Little things: to market, to market

On Sunday Dave and I went to the local Vietnamese fresh food market ‘Little Saigon’ to have lunch and stock up on fish, fruit and veggies for the week. It’s one of my all time favourite domestic things we do. Obviously I love Vietnam so I get a kick out of seeing and tasting all the things I’ve encountered on my holidays but I love the energy and the honesty of this place. I don’t know if that sounds stupid but there are no fancy signs, there are no pristine shelves or 2 for 1 deals. There are plates of fruit cut up for tasting and people just use their fingers and help themselves. There are people shouting out their prices loud and fast in Vietnamese. The herbs are 99 cents a bunch and there are live mud crabs lined up in rows in plastic tubs. The food stalls on the sidelines sell crispy fried calamari, dumplings, rice paper rolls and all kinds of other tasty things.

We go there for the experience and the fruit tasting as much as the cheap prices and fresh produce. I get more excited than a normal person should about grocery shopping but I just think it’s the best part of living where we do. 20130429-220507.jpg20130429-220537.jpg20130429-220546.jpg20130429-220555.jpg20130429-220604.jpg20130429-220619.jpg

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How to make a cute cupcake stand

What do you get if you cross two plates and a candlestick?

A cupcake stand! Or possibly a romantic dinner. In my case, I chose to make a stand. This is one of those brilliant ‘why didn’t I think of that’ ideas.

I first came across the idea of a tiered stand made from plates and candlesticks on this lovely blog and I’ve seen it in several places since. The idea is great because who wants to spend a fortune on a ready-made rarely-used item? Plus, by making it yourself you can choose the style and colours you like, use other things such as glasses or vases for the stand and make use of odd plates. You can leave them as they are, paint them or, like me, Mod Podge them!

This was my first experience with Mod Podge and can I just say: I am in love! For those unfamiliar with it (I have only really seen it on US blogs, hardly ever in Australia) Mod Podge is a glue, sealer and finish all in one little tub. And its really fun to use (find more awesome Mod Podge projects at Mod Podge Rocks).

I found the plates and candlestick in The Reject Shop which is the Australian version of a Dollar Store (find more awesome dollar store projects at Dollar Store Crafts). While I was trying to decide if I would paint them or leave them as they were I found some lovely old paper I had once found stuffed inside some new shoes. It’s thin, but thicker than tissue paper. I would say about a newspaper thickness. I really like the pattern on that paper so I decided to Mod Podge it onto my plates. It worked really well and took 3 coats plus the first coat I used to glue the paper onto the plate. It kind of reminds me of the willow pattern.

Once it was dry all that was left to do was glue the candlestick to the plates. (I actually haven’t glued mine yet because I wanted to show you how it looks as a single tiered cake stand too).

Materials you will need for this project:

2 x plates (one small, one large)

1 x candlestick

Strong glue for ceramics and glass

Patterned paper

Mod Podge (I used gloss)

Paint brush (I used my pastry brush!)

Scissors

Wash and dry your plates and candlestick.

Cut out your paper shapes and glue them onto the plate using the Mod Podge. Be gentle but try to eliminate any air bubbles. Mod Podge over the plate surface and leave to dry. Once dry, add another coat and leave to dry. Continue until you have 3 top coats.

Then just glue the bottom of the candlestick to the centre of the large plate and glue the small plate onto the candlestick. And there you have it – one pretty cup cake stand for next to nothing. This isn’t dishwasher safe so once used, just wipe clean with a damp cloth.

I think it also looks nice with fruit if you want to go with the healthy option!

P.S. I know what you’re thinking, you’re thinking ‘where did Maddy get those white chocolate heart-shaped cake toppers? I have to have them!‘ Well stay tuned and I might just tell you!

UPDATE: here is the tutorial for the delicious heart-shaped cake toppers.

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