December 2011

Abstract Floral in a hoop

abstract floral


Blue Goat

Blue Goat

From a coloring page by Made by Joel

Darn It!

Mending tools
Sometimes moths get to your sweaters and you can't really walk around with giant holes in your sweaters. Well you could, but for me the holes let in too much cold air! Since I had a sweater to wash, I wanted to mend it first.  I have made some really clumsy attempts at mends before but decided to go ahead.  I got out all the possible tools required (mending wool, embroidery floss, and an actual darning egg!)  I looked in my old Home Economics book which included a digram on how to mend a run in your stocking (!) and how to darn a sock. Helpful. Being able to darn was a big deal in the past and girls would do entire samplers of darning stitches.  

I had a sweater that was sort of medium weight which would not require anything too fancy, just a back and forth weaving over the hole to close it. I used embroidery floss becaue the color was a better match than any of the wool I had.  And, I looked around online and found some good ideas.  It worked!  The holes are mended with little puckering and the stitches are not too obvious!  Probably would not wear to meet the Queen or anything but it has life in it yet! 

finished mend
My grandmothers, bless them, are rolling their eyes and laughing hysterically that this is a news flash.  Duh. I am glad that I can recover from a moth attack and stay warm this winter.  I shall wear it with pride.  And when that no longer works, I may felt it and make a stuffed monster out of it! 

Make Do and Mend

Merry Christmas

Polar bear cub by Steven Kazlowski


The Joy of Christmas...recycling!

Christmas recycling
I warned you that I was holding onto the glass jars with ideas about using them as gifts!

I decided to make homemade lavendar bath salts and a lemon sugar hand scrub.  We spray painted the lids, got some labels and voila! The stash of ribbons that I have been saving for years came in handy too. I am giving to local friends that drop by our Christmas Eve Luminaria Open House! 

Some sites and ideas if you want to make some at your house!
lemon scrub and again and bath salts

Making Your Own Salad Dressing, part II

mango dressing

I told you of my realization I could make dressing rather than buy it, thus re-using all those dressing bottles I had acquired. What I did not explain was that I had a mild addiction to Annie's Papaya Poppyseed Dressing.  It is really good.  

Since I had committed to making dressing, I decided to scour the web for similiar dressings.  Funny, it was not among the vast repertoire of knock off recipes.  And I kept finding recipes using papaya seeds which was not at all what I wanted.  The papayas in the stores here are the saddest of tropical fruits.  But wait!  Why couldn't I substitute mango for the papaya?

It is not too hard to find sweet dressing recipes or poppyseed recipes. From the wide range of recipes, here is what I cobbled together.  And, I think it is really tasty and it does satisfy my craving for the old Annie's!  

Tangy Mango Salad Dressing

1/3 cup vinegar  (use the one you like best.  I uses red wine once, reaspberry once.)
2/3 cup oil  (I use less and add some water)
3/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbs dijon mustard
1 mango

Put in blender and blend.  Add poppyseeds last, if you like.  
Makes a little more than one salad dressing bottle full. 




Jennifer Boe

Little Debbie Cream Pie by Jennifer Boe, 2011
Little Debbie Oatmeal Cream Pie, 2011

Having been a junk food fan as a kid, I especially liked the Sandwiches and Snacks series.  And, I love that the nutritional info is on there but in a faded, background sort of way.  The combination of embroidery and xerox transfer technique is cool.  

I also like the Meats series a lot.  



Janet Hoelzel

All Dogs Go to Heaven

Lots more fun paintings and prints of dogs and monkeys at her web site.


The Christmas Krampus

My kind of Christmas story.


35mm sewnslides by Lauren DiCioccio

Ft. Necessity: Cabin 2008 by Lauren DiCioccio
Ft. Necessity: Cabin, 2008

Capitol: 2010 by Lauren DiCioccio
capitol, 2010

Work by Lauren DiCioccio from the 35mm sewnslide series.