Saturday, July 28, 2007


Inspired by the movie Ratatouille, I decided to make this dish for dinner tonight. My husband and I are trying a 1 month Candida cleanse and it's really hard to find dishes which don't contain wheat, gluten or sugar. I thought of this dish because we saw the movie last weekend and really enjoyed it - Two thumbs from me for sure!

The dish got a thumbs up from my husband - another tough food critic (if you've already seen the movie), so I'll be adding this one to my dinner repertoire.

I used this recipe - the "Our Method" which takes the traditional French one, but cooks it all in one pot. Less dishes is always high on my list which is why I chose it. Oh - and last but not least, I served it on a bed of Lundberg rice (brown and wild rice mix). It has a yummy nutty texure and tastes even better if you cook it in chicken stock!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

prints and patterns

Last weekend I came across these rubber carvings I did about 8 years ago. Do you ever discover things you've made or designed and forgotten about because they got tucked away for years?....When you re-discover them years later you are surprised and impressed with the thought and skill that went into creating them. I hardly ever feel this way when I just complete a project. It's still too fresh in my mind all the technicalities that didn't work or weren't executed perfectly. (I went to design school where perfectionism is preached and expected). The good thing about 8 years later is that all those imperfections have long been forgotten and you can look at your creation with fresh eyes - and surprise! Then you realize the person you were back then and the person you still are, and hope to yet become is all in the same? Does that make any sense?! When I look at these carvings now, I can see the interest I had in the patterns and their repeats.

Six months ago I had an epiphany when I decided I wanted to focus on developing my design skills in the area of pattern design for textiles. I even went out and purchased myself this swanky new iMac computer to work on (which I am still learning how to use by the way)! I thought this was a "new" idea - something that I had just discovered as an interest. After looking at these carved stamps I realize it's something I've always loved, but just hadn't considered in the past few years. If anything it at least re-confirms that I am on the right path with this new become a fabric designer. Wish me luck as I have a LOT to learn - especially about computers and computer programs.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Bag it!

Hello again! I've finally got a July project to post. Nothing too fancy just a new bag idea I've been playing with. This is the 1st prototype - and as most crafty sewers know - it's never totally perfect! My goal was to create a simple bag that wouldn't require interfacing. (I've nothing against interfacing, I just don't happen to have any at the moment).

I used fabric from Amy Butler's Lotus collection. I had originally planned to make a skirt with it, but in the end decided on a quicker project. The bag is fully reversible with bias binding on the handles. The other goal I was trying to accomplish with this bag was a shoulder strap that would stay put on my narrow sloping shoulders! I angled the seam at the shoulder joining area and it seems to work "sort of". It still slides if there isn't enough in the bag, but it does stay put when it's loaded full of "stuff". After finishing the first sample I've decided I want the bag to be bigger. It also needs a zippered pocket on the inside for my keys so that I'm not fishing around for them.

I'll post a tutorial on how to sew zippered pockets. I know some sewers still feel nervous about zippers but they really aren't that hard. Having done my time as a sample sewer of Outerwear clothing (which are full of zippers) this is one sewing technique I have definitely mastered. Stay posted for the tutorial....

I'm making a real conscious effort to cut down on the number of plastic bags I collect from grocery stores. I can't believe that cashiers still look at me as if I have horns when I tell them I've got my own bags. We are seriously clogging the earth with them....I'm just trying to do my little part.