It's been a very cold and rainy time here in Northern Cal, with flooding and very cold temps. Lots of sewing and baking have been going on in the house. One baking adventure is pictured above. I have wanted to make an epiphany cake ever since I moved back from France. They sell these cakes the entire month of January, and while we were there we took full advantage of that! In the picture above, with the ingredients, there are four of the many "feves" that I collected. For those not familiar with this wonderful treat, it's a cake made to celebrate epiphany. They hide a "feve" somewhere in the filling, and then bake the cake off. The person who gets the feve in their piece gets to wear the paper crown and is king. There was also some sort of game that they played, that involved going under the table, but I can't remember all the rules to this. The filling in between the puff pastry is called "frangipane." It's made with all the ingredients you see in the photo. I bought some puff pastry at Whole Foods that actually was from France. I really loved that it was already in a circular shape. The puff pastry from Du Four, that I usually buy, is rectangular. Since it was circular, there was no waste. I hadn't planned on making this cake, but when my dear husband put the groceries away, he didn't realize this was suppose to go into the freezer, and chucked it in the fridge instead. It thawed of course, so it had to be used right away. I had to think fast, because I was going to use it for something savory that I hadn't planned on making right away. It ended up being a yummy, happy accident and now I would love to try other fillings for it, like the ones I had in France. I used a David Lebovitz recipe for the filling, but you can find others that suit your taste.
Work at BHLDN has been slow until this past week. I have been only working at the most two times a week, but business is picking up and brides are making appointments again. Had lots of fun working with the lovely ladies this past weekend. We are also having a lot of girls come in for prom dresses. This past weekend, we had one customer looking for a maid of honor dress that really made me sad. She was such a pretty girl and not at all over weight by any means. We didn't have any dresses that fit her figure. She broke down in tears and I felt that the appointment got away from me at that point. I wanted to give her a big fat hug and tell her how beautiful she was, and that it wasn't her fault and to love her body, but she shut down and didn't want to hear anything positive. Luckily her mom and sister were really sweet and tried to comfort her. I feel for her, as I have had some tears in dressing rooms myself. Having now worked at BHLDN for a few months, I have heard so many women of all ages, bashing their bodies. Very sad I think. I try and tell them that event dresses are always sized differently than ready to wear, and that it is best to get a bigger size and have it tailored to fit. So many women are hung up on the size on the tag! If they only knew the process of how garments are designed and produced, I think it would help.
On another note, going back into work this week has been helpful for me to get away from Facebook and CNN! After spending the day at work last Friday, I came home in a much happier mood than I have been these past couple of weeks. I'm not getting into a political discussion on my blog so don't worry, I think everyone has had enough. It was just great to take a step away and live life and not think about world events.
I just want to know one thing. How have I been living without that wonderful new steam iron I got for christmas?!! HOLY SMOKES! I'm a big believer in pressing your work in every step of construction, and I feel like all these years I have been missing out in how incredible one of these irons work! I actually received two of these for Christmas hahaha. Caitlin and Cyrous also gave me one, so I returned one and then got a new ironing board to hold this new toy. I was able to press the little dress that I just made, with such ease. I loved how it smoothed out the fitted sleeves so perfectly. I also have had fun just doing plain ironing, because It cuts your ironing time by half.
I'll be listing the cute little pink dress with metallic gold birds on it tomorrow when there is some nice sunlight in the house to photograph it.I love how this little pink dress turned out. The buttons I used are shell and are so pretty in real life. I had fun making it, but oh those fitted sleeves!! I think I finally have a good system down for them, but I always take a deep breath when I begin the stitching of them. Making clothing and then trying to photograph them for Etsy, is quite a feat in the winter months. Hopefully the sun will cooperate tomorrow. I'm trying to decide on my next project. Part of me wants to do a vintage piece with embroidery and another part of me wants to keep putting some basics in. Sometimes I know exactly what I want to make next, and other times I have so many ideas floating I can pin one down. It will come to me, but sometimes I get antsy and don't know where to begin.
I know I always promise to be on here more, but then miserably fail. Sorry for my handful of readers hahah, but I will at least always check in at least once a month, with hopes always to do more.
Happy belated 2017!