Sunday, September 30, 2012

shoes, etc. - camper clogs

Came across these clogs from the shoe store Camper, which have a great norwegian pattern on them. So cute for winter!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

anna crochets - thank you!

I was so surprised and honored to have my crochet rose post mentioned on the blog Love of Knitting's "What We've Been Reading" list, as well as a top story on the e-newspaper Crochet Patterns Today. Thank you both!

If you haven't already, you should definitely visit these sites. I have found cute patterns on both.

For example, check out this adorable hat - suitable for both humans and pugs - which I first saw on Crochet Patterns Today. The pattern, with illustrated directions, is available on the blog A Beautiful Mess.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

anna crochets - pink rose

I have not crocheted in a very long time, but after seeing this post for a crochet tea cosy with rose adornments on the blog Why Didn't Anyone Tell Me?, I decided to give it a try. I started with a rose, and it was actually much easier than I was expecting. I finished the project all in one sitting, even with reteaching myself how to crochet.

I got the pattern from the blog The Dark Knit via Pom Pom Emporium, which has some great illustrated instructions. I don't think I will attach this rose to the yellow + pink tea cosy I just finished, but I'm sure I will make a tea cosy in the future that it can adorn. Or perhaps a headband?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

anna knits - yellow + pink tea cosy

I finished a medium sized yellow + pink tea cosy today. It is a variation on the spiral top tea cosy pattern I posted for free here.

Here is me finishing up the top with four double pointed needles:

And here is the finished product:

Now I want to make a flower to adorn the top of the tea cosy. I like the looks of these crochet roses from blog Pom Pom Emporium.

There are great illustrated instructions here.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

halloween, etc. - kitty costume

I saw this crochet halloween costume - "in bread" kitty - on Etsy and had to share:

It is from the store Yummy Pancake. So cute! Do you have any ideas for halloween costumes?

Monday, September 24, 2012

anna cooks - clams al forno w pasta

I went to Block Island this weekend with some friends. The weather was beautiful, and it was even warm enough to go swimming in the ocean.

On Saturday night, we made Clams Al Forno with pasta. The recipe comes from the restaurant Al Forno in Providence, RI. They serve it as an appetizer, but we decided to make it into an entree by pairing the clams with spaghetti - a twist on Spaghetti alle Vongole dish.
All we did was clean 35 littlenecks (this is enough for 4 ppl), place them in a baking dish with cut up onion, jalapeno peper (seeded), cut up tomatoes in puree, minced garlic, white wine, water, and a stick of butter, and bake for 20 minutes at 500F. Meanwhile we made a lb of spaghetti.

Garnish with thinly sliced scallions and lemon wedges.

Photo credit: Susan M.
We put some marinara sauce on our pasta along with the clams, but the butter/wine/tomato/lemon sauce from the clams would have been tasty alone on the spaghetti. 

For an end-of-summer dinner, seafood dinner, this was very simple and very delicious!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

stationary, etc. - olivebox

A few weeks ago I wrote about the company Birchbox, which sends subscribers sample sizes of new beauty items each month. I love getting my Birchbox in the mail, and so I was very excited to see that a new company, OliveBox, is following a similar business model, but with paper products. (I heard about OliveBox from the fabulous blog Paper Crave.)

As a member, OliveBox will send you a package of paper and lifestyle products each month curated by members of their team. It could be items such as cards, DIY sets, or artwork. You can buy a 1, 3, 6, or 12 month subscription. It is a neat way to discover new stationary and paper products.

I love paper products, and I hope to have more time with my letterpress machine as the temperatures get cooler and I spend more time indoors. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

crochet, etc. - crochet tea cosy

Isn't this crochet tea cosy adorable?

It is from the blog Why Didn't Anyone Tell Me, which includes wonderful instructions for the cosy (with pictures!) here. I love the pattern because you can adjust it for whatever size/shape tea pot you are working on.


The pattern for the roses may be found here.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

anna cooks - homemade granola bars

A few years ago I made this recipe for Banana Chocolate Breakfast Bars from the blog Chocolate and Zucchini. They came out very well, but I then totally forgot about the recipe until this past week. I was going to visit my boyfriend for the weekend, and since he is trying to loose a few pounds after his summer in Brussels, I decided to bring him these granola bars, instead of my usual cookies or brownies.

This time I added dried cherries - I love the combination of cherries and chocolate - as well as more shredded coconut to the recipe. They came out so well that I made them two days in a row! Easy, delicious, and healthy, this is a must try recipe.

Oh, and this recipe is vegan! No butter or honey, etc.

Vegan* Chocolate, Cherry Granola Bars 
Adapted from Banana Chocolate Breakfast Bars on Chocolate and Zucchini, which adapted its recipe from Nikki's Healthy Cookie Recipe on Heidi's 101 Cookbooks.

*As long as the chocolate you use is vegan!

