Reused egg carton - Birdie ring boxes

December 20, 2008

I decided to make some silly rings for my friends as a Christmas gift, and came up with this idea for cute ring boxes. It's really, really easy and super fast, so if you still have a bunch of friends or colleagues on your list you could try this one. Also, it's so easy that kids could do it, too.

Ring boxes:

Ring boxes

Ring boxes

Owl ring box

Parrot ring box

Read the whole tutorial here: Recycled egg Styrofoam to birdie ring boxes.

Paper Ornaments And Gift Wrapping Tutorial

December 17, 2008

Yes, I have an exam tomorrow. And, yes, that's why this day is so perfect for crafting, for finally making all those things that caught my eyes on other blogs last few days. First I saw paper ornaments on Zakka life and on How About Orange again few days ago. Maybe just because of postponing the crafting my own paper ornaments I had a chance to get an idea to make a variation of earlier mentioned ones.

Here's what I've came up with:

Paper Ornament

Paper Ornament

Paper Ornament

Gift Wrapping Ribbon

Also, while making it I realized that if you do not finish the project to the end, but stop on one of the steps you can get a nice gift wrapping, as shown above.

And, here's the tutorial:
1. You'll need:
  • paper - I used two A4 papers of two different colours
  • ruler
  • pencil
  • scissors
  • glue
  • stapler (this should save your time) or thick needle and thread (but this would work too)

2. Draw your lines. I choose to have longer strips for pink one, and shorter for the vanilla one. My strips are 3,5 cm wide (about 1,4 inches).

3. Cut the strips. I got 6 pink strips, and 8 vanilla ones, but you must have the same number, so I used 6 of each.
4. Fold them into half:
5. Put the strips together in a way that you put one pink, one vanilla, one pink... :
This is how they should look:
6. Sew the strips together in the middle:
7. Glue the inner strip (if you click on the image you will see bigger one, and than you can clearly see where the glue should go):
8. Glue the outer strip (same as before):
9a. When you make just 2, 3 or 4 of them you may want to stop there, as now it makes a nice ribbon for gift wrapping:
9b. Or go all the way around until you glue them all and get this:
Final ornament is 13 cm (5 inches) in diameter.

I like how it looks different from different angles, and I'd love to play with it more, but right now I have to study :(
As soon as I get back to this, I'll post what else I've made using same technique.
I hope you liked it!

Book: Richard P. Feynman's "Surely You're Joking Mr. Feynman!"

December 16, 2008

This book is not what one usually thinks under the therm 'biography'; it's actually a collection of stories from Feynman's life as he told them. On the back cover there's a specific word used - self-portrait. Maybe that word describes the best what this book really is.

Reading about 'adventures of a curious character', told by the same funny, honest, intelligent and unpredictable person makes you feel like you're also falling into adventure with him, like you're getting to know and understand him. Finally, when I came to just four stories until the end I just stopped reading, and couldn't go any further. I couldn't just read through his entire life, close the book and say 'so, ok, that's it'. I want to, need to, have those few pages more, just to know that his story is not finished, that there's more, still.

For those who are not familiar with Richard Feynman lets say that he's a semiskilled Nobel laureate in physics. Whatever he touches he turns to gold, what ever interests him he investigates deeply and thoroughly. On one hand intelligent, innovative, hardworking, inquisitive, and on the other hand silly, honest, positive.

Possibly a great gift for persons who admire science, innovation, intelligence, good humor, and maybe even Feynman himself (you wouldn't think maybe, but there are many, big hug to ya all :).

The front cover :]

Recycled Christmas Ornaments

December 15, 2008

For this you'll need:
  • can top cover from an used can
  • something to make it nice and pretty: colors, papers, scissors, permanent markers...
  • ribbon

This is with what you begin with, and this is what you get:

You can do what ever you like to decorate your can top covers. What's cool about them is that they already have the little hook on the top, and that they're made of metal and already have nice white, golden or silver color.
I'm really not skilled in drawing or decorating, so I'm sure somebody else would do it much better.

Anyway, I hope you like it :)
If you decide to do your own I would be very happy to see them!
... And remember you've seen it first here!

You may also like to learn how to make a two-flower paper ornament:

Book: Jack London's "Michael, Brother of Jerry"

December 13, 2008

I decided to read this first time I saw the quotation from the foreword. When I started reading it, there was no more chance stopping. The story of Michael, an Irish terrier, pulls you, and you can not leave Michael alone any more. Most of the story is written from Michael's perspective, and it's obvious that London understands the dog so deeply and truly. Anyone who ever lived with a dog will be surprised reading and in the same time recognizing things London is writing about.

