Wednesday, September 22, 2010


I'm listing some new things in my shops today.

Vintage paperweight

Antique Lidded Soup Tureen

Linen pumpkins

The paperweight is charming. It has a picture of 2 ducks landing on a winter pond. The tureen is very nice and comes with a ladle. I made the 2 pumpkins out of recycled linen and gave them brown wool sweater stems. Feel free to shop!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Little Quail

Little Quail Pillow

Quail detail

I just finished this pillow and put it in my shop. It's free-hand machine embroidery with hand embroidered accents.

Rose Hips

Rose hip jelly

I just finished canning a batch of rose hip jelly. It has a sort of appley taste and a pretty amber color.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Wild Grapes

Wild grape jam


We found some wild grape vines in the park and brought home a bag full to make jam.
The grape flavor is so intense and reminds me of the beautiful fall day we looked up and saw all those grape clusters growing on the vines in the willow tree by the creek.
Go out and look for wild grapes in your neighborhood. If you find some make some jam. Here is the recipe:

Wild Grape Jam

1 bag of grapes (5 c juice)
7 c sugar
1 box of pectin

Pick as many grape clusters as will fill a plastic grocery bag. Don't worry about the stems, you will strain them out later. Put the grapes in a big bucket and cover with water. Let this sit over night, it will kill the bugs and they will float to the top. Pour off the water and rinse them again. Pick out any green grapes and the large stems.
Take a large stock pot and put the grape clusters in it, and just cover with water. As you go, pick out any grapes that are damaged or shriveled.
Bring to a low boil and mash with a potato masher for 10 minutes. Let this cool. Strain the grape juice into a bowl. Use the masher to try to get all the juice out. Discard or compost the stems, skins, and seeds.
Measure 5 cups of the grape juice and put in a stock pot. Stir in the box of pectin and bring to a boil. Measure 7 cups of sugar into a bowl and have it ready to pour into the pot all together. When the pectin and juice is all mixed together, pour the sugar in and bring to a rolling boil while stirring. Boil for exactly one minute, then remove from heat. Pour into clean sterile jars and process in a water bath for 10 minutes. This will make 8 or 9 half pint jars of jam.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Fall Foraging

Fall is here and it is foraging season! My sister and I have been out in the fields and hedgerows looking for fruit to make into syrups and jellies.

Elderberry syrup

We found a lot of elderberries and made syrup. It has a beautiful garnet color.

Boiling elderberries for syrup

Mashing the berries

The syrup can be used in many ways. Over pancakes and waffles, added to club soda for a sparkling drink, added to white wine for a fruit punch, and I will make some of it up into jelly.
I used it in the Spicy Pear dessert I made for my daughter when she came for a visit and it was delicious! This is based on a medieval dish I read about. Here is the recipe:

Spicy Elderberry Pears

4 pears
3 c red wine
3 tbsp elderberry syrup
1 cinnamon stick
3 whole cloves
3 peppercorns

Peel and core the pears and place in sauce pan. Pour wine and syrup over them. Add the cinnamon, cloves, and pepper corns. Simmer for 30 minutes or until the pears begin to soften. Serve them hot and the pears will be pink, or let them cool and put them in the refrigerator overnight and the pears will absorb more wine and be dark purple. I like to serve them over Greek yoghurt.

Spicy elderberry pears

We also found a lot of crabapples and made them into jam.

Crabapple jam

Crabapple jam

This stuff is yummy! We found several different types of crabapples and mixed them all together. This jam is a pretty pinky peach color and tastes very appley.
We also picked wild grapes, highbush cranberries, and rose hips. Those will all be made into jams and jellies too.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

I've Been Stalked!

The blog Etsy Stalker featured my Meh Robot pin today.

Meh Robot

Thanks Beatrice and Violet!

Tree Pillow

Tree pillow

I've been doing more free hand machine stitching. This is done on recycled linen in black thread and sewn into a little pillow.