Friday, March 25, 2011

Blood, Bones, Butter

i am determined to start showing y'all some of the things i read, listen to and come across in the literary/media world, on this blog.  many of you know that i spend a crazy amount of time in the car chauffeuring my kids around and generally getting out and about so i end up listening to a LOT of books on CD.  (I also watch a LOT of movies in the evenings so they will be revealed here too)
it should be noted here that i do belong to a book club wherein we read historical fiction and i have been known to "read" the book by "listening" to it!  i cheat.  and i digress.

recently i came across a review of this book, Blood, Bones and Butter: the Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef by Gabrielle Hamilton. 

OK.  lots of you know i consider myself a "foodie".  totally amateur, for sure, but a foodie non-the-less.  i have much, much, much to learn about food, ingredients, methods, etc.  but boy do i love me some good beautiful delicious food.  and almost more than food, well not more than, but a close tie, i love books (or CDs!) about food.  i could go on and on about my favorite books being the ones about food, memoirs about cooking, details of what someone ate, and most especially any book that has recipes included. 

i got started in that particular genre by reading (yes, actually reading!) When French Women Cook by Madeleine Kamman.  then i read The Tenth Muse by Judith Jones (who published Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking).  then i read Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver.  then i read a Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg. 

well. life just wasn't the same.

(it kinda freaks me out to think that there are likely hundreds of more books out there, like this, that i don't yet know about.  i want to read them all and i can't wait!)

So Blood, Bones and Butter does not have recipes.  but i am telling you, it does not matter.


Gabrielle Hamilton writes from a place of poetry, honesty and pure brilliance.  all about food and life.  a magical life.  you will laugh, be shocked, cringe, and cry.  yes.  it's that good!

you know how when you are reading/watching/listening/seeing/witnessing something SO GOOD you don't want it to end and if you have the power or the will, you slow it down so it won't end?  ok.  that's this book.

it's about eating.  and cooking.  and finding your way.  and the ups and downs of life.  it's funny.  and it's ordinary in an extraordinary way. it's about her 30 seat restaurant Prune, in New York.  and a lot more.

Mario Batali says: "she has raised the bar for all books about eating and cooking"

Anthony Bourdain says: "Simply the best memoir by a chef ever.  EVER."

but don't take their word for it.  or mine.  run as fast as you can to your local book store or library and grab this book (or CD).  you won't be sorry.

and since i did listen to it on CD, and Gabrielle reads it herself, (which i love when the author reads their own book,) i think you should listen to it.  i'll just say that.  listen to it if you can.  and know that it is not completely "clean" if there are little ears around.  not clean, but oh so worth it!



Thursday, March 24, 2011


i finally put up a dowel/rod in my studio to hang all my favorite ribbon on.  those of you who know me well know i have a package wrapping and ribbon addiction!

i hung this right above my sewing machine area so it is easy to access.  no more rummaging thru plastic bins in the garage since
i use a lot of ribbon, a lot of the time!

all my ribbon that was not on spools now fits in one smaller container right under my sewing machine desk.  yeah!  all my ribbon is out of the garage!

looking for something to wrap and ribbon-ify,

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

We Are All Connected

so i stenciled some text on this old paint by number i had down at the shop.  i have seen these, like the plates, on Etsy and elsewhere and thought i'd give it a go.

work in progress

i have lot of old prints, mirrors and odd paintings that i plan to add some text too.   most will be for sale down at the shop.  come check it out.

dreaming of tucson...9 days and counting,

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Corn Bag Cushion

here is the finished chaise lounge cushion i recovered for my friend Kathy.  it turned out even better then i had hoped and Kathy loves it!  i love it too! 
here is the original cushion:

the cover i made slips right over this and opens in the back for easy removal.

here is a close up of one of the vintage feed sacks i used.  I used three in all.  Kathy had bought them especially for this project and she gave me a cotton curtain panel to use for the back fabric.

here are the sacks layed out in the initial stages.

trying to show you the red double top stitching i did on the top to tie all the pieces together.  i will show you the overlapping "pocket opening" in the back.  it's just like you might see on a euro sham pillow:

so there you have it.  another cover up!  Kathy is using vintage ticking pillows to go around the back side of this, where your head, neck, and back would rest.  i bet it looks really good all together.

off to work on more painting bags.  i know i've said it a hundred times but i am trying to get several bags done so when i get back from Tucson i can list a bunch of stuff at once in my Etsy shop.  wish me luck.  fingers crossed.


Monday, March 21, 2011

Bite Me

i found this plate at the thrift a few weeks ago.  i have been looking for pretty plates to write silly messages on like i have seen on Etsy.  this one has pears and cherries so i figured, "Bite Me" was appropriate!

here is the plate without the words

the back already had a hanger on it

i do not own a porcelaine pen yet so this time i used adhesive letter stickers and then varnished with clear matte shellac to finish it off and make it last and be durable for longevity.

i have a few other blurbs i want to try out on plates and dishes but i will wait until i have the porcelaine pen since you can paint or draw whatever you want, bake it in the oven for a few, and then have a new creation made.  lots of exciting possibilities with this!

the "bite me" plate is down at the shop for sale.

skiing the Cascades,

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

TEDxHouston - Brené Brown

I am so in love with this woman!  Everything she speaks rings so true for me it brings me to tears.  I have ordered her DVD and will be watching her PBS special.  Please, please, please take the twenty minutes to watch this video.  If you are a woman, a man, a mother, a father, a partner, a friend, a sister, or brother, if you are an artist and try to live a creative authentic life, then this is for you!  Enjoy and begin to be transformed!   xoxox  - Jennette