The story is engaging, but maybe it helps knowing that London takes care of his readers, as well as of the story. I wouldn't like it if he went any more reader friendly, as than he would certainly miss his point, and in some way show disrespect for Jerry's destiny, as well as the destinies of many, many other animals.

Here's the quote:
Very early in my life, possibly because of the insatiable curiosity that was born in me, I came to dislike the performances of trained animals. It was my curiosity that spoiled for me this form of amusement, for I was led to seek behind the performance in order to learn how the performance was achieved. And what I found behind the brave show and glitter of performance was not nice. It was a body of cruelty so horrible that I am confident no normal person exists who, once aware of it, could ever enjoy looking on at any trained-animal turn.


I have indeed lived life in a very rough school and have seen more than the average man's share of inhumanity and cruelty, from the forecastle and the prison, the slum and the desert, the execution-chamber and the lazar-house, to the battlefield and the military hospital. I have seen horrible deaths and mutilations. I have seen imbeciles hanged, because, being imbeciles, they did not possess the hire of lawyers. I have seen the hearts and stamina of strong men broken, and I have seen other men, by ill-treatment, driven to permanent and howling madness. I have witnessed the deaths of old and young, and even infants, from sheer starvation. I have seen men and women beaten by whips and clubs and fists, and I have seen the rhinoceros-hide whips laid around the naked torsos of black boys so heartily that each stroke stripped away the skin in full circle. And yet, let me add finally, never have I been so appalled and shocked by the world's cruelty as have I been appalled and shocked in the midst of happy, laughing, and applauding audiences when trained-animal turns were being performed on the stage.


Cruelty, as a fine art, has attained its perfect flower in the trained-animal world.

You can find the e-book here:

Recipe: Juicy vegetarian homemade pizza

December 12, 2008

I bet there are million of recipes for pizza, at least 234 567 of them being vegetarian. One would say no point of adding yet another one to the list. But, let me explain you why my pizza deserves to have the recipe published:
  • it smells so good, it tastes even better and it melts in your mouth
  • also, in this recipe I'll share some easy and cheap tricks how to make your homemade pizza taste just like ones from the pizzerias

Here's a list of stuff that you must have if you want a tasty, juicy vegetarian pizza:
  • a fresh dough
  • plum tomatoes - from a can if not a season
  • cheese - not any type of cheese is good, try something like Gouda cheese
  • fresh mushrooms (champignon) - the ones from a can are a total disaster, and I would say if you cannot have fresh ones don't use these ones either
  • sweet corns - ones from a can or jar would do
  • oregano, as well as other spices like salt, pepper, garlic, thyme, basil...

List of things that would be great to have on vegetarian pizza, but are not that necessary:
  • fresh paprika - sliced
  • onion - sliced
  • zucchini - sliced
  • arugula
  • mozzarella
Ok, so here comes the procedure..

1) Make dough. Use 400g of flour, 7g of dry yeast, 1 tsp of salt, 2 Tsp of olive oil and 2 deciliters of warm water. Just sift flour to a bowl, add salt, yeast and a little bit of oil. Pour warm water into glass, and add it little by little to the flour and mix. Your dough is ready when all the flour is used up, and the dough is rather soft than gummy. Cover with cloth and place on a warm spot.

2) While the dough is rising up you can start chopping the vegetables. Start with the tomatoes, as they need to be cooked. Chop the garlic, too. Put the oil in a pot, and place on the low heat. Add garlic, and a bit later add salt and pepper. Add tomatoes, and have water prepared near by to add. Add oregano and other spices you'd like. Leave cooking, stir from time to time, and add some water.

3) Heat up the oven to say 200 °C (400 °F), but take the oven crossbar out first.

4) While the tomatoes are cooking you can slice the rest of stuff (olives don't need do be chopped), into thin slices.

5) Spread the dough. Cover the oven crossbar with the aluminum foil, and spread oil over it. Place the dough on the oven crossbar.

6) Add half of the tomatoes and spread them over the dough. Add all the shredded cheese all over the dough, and cover with the rest of the tomato sauce. Add rest of the chopped vegetables you have.

7) Cover the pizza completely with another piece of aluminum foil, it's not a problem if it touches pizza, but it shouldn't be completely attached to pizza. Place in a preheated oven. Your pizza will be ready in 15 - 20 minutes, depending on the size, heat and oven.

