Thursday, April 30, 2009

Argula and Mushroom Stromboli PLUS a sneak peek!

As I was reading my bloglist in the late morning today, I came across Vegan Dad's post on Stromboli. I immediately went to the kitchen and busted out the bread machine. I hardly EVER make bread or dough without it.

The simple dough recipe is as follows:
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cups Bread Flour (I just added 1 Tbsp Vital Wheat Gluten to regular flour, which is the same thing)
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 1/2 tsp yeast

Add those to your bread machine, according to the manufacturers instructions.

Meanwhile, prepare the filling. You'll also need to pre-heat your pizza stone in the oven at 400 degrees.

Arugula and Mushroom Filling
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 package Gimme Lean, Sausage Style
  • 5-6 cremini mushrooms, chopped (about a half cup)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp each: thyme, oregano and rosemary
  • 2 large handfuls of Baby Arugula (I used about half a box of organic)
  • 1/4 cup water
  1. Heat the oil over medium high heat and saute the sausage, breaking it up with the back of a spoon until lightly browned.
  2. Add the mushrooms, and cook for a few minutes, until the juices come out. Add the garlic and herbs.
  3. Stir in the baby arugula, a small handful at a time, tossing and turning the ingredients until the arugula wilts. Add water if the pan dries out. Continue to stir and cook for a few minutes more. Turn the heat off and set the filling aside.

Cut about 2/3 of the dough and roll out into a long rectangle. Save the reminder for a small pizza for yourself. The dough will keep in the frig for about a week.

Spread 1/2 cup pizza sauce over the top, then add the filling, leaving about a 1 1/2" border of dough. Top with 1/2 cup shredded cheese. I used some cheddar, a 4 cheese Italian blend, and some sliced Havarti.

Cut 2" wide slits along the long sides. Fold the short end over the filling, then overlap the side pieces of dough, creating a braid.
Mine looks a little bit like an idiot tried to braid it. Whatever. It tastes good, and that's all I really care about.

Brush with milk and bake for about 2o minutes. Mine cooked up in about 15, so keep an eye out.

In other news, this week has been quite a creative week for me. Last weekend, the Earth Day Fest in Shepherdstown was such a success for me, it really got me inspired to work my butt off.

This dress will be my fifth dress just this week. Here's a sneek peak of one that was just finished up today:
Many of the items I've been creating will not be listed on the site or in my Etsy shop. They will be for summer inventory, heading to one of the festivals I'll be at this Summer. You can check my Facebook Fan Page for specific dates and information. Pin It

Friday, April 17, 2009

Thinking of buying Handmade Clothing?

As many of you who read this blog know, I am a handmade clothing artist, amongst many other forms of textile art.  I'd like to think that most of you who read this blog own or have owned a piece of handmade clothing.

What made you buy it?  Was it the overall appearance of the item?  The attention to detail?  The originality of the piece?  Was it the artist themselves?

As with many things in life, our own work can benefit from looking at the situation from the other side of table.  Put yourself in your customer's shoes.  Why should I buy this item?  What am I looking for? How would I find this item? What search terms might I use?

I came across a kick-ass website today that talks about the details of handmade clothing.  They discuss what to look out for, when buying a one of a kind piece from an artist.

Pricing can sometimes be 2-3 times the cost of store-bought items. 


These pieces we make, are the textile creations of the images we hold in our souls.  Our own art.  We express our vision thru the combination of textiles and threadwork.   Each piece carrying it's own feeling and symbolic  reasoning.  As with all artwork, it is hard to come up with a price for each piece.  My own pricing system refects the cost of supplies, and my time making the item, from selecting fabrics, dyeing them, down to the last thread snip.  And yes, I do snip my threads from EACH piece!

Why do you buy handmade?

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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Heads, Shoulders, but what about his Knees and Toes?

On our way to the gym this morning:

Tim: I'm just gonna get rid of ALL the sweets when we get back home.

Me: K

Tim: No need in having it around.

Me: I'll just hide it.

Tim: Yeah, you'll hide it in the garbage can!

Me: Well, it's not like I've been pigging out on candy (remembering the reese's cups candy wrappers from his lunch on the couch yesterday afternoon)

Tim: Uh huh

Me: Well, I mean, just some of the Easter bunny. It's not like I've been hogging down on that. . . I just ate his head off. . .

Tim: Uh huh

Me: Okay, and maybe some of his shoulders, too. . .
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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Batik Panty Giveaway!

For the next month, each purchase from my Etsy shop will be entered into a FREE batik panty giveaway drawing!

Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade

On Thursday, May 14th, I will use for a drawing of each sale from my shop.

Limit one per person.

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Thursday, April 2, 2009

Batik Booty

A couple of weeks ago I got 56 pairs of panties from the UPS guy.  This will be just the start of my Spring and Summer inventory of batik panties.  These have become a great seller here in my shop, and I'm excited to get them to more than one festival this year.   I began making a lot more of these late in the summer last year but actually made my first pairs several years ago.   I had ordered a few different styles last summer, but finally settled for the Boy short style after the other two styles ended up sticking around a lot longer.

The photo above shows the beginning of some that will get waxed again and go back into the dye.  Here's what it looks like when I'm waxing a piece.  I usually stretch it with an embroidery hoop, as it helps the wax penetrate the fabric.  Most of the times I sketch the designs in with pencil, but sometimes I just go for it and do it free-hand.  

I got started with about 20 some pairs in this last batch.  I say batch because I like to do several pieces at one time when I do batik.  No sense on dragging out all the supplies and messing up the studio just for one pair of drawers!  I mix up my dyes in small batches, and like to use up all that I've got at one time so it doesn't sit around and lose its' strength.  A lot of the times I have more dye than I need when I finish my batik clothing pieces, so the rest of the dyes get thrown onto random pieces of fabric I have here, a lot of which lately has been hemp.    

The latest dyed piece will go to a friend of mine who has traded a lovely skirt with me.  I will get pics of me in the skirt and her package I'm working on now.  Lily's trade from me will be many dyed goodies!  Here's a pic of the applique of Lily's skirt from her Myspace page: 

The applique is just beautiful, isn't it!  I've already worn the skirt 3 times in the past week!   More photos to come of new inventory and me in this skirt!!

An Award!

I was given this award by Jan over at Wyldewood Papers Blog for my RAOK post.  That was so nice of ya,  Jan!!  Thank you kindly!   I shall repay the compliment and give this award to:


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