An Afternoons Work #2

My friend and I had the second 'sewing afternoon' yesterday. We started with her 18th century attire this week.

We made the chemise first. It is a one size pattern. We didn't alterate it. Maybe we should have. It's huuuge!

I know an 18th century chemise is bigger than an early 19th centurys, but it's really very big. 
Maybe I will make mine a bit smaller. 
We used a linen fabric that is mixed with some synthetic fibers. 
The real linen they had in the shop was of an unusable quality. Very big threads and very stiff. 
So I purchased my linen again from neheleniapatterns, though they didn't had the pure white linen in stock currently but only some off-white linen. But it matches perfectly with the lace I am going to use. And it is the finest linen I have ever bought.

We almost got the chemise of my friend ready on the first afternoon. We will shorten the sleeves when we know the exact length of the sleeves of her dress and attach the lace.

On the second afternoon yesterday we started with the project I feared the most. The stays. I never made stays before (well the regency stays almost can't be named stays)

The instruction that came with the pattern of the stays is very minimalistic. You have to know how to change such a garment when using this pattern. I don't know. So I read some informations on the internet. The best I found was on www.marquise.de

We decided to give the pattern a try as it is, though it will be too small at the waist - and then make changes if necessary. 

We started with the mockup yesterday.
Made of some old tight woven cotton. 
We sewed the boning chanels by machine completely. So we have to bone it now and my friend has to wear it then.

I will keep you updated on the progress.

My order arrived on friday too.
I ordered some patterns for gloves, a mantelet , a muff and a sewing package for a bag. Things I will make if I have the time.

And some broidery anglaise fabric for my friends dress.


I finally finally found the perfect perfect perfect fabric for my robe anglaise!
I'm so happy!

I have to order it now.
Maybe you know the site renaissancefabrics.


Cupcakery Regensburg

shop entrance
We had been to Regensburg on a hot July day this year and went sightseeing a little bit.

Per accident we found a cute little store which was only selling cupcakes. I have never seen a store in Germany where only cupcakes are sold. We were there on sunday and it was closed, so we had to come back on Monday.

I just had to. I really wondered what it would look like from the inside and how the cupcakes tasted.

So we came back on Monday and walked in. The shop was huge! And they were only selling cupcakes at the front desk. The rest of the room was sitting space with really nicely decorated walls - painted with different motivs.

We ordered two cupcakes and sat down. I had a lemon cupcakes that was really tasty. I don´t remember the flavour of the cupcake of my boyfriend anymore.

They were quite small. The cupcakes I make at home are huge compared to them. Maybe my cupcakes are not the real deal.

The owner of the shop learned how to make cupcakes in the USA. You can even order them or take a big box full of cupcakes with you.

They have a homepage too:
Cupcakery Regensburg

If you are ever to Regensburg and have some time - go there. It´s worth the visit!


Flea Market

I have been at the local flea market again, today. 
I have been searching for some old/ antique lace to use for our new garments.

The first thing I found was a japanese cookbook written in english. I got this nice book for only 1 €.
The book is from 1989 - so not the newest, but has some nice details, many pictures and tips how you can change the basic recipe.

I was searching for some affordable lace that can be used for a dress of the 18th century but didn't find something nice.
I already wanted to leave but had a look at some last booths.
And then I found some really nice lace. Maybe good for the neckline of a chemise.
1.45 m long at one part sewn together and
2.75 m long 

They have to survive the washing machine now - they are a bit yellow and smelly.


Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween everyone! 

I just finished this years Jack-o'-lantern.

Took me about one hour. So just a normal face. I personally prefer the lanterns with evil faces, not the laughing ones which kann be seen here in Germany quite a lot.


1813 - 2013 Two Hundred Years Battle Of The Nations

This weekend my boyfriend, my family and I have been on an extraordinary event in Leipzig.

This year is the 200th anniversary of the battle of the nations which took place around Leipzig.

So there was this special 'event' for which we ordered tickets already last year.
Over 6000 Reenactors from all over Europe in historical garments showing how the battles were fought back then. Really interesting and the details of the uniforms of the soldiers were amazing. 

On saturday was a demonstration of the farmers and daily life back in 1813 which we watched near the village Liebertwolkwitz. There was also a demonstation of weapons too.

And on sunday was the demonstration of the Battle Of The Nations, or how it could have looked like.

I didn't finish my boyfriends empire attire for this years WGT in May so I wanted it to be finished now.

I started late again and was under pressure of time - again. 

The last days I spent with working and sewing - way more than sleeping. So now I am pretty exhausted. But somehow I managed to get the tailcoat ready on the last minute though I had to improvise. I didn't line the sleeves and omited the cuffs. And unfortunately it didn't fit like I thought it would. So I think before next years festival I will take it apart, fit and resew it again.

I managed to alterate the sleeves of my silk ball gown. I didn't like the voluminous shape they had and am more happy with the way they look like now. The dress looks more like the antique dresses now, I think.

List of our garments:

For my dress:
Silk dress

For my boyfriend:
Poem shirt

Some things were completely handsewn, some half hand - half machine, and most - unfortunately- sewn by machine.

I started with a spencer for me but didn't finish it in time. Maybe for next years festival too.

Some clothes are now in the laundry. Maybe I will take pictures of each piece and post them here.

So next week a close friend and I are going to start with the chemise and stays for our dresses for the ball in March. I don't want to be under such a time pressure like I have been the last week (^_-)


月見 / Tsukimi

Yesterday we held O-Tsukimi at our home.

My friends and I made Tsukimi Udon with Shitake, Udon noodles, spring onions, egg, mangold and chicken.

It was really delicious!

After having dinner we watched the moon had Sake and Tsukimi Dango with Adzuki beans, Kinako and Mitarashi sauce.
おいしい  でした!


Birthday Diner

I promised my friend to have he a japanese dinner. 

Since it should be a birthday dinner I wanted it to be something special. Different from a normal dinner.

So I chose Sekihan (cooked glutenous rice with cooked adzuki beans) 
Filet from a cow with daikon and ginger. 
Agedashi Dofu
Miso soup with potatoes
Cooked eggplant with soy sauce

The table decoration:

The food:

I was proud to get all the food ready in time. 
We had a special matcha/sencha mix with the dinner.

After the dinner we had some greentea Yokan and Gyokuro tea. I loved it. I love the sweetness of the Gyokuro tea... *sigh* 

Cut My Hair

A small picture of my new hairstyle.

I cut my bleached and coloured hair to get my natural haircolour back.

I'm quite happy and don't regret this step.


New Shoes (^∇^)

I was searching for black shoes on ebay today and found these cuties:

They were such a bargain. Only 7 €. I really couldn't resist. 
Since I got my hair cut last week (picture to follow) I want to get a more reserved gothic look.

Now my plans for next year (the reason why I was searching for black shoes):
I want to visit an extraordinary event:


Now I am searching for perfect fabric for my robe anglaise which I want to wear. The one I already wanted to sew last year. A close friend will accompany me to the event. 
I have to sew a dress for her too.


Cakes For A Wedding

A co-worker had her wedding this weekend and asked me to make her some cakes for the party.

I happily agreed.

I wanted to make a cake with fudge again. I bought beautiful butterly cutters some time ago and wanted to use them. I wanted to make a festive cake and not to fancy this time.

So I decided - for the first time- not to colour the base fudge of the cake.
I used pink butterlys - put some glimmer on them and placed them on the cake.
To hide the edge I used ribbon. An inspiration I got from pictures on the net.

I made some cupcakes too.
The following cupcakes I made for the second time.
The dough is with apples and shaved almonds.
The cream is cooked with lavender and coloured with beetroot.
Decoration is real lavender.

Cupcakes with lavender cream

The following cupcakes were a first try. My co-worker selected them from my cupcakes book. She wanted to have them at their wedding.
Since it was not the season for red currants here anymore I had to search for them in the supermakets. Luckily I still got some.
So one day before the wedding I made the cakes. Unfortunately I didn´t get the recipe right - or maybe it was a strange one - at least that´s what was my impression.
So I hade to make them a day later again. I used a quite simple recipe for the dough with butter, eggs and sugar and added some lime paring into it to give it a similar taste as the original dough.
The cream was really a lot of work. It was made of cream cheese, cream, lime juice, lime paring, coconut milk, sugar powder and mashedd red currants.
It was a lot of work but somehow I managed to get ready on the last minute ;-)
The cakes were tasty.

Cupcakes with red currant cream



We tried some shaved Ice last week and put Grenadine sirup over it and sweetened condensed milk like we have seen it on the japenese festival in Munich some years ago. As far as I know this kind of ice is called Kakigori.

Since I have seen a lot of really interesting different kinds of "Kakigori" last year in Japan (wanted to try one but the prices were high - about 8-10 €) I wanted to give it a try at home now. So we picked this recipe
at www.nekobento.com 

It was really delicious and not that difficult to make. We only made the riceflourballs smaller than in the recipe to give it a nice appearance.

If you like Anko and Matcha you should give it a try too.

Sorry for the bad picture.


May I introduce you

The new member of our family.

Max, or Maxl as we call him.

A fifteen week old male cat.

A friend of mine got a mothercat per 'accident' who got four little kittens. But since she already has two cats beside the mother she can't keep all of them.

