Flea Market Findings

I don't always hit the flea market but when I do, I try to find items that speak to me. I rarely find a think but check out what I was able to grab on Saturday and all for just seven bucks.

A vintage jacket that may or may not have a different journey once I totally lay my hands on it. I just like to change things and give me signature. I grabbed it just for its design and color, it is blue after all. Who would think a fabric used to adorn a home, could also be used for a jacket, how cool is that?

Not that I really needed a make-up bag. I am a minimalist in that regard but bought it to serve as a storage for my world of bracelets once they are completed and also as a added decor on many future projects. Art direction in motion.  

I am a scarf person. I live for scarf. I have an assortment of them and just found a little corner on the drawer for it. I am pretty sure I will wear it sometimes but bought it mostly for what you will see below, 

Voila, Eiffel Tower, Paris. 

Call me crazy!


My Art, My Creation, My Work

I am a woman show. I live in a schizophrenic world, no pun intended but my hands are like tentacles extending everywhere.  They move around faster then birds migrating south. I am just creative so they say.

Once upon a time, I wanted to be a fashion designer so I began sewing, to the point I had my own clients, high school friends, a skill I learned from my mother at tender age of 16. I was riding high, I loved it but it all stopped when I moved to the States where you live and breathe ready to wear, and college took over. 

I was creating and it felt great to see my work on others. Undone, I moved on, dreaming on becoming a fabric designer. So, I began sketching while innocently searching for factories with no way of knowing it would come to fulfillment.

As fait would have it, I ended up in the same city the factories were to be located but as it has happened with many factories, they moved to China. However, the world today is our oyster. We live in the digital age where anything and everything is possible as long as you try.

I thought about combining my two loves, well one of many, designing and sewing and create beautiful pieces for a long, long time but kept putting it in the back burner. I had ideas, may ideas and they were that, ideas until now.

It is without further ado that I present you my first installment of my two loves. The fabric you see, it is mine and the bags, I made them from head to toe.  They are ©Ampablue Creations. Hope you love them as much as I loved making them. 


Hazelnut Cookies

One of the things I enjoyed doing while growing up back home, was baking. There wasn’t a cake or cookie I wouldn’t make, there wasn’t a sweet treat I wouldn’t sample, there wasn’t a day that would go by without me munching on something sugary. 

I loved to bake mostly because just as I loved to make them, I also loved to eat them. Just as I finished baking them, as fast I had them on my mouth with no minute to spare. 

It was a fun and relaxing activity around the house. It kept me occupied and out of trouble but the main objective, it reduced costs to a fraction of that of a shop, I could tailor the recipe to my liking, besides, it was the thing to do. We would rather make it ourselves then buying them.  Hmm imagine serving your visitors homemade, freshly baked goodies? The aroma... I can hear the the tambourine playing. 

So, this weekend I was hit by a baking pan. I had a urge and did something have not done in a long time, baking. I can envision the folks at my local supermarket rattled up, hands on their head saying "oh no" about the news. 

With some time to burn and feeling domestic, I made some hazelnuts cinnamon cookies in a whimsy. Yes, I did and they turned out mighty tasty thank you. But something change on my way to      in the process however with my munching habits; times have changed. The cookies did not square straight to my mouth but to a basket in my kitchen with tea and coffee looking fixedly at them saying “pick me, pick me”. They didn’t, I didn’t, we did not. I have it down now, I laid low. I was motivated not to upset the scale but watch it and not to appear in the love handles wall of fame. It was fun I may add, liberating and a delight. Loved it. 

____  ''  ____

- Courtesy of epicurious.com

  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts (2 oz)
  • 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 soupspoon cinnamon


Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F.
Toast hazelnuts in a shallow baking pan until fragrant and skins begin to loosen, about 6 minutes. Rub nuts in a kitchen towel to remove any loose skins (some skins may not come off) and cool to room temperature.
Pulse nuts and 1/4 cup sugar in a food processor until nuts are finely ground, then add flour and a pinch of salt, pulsing until combined. Add butter and pulse until dough just forms a ball. Divide dough in half, then roll dough on a work surface lightly dusted with sugar and flour into 2 (11-inch-long) logs (each about 1 inch wide). Chill, wrapped in plastic wrap, 1 hour.
Cut logs crosswise into 1/2-inch slices and arrange rounds 2 inches apart on 2 baking sheets.
Bake, 1 sheet at a time, until bottom edges just begin to turn pale golden, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool cookies on sheet 2 minutes. Place remaining 3 tablespoons sugar in a small dish and dip tops of cookies in it, then cool sugared cookies on a rack.

Happy baking! 


Mango Lime Pops

It is so hot today that it calls for one of these. Yummy! Sorry I can't share it, I wish I could but in case you are in the mood for one and are too busy to run to the store, here is a fun, friendly and easy recipe I found on the Real Simple website. Mango is one of my favorite fruits and I can never go wrong with it, it melts in your mouth and lime just gives it that saddle quick it needs. Hope you like it. I loved it. Cheers! 

