A compromise in interior decorating and scatter cushions, what every household needs for Games Night.... Suburbia Cushions!
Each cushion is a nearly regular hexagon with 40cm sides. Maths teachers should be proud as, not have a protractor at home, I used the compass method of drawing 60 degree angles to make a 120 degree corner for them! They are an interpretation of the starter tiles from Ted Alspach's Suburbia game.
I made the cushions out of white cotton and stuffed them with toy stuffing. They needed a lot of stuffing!
Making the covers began by making the five mini hexagons of each colour. All of them were made using white cotton, machine embroidered onto coloured cotton. They became a little wrinkled even using iron on interfacing and next time I'd probably do them in reverse.
Then the borders were attached to their background hexagon. The tiles have drawings on them and this did lead to quite a planning meeting about how best to represent this: I felt that more applique would be time consuming and draw too much attention to the background but the co chair was worried that fabric paint would look too messy; so the backgrounds are plain. I think that looks better as otherwise the cushions would be too messy.
Next it was time to add the white embroidery. I used a white pen to outline the areas before machining them on. This is my first sewing machine embroidery project so I was a little nervous, particularly about the dollar signs but they came out passable.
Then the cushions were finished off with the banners. the writing is done in fabric pen as I didn't think I could machine embroider that neatly. And finally all off the hexes were attached. This lead to much less wrinkling as the fabric was very thick by then.
Because of their shape, the cushions needed really long zips so I bought some continuous zip in blue and watched many videos to discover the technique for attaching the pull but it turns out, jamming them on works just fine.
Finally, the back and the front were joined together and here is the completed result.
For the hardcore gamers out there, I'll admit that there are some changes from the original tiles: I made the backs lakes, which are the backs of every type of tile except the starter tiles, but I thought it would be more fun. There is also some white writing on the lake cards, which I couldn't replicate due to the resolution of my embroidery. However, there isn't writing on the app version so I'll pretend it was intended.
The cushions are quite large and so can double up as floor cushions if we have too many guests!
Each cushion needed:
70cm x 70cm background colour cotton
70cm x 70 cm border colour cotton
70cm x 70cm blue cotton for back
70cm x150cm white cotton for the cushion
1kg of cushion stuffing
scraps of white, blue, green, yellow, grey cotton for hexes
Black, white, blue, yellow, green, grey and red embroidery thread
The board game company featured the cushions on their instagram!
This worked as a pretty good thin crust pizza base: it even supported a stuffed crust well. It did taste a little more like pastry though.
600g plain flour
1 floz oil
2 floz milk
7g easy yeast
11 floz warm water
Mix the ingredients and knead for 10 minutes. Leave it to rise for 1.5 hours then knead again and leave for another hour.
Roll it out until it is 2mm thick.
This makes 3 pizzas and can be left in the fridge without toppings overnight.
A wonderful friend gave me the Humming Bird Bakery recipe book for Christmas so I thought I'd try one out for board game night this week, Key Lime Pie.
500g hobnob biscuits (or digestives or maple and pecan crunch cereal)
200g unsalted butter
8 egg yolks
2 tins condensed milk
300ml double cream
I don't own a pie dish and found that this turned out pretty enormous in a standard 23cm cake dish; so if you only have one of those I'd suggest 1/2 to 2/3 of the ingredients. It also said that it was 10-12 servings: with the full mixture it's more like 14-16 (and I don't normally find there are enough servings!)
To make the base: whizz up 500g of hobnobs in a blender and pour 200g of melted butter over it. Mix them together well and then push them into your dish. Smooth it down with a spoon putting a lot of pressure on it so that it's really compact. Cook at 170 degrees for 30 minutes and then leave to cool.
To make the curd, separate 8 egg yolks (you can freeze the whites and make Angel Food Cake or Meringues). Zest and juice 5 limes (I only had 3 limes and 2 lemons and that seemed to work fine). Then mix them all together with two (two!!!) tins of condensed milk. Pour the mixture into the base and cook again for 30 minutes at 150,
Leave it to cool for a long time, at least and hour and then pop it in the fridge, preferably overnight. Just before it's time to serve, whip up 300ml of cream with a whisk and slap it on top. You can grate lime zest over it to make it look more fancy.
Serve in large slices, delicious!
You rip what you sew!