Saturday, November 19, 2011

500 Follower Giveaway

It's definitely time for a giveaway at Carolyn's Little Kitchen. I thought I should celebrate having 500 very patient followers, so I have put together this little French provincial display as my giveaway - I really hope you like it. It includes a little tin "bus blind" sign, with French bakery lettering, some little posters and some coat hooks. And everything you can see on the shelves.
On the first shelf, there is a jar of pickled onions, some cute little jars of jam with polkadot lids, two of my French provinical style plates, a gorgeous little rolling pin, two little jugs I painted and a cute tin sign: "Cuisine".

Shelf two has an apple pie and a loaf of bread, a little cookbook and some more plates.

On the third shelf is a tin sign: "Bon Appetit", some more cute cookbooks, all with a French theme, another little plate, an Eiffel Tower statue, and a little basket filled with French provincial style tiles.

The bottom shelf has a wheel of Brie, with a few crackers, a crockery baking dish and another of my plates, with some co-ordinating cloths. I haven't glued anything down so whoever wins this giveaway can use this as a complete piece or just arrange the accessories where they look best.

I really hope you like this giveway - I spent quite a lot of time putting it together after my last post, but then had lots of trouble getting good photos to post so apologies that it has taken so long. I do really appreciate my followers, so thank you so much for being there!

I'll draw the giveaway on 1st December, so I can post it to you in time for Christmas. To enter, you just have to post a comment on this blogpost.....good luck to you all.

I have had this cute doll for a while. She was originally in my Victorian dollshouse but now she lives in a drawer (poor little thing!). She has been invited out of the drawer for a spot of modeling. Incidentally, she is also modeling an outfit I "made" for her (which does highlight my lack of sewing skills and fondness for not-hemming-things and for glue). It isn't that great but it's still better than what she was wearing when she arrived (very ugly tartan outfit with giant tam-o-shanter).

The reason she has been invited out is to show you the pretty hats that arrived a little while ago. They came from Just for You on Etsy. This one is such a pretty, soft lavender colour and so beautifully trimmed.

But this one is my absolute favourite! It is absolutely beautiful, with the pretty flowers. Thanks very much to Nina, - I saw the lovely hat she had purchased on her blog and really loved it.


Now I am going to show you one of the reasons I haven't been blogging much about miniatures lately.....

.....I've been bitten by a new obsession: Soapmaking! I've been wanting to try it for ages, but haven't because I was really scared of using the caustic soda, especially with children and my little dog always around. Anyway, my parents gave me birthday money, so I decided to spend it on a book on soapmaking and some soap ingredients and had a go and it is HEAPS of fun!!

These are some of the soaps I have made in the last few weeks. The ones on the left are calendula, oatmeal and cinnamon, and luxurious lavender. The ones in the middle are calendula (made with calendula petals which I picked from a friend's garden and dried), lavender (bit disappointed with the grey colour of that one) and camomile. And...da DA! The cupcake on the right IS SOAP and I made it myself. I am so chuffed with it. I learnt how to do it by traipsing around on the internet and it wasn't too hard.

These are the calendula soaps....I love the way the dried petals have kept their colour. I figured out how to make the tops of these ones textured and they look pretty with glitter.

These are the cupcake soaps I made - the flowers aren't soap - they are paper flowers from a craft store. But the whole rest of the cupcakes are soap.

I had to put another photo of the cupcake soap in because it is so pretty!

Because I want to give these away as Christmas presents this year, I had to get on and make them right now, because they have to sit for a number of weeks to completely finish saponifying before they can be used, that's why I haven't had much time for anything else. Here is a selection of soaps in the little basket I bought for them today from the bargain store. A bit of celophane and ribbon and some labels on the soap and they will look nice, I think. I have tried a couple of the first batches I made because they have - only just - sat long enough to have mellowed, and they are absolutely beautiful to use. I've used really lovely oils and you can really tell the difference. I've never been one to fuss much over soaps and toiletries really, but these are so lovely to use that I don't think I want to go back to supermarket soap.

Anyway, for your patience in listening to all this, I thought I would offer a second prize in the giveaway which will be a bar of homemade soap. You choose which one you would like to try and if you are the winner I will send it to you. Just mention in the comments which one you would choose if you are the winner and good luck everyone!

I'm not sure that soapmaking is ideally suited for impatient people, however. Not easy to wait six weeks (or even three) before using your lovely, homemade soap!