- 2 cups rolled oats
- 2/3 cup ground almonds (I ground mine in a food processer)
- 1/2 cup dried, unsweetened grated coconut
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 very ripe, medium bananas
- 1/2 teaspoon natural vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup slightly warmed coconut oil (may substitute whole almond butter or olive oil)
- About 3 1/2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips (may substitute with a darker chocolate)
- About 1/4 cup dried, sweetened cherries chopped (about in quarters)**

**You can add any type of dried fruit you'd like - cranberries, blueberries, pineapple, etc. It is a very flexible recipe.  

Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease an 8x8 baking dish with vegetable oil.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the oats, ground almonds, coconut, and salt. Set aside.

In another medium mixing bowl, combine the bananas, vanilla, and coconut oil, and mash together using a potato masher. Add the oats mixture and mix well. Fold the chocolate and cherries in gently.

Pour into the prepared baking dish, level the surface, and put into the oven. Bake for 25 minutes, or until the top is set and the edges are golden-brown. Let cool completely before slicing.

Cut into bars of your preferred size and wrap in wax paper or saran wrap. Decorate with stickers.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

dance, etc. - so you think you can dance finale

I taped the finale episode (before the winner is announced) of So You Think You Can Dance, and after watching half of it tonight I wanted to share two of my favorite performances. Enjoy:

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

anna eats - narragansett creamery

I was so excited to see that the Whole Foods near me sells Narragansett Creamery cheeses. I used to get it in Rhode Island while in college. The ricotta is perfect with a bowl of pasta.

On their website, Narragansett Creamery has recipes to try with their products. This Honey Drizzled Ricotta with Shortbread recipe is so simple, but I'm sure it would be amazing:

Honey Drizzled Ricotta with Shortbread - recipe taken from Narragansett Creamery (

1 cup Renaissance ricotta
2 tablespoons local honey + more for drizzling
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
2 to 3 drops pure almond extract
Fresh berries of your choice
Scottish shortbread

Place ricotta, honey, lemon zest and almond extract in a blender and blend on medium speed until smooth. Refrigerate for 1 hour, then spoon into small dessert cups. Top with berries and a stick of shortbread. Drizzle with honey and serve.

Narragansett Creamery also sells gift boxes on their website if you want to try them but don't live in the area. Click here to check the gift boxes out!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

knitting, etc. - octopus tea cosy

I stumbled across this octopus tea cosy while perusing ravelry for projects using Cascade 220 yarn (I love that you can search for projects by yarn!).

The project and photo are by sputnik of the blog Keeping in Touch. She describes it as "an octopus on a rock" - cute idea! 

The octopus itself, and picture, comes from this pattern by Hansi Singh. It looks so real! She has a bunch of knitted toys on her ravelry site. I will have to try some now that I have stuffing left over from my knit pug

Monday, September 10, 2012

dessert, etc. - pumpkin cupcakes

How cute is this cupcake I saw on Pinterest:

It is a Brown Butter Pumpkin Cupcake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting from the blog Baked Perfection. The recipe is on the website, and I will definitely try it soon. I also want to get a piping bag so I can decorate cupcakes like this. So cute!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

fashion, etc. - on the street knitwear

I was reading the NYTimes Sunday Styles today, and noticed that Bill Cunningham's On the Street features knitted dresses. I thought I'd share:

I love the knitted princess style dresses by Azzedine Ala├»a (left and right). In his video commentary, Bill Cunningham says that knitted dresses are an indication of where fashion is going. I totally agree!

BTW if you havent watched the documentary Bill Cunningham New York, I highly recommend it.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

cleaning, etc. - orla kiely for method

While getting ready for President Obama's speech, I decided to do some household cleaning. My go to cleaners are Method products, so I am super excited to see that Method has teamed up with pattern maker Orla Kiely for a limited edition set of cleaners.

I have always loved Orla Kiely prints, and the new Method collection is no exception!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

anna cooks - cheese souffle

I made an individual cheese souffle for dinner tonight. It really is a misconception that souffle is hard to make. It is not the easiest thing, but it is not hard to make - even in my tiny kitchen.

I used this recipe via The Times-Picayune. The recipe originally came from the book The Pleasures of Cooking for One by Judith Jones. The souffle came out so well that I actually decided to buy the book on Amazon. 

I will definitely make this again!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

knitting, etc. - fall knitting

Now that September is here I'm starting to think about fall knitting. I love this sweater I saw on Pinterest. The color is really great for fall, and the pattern is gorgeous.

Here is another beautiful sweater from Berroco design studio:

Cables are something I want to practice this fall. I think my first cable-y project will be this boot topper I blogged about a few weeks ago. 

Monday, September 3, 2012

anna works - orientation cupcakes

I was super busy this weekend working orientation for the art school I work at. Check out the adorable mini cupcakes we had made from Georgetown Cupcake (now in Boston!) for the event:

They were super yummy!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

anna knits - weekend knitting

Happy weekend knitting! I started a new tea cosy for my esty shop. I am making a medium size one instead of my usual small.

I'm loving the neon yellow (Cascade 220 - 7828)!
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