_ _ _ _ _ 

Recipe courtesy of Real Simple

Hands-On Time:15 minutes  Total Time: 255 minutes  Serves:8


2 large mangoes, peeled and chopped (4 cups)
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/3 cup sugar
pinch fine salt

  1. Puree the mangoes, lime juice, sugar, 1 cup water, and salt in a blender until smooth.
  2. Pour the mixture into 10 3-ounce or 8 4-ounce ice-pop molds, dividing evenly. Insert ice-pop sticks and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours and up to 4 days.


National French Fry Day

Yes, today is National French Fry Day. I mean what could be more Americana then celebrate a greasy but tasty food that can incite all the awful diseases and not caring because it tastes good?! Call it food, call it snack, call it whatever you want, it is one my favorites indulgences and I am not one bit apologetic about it. I can eat a whole plate and be happy for the rest of the day, greasy or non-greasy. 

Since my eating french fries habit is such a rare once in the moon occurrence, I believe my blood pressure and heart can handle it then again, the last time I had french fries, it was a year ago; so, I am excused. 

In case you would like to celebrate the day and do not have time to cook, rush to McDonalds, they have one of the best. Add chicken and vegetables to it, and you have a meal. I tasted them all but this one beats the cake.  

Happy National French Fry Day!


Le Petit Pie

As the story goes, Jenny was always interested in beekeeping because as she puts it, “it is really good for the environment and I think bees are fascinating!” Well, who am I to argue with that? 

The first Christmas she and boyfriend Ben spent together, he bought her an apiary (bee hive) and all the tools she would need to bee keep. Courageous. In my little world, I run to Timbuktu when I see a bee but there she was, taking care of the environment.  

By spring, she had it up and running, and the bees were producing tons of honey but by then, LePetitpie and nothing of the kind even crossed her mind. She had just found a hobby and was not thinking about turning it into a business. She enjoyed and was having fun. 

She decided to join the beekeeping club for knowledge and experience.

By summer of that year, she was using honey in everything that for her friend Shannon's birthday picnic, she decided to make a pie. 

Since it was a picnic, she thought a large pie would be hard to cut and share so, she made small pies in muffin tins, using her own honey to sweeten the crust and a concept was born. It was a hit. Her friends loved them. They thought the pies were cute. 

Voila! Cuteness is always a prelude to something magnificent. Who better testers then your friends? They will always tell you the truth. 

Her beekeeping club was having a festival for National Honey Bee Day so, she decided to bring out her pies to test the water and see what would happened… Drumroll please, touchdown. She sold out!

In the fall of last year, she started bringing the pies out to farmers markets and the rest is history. 

You can find Jenny and Le Petit Pie in Winter Garden and Lake Eola, FL farmer’s markets but she will be taking a break soon, changing the scenery a bit by heading out to Denver, CO for the summer. If you around the area, check her out. Trust me, the tiny all American Apple, Strawberry and Stripes, Yankee Doodle Cherry and Red, White Blueberry Honey Baked into the crust from scratch with love are delicious and I am not even a pie connoisseur.  They are made with love, individually for you! 


It Runs In The Family

Meet Gorretti Pina, she is an author and designer in Lisbon, Portugal and also my cousin. Her brother who passed away a few years ago, was also a great and renowned artist. Yes, the arts run in my family - both parents side. So, even if I wanted to, I could not escape it. She has written two books, poetry and fiction and is making her mark across the Portuguese world. I hope to see her showcasing her collections one day in a major runway show.

With Anibal Cavaco Silva, President of Portugal at Palacio Nacional de Belem

Her first book

Her second book, a collection of poetry

On a TV show in Lisbon, Portugal


Glittered Out

Its universal language in sewing world is, alterations but I like to call it “fixing”.

A friend of mine called me the other day with her up, she was going to a wedding but the dress she bought, was to big, if I could do "your magic". Well, I love challenges. I haven’t seen a fabric I haven’t conquered yet, so I was on but… hmmm, wait. 

The dress was lovely, simple, cute and it beautifully accentuated her Latina body but there was a catch, an issue of major minor proportion, glitter. Glitter that din't know how to behave and had a mind of its own that by the time I was done working on the dress, I had 911 on speed dial. 

There was glitter anywhere glitter could land. It was all over the table - thank you plastic cover for coming to my rescue, floor, my dress, my face, my hands and yes, shower was on the menu and came handy. I was glittered out in glitterland. 

Needless to say, it didn’t matter. It was all about her. She is such a townboy, always in shorts and pants, and it was nice to see her all glamoured out for a change. She, second from the right, looked cute and adorable. I am glad she had fun and enjoyed her childhood friend’s wedding and I am glitter free. Oh well, until the next adventure.