So we decided to give one of the four kittens a new home.

He is integrating now into our home and feels already very well but our other two cats don't. 

Our cats are both about ten years old and have difficulties to accept him. The cat does better than the male cat who is hiding on top of the  the cupboard for two and a half days now.

Hope he will be better soon.


とんぼの帯 Dragonfly Obi

Ichiroya again (^_-)

I have a little faible for dragonflys.

I missed out the fabulous dragonfly yukata bolt some time ago.
Now I bought a wounderful Ro Nagoya Obi with embroidered Dragonflys.

Unfortunately it has many and very prominent stains. Ichiroya said it is not wearable anymore...

Maybe - I will give it a try and give it to the dry cleaner. It is not dyed but nly embroidered, so I think it could work.
The other option is to handwash it.

I will see.

I read about dragonflys on wikipedia and found this:

As a seasonal symbol in Japan, the dragonfly is associated with summer and early autumn.[18] More generally, dragonflies are symbols of courage, strength, and happiness, and they often appear in art and literature, especially haiku. The love for dragonflies is reflected by traditional (layman's) names for almost all of the 200 species of dragonflies found in and around Japan.[19] Japanese children catch large dragonflies as a game, using a hair with a small pebble tied to each end, which they throw into the air. The dragonfly mistakes the pebbles for prey, gets tangled in the hair, and is dragged to the ground by the weight.[12]:38

Beyond this, one of Japan's historical names – Akitsushima (Kanji Hiragana: あきつしま) – is an archaic form meaning "Dragonfly Islands".[20] This is attributed to a legend in which Japan's mythical founder, Emperor Jinmu, was bitten by a mosquito, which was then promptly eaten by a dragonfly.[21][22]


Refreshing Green Tea

A perfect way to stay cool on hot summer days is to enjoy cold green tea. 

I love drinking it in the summertime for some years now.

Usually I make a huge amount of Tea with normal sencha, using hot water.
Let cool down, put it in the refrigerator and cool for some hours or overnight.
Then enjoy pure or with ice cubes

You can brew it a little bit longer then you would usually do with normal green tea. I prefer it only brewed for a short time. Maybe one to one and a half minutes.

What I learned now - after years of drinking it.  ( ̄▽ ̄)  you can brew only the half of the amount of water with the green tea. And then fill up with the remaining water (cold). So it will cool down faster.

With my last J-List order I got the new green tea that is already packed into small bags and can be used with cold and hot water. I decided to give it a try with cold water - the reason why I bought it.
It works very good. One teabag is enough for one litre of water. 
And you can even use the teabag a second time.

The same day I tried the new tea I  made cold green tea the way I usually do.

I wanted to have a good comparison between both.

I noticed that there is not much difference between them. The new one in bags gives a nicer green colour and keeps that colour longer. The sencha green tea tends to darken from green to brown with time.

Currently I prefer the newly bought one because it is easier and quicker made and I can use cold water.

On the left the ready packed tea and on the right my 'sencha tea' 

There is not much difference in taste.


Ichigo Daifuku

We made Ichigo Daifuku yesterday.

My friend is really good at making them (*^^*)
I'm totally envious!

We tried my new tea - Hojicha - roasted green tea. It was delicious. My first thought was that is similar to Genmaicha but somehow there is a huge difference between them

Yesterday I noticed that I have eight different kinds of green tea at home at the moment (°_°)
I never thought that I would ever notice a difference between different kinds of green tea. Now I want to try every kind of japanese tea I can get.


Back From Our Mini Holiday

We've been on the Island Ruegen in the North of Germany the last two days.
More information is about to follow soon.


J-Box order

Those of you who buy regularly  items from japan via the internet might know J-Box/ J-List.

I've ordered the second time there two or three weeks ago and the parcel arrived yesterday.
Unfortunately they ran out of the items that I really wanted - Matcha Oreo cookies and a beautiful Totoro Firework Noren for summer.

But the other items are really great too!

Fit´s chewing gums
I wanted to have a Katori Buta (right name?) since my visit to Japan last year. Can't await to use it ^v^
Hope we will have some warm days this summer again.

The Pig with matching incense stick
The Jiji baby rattle only found it's way to our home because it's really cute. We don't need it already ;-)

Baby Rattle
The green tea can be made hot and cool. I want to try this one on hot summer days aswell.

I never tried roasted green tea Hojicha before so I want to try this one too. And I have an interesting recipe for a cake with Hojicha which I want to make too.

Since viewing a video on youtube from cooking with dog I wanted to have one of those nice sandwich makers too. I think I already will try it tomorrow.

And I have my very first Totoro Bento box ^v^
Will be in use on monday too.