing and fashion design from urban Berlin!

Archive for the month “November, 2012”

At home with a cold and a pencil…

This week I had to sit at home and cure myself. I caught a cold and even though I tried to go to work and handle it somehow, it was just too much at the end of the day. My energy was gone and I needed some proper sleep and peace. I definitely wanted to use the extra time at home to finish some projects, but my body was too weak and I couldn’t concentrate on anything for a long time. The least I could do was something relaxing but still creative. So I took a pencil and started to sketch some stuff.

I didn’t do any sketches for a long time and I’m not the type of person who designs everything accurately and puts it down on paper. I’m having some ideas of making my own pieces and do something like a collection one day but I’m not as close to that as I would love to be. Still there are some ideas in my head on bags, underwear and woolen sweaters. Hopefully my progress in sewing will continue and bring everything together one day.

On the first sketch you can see the idea for an interesting avant-garde looking waistcoat/shirt that I’m planning to do the next weeks. It is supposed to be made of a shiny and flowing material. I also visualized some ideas for bags and sweaters/jackets. I think I will use many of these inspirations for my upcoming projects. I don’t use a lot color when sketching, I simply like to keep it clean and leave it open to whether color I want to use in the end. My sketches are not so professional, but I think some of them still turned out very nice.

I feel much better today and I’m glad that I used the extra time at home this week to be creative and practice sketching after a long time.IMGP0858IMGP0864IMGP0862IMGP0860IMGP0865

IMGP0859IMGP0857The Brave Cook

The Smurfs are coming!

Last week I presented you some of my sewing projects and the reactions were so good that I decided to present you more here on my blog. Next to cooking sewing is another big hobby of me and I don’t want to refrain from sharing my sewing experiences with you the same I do with my cooking. When it comes to cooking I’m an amateur. Regarding my sewing it’s not so easy to estimate my skills, but I’m trying things out and I’m determined to get better and better. Learning to sew means to me to create different things. Last week I have presented you a waistcoat and an altered bag. This week I tried to make something new out of an old piece of cloth. Actually, I made some underwear out of a t-shirt.

I was not planning to make mens underwear out of a t-shirt this week, but looking for some leftover fabric in my closet I’ve found an old smurf t-shirt. Yes, it was in fact mine! I had even worn that t-shirt a couple of times at work! This t-shirt was so cute that I decided to make something out of the smurf motif. The smurfs have been my favorite cartoon as a little kid and I still love the way they look. I immediately got the idea of making underwear out of it. First of all, the material was very stretchy and second I know some mens underwear with colorful prints and I always loved it. So I decided to make an underwear pant with a colorful smurf print on the back.

If you are planning to turn a piece of cloth into something else you just need to be sure that the material is appropriate for your idea and you also need to check if there is enough material from the piece that you’re using. My old t-shirt was cut very tight and I had to check first if the length and breadth would be enough to fit my hip area. Fortunately, it fitted perfectly on my hips so that I would not even have to cut the sides open. I simply had to cut off the upper part of the t-shirt including smurfette. I love smurfette a lot, that’s why I kept her to use her for another project in the future.I could have made the pant with the print in the front, but I wanted to make a lining in the front and the motif would look better in the back. I also found a waistband that was formerly a part of another shirt. I thought it would look good on the pant and give it a sporty look. I think I made a very clean and nice looking finish. I should remember that for the next time. Trying the pant on it was feeling very comfortable. Hope you also like the fit and the design of it considering that it was made out of a t-shirt!For all of you who are waiting for another recipe: I will definitely post more recipes on my blog, but I will also share with you my sewing projects and other things out of my life! So my blog will be an interesting mixture!

The Brave Cook

Two sewing projects in two weeks!

Finally an easy working week! The last weeks had been very stressful, taking all of my balance and energy, but this working week was over so fast and I was finally in the right mood to devote myself to some sewing projects. But before I start sharing with you my projects I really want to thank everyone who commented on my last weeks post thanking all of my followers. It is important to stay thankful in life and to appreciate every single joy and blessing.