Friday, March 11, 2011

Another Basket Liner

made another basket liner to sell at the shop.

here is the plain basket, long and rectangular.

here is the basket laid out on the piece of floral linen i used to make the liner.  now that i look at it, i like this "wrong side" fadedness much more than the "right side" brightness. 
i did actually try to bleach out the fabric a bit first but it didn't react to the bleaching.
not. at. all.

here is the fabric laid out and ready to be sewn up to make the corners.

here is the liner draped over the basket before i made the casing for the drawstring ribbon.

and here's a final look at the lined basket.

i'm in a "lining" mood but now need to shift to a "recovering" mood.
Kathy has hired me to do more sewing for her again.  this time it's to recover a lounge cushion in old vintage corn feed sacks.  i will show you the whole project as soon as i am finished.  Kathy and i agreed to do half trade, half cash for this job. 
and i absolutely cannot wait to show you what i am getting in trade!  it is to die for!  at least to me.  y'all know how much i like weird stuff.  well this is gonna be right up the "so weird it's the coolest thing ever" alley.  just wait!

cooking lobster ravioli with a shallot, lemon, olive oil, cream and parsley sauce for jasper and my dinner.  can i get a "hell yes!"?  i thought so! :)

Tanya Davis- Subtlety Spoken Word Performance

I love this so much!  I hope you do too! 

found via the mostly lovely and talented Vivienne McMaster

Friday, March 4, 2011

Adele - Rolling In The Deep

having a friday night dance party in the kitchen to Adele!  HELLO!  have you heard Rolling In the Deep?!!!  I dare you, double dog dare you, to sit still while you listen to this!  get up!  move!  shake your booty and dance your arse off!

  its good friends!  real, real good!



(p.s.  i am desperately seeking 2 tickets to see Adele on June 1st at the Paramount in Seattle.  she was originally playing at the Showbox and they moved the show to the Paramount for more room and it STILL sold out!  i'm desperate!  help a girl out if ya can!  thanks loves!)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Sheep Bag

this is the bag i made out of a vintage feed sack i found at an antique show in the fall.  the bag has been done for a while now.  i was trying to wait to post about it until i had my Etsy shop all up and running so i could list it there.  but alas, nothing in the Etsy shop yet.  yet....  but there will be!

the folks i bought this from said they found at an estate sale on the Colville Reservation here in Washington state, on the east side.

a close up

here the pattern is being layed out.  it was important to me to use up every single bit of print i could.

this piece ended up becoming a big divided outside pocket

i threw in this photo to show you the double row of top stitching detail i do on all the pockets and edges.  it gives a nice finished look.

i used a vintage print dress for the lining of the bag.  the square part cut out of the bust turned into this:

one of the inside pockets! with original seams and tip of v-neck, etc.

here is the back side of the bag with the wide strip made into three separate outside pockets.  i used the back of the sheep feed sack for the back of the bag.  and like i said, i was trying to use up every bit of print the bag had so i got some on the handle too.  i really like the worn look and all the markings of age and wear and tear.  some people look at them as blemishes.  i look at them as character.

a look inside the finished bag

so there you have it folks!  the sheep bag has been a big hit with my friends, three of which say they want it.  i will certainly publish a little post about it when it's up for grabs on Etsy.  stay tuned!

deciding on a new tattoo design,

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

February Finds

the studio mascots got new hats!  found these very small vintage party hats at second saturdayz

this is the second one of these i have found.  this one at ruffles and rust.  the other one is a much brighter blue.  and it's for sale down at the mall.  but i will be turning this one into a pin cushion.  stay tuned and i will show you the results soon....
the little lame prince and his traveling cloak

also from ruffles and rust.  it had such great picture plates i couldn't resist

just found this at ruffles and rust too.

already had this similar one and had to show ya!

found this at second saturdayz.  i definitely have a thing for little pouches/purses/wallets, especially leather or beaded!  i'll try to get a post together of all the ones in my possession to show you soon!

yes.  this is a velvet painting.  i know.  you think it's strange.  but i LOVE this!  i found it at goodwill.  it was marked over $20.  i asked to speak to the manager and pointed out its slight and minimal flaws to her, asking if it could be reduced in price.  of course, she said, how about $10?  Sold!

this is a nice old piece of oak that used to have "scrolly" decorative wood pieces attached to it.  i love how you can see where the pieces were.  it gives it a cool patina/look.

i will most likely incorporate this piece into a "crazy quilt" headboard i am working on for our king size bed, incorporating the east coast blue shutters i found last summer and incorporating a few other pieces of found wood.  i'll show you if/when i ever get around to completing it!

another old doll to embroider.  my sister in law Jamie found me this one.

another vintage velvet box.  this one blue.  more on the velvet box collection coming soon!

i have been looking for one of these forever for our vintage 1961 Fireball travel trailer.  yes, ours is a travel trailer, not a mobile home, technically, but the decal on the plate looks so similar to our little Fireball!  so i am trying to decide if i will go all out ghetto and cross out "mobile home" with a Sharpie and write in Travel Trailer, or not!

a vintage camera strap!!!!  Love!!!

this $3 necklace from the thrift bought for the tigers eye beads.  i have been a Complete FREAK lately over tigers eye!  Swoon!

a perfectly green hull coffee mug.  maybe for the Fireball...

i think that might be just about it for February Finds.  i did get some new fabrics that i will be making stuff with but i'll show you those when they become something :)

folding fabrics and finding storage,
(wish me luck!)