Sunday, May 30, 2010

Handmade Market Place Giveaway; I want to share with you

~Recently I had the sweet luck to receive a copy of this lovely inspirational and practical read, Handmade Market Place by Kari Chapin. I knew months ago when this book came out that it would enthrall my crafty brain simply based on the contributors alone, those Kari calls her creative collective; Amy Karol( angrychicken), Natalie Zee Drieu(craftzine), Diane Gilleland( craftypod), Jenny Ryan(homeecshop) were just a few of my craft heroes dropping their knowledge on you in this volume of crafty goodness. I was squealy excited when I got my copy and realized it was sprinkled with the loveliest illustrations from Emily Martin(The black apple).

~I could have then been let down pretty easily considering I was expecting crafty biblical experiences from this sweet little paperback. However Kari and her collective do not disappoint. As and overall nut shell explanation of what really made this book stand out for me; It made me super excited about the modern Craft movement and ensured me that I could be a part of it, and showed me exactly how to take part in my own unique way. No matter where anyone is or which direction they are heading on their creative travels this book has some knowledge to extend to you. I want to share this book with one of you lovely readers, cause its the kind of thing you just want to spread around! So leave me a comment telling me why you love to make things. On June 6Th, I will pick a winner to send my copy Y'all to bits
PS I need an email from everyone in order to enter you in the giveaway...some of you do not have an email on your bloggerprofile if not leave your email in the comment if you really want to win

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The season's first Caprese or THAT'S why they used to call it fruit!

~We were lucky enough to be on the receiving end of some homegrowns from the Valley last week. The Valley being Harlingen Texas where KG's family roots out of. The great thing about homegrown tomatoes is that even if you can only afford store brand, part skim, mozzarella your Caprese still taste AMAZING! I am not sure what variety these tomatoes were but they were the sweetest tasting tomatoes I have had in at least 2 years. I mean it was crazy, like some kind of tangy mango, or something?! Last year was a terrible year for 'maters in central Texas; it was downright painful. Hopefully this year will not be a repeater... I have quite a few green ones on my Topsy Turvey vines, which are fairing quite well. (fingers crossed)So if you don't know here is the easy pleasy recipe for a summer staple in this house

white trash Caprese

sliced Mozzarella(the best you can git)
Basil leaves whole cut into ribbons ( mine were to little to use whole)
olive oil(Hill Country Fare)
kosher salt
cracked pepper
Home grown tomatoes

slice your tomatoes fairly thin and plate 'em,
drizzle with oil, sprinkle with pepper(no salt yet or you will get a real watery dish) ,
if you are using full basil leaves lay them on now if not lay your sliced cheese on.
sprinkle with basil ribbons if that is what you are using.
Drizzle with a little more oil and salt and pepper.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Colorado Couple; a Custom order

~I recently had an order for a pair of aprons as a wedding gift the following is from the accompanied note...

" John and Clare,
These two aprons were made especially for you, by belle and burger, in Austin Texas. Your sister told me a little about you to help me with a theme. She said you live in Colorado and love outdoorsy, hiking things.

With your love for wildlife I assumed that you two were keen on recycling and I tried to I use a lot of re purposed fabrics. I chose to use blues and greens because I think of Colorado and I think lush, green forest and cold, blue water.
Plant imagery seemed a perfect way to express your love for nature. So I searched for plants that would be symbolic of family, traditions, and new beginnings. I wanted to use floral images on Clare's apron, so I designed an Indian paintbrush applique. If you are not familiar with this flower it is a delightful wild flower that usually appears in central Texas in the early spring. The Indian paintbrush seemed like a perfect choice to give reference to lush beginnings, Texas and your sister . The tree I felt was a compelling image to symbolize strength and growth as family.
I wish you two a lovely life together and I hope you will spend many hours in these aprons making good food and good-times."

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

we've been slimed....

