Month: August 2016

Lactose free carrot cupcakes

I found this recipe for carrot cake about 5 weeks ago, and had it in the back of mind all this time. Then this week at work a morning tea was organised to celebrate one person returning from 5 weeks leave and another’s birthday. What a perfect opportunity to pull this lactose free carrot cupcakes recipe out and give it a try!

The original recipe was both vegan and gluten free, but as I’m only lactose intolerant, I made a few alterations based on the ingredients that I could source easily here in Australia. This converted the cakes into being lactose free, but if you’re after gluten free or Vegan, try out the original recipe!

The result was delicious and the cupcakes disappeared within about 3 minutes of hitting the table! I opted for making cupcakes instead of cakes so it would cool quicker and be easier to transport on the bus, but I plan to make this recipe again as a cake this weekend!

Carrot cupcakes |

These cupcakes are beautifully moist, and with the carrots I can convince myself that they are relatively healthy. The cream cheese icing is the perfect balance to the cake, sweet but not overly so, and I was pleasantly surprised by the lactose free cream cheese that I used!

Kelly very generously gave me permission to re-post the list of ingredients with my modifications, so here it is:

Cake Ingredients

  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon bicarb soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅓ teaspoon ginger
  • ½ cup organic cane sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup organic canola oil
  • 3 Tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup water

Frosting ingredients

  • 2 cups icing sugar
  • 113g lactose free cream cheese (I used Lidell’s brand), softened
  • 4 Tablespoons buttery spread (I used Nutellex), softened

Carrot cupcakes |

For the instructions, head on over to The Pretty Bee and let me know if you have any other recipes that you’d like me to try!

Happy cooking,

Meagan x

Sunset Clutch tunisian crochet pattern

This week I was able to finish up my sunset clutch, and I am excited to bring you this Tunisian crochet clutch pattern!

As I mentioned last week, I’ve been working with Hoooked Ribbon XL yarn, so it worked up quickly. After last week, all that I had left to do was finish up the last two colour segments then sew in the yarn ends and construct the clutch! I used a plastic yarn needle that I got with another kit that I purchased, and sewed the ends into the back side of the fabric.

Yarn ends all sewn in |

The next step was to attach the zipper, which was a bit of a challenge due to the thickness of the yarn. First I folded the crocheted piece in half so that the striped/correct side (as seen in the photo above) was facing the outside then pinned the 20cm zipper in place to the wrong side of crochet. Next I unzipped the zipper and sewed it in place using my machine with the zipper foot. Because the crocheted piece is quite thick, it was a bit of a challenge getting it through the machine, so I did guide it along a little. Once both sides of the zipper were attached, I turned the bag inside out and slip stitched the edges together with more RibbonXL yarn.

Sunset Clutch complete |

This clutch is the perfect size to slip my phone, cards, cash and a bit of lip gloss into, and I can’t wait to use it!

Sunset Clutch in action |

I have written up the pattern so that you can make your own at home. If you do make it please share on Instagram and use the hash tag #MeaganMade so that I can see your beautiful results. This is the first pattern I have written up so I’d love feedback, please let me know how you go! 🙂


I won’t go into too much details here about how to do the Tunisian crochet stitch because there are already some fantastic video tutorial’s online. For this pattern I have used Bella Coco’s video’s – Part 1 shows how to do the beginning row and the simple stitch, and Part 2 shows how to change colours and finish up the project.

Yarn: 4 colours of Hoooked Ribbon XL Yarn (approx 1/2 a ball each)

  • Colour 1 (C1): Frosted Yellow
  • Colour 2 (C2): Iced Apricot
  • Colour 3 (C3): Sweet Pink
  • Colour 4 (C4): Lila Dusk

Hook: 9mm Tunisian crochet hook

Other materials: 20 cm pale yellow zipper. Yarn needle.


Foundation Chain – (C1) Create a slip knot then chain 21.

Row 1 – (C1) Tunisian Crochet Simple Stitch (TCSS) into the V’s (See video tutorial) along foundation chain, ending with 21 loops on your hook. Return pass (as per video tutorial).

Rows 2 -3 – (C1) [TCSS into the vertical bars (21 loops on your hook). Return pass] x2. Colour change at end of Row 3 (See video tutorial).

Rows 4-6 – (C2) [TCSS into the vertical bars (21 loops on your hook). Return pass] x3. Colour change at end of Row 6.

Rows 7-9 – (C3) [TCSS into the vertical bars (21 loops on your hook). Return pass] x3. Colour change at end of Row 9

Rows 10-15 (C4) [TCSS into the vertical bars (21 loops on your hook). Return pass] x6. Colour change at end of Row 15.

Rows 16-18 (C3) [TCSS into the vertical bars (21 loops on your hook). Return pass] x3. Colour change at end of Row 18.

