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Hello all,
 
Here is a link to a questionnaire for my univeristy project:
 
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/6VB8JG2
 
I have decided on a project the title of:
 
‘Best of British:The Relaunch of Norman Hartnell’

I would really appreciate it if you would be able to fill in this quick questionnaire on luxury British heritage brands. There are 10 multiple choice questions and it will take just a few mintutes. Every single response will help me a lot in my final degree project.

Thanks!

These cupcakes/muffins (it depends on the size of the case you cook it in) are delicious. I just made them and ate one warm and it was so yummy I had to blog the recipe. This is a great recipe for all you diabetics out there, ot generally anyone on a low sugar/no sugar diet. They are easy to make and don’t involve any unusual ingredients, so get cooking!

Ingredients

6 oz plain flour
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
3 oz soft margarine
14 tablespoons of sweetener
100 ml milk
2 tablespoons of honey
1 egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence or 1 pod with seeds scraped out
A load of blueberries

Method

Pre-heat the oven to 210C/gas 6
Put paper cases into baking tray. It will make about 20 small cakes, so about 10 muffins
Sieve the flour and baking powder together and put into a bowl
In another bowl beat the margarine or butter with the sweetener and honey until light and fluffy
Add the vanilla essence and the egg and beat well
Add half the flour mixture to the other mixture and all the milk. Stir well. Add the rest of the flour mixture
Add the blueberries and fold in gently
Spoon the mixture into the cup cases
Put into the oven in the top half of the oven
Cook for 15 minutes. Do not open the oven until this time or the cupcakes will collapse.
Check to see if they are done.
Stick a wood cocktail stick in if it comes out clean they are done . If you touch the surface of a cupcake and it is springy to the touch it is done. If not leave longer in the oven. Depending on the size they can take 15 to 20 minutes.

Voila!! Enjoy!

This recipe is ridiculously easy, and very cheap. Salt dough is a great way to create your own decorations, and you can dye them or paint them any colour you like…let’s get microwaving!

1. The ratio is 1 cup of salt, 1 cup of water and 2 cups of flour. Mix all this together. It can get rather messy! If it is really gloopy, add more flour. If it is very dry, and a splash more water. You can leave the dough its natural colour, or add food colouring to stain it any colour you want! Only use a drop or two of food colouring, and you may find it makes the dough more sticky, so be prepared to add a little more flour. It is also good to have a little olive oil handy as later on when cutting out the dough may begin to dry out. The oil can be rubbed on the dough to soften it back up.

2. Knead the dough until soft and pliable

3. Get a clean work surface or board, and a rolling pin. Choose a selection of pastry cutters, these can be letters, shapes…anything you want! These can be bought from cookery shops, supermarkets etc. Roll out the dough until it is the desired thickness (don’t make it too thin) and start cutting out the shapes. If you want them to be hanging decorations, then remember to put a hole in the shape using a skewer or pencil

4. Pop the shapes on a plate that has been covered in grease proof paper, and put them in the microwave. Cook on full power for approximately 2 and a half minutes. If you take them out and they are doughy still, put them in for  a bit longer. Watch that they don’t burn!

5. Now leave them to cool

6. Once fully cooled, you can paint and decorate them. You can use any type of paint, preferably poster paint or acrylic. Also, glitter is a great way to jazz them up. Just have fun!

 

An Image a Day

Something a little bit different today…

I am not sure who this is a picture of, I just happened to come across it. It’s quite inspiring for both the pose the woman is positioned in, and for the dress she is wearing.

I am not normally a fan of all this PVC and dominatrix style design, but this is different; it is subtle and feminine. I love how if you crop the image and look at her face she looks like a 1950s housewife, then you see the image from her neck down and it tells an entirely different story. This is an interesting approach to take in design, to mix two opposing and contrasting themes together to create something that challenges the viewer, as well as the wearer.

An Image a Day

Drumroll please…

Another photoshoot on a bike! Something deeply inspiring in them?! Who knows, but what I love about this photo is how carefree and relaxed, yet elegant, Jennifer looks.  And this is what I like to create in my designs – relxed elegance. The black outfit is chic and timeless, and the expression on her face sends out vibes of happiness and fun. It makes me want to go cycling, although maybe not in flip flops…that spells danger to me!! Viva Miss Aniston.

I just discovered Nixxi, a fabulous fashion label whose clothes are uber cool and glamourous, as well as being sustainably produced. Bravo!

As far as I am aware, Nixxi isn’t (annoyingly) available to buy in the UK…although, trust me, I am looking! It appears to be a Canadian label, and my Mum is travelling over there later on this year, so may have to ask her to bring me some bits back!

Nixxi has been nominated for a ‘Fashion Takes Action’ award, and I hope they do well! The clothes are utterly feminine and gorgeous. Lots of drapery, and floating fabrics. ‘Clean silhouettes in organic textures’ as they put it. I love it. I am a sucker for anything sustainable and ethical, especially if it looks as pretty as these clothes do…

An Image a Day

Today’s image…

This image is fabulous and so strong. The structured lines of the skirt are offset by the drapery of the coat.