~Burger loves Ghostbusters, especially The Real Ghostbusters cartoon series; Slimer being his fave of course ( although I believe Peter Venkman is a close second).
~He also has a special place in his heart for all things slimy.
So when we were recently watching an episode of popular mechanics for kids and they revealed two recipes for slime, I quickly jotted them down.
We tried the less toxic(seeming) slime, that involved corn starch and water. Basically you mix the two until you get a slime consistency that pleases your Slimer. We also mixed in green food coloring. Burger was captivated with his non-Newtonian fluid, for the better part of an hour. Clean up was actually super easy( but would have been even easier in the yard(duh). This site has a wealth of great slime information. I think we will try this slime recipe next , or check this out...How to make Nickelodeon style slime! the ingredients are a little more specific so maybe....but outside this time! also, he wants it to be red next time.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Estoy thankful

~Super BIG Thanks to everyone who came out Friday and Saturday to the closet sale! It was perfect, I love selling from the comfort of my own home...I loved all the visitors too! ~ At first I was, a little worried because of the crazy rain. I had planned on a "yard" sale with tents, Arnold Palmers and Lone stars to boot, but everything fit nicely in the new GIGANTIC ( to me)living room... and we still had dranks. ~I am thinking we will be repeating this little hootenanny several times a year, heck maybe even once a month( she says, all bright eyed)...and in the yard next time, hopefully. I will surely be telling y'all all about it. ~I do still have plenty of pretty things for sale,and will be adding them to my shop. ~ What I am most super excited about is this summers frock ......and how beautiful it looked on so many different shaped bodies!~I made them all stappless to start, then I added straps to most after they were bought...(like here... they cross over in the back) ....but they work without straps as well, or also as a halter (although I am not a halter girl) This dress is so comfortable and versatile and one size fits most(approx SZ 4-10...although I have drafted a larger and smaller pattern.Almost all sold but, not this one....~I am making more this week so be lookin'!!! If you see something you like or wanna look before I have it posted in the shop shoot me an email and I will arrange a cyber viewing... or we can do it up custom for you

and I will leave you with some blue bonnets on a tea towel....
PS... burger is going part time to a Spanish immersion daycare, hence the blog post title...we are all trying to learn!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

belle and burger closet sale May14-15!!

~I have been filling my closet with all kinds of summer fancies. I will be opening it up for a Two day, drop in' sale next weekend Friday May 14Th 12-4 and Saturday MAy 15Th from 11-2.... I will have lots of the new skirts, dresses, knit tanks and tshirts. I also have all sorts of extra littles like undies, pin cushions, bags and such. This is also a perfect opportunity to chat about that custom order you have been wanting, right !?If you are local FB me and I can give you the address or send me an email. (bellesouthgirl at yahoo dot com). I will hopefully post some preview pix next week!
**** or check only****(sorry no plastics )

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Buffy and the wild flower revolution

We have had a nasty cold virus up in here for weeks it seems. Burger started school about 3 weeks back (part time) and had to miss the second week because of it. I thought I was super mom and immune but low and behold I have been completely taken out of the game( weak The wire reference). Anyway I had big plans to get up a floral tea towel tutorial in time for all ya'll to make them for mothers day (sneak peak photo) but... Kg put his foot down yesterday and told me to SLEEP. So I layed in bed and watched most of the first and half of the second season of Buffy....Oh yeah and I slept some too.
So I will post my tea towel tutorial later this week and instead sprinkle this post with central Texas wild flowers and the skirts they have inspired.
We have had banner year as far as the wild flowers go here in central Texas. The most beautiful I have seen them in my 10 years in Texas(I cannot believe I have been here just 7 months shy of a decade). Burger and I have been driving around snapping photos in all directions. Spring floral explosions have always filled me with urgent inspiration. In the Georgia it was always the wild dogwoods EVERYWHERE, and in South Carolina the azaleas were just crazy beautiful.
But in central Texas the Bluebonnets are the belles... and the Indian paint brushes ain't nothing to forget about either. I have been inspired by the shapes and the colors and the utter abundance and explosiveness of these beautiful fields of flowers. I took photos and drew for a couple weeks then I just sort of went at it. The towels I will show in the tutorial later are all from this train of inspiration and they are probably the best in my mind. About half way through the skirts I came across a bluebonnet quilt from the 1930's in a library book on Texas quilts ( and shame on me I cannot give reference...I will correct) . I used this as inspiration for the style of the Indian paintbrush flowers here... Anyway I am rambling in my NyQuil haze so I will go to bed..... nitenite