Some of you were asking me to post my sewing projects here on wordpress. So first of all I finished the waistcoat that I was planning for such a long time. Actually it was really hard work. It was one of my first sewing projects and definitely not an easy one. A waistcoat has so many details and consists of many little parts, but I think I mastered it properly though it’s not perfect. I’ve already done a bound/jetted pocket and I can tell you that it’s one of the most difficult things to do, because you have to be as accurate as possible. I still need to practice that more to get a feeling for it. I also used a leather similar material for the inner front part and for the neck part. It requires some practice to work with such a material too. My sewing machine had some difficulties to handle it, but I definitely want to practice this such material more. To sum up the result, it’s very acceptable for the first waistcoat but there’s a lot of space for improvement left. Especially the neck piece was done not in an appropriate way. Hope you still like the result.

This project took me really quite a lot of my free time. But it’s a great feeling to hold a finished self-made piece in your hands as well as to think of a new project to start to challenge yourself.

Last week my backpack ripped completely and I was on a search for a new comfortable bag for work as well as for daily travels. It was not easy to find a bag suitable and for an acceptable price. Then I found an interesting shopper bag in a light color that was on sale! The only problem was that it was really huge, one of these extra large shopper bags that are so fashionable at the moment. I don’t like these huge bags at all, but since it was that cheap I figured out it would be ok to simply buy it and change the change of it. That’s exactly what I did! I cut the bag into pieces and started to put it together. It sounds easy to do that, but when you cut the bag into all these single pieces you realize that there is much more to it than just putting the outer parts together. I also had to sew the inner part and to renew the zipper. Due to the thick material I had to do a lot of hand sewing what took me a whole evening of my weekend.

I really wanted to finish it the same day so that I could take it to work the next day and I can truly say that I’m more than satisfied with the result. I made the shape of the bag into something like a postman’s bag which I like a lot on bags. I do enjoy taking the bag to work now and it was a good decision to buy it! What do you think of the shape?

The Brave Cook

Thanks to all of my followers…

Today I want to use the opportunity to thank all of my followers here on wordpress. This week I finally got 150 followers and I’m truly overwhelmed with the success of my blog. Of course I’m also thanking every single visitor and everyone who liked or commented on one of my posts.

I’m new to blogging and so is my blog new and developing. Two months ago I just started with my blog and this week I already got over 150 followers. That is pleasing me but at the same time it shows that some of you have expectations as to what I will post next. So I guess I earned some kind of responsibility.

I’m very busy every week with my regular sports training and my sewing projects next to my full time job, so I cannot post recipes on a regular basis as many bloggers do, but I will still let you take part in my life and give you insight into my latest cooking/sewing projects and plans.

I also enjoy reading all the other interesting blogs here on wordpress about cooking, traveling, photography, family and life itself. Some of your blogs fascinate me a lot and comparing my blog to these I know I have a lot to learn.

Once again, thanks to all of you from me and my sweet darling Mithi and keep enjoying my blog and everything what is ahead!

The Brave Cook

Some powerful words and some creamy squash!

This week some words by the writer Marianne Williamson from her book “A return to love” got stuck in my head: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?”

I love this short quote a lot, it really gives me motivation to hang on to my dreams and to love myself for my strengths and positive character traits. Of course, I also continued my practice in the kitchen presenting you today a delicious and wonderful looking creamy squash soup. I’ve seen quite a lot squash recipes the last days on wordpress and I loved them all, but I definitely wanted to make my own.Ingredients

  • 1 large butternut or hokkaido squash
  • 2 floury potatoes
  • 4 carrots
  • 1 onion (not necessarily)
  • 4 scallions
  • 1 chili
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp sweet mustard
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock

Instructions

Prepare the chicken or vegetable stock in a large stock pot or pan while chopping the vegetables. You can use as much stock as you like, depending on how creamy or not you want to squash soup to be. I didn’t use a lot of stock, because I wanted it to be very creamy.

Halve, seed, peel and cube the squash. Peel and chop also the onion, the potatoes, the carrots and the chili. Chop the scallions and add other herbs to your taste. Heat another large stock pot over medium-high heat with one tablespoon of olive oil and add the chopped onion first for some minutes, until softened. Now you can also add the squash, the other vegetables and the stock. Don’t forget to sprinkle with one teaspoon salt, some lemon juice and to add one teaspoon mustard.Bring everything to a boil, cover, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 30-40 minutes until everything is completely tender. Now use an immersion blender or transfer it to a stand up blender/food processor to blend the soup smooth. You can still add more stock if it should be too thick for you.

Serve in small bowls with a dollop of sour cream or chopped scallions. Enjoy and have a great weekend!

The Brave Cook

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