I tried many homemade pizzas, and everybody who makes them has a little trick, and I find it great. My trick is consisted of simply using fresh ingredients, cooked tomato sauce and keeping pizza juicy. Isn't it awful when the cheese, mushrooms and corn just dry out, and become chewy and hard? That's why you need to mix the cheese into the sauce; that way it'll melt, but won't dry out. Also, by putting the aluminum foil under the pizza you allow it to bake faster, and the dough to become more crunchy and pizza like than bread like. By putting the upper aluminum foil you make sure that the vegetables don't dry out, but remain fresh and juicy.

Buon appetito!

Ideas I recently enjoyed seeing around :)

December 11, 2008

In no specific order, just as it comes :)

From Atomic Shrimp comes a great tutorial how to make a fancy little silver-like box from an old can, and all you need you probably already have in your home.

Flickr user Claire L. Evans shows us an adorable skirt made of an old T-shirt.

From Urban Threads comes an excellent tutorial how to make your own toasty pack, to warm you during the cold winter.

As the season of joy and mostly giving some gifts is very close, here's a nice tutorial how to make a 3D star from paper to make your gifts more attractive. From High Hopes.

Beautiful fairy lights made of old egg cartons (with tutorial) are a must see, via Esprit Cabane.

If you have many friends coming at your place you may want to make some slippers, and here on Creative Babies' Blog is a great tutorial how to use some old cloth to make new slippers.

How salvaged drawers can become a beautiful modular bookcase is explained and showed on Craftynest, with tutorial!

A great piece by Flickr user cauchy09 with recycled denim, khaki and corduroy that looks just brilliant!

So, here it is, I hope you enjoyed it, I did!

Video: The Story of Stuff

December 09, 2008

Every now and then you stumble upon a good article, video, book, thought... that in a very clear and obvious way said some things you thought as well. Maybe you did not pronounce it so well, maybe it seemed vague and hard to explain, and than - illumination! - there's someone who did the job just perfectly.

That's what I felt watching this video. Just to say immediately, you can watch the video and/or download it here: The Story of Stuff. The storytelling is clear, direct and thorough. The documentary lasts for 20 minutes only, but you'll be surprised how much has been said. (And I must add that the animation is really great!)

After this video you won't call yourself so proudly an ecologist just because you separate all the junk you buy. There's so much more to it!

Enjoy your video :)

Recipe: Pasticada - a vegan version

December 08, 2008

Is there a better way to start a new blog than by posting a tasty festive recipe? I cannot think of any!

To begin with; pasticada is a traditional meal in Dalmatia, part of Croatia (it's in Europe - do your geography :). It's usually prepared with meat, and takes lots of time (two days for preparation - ohlala), but it could be prepared as a tasty sauce itself and accompany with gnocchi or corn porridge.

Pasticada is remarkable for it's rather cheap, but healthy ingredients that make very specific combination of tastes. It's ingredients are fairly cheap, but the meal itself is fancy and a bit exotic.

Here's what you'll need to cook pasticada :
  • tomatoes - 800 g (or 28 ounces) if it's not a season it's best to use those from a can
  • carrots - 2 medium size
  • onion - 2 medium size, but you can use less if you want
  • dried plums (prunes) - 100 g (or 3,5 ounces)
  • garlic - a little bit
  • olive oil - few tablespoons
  • salt
  • pepper
  • spices - it's best to use some of the green spices like laurel, thyme, parsley... in short anything herbal, spicy, mediterranean
  • red wine and/or vinegar - few drops (i didn't use it this time, but you can if you like it's taste)
Chop the tomatoes, onions, dried plums and garlic. Slice the carrots, better thinner than wider.
Put olive oil in a cooking bowl, and put on a low heat. Add garlic, and after a minute or two add onion. It's good to add salt and pepper already now as salt helps softening the onions. After the onions soften a little bit, say 2-3 minutes, add carrots and plums, and cook until the carrots get at least bit softy, that could be further 5 minutes or so. Than, add the tomatoes and all other spices. Have water close to add.

You'll probably be cooking this for another 25 minutes or so; you simply must taste it to see if it's good. The taste of the sauce depends on how long you cook it, so you decide if it's over or not.

As a side dish I used grilled soy stakes with chopped garlic and olive oil, arugula salad and corn porridge. All of those you can easily prepare while the pasticada is still cooking.


December 07, 2008


RECIPES - All veg(etari)an:



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