This little collage contains a few of Bittersweets favorite things.
The hemp twine, dried hydrangea, vintage linen and days gone by children images seem to fit in with these lazy hazy days of summer.
I'm quite saddened by the recent act of terror that slithered into the Aurora Co. theatre.
Something important to remember...
God does not perform these ruthless acts of violence. Man does.
I am praying that the injured will recover and that the victims families will find comfort and peace during this tragic time. I'm also praying that the loving hearts of their fellow men and women will comfort and nurture their souls.
I'm going to be breaking from my posts for a few days to focus on some hanging projects, dr. appointments, dentist, etc. My annual "look me over, lend me an ear time."
There's a big version of this chalk board that I made several years ago that is used during shows and events. This smaller chalk board is an ideal size to transport to a craft show or simply sit or hang in your cottage kitchen.
The burlap ruffle was made by pulling threads, didn't think the burlap would fit good in my ruffler.) I used a staple gun to attach the ruffle and then hot glued the small lavender bundles here and there just because of my fondness for the herb.
These little chalk boards are a fun & easy summer craft.
I really want to make some with cotton calico trims next!
I purchased the chalk boards at JoAnns along with a yard of burlap. The lavender may be purchased on Bittersweets web site.
I'm hoping to have the chalk boards available on the web site ready made if you're interested along with some new show aprons. Having particpated in a number of shows over the years I have a desire to create display pieces and show ready items that are unique to the industry. Little add-on's that I believe will help your boutique stand out.
Searching through the patterns lately. Looking for a particular shape and style. I think you'll like what I'm going to make!
So many more projects brewing during this heat wave!
Bittersweet is launching a new fall line of artisan products. It will be called "Back to Basics." The designs and packaging will reflect and touch on some of my original Bittersweets from 15 years ago. Kind of a soulful feeling to bring back some of those baby ideas.
The concept is simple and ties into our pure|clean|simple philosophy that we utilize today.
"Back to Basics" seem to go hand in hand with future Bittersweet ideas. In my mind the new line offers less packaging and a cohesive look.
Mini bath salt packaged in hand stamped brown paper wrappings, "Back to Basics."
The rest of the future designs for this line will carry the same theme in a variety of products.
I hope to have it listed on the new web site soon.
In addition to the soaking salt, new soaps and home keeping essentials.
I have a summer craft project to share with you. Something I made yesterday!
I'm also working on some tablier exposition d'artisanat , aka ~ craft show apron. A little short tablier with plenty of pockets for safe keeping change, tickets, etc.
I'm hoping all the kinks and winks, browsing issues, etc. are finally fixed on the new web site. I did not use html as much as I usually do to build it and when you don't use it, depending on which program you're using to construct, sometimes, most always, browsing problems can rear their ugly head! For example. Once the web pages are published it may look fine when viewed in Microsoft Explorer, but when browsing on Google Chrome or Safari or Fire-fox it may appear to be a total mess! That's why when you choose a program to build a web site you should always make sure it's going to play nicely with all the other kids! Anyway, fingers crossed, I'm hoping I have it fixed xxxxxx.
Moving on..... I hope
Busy week. Fun busy. Manufacturing kicking in, (2 weeks behind the usual production time.) I really, really, really need to get away from the computer for awhile! Some sewing projects planned. New items for the new web site. Pondering new soap flavors for fall and winter. Sniffing the new essential oils that arrived last week. Tangerine, you're sweet! Patchouli, my long lost love...Soap manufacturing in session for the next couple of weeks.
Prairie quilt fever... I'm yearning to make more! New little craft apron thoughts. Hoping to have some listed on the new web site in time for your crafty autumn shows!
An old creation re-visited that I want to share with a tutorial. I believe you'll like it! It's an easy craft, but oh so cute and a perfect addition to any workspace, craft show, shop, even home. Have I got you going? Patience my friend and anticipation, my all time favorite word in the universe next to fastidious!
Sunny day and hot when I attempted to get some product shots. Way too hot! Not liking it and growing weary each day it arrives.
Turning it around. Not much to do about nothing. In other words, yes it sucks, the heat that is, but what's you gonna do about it? Counting my blessings that we have air and pretending it's not there!
A quick shout out about Saturday's friends, customers that came by the studio. Thank you for the gift and thank you for being you! I always say that I have the best friends, customers and I mean it! I'm also blessed in that category!
Almost anyone that was raised in the midwest is familiar with this summer dish. It's easy and breezy to put together. Cucumber dishes shout summer! It's nice to have access to fresh organic produce from our local farmers' market.
