Sunday, September 30, 2012

October Featured Artisan

Our featured artisan for October is Jenny from Paisley Handmade. For the last couple of years we've been getting the most amazing little spice bundles from Jenny for making spiced cider or tea. Nothing says autumn to me quite like spiced cider. I love the way it makes the house smell while its simmering, the way you can stick your face over the pot and breath in the sweet, spicy steam and feel the warmth all over. And then you fill up a favorite mug and cup it in your cold hands, or hold it up to a defrosting cheek. Whenever we have guests over during the fall or winter I'm sure to have a pot of spiced cider simmering. The inviting smell in the house tricks people into thinking I'm much better at the whole domestic thing than I really am and cider and cookies is a treat sure to please any guest. All of this to say that I know spiced cider. I've tried all sorts of recipes and mixes. Most are too bitter, others are just too boring. Jenny's mix is just right. Its smooth but with enough of a zing to stay interesting. She must put a special ingredient in it because its different than others that I've tried. And guess what? If you place an order* in October you can try it yourself! We'll be sending out little spice bundles with orders! We do have a limited supply so orders placed early in the month will be filled first. P.S. you can also use the spice bundles to make spiced tea or mulled wine.

Now, lets learn a bit about Jenny and find out what else she is into other than making amazing spice bundles!

1-      Have you been crafty all your life? When did you first become interested in making things with your hands? 
       My first introduction to crafting came though my Mom.  She had a sewing business that she ran as a second job, and I loved going along with her to craft shows.  She taught me to sew, and I remember making an awesome, totally in style -in the 80's - pants jumper.  Yikes!

2-      When/how did you get interested in making mulling spices and how did you learn?  
      The recipe actually was passed down from my mom.  She made them for her Fall and Winter shows and they always sold like gangbusters, so when I was getting ready to do my first show I decided I couldn't do a show without the mulling spices!  I've just recently started marketing them in my Etsy shop as personalized wedding/event favors too and that is going well!

3-      Where do you find inspiration? 
      In this age of so many crafty blogs and Pinterest, it's impossible to not find some inspiration via the online world, but many times I am just inspired by my life at home with my family.  I see what needs I have as a mother to small children and assume that there are other people just like me searching for cute, functional items.  

4-      What other hobbies do you enjoy? 
       I love a good flea market or antique store, