Wordless Wednesday

corset 3

 

This, quite frankly, stunning Corset is by V Couture. I seriously recommend checking out their website for some jaw dropping inspiration and stunning Corsetry.

Don’t forget to join in with Corset Month on FacebookTwitter (#corsetsessions) and Pinterest!

Happy stitching.

Tuesday Treats: Florentines!

Welcome to Tuesday Treats! I’m going to be sharing my favourite Christmas Recipes with you, and my first is a doozy!

I love Florentines, I love them! I love that they are crunchy and soft all at once, I love the snap of Fresh Ginger you get and I love the contrast of Dark Chocolate which somehow makes them savoury, then White Chocolate which is almost impossibly sweet!

Fresh Ginger is the key, I promise. I had no idea until my Mum and I discovered this amazing Deli in Winchester selling them. We were addicted but couldn’t understand why! Finally we decided it was the Fresh Ginger, whipped up a batch ourselves and it was!!

The following Recipe is from Delia Smith, and I don’t fuss much with it! I do swap out the Angelica for Fresh chopped Ginger- because who can find Angelica?!- and I decorate half of the Florentines with White Chocolate and half with Dark. If you want to be extra decadent you can use Green & Black Maya Gold… yum! Click here to see the original recipe and enjoy… …

florentines

You will need (for the Laura version anyway!):

5oz/150g Dark Chocolate and the same in White Chocolate

1oz/25g Butter, plus a little extra for greasing

3oz/75g Caster Sugar

1/2oz/10g Plain Flour, plus a little extra for dusting

21/2fl oz/65ml Double Cream

4oz/100g Flaked Almonds (No Delia, I still wont cut my own up!!)

1oz/25g Natural, Un-Dyed Glacé Cherries

Large Knob of Fresh Ginger, peeled and finely chopped

Pre-heat your oven to Gas 5, 375F or 190C

You will also need two large, flat Baking Sheets

Melt 1oz/25g Butter, together with the sugar and flour, in a small, heavy-based saucepan over a very low heat, and keep stirring until the mixture has melted. Gradually add the cream, stirring continuously to keep it smooth.

Add  the remaining ingredients, except the chocolate. Stir thoroughly again, then remove the saucepan from the heat and put the mixture on one side to cool. Next, brush the baking sheets with a little melted butter, lightly dust with flour and then tap them to get rid of the excess flour (this works I promise!).

You’ll find it easier to bake one sheet of the Florentines at a time. Place heaped teaspoonfuls of the mixture on to one of the prepared baking sheets, spacing them about an inch (2.5 cm) apart (to allow the mixture room to expand while baking, and it hella expands!). Flatten each spoonful with the back of the spoon, then bake on a high shelf for about 12-15 minutes, or until golden.

Take them out of the oven and leave the biscuits to harden on the baking sheets for 2-3 minutes, before quickly removing them to a wire rack to cool. I use a Spatula to neaten the edges of the Florentines at this point as they will have spread unevenly, and I can make them round again whilst thickening up the edges to make spreading the Chocolate on a bit easier. I also allow to cool on a flat surface because they can be a little floppy! Repeat with any further batches.

Melt the chocolate in a basin over a saucepan of barely simmering water, making sure the base of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. I work with one Chocolate, then the other so as to save space in my teeny kitchen.

Place the cooled Florentines, base up, on a wire rack and, using a teaspoon, coat the underside of each Florentine with warm melted chocolate. Then, just before it sets, make a patterned, wavy line on each one, using a fork. Now leave the Florentines to cool completely before eating, packing up as a gift or just proudly looking at!

Remember to pop back for more posts throughout November, and Christmas Month!

Happy Christmas!

Spats n Hats… not just for Chaps!

Okay, okay… I just did that title ‘cos it rhymed!

I have a fabuloso new offer in my Etsy shop:

spats n hats deal

spats n hats deal 2 spats n hats deal 3

Choose from any listed pair of Spats and a Mini Top Hat Kit to complete your look this season!!

SPATS:

Maybe try a Pinstripe? Or a Rootin’ tootin’ Old West Victorian Blood Red Silk pair?! Or the dandy Pirate Print? Whichever style you decide upon these ankle high Spats fit to the floor, and curve gracefully towards the button fasteners. The top of these Spats has been designed to fold down to create different shapes whether you are wearing boots, heels or shoes! A great addition to a Costumed night out, or a smart finish to any outfit.

Hand made and hand finished by Laura After Midnight the finished ankle measurement is 30cm/12”. All pairs of Spats to come out of Midnight Heights are delivered wrapped in acid free tissue paper. Simply convo your choice when purchasing.

MINI TOP HAT KIT:

Laura After Midnight’s Unique Mini Top Hat Kit is available in many stunning Silks and Cottons both plain and patterned. Included in each Kit is a decoration pack with Satin Ribbon, Lace, feathers, Vintage Buttons and many other details to decorate with.Each pack includes all fabric needed to create your very own Mini Top Hat with pins, needles, pattern sheet and full instruction booklet and decoration pack to inspire.The very first of its kind and stuffed full of wonderful little illustrations, this excellent little kit guides you through every step of properly constructing a Mini Top Hat using basic Millinery techniques that have both been taught and picked up over many years of Costume Making here at Midnight Heights! With added insights into stitch terminology and hints and tips any one who can hand sew can make this little darling hat, or learn to refine their technique. The pattern included is re-usable so with one quick trip to the haberdashery store you could make more for your friends, to give as gifts, add the finishing touch to a wedding party or just for you! All you need is a pair of sharp scissors, and thread to match. Finished height is 8cm/3″.Simply convo your choice when purchasing. If you do not see the colour Spats or Hats your heart desires please convo me! Midnight Heights is stuffed to the gunnels with delicious fabrics to please everyone innermost fantasies!

Visit my Etsy store now to purchase!!!

Balenciaga in ’06.

There are some catwalk shows which I don’t think I shall ever forget, & this is one of them. I have never quite had the same experience (except maybe when viewing Galliano’s perfect Calico toiles’!) when viewing such beauty from a single colour.

I rediscovered this stunning tailored jacket, which was inspired by lingerie lines, when looking for Wordless Wednesday images & simply had to share! Having studied both Fashion & Costume Design I have become familiar with most designers throughout the decades however; each only has a few truly iconic, breathtaking, Couture moments and this is one of Balenciagas.

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The day after this ’06 Catwalk Show this image was everywhere, and for the few months after it still haunted the pages of most fashion magazines. You can almost breathe in the hundreds of stitching hours this must have taken!

I think you’ll agree that this is work every designer aspires to, & if you like this then I have a superb treat in store for you in a future Wordless Wednesday.

Happy stitching!

Lots more to discover!

I have added the last few days worth of work on to Etsy, & I have to say that despite Midnight Heights looking like a fabric bomb has hit it I am very pleased!

I have finally worked out my Bloomers pattern & have made them up in Black with striped detailing and White with black detailing. I’ve done a little bit of research & I think they have just the right amount of design over functionality. I have tried to keep them simple whilst retaining a fun ‘costume’ feel & I think I have succeeded. I have still to make the knee length and ‘Bloomie’ version- little knickers but with bloomer fun retained!

Black Cotton Bloomers with Black & White Striped covered buttons & Binding detail. Click here to buy.

White Cotton Bloomers with Black Lace and Black covered button details. Click here to buy. Alternatively buy a set of two for a reduced price here.

I think they’re rather lovely! Look out for more new products over the next few days…

Happy stitching!