It's best to chill the cue's overnight rather than several hours. I'm also sharing a variation cucumber recipe, (one of my moms) and it's summer easy too. I prefer my moms recipe, but fix both.
I had a friend email me and say that she soaks the cucumbers in salt water before hand. I'm guessing this allows the cucumber to have more flavor.
I always add a tad bit more sugar. Kind of a sweet, sour dish and I also usually add fresh dill from the garden.
Cucumbers and onion
■4 medium size cucumbers ■2 small vidalia onions ■1/3 cup white vinegar ■1/3 cup sugar ■1/2 tsp salt and a pinch of fresh dill
Directions Slice cucumbers and onions thinly. Combine vinegar,sugar and salt in a small bowl and pour over cucumbers and onions. Chill in the fridge and drain the juice before you eat them.
Pie. Glorious pie! Who doesn't like pie? If you don't like it there's probably something wrong with you!
All kidding aside over the years I've made my fair share of pies. During those bake offs I've learned a few secrets on how to create the perfect pie.
The pie in the picture is banana cream.
Another important pie note... You really must devote an entire afternoon to making a pie. I guess that's why pie is glorious!
My grandmother Christine taught me to make pies. She shared her chocolate pie recipe when I was around 19. After getting the recipe I could not wait to make the pie. There's something soulful about a homemade cream pie. From the moment I take that first bite the rich creamy pudding melts in my mouth almost like magic.
I'd like to share my cream pie recipe. It's a universal receipt that can be used to make any cream pie of your choice. I have one very special pie secret to share that will assist you in creating a perfect pie. I picked up the secret from Emeril Lagasses' pie recipes.
A glorious pie starts out with a great flaky crust! This recipe is the only pie crust recipe I've ever used, love it! So easy. I always follow the recipe because it makes up to 5 crusts then I place the balls in the freezer. If ever I want to make quiche or pie I simply allow the dough to thaw for an hour or so.
4 cups flour
1 T. Sugar
2 tsp. salt
1 3/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup water
1 T. white or cider vinegar
1 large egg
Mix well, flour, sugar, salt. Add shortening and mix until crumbly. I use my hands. In small bowl beat water, vinegar and egg, add to the flour mixture and stir until moist. Divide dough into 5 portions. Use on or two depending on what kind of pie you're making. The rest can be shaped into balls and freeze until needed.
Grandma Christine's Cream & Custard Pie Recipe
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup flour or 1/4 cup cornstarch (I use cornstarch)
1/4 tsp. salt
3 cups milk
4 large eggs
3 T. butter
1 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Prick the bottom of your pie shell with a fork several times and then bake your pie shell at 425 degrees for 10 - 12 minutes or until golden brown. While your pie crust is cooling.
In a medium saucepan combine sugar, flour or cornstarch, and salt, gradually stir in milk. Cook over medium heat while stirring until thick and bubbly. Reduce heat, cook and stir 2 minutes more. Remove from heat. Separate egg yolks from whites, set whites aside for meringue.
Beat egg yolks slightly. Gradually stir 1 cup of the hot mixture into yolks. Return egg mixture to saucepan; bring to a gently boil. Cook and stir 2 minutes more. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and butter until melted.
This is the secret...
Cover the pie with plastic wrap and allow to cool in refrigerator for several hours. After several hours it will be ready for the meringue.
Take the pie out of the fridge and prepare the meringue.
I never use a recipe for meringue so I'm just going to instruct you my way.
Always use a glass pan when making meringue. It won't turn out if you don't!
Grab the reserved 4 egg whites and add a Tablespoon or two of sugar. With your mixer on high, begin beating. Add a T. more of sugar and beat until you get stiff peaks. You can turn your mixer off and grab some of the meringue as though it were a spoon. The peaks should stay in place and resemble a mountain.
Spoon the meringue onto your glorious pie. I like to have peaks on mine. Return pie to a 425 preheated oven for 10 - 15 minutes. Keep an eye on it. You really just want the tips of the meringue to brown. I kind of over-did it on my pie.
The secret continues...
Remove your glorious pie from the oven and place directly in the refrigerator once again. Allow it to cool completely, another 4 hours or so.
The refrigerator is the trick to making great pies.
A post on your blog letting your readers know about this giveaway.
I mentioned yesterday how I have this cute little Mikarose number in my closet!
I love this little dress! It fits perfect, not to snug, but smooth and easy. It has plenty of room in the hip area and is thinning. The bouquet neckline is darling and adds a feminine touch. I'm also fond of the flirty hem. To sum it up... This is my go-to dress. Add a pair of pumps or wedged sandals and the outfit is complete!
Deadline for entry will be on Tuesday, July 17, 2012.