Tag Archives: Easter

Rocking Dog Thinks Ahead To A Chocolatey Easter!

Are You Ready For An Egg Hunt? Rocking Dog

Are You Ready For An Egg Hunt?

I got a little bit carried away thinking about a chocolatey Easter. The vibrant blossom everywhere set me mulling over all those forthcoming opportunities to gather flowers, select pretty foil wrapped eggs and making indulgent Rocking Dog bakes for friends and neighbours. Admittedly Easter is still a little way away but there is nothing wrong with a little bit of planning, hunting and gathering! As we left Umbria our local patisserie Michele & Co was beginning to put out Easter loveliness. Crisp white tissue papered packages were embellished with silk flowers, wool, lace, ribbon and twine. His styling is inspirational as are his delicious sweet offerings.

Yesterday I made pretty lined bags for going on a future egg hunt. Gingham was selected as the structured pattern is perfect to use as guidelines for sewing lines of braid and ribbons. I added appliqué eggs and the linings came from a vintage embroidered tablecloth. The bags constructed, I used lace for handles and finally sewed some pretty vintage buttons for extra frou factor.

My favourite garden in the village is in full flourish. It is wild and lovely. Narcissi, Tete de Tete, Daffodils and Fritillaria push through the grass in generous clumps. The garden is bordered by Japonica, Camelia, Catkin and fruit trees. Its organic wild nature makes me smile… always. After cutting back hedges neatly in Italy I had that moment of bad haircut regret! A degree of shagginess and un-eveness definitely gives a garden an air of mystery and romance. This local garden has romance and whimsy aplenty. I can definitely imagine a good egg hunt there.

Oooh I feel a Chocolat moment coming on!

By the way the next Rocking Dog creative Huddle will be on Wednesday 29th March 7-9pm. All welcome. Delicious homemade cake, chat and creativity. Donations into the teapot with a percentage to Fine Cell Work supporting prison inmates to sew wonderful things.

Spring Branches,Rocking Dog

Spring Branches

My Blooming Garden,Rocking Dog

My Blooming Garden

Favourite Garden,Rocking Dog

Favourite Garden

Easter Kitsch,Rocking Dog

Easter Kitsch

Embellished Brownies,Rocking Dog

Embellished Brownies

Vintage Stash,Rocking Dog

Vintage Stash

Michele's Easter Frou!,Rocking Dog

Michele’s Easter Frou!

Calorie Free!,Rocking Dog

Calorie Free!

They're Going On An Egg Hunt!, Rocking Dog

They’re Going On An Egg Hunt!

Buzzing Off For a Wee While!

My New Beautiful Bee. Made by Cleo Mussi, Rocking Dog

My New Beautiful Bee. Made by Cleo Mussi.

Yes the Dog is indeed buzzing off for a wee while. I do hope you’ll remember to hone on in again once the Easter Bunny has disappeared back down to her snuggly burrow.
Have a wonderful Easter break and hope it’s full of family, friends, fun and of course…… lots of chocolate!

Much Love Liz a.k.a Rocking Dog x

PS. Cleo Mussi’s work can be seen at Anthropologie, Kings Road. 17th March- May 8th. Her exhibition is aptly entitled “Rabbit Manufactory”.

Rocking Dog’s Easter Treats

Rocking Dog Easter Tableau, Rocking Dog

Rocking Dog Easter Tableau

Rocking Dog’s Easter treats are spilling out onto the dining table, creating a lovely seasonal tableau.

Pre Easter gifting includes a tray of gooey batch of chocolate brownie, Nigella’s recipe of course! Speckled eggs and a light dusting of icing sugar make a pretty addition to the delectable squares. Chocolate lollipops were quickly run up using white chocolate, miniature eggs and sticks (Lakeland and John Lewis supply these). Once set in the fridge the pretty ‘pops are bedecked with ribbon. Arrange in a lovely vintage jug or group in cellophane bags. An egg plaque (Poundland) with its coating of hundreds and thousands was enhanced with a piped iced message.

A food parcel of luxury hot cross buns, apricot conserve, Easter biscuits and chocolate bunnies are wrapped in cellophane and a band of paper. I am still using up my supply of M&S Adventures in Food magazines. The parcel is completed with twine and hand written luggage label.

Other gifts are simply wrapped in crisp white tissue paper and bedecked with the contents from an Easter photo-booth pack (£3 Sainsbury’s). I love the battery operated egg fairy lights ( a bargainous £1 from Poundland).

Non chocolatey gifts include gorgeous pink tulips bound with a generous swag of polka dot ribbon, and pots of cheery Tete de Tete (69p Lidl). I used squares of vintage green gingham and twine to frou the plastic pots.

It’s not quite time for the Easter bunnies, but Real Live Rocking Dog and his friend Zac enjoyed donning some bunny ears in the hope of receiving a dog friendly Easter treat!

Food Parcel, Rocking Dog

Food Parcel

Gooey Easter Brownie, Rocking Dog

Gooey Easter Brownie

Yum!, Rocking Dog

Yum!

My Boy Lollipop!, Rocking Dog

My Boy Lollipop!

Easter Wrap, Rocking Dog

Easter Wrap

Easter Florals, Rocking Dog

Easter Florals

Party Rings, Rocking Dog

Party Rings

Hundreds & Thousands, Rocking Dog

Hundreds & Thousands

Easter Bunnies!, Rocking Dog

Easter Bunnies!

Rocking Dog Is So Excited By Easter Decorations!

Flowers & Chocolates, Rocking Dog

Flowers & Chocolates

Yes indeed Rocking Dog is so excited by Easter decorations. Easter is a little way away yet, but now is the time to do a little bit of Easter stashing!