Rows 19-21 – (C2) [TCSS into the vertical bars (21 loops on your hook). Return pass] x3. Colour change at end of Row 21.

Rows 22-24 – (C1) [TCSS into the vertical bars (21 loops on your hook). Return pass] x3

Finishing Row – (C1) Work along Row 24 as per video tutorial on finishing. Tie off at end of row.


  1. Sew in ends to wrong side of crocheted piece using yarn needle.
  2. Pin zipper to wrong side of edge of yellow bands of crochet piece.
  3. Attach by hand or use zipper foot on sewing machine.
  4. Unzip zipper and turn clutch inside out.
  5. Slip stitch edges closed using colour of choice, I used C4. Sew in ends.
  6. Turn clutch right way out and zip closed.
  7. You’re done!

Happy crocheting,

Meagan xo

Sunset Clutch – Tunisian Crochet

This week I’ve been travelling for work, so I’ve been thinking of all of the projects that I wanted to start, including this Tunisian crochet sunset clutch. You can never have too many WIP’s – Work In Progress – right?! I was able to start designing and working on my clutch, and am very happy with how it’s turning out so far.

I picked up these balls of Hoooked Ribbon XL yarn last year in a small craft shop in Berry NSW while visiting a friend. I had thought that I might make some crocheted baskets and put to the side in my stash. I’d also been seeing a lot of Tunisian Crochet projects pop up in my Pinterest feed lately, but haven’t been too keen to start yet another blanket! After seeing a Tunisian crochet clutch in a friend’s Mollie Make’s magazine, I thought I’d try to design my own, and use up these gorgeous colours of Ribbon XL.

Ribbon XL colours for Sunset Clutch |

When I picked these colours I thought they looked nice together, but this week I realised just why – they reminded me of a sunset! I wanted to combine these colours together in the one clutch, and thought this would be a good yarn to try out Tunisian style of crochet.

I’d purchased a set of Tunisian hooks from Amazon and made a test swatch to see if I could actually master the stitch. I was able to get the hang of it, much to my relief, and decided on the size of completed clutch. Bella Coco’s YouTube tutorial was incredibly easy to follow, and if you want to give this stitch a try, I’d definitely recommend that you try following her 2 part tutorial. I’m making the body of the clutch in one piece, and I’ve almost finished that, but I now have to decide if I’m going to use a flap and button closure, or if I’m going to try to attach a zipper instead.

Sunset Clutch in progress |

I had originally planned to use wool and line the pouch, but this Ribbon XL yarn results in a thick and quite rugged finish, so I think it will be right without lining. I also like the finish of this stitch with the squares visible on the front of the piece. Ribbon XL is made from recycled cotton and is the lightweight version of their Zpagetti yarn and is fantastic to work with.

I’ll keep you posted as I work further on the pouch, and I am thinking about writing up the pattern… what do you guys think?

Happy crocheting,

Meagan x

Accuquilt Quilt Design – Stage 1

Browsing through my emails last week, I stumbled across one from Spotlight which had the magic word – “Discount”! There was a line of Buzoku cotton with metallic gold highlights (a slightly heavier weight 100% cotton) that I quickly fell in love with, and I knew that I had to try designing a quilt with this fabric.

Fabric Samples |

Now, there’s a slight hitch in this plan, I’ve never made a quilt with anything more complicated than plain squares, but with my recent Accuquilt purchase, I was feeling game. The Accuquilt GO! fabric cutter uses dies to cut material exactly to size, every time. Cutting the fabric is my least favourite part of the whole quilting process, mostly because I’m a bit of a perfectionist and it normally involves multiple re-cuts and takes forever.

With this cutter you can cut through up to 6 layers of cotton fabric at once. While it was a bit of an expensive purchase, I think it will be worth it if I do more quilting as a result. I also purchased the 9″ Qube which gives me the option of creating 79 different squares all 9″ in size, and I have been using the Quarter Square Triangle (4.5″ finished square) die.

AccuQuilt Cutter |

This was the first time I have used the cutter, and it was quite simple to use. I used a cardboard template that I made to be slightly larger than the triangle, and used the leftover from the first pass to make a second. With one row of fabric I was able to get 14 triangles, and all within about 3 minutes. It probably took longer to square up the fabric and cut the row than to cut all the triangles.

Cut quarter square triangles |

The dog-eared corners from the die made the sewing process a little easier. After a few false starts with the wrong sewing foot, I finally got 4 squares with some good sharp corners. I’m so happy with the combo of light and dark fabrics, but I think I’ll need to put some plain sashing between the squares as the patterns are quite busy when put next to each other. I have a die to cut 2.5″ strips, so I think I’ll use those, but now I need to work out what colour. Perhaps dark grey, or maybe gold?

Completed squares |

I’m still finalising the design, so let me know what colour you’d suggest in the comments below, and I’ll bring you some updates in the weeks to come!

Happy quilting,

Meagan x