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Cookbook Preview: From Scratch

April 17, 2014, 11:06 am  Posted by Julie
 

You don’t have to be an accomplished gourmet to appreciate the delicious ideas in From Scratch: An Introduction to French Breads, Cheeses, Preserves, Pickles, Charcuterie, Condiments, Yogurts, Sweets, and More by Laurence and Gilles Laurendon. Featuring 120 recipes, this beautifully photographed new book captures the classic tastes of the French countryside. In addition to recipes for delicious artisan foods, the book includes a wealth of menu ideas, culinary tips, and easy-to-follow techniques.

If you’re hoping to hone your yogurt-making skills in time for summer or want to try your hand at preserving veggies, then look no further than From Scratch. You’ll find all the DIY info you need for those culinary undertakings, along with simple instructions for making your own pastas, sausages, and tofu. Whether you’re a culinary connoisseur or merely curious, you’ll find inspiration in From Scratch. It’s a feast from start to finish.

From Scratch is available at Barnes and Noble and wherever books are sold.

 

 
 
 
 
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Introducing 1000 Beads

April 03, 2014, 10:55 am  Posted by Julie
 

A sparkling new collection that focuses on the timeless creative practice of beadmaking,1000 Beads features a diverse group of handmade beads in glass, clay, metal, paper, and fiber from an international roster of artists. As the companion volume to Lark’s 2004 title 1000 Glass Beads, this impressive new volume provides an illuminating look at contemporary practitioners of the form.   The pieces in the collection were selected by Kristina Logan, who is known internationally for her glass beads. The techniques used—image transfer, appliqué, and traditional flameworking, among many others—are as diverse as the materials.

Whether they’re depicted individually or as part of a necklace, bracelet, or brooch, the beads in this dazzling book are examples of consummate craftsmanship on an intimate scale. Enjoy the images below and pick up a copy of 1000 Beads. You can find it at Barnes & Noble and wherever books are sold.

 

Cubes, of Course! by Ann Klem

Thera by Holly Cooper



Spiral by Wiwat Kamolpornwijit 

 

 

Purple Fibers by Lee Schein

PB2 by Lily Liu

 
 
 
 
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Packaging How-To for Crafters!

April 02, 2014, 17:50 pm  Posted by Becky
 

Etsy sellers, wholesalers, gift-givers, Pinterest lovers, and home crafters, gather around! You’ve got your craft down, but what’s the best way to present it or ship it? Packaging Your Crafts is [beautifully] jam-packed with nearly 200 eye-candy photos of creative packaging ideas. You’ll also find overviews of packaging and packing materials including tips on keeping it green, 10 tutorials for specific techniques such as glass etching and image transfer, 13 designer spotlights illustrating specific products from real brands, plus downloadable box and label templates!
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You might never outgrow this book, because it offers so many resources for every level, from wrapping up a single brownie or stack of stationery to packing hundreds of t-shirts to be stacked and sold in retail stores. Check out a few of my favorite spreads below–you’ll see why I love this book so much!

 

 

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Simple Soldered Jewelry and Accessories

February 26, 2014, 20:14 pm  Posted by Becky
 

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Jewelry of all kinds, home decor, and lots of inspiration! That’s what you’ll find in this new paperback version of Lisa Bluhm’s playful how-to, Simple Soldered Jewelry and Accessories. Holiday ornaments featuring ribbons, pendants, and Victorian clip art; a turquoise jewelry set; a necklace made from a broken porcelain plate; and bedazzled antique bottles are just a few of the fun-expected projects you’ll find!

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Lisa takes readers through the basics, including what you’ll need and some simple techniques, and she shares lots of experience that can only come from having learned the hard way. After teaching all about soldering, she shares a few jewelry-making techniques too, which are followed by more than 40 projects. Think of this as your incredibly comprehensive Intro to Soldering course!

 
 
 
 
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Sophisticated Pinch Pottery

February 18, 2014, 09:00 am  Posted by Linda
 

Don’t you love the texture on these pieces? The lidded  jar with its boldly carved ridges, is rugged yet organic and the teapot’s floral motif while prominate, is graceful and perfectly suited to the pot’s plumpness. The forms are both pleasing to the eye and functional. What I find especially remarkable is that both of these sophisticated works were created using only simple pinch pottery techniques.

 

Susan Halls is the author of newly released Pinch Pottery: Functional, Modern Handbuilding. Utilizing techniques readers may have learned long ago in summer camp, like making pinch pots, Susan shows how easy it is to create a wealth of ceramic forms that are refined and incredibly modern looking. She begins with  simple shapes anyone can make, like the classic pinch pot, and then moves on to pinching a sphere, a wide bowl, a trumpet shape, and finally a cylinder. From there Susan demonstrates how easy it is to cut, alter, and combine these shapes to make more complex forms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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While February may not be the most popular time to wed, many brides and their families and friends are using these winter months to kick wedding planning into high gear.

And with all the costs associated with the big day, it’s only natural to seek out cost-effective ways and ideas to customize a wedding. Stylish Weddings is packed with over 50 quick, simple, and inexpensive essential wedding projects to make, all photographed in lavish settings.