I love little bags of foil wrapped eggs and of course Lindt bunnies. Much too dangerous for my waistline to have those tempting creatures in my cupboard! TK Maxx, supermarkets, John Lewis and M&S are all worth checking out for Easter Frou. I bought lovely raffia carrots from TK Maxx, whilst chocolate eggs of the foiled and speckled variety were bought in M&S and Sainsbury’s. During my Easter fest I spotted pretty rustic wreaths, bunting, rabbits, crowned fluffy chicks, twiggy bird houses and wicker baskets. I was very restrained, in part because we will be spending Easter thousands of miles away this year.

I was tempted by the book Handmade Gifts From The Kitchen by Alison Walker. A bargainous £7.99 (RRP.£20) in TK Maxx. Although the book has no recipes specifically for Easter, there are many that would adapt well to be given as Easter presents. Imagine Honey & Almond Nougat, Coconut Ice or Macarons cocooned in pretty floral lined boxes or in vintage lustre tea cups.

Other finds were to be found in “my” beloved John Lewis remnant bin. I loved the decadent little piece of fabric I found with stripes in muted purple, mustard and rose together with geometric embroidery. In time I think it will make four lozenge shaped cushions with sumptuous velvet backs. In the dressmaking department I bought green and white gingham for £2 metre. Very fresh and simple it will be used for projects to herald the spring. However, I also know I will be using it to line stockings etc.. for the end of the year, perish the thought!

This months Country Living is very inspirational for Easter makes and bakes. So let’s all get creative and bring a little bit of spring into our homes!

More Easter and springtime loveliness to follow in the coming weeks from Rocking Dog.

 Last Easter Frou!, Rocking Dog

Last Easter Frou!

Vintage Hankies, Rocking Dog

Vintage Hankies

So Sad Bunny, Rocking Dog

So Sad Bunny

Fab' Fabric, Rocking Dog

Fab’ Fabric

Easter Inspiration, Rocking Dog

Easter Inspiration

Good For Gifts, Rocking Dog

Good For Gifts

Raffia Carrots, Rocking Dog

Raffia Carrots

Pretty Paper, Rocking Dog

Pretty Paper

Easter House 2015, Rocking Dog

Easter House 2015

Iced Easter Bunny Cottage

Iced Bunny Cottage, Rocking Dog

Iced Bunny Cottage

A few days ago I discovered a forgotten about Ikea gingerbread house kit in one of my kitchen cupboards. It was one of those projects that surprise, surprise didn’t come to fruition at Christmas time. I decided to set too, armed with a piping bag, icing and Easter sweet treats. It was a good distraction tactic to try and forget about the loft hatch being carved out overhead. Arrrgh! one of Andyman’s latest projects, and one which by the end of the day reduced me to sobbing tears. I just wasn’t in the mood for all the resulting dust, mayhem and redecoration needed. C’est la Vie!

The Gingerbread residence was quickly completed and now sits under a dust free glass dome. I adorned the house with some Lollipop trees made from melted white chocolate. To keep the lolly’s upright I stuck the lolly-stick trunks into some cotton reels. The grass was made by mixing desiccated coconut with green food colouring. As the meerkats say… “Simple”!

So today, there’ll be no twiddling about with Gingerbread houses- there’s a serious cleaning mission to get underway!

Christmas Leftover, Rocking Dog

Christmas Leftover

Ikea Flat-pack, Rocking Dog

Ikea Flat-pack

Lollypop Tree, Rocking Dog

Lollypop Tree

Vintage Treasure Hunting For Easter

Vintage Treasure, Rocking Dog

Vintage Treasure

Now is the time to look out for vintage treasure in readiness of Easter.

I love creating a Springtime tableau, with branches (Contorted Hazel and Pussy Willow being favourites), spring flowers in pretty antique jugs and a scattering of chocolate eggs and animals. These are supplemented by some pretty kitsch Easter rabbits and other odds and sods!

Seek out pretty antique cups to fill with speckled eggs and glorious tea plates to present Easter Biscuits and Hot Cross Buns. Pretty vintage embroidered and printed handkerchiefs can be used to wrap eggs and small gifts, tie with characterful ribbon or string. Hunt carefully for 50’s cardboard eggs and wicker baskets to fill with treats.

Charity shops are a good place to start your search as are vintage markets and fairs. My favourite is the Vintage and Handmade Jumble sale at Rangeworthy, nr Bristol. The next sale is up and coming on 21st March. As if the sale isn’t lovely enough there are teas and wonderful cakes served up by the friendly WI.

As a child I used to love the annual school trip at Easter. We’d be taken to Lewis’s (now Primark) in Bristol when we’d be escorted up the wooden escalators to the top of the building where we would be met by a menagerie of rabbits, chicks, lambs etc.. It all feels rather surreal now, in this age of consumerism, health and safety and contractable diseases!

In the 80’s we were lucky enough to live in Germany and they REALLY knew how to decorate for Easter. Houses, shops, cafe’s, churches and streets were enchantingly decorated with branches hung with decorated eggs and ornaments. One cafe in Kleve
at Easter time gave over floorspace to a huge perspex pen housing a mossy earthy mound. Decorated with daffodils, hyacinths and primroses there’d be an entertaining collection of fluffy chicks, ducklings and bunnies, delightful! Furthermore the shops would wrap purchases in seasonal paper embellished with curled ribbon.

So go in search of seasonal vintage treasures and buy pretty chocolate eggs and animals whilst stocks are plentiful. Lidl and TK Maxx have really pretty chocolate menageries!

Additionally have a Chocolat moment for Easter inspiration. Curl up with a foamy hot chocolate and be indulged!

Charming China, Rocking Dog

Charming China

Lidl Lamb!, Rocking Dog

Lidl Lamb!

Vintage Hanky Wrap, Rocking Dog

Vintage Hanky Wrap