Explore six different signature themes, each contributed by a talented designer, that appeal to a wide audience: Farm Chicks Country Wedding (by Serena Thompson), French-Inspired Wedding (by Corey Amaro), Rustic & Elegant Wedding (by Tracy Schultz), Romantic & Pretty Wedding (by Heather Bullard), Natural & Organic Wedding (by Minna Mercke Schmidt), and Vintage Glam Wedding (by Tiffany Kirchner-Dixon). Each theme highlights the quintessential elements required to get that look with an “inspiration board” of images, plenty of tips, and suggestions for pulling everything together. Projects with a special touch include invitations, table settings, favors, decorations, and items for the bride and bridal party.

Don’t know anyone getting married right now? No worries. Many of these ideas would be great for any kind of entertaining with just the slightest creative adjustments.

 

 
 
 
 
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Marica DeCoster Presents—Now Available!

February 11, 2014, 15:08 pm  Posted by Kevin Kopp
 

 

Marcia DeCoster interviews 30 leading beaders on inspiration and technique

Just published! Beadmaster Marcia DeCoster delivers page after page of inspiration by offering you the personal stories and latest creations from 30 leading jewelry designers in her latest, Marcia DeCoster Presents.

 

Through interviews conducted by Marcia, these artists open up about their beginnings, their successes, their muses and influences, their favorite materials, their membership in the worldwide beading community, and their future beading dreams.

 

In addition to the insight and innovation present in these discussions, this volume is filled with gorgeous color photos that showcase a number of the most beautiful pieces from each contributor.

 

The artists in this book represent an international roster of the best in the field:

Daeng Weaver, Miriam Shimon, Patrick Duggan, Kerrie Slade, Melissa Ingram, Beki Haley, Betty Stephan, Sian Nolan, Debi Keir-Nicholson, Nancy Dale, Martina Nagele, Helena Tan-Lim, Heather Kingsley-Heath, Elke Leonhardt-Rath, Riana Bootha Olckers, Cynthia Newcomer Daniel, Isabella Lam, Petra Tismer, Marsha Wiest-Hines, Christina Vandervlist, Linda L. Jones, Gabriella van Diepen, Idele Gilbert, Kinga Nichols, Susan Blessinger, Ann Braginsky, Heather Collin, Patrizia Tager, Zoya Gutina, Edgar Lopez

       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And don’t forget the best-selling companion book in this Spotlight on Beading series, Suzanne Golden Presents

 
 
 
 
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Etsy Favorites: Passion for Peppermint

December 28, 2013, 09:00 am  Posted by Nicole McConville
 

This time of the year I get struck by a nearly uncontrollable craving. As the shelves of the grocery store fill with the enticement of seasonal treats, I focus my attention on seeking out my personal holiday favorite: peppermint. I think this desire was instilled at an early age with that miracle known as peppermint ice cream, a frozen miracle of flavor, spotted with little peppermint candy bits. I looked forward to its arrival every year. Now as an adult my culinary tastes have expanded and my sweet tooth has been (somewhat) tamed, but the annual love for that cooling peppermint remains. With that urge in mind I set my eyes to Etsy to seek out some items that would bring lip-smacking, smile-inducing peppermint pleasure to the rest of these chilly winter months. What I found only fuels my need to stock up. Full credits and shop links below!

TOP LEFT: Peppermint Bark Shortbread Cookies by Butter Blossoms
TOP RIGHT: Peppermint Hot Chocolate by Carriage Door
MIDDLE LEFT: Holiday Red and White French Macarons by The Splendid Sweet Shoppe
MIDDLE RIGHT: Peppermint Chocolate Chip Blondies by Bake It Happen
BOTTOM LEFT: White Chocolate Peppermint Marshmallows by Epic Edibles
BOTTOM RIGHT: Peppermint Bark by Mother Fudger
 
 
 
 
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Simple Cider: A Low-Tech Approach

December 26, 2013, 10:00 am  Posted by Becky
 

 

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Lately, I have been experimenting with making hard cider. I’m really low-tech when it comes to this sort of thing. I make mead too, but I can’t be bothered with all that racking and bottling and stuff. So, I make an herbal tea, mix it 50/50 with honey, add some yeast and yeast energizer, throw an airlock on the bottle, and forget aboudit. When it’s time to drink the mead (3-6 months later), I just pour from the same bottle, which I store indefinitely with the airlock on it. I have the same approach to cider. The simplest way I know to make homemade hard cider is as follows:

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Free Recipe from Sweet Confections: Sugarplums

December 23, 2013, 12:29 pm  Posted by Julie
 



If you think sugarplums are simply the stuff of visions, then you’re in for a sweet surprise. An easy-to-assemble treat that’s perfect for the final countdown to Christmas, this classic candy will add some extra-festive flavor to your holiday. The free recipe featured here comes from Nina Wanat’s splendid book, Sweet Confections: Beautiful Candy to Make at Home. Give it a try and you’ll see that sugarplums don’t have to be a dream…

Download the recipe here. Happy holidays!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can find Sweet Confections at Barnes & Noble and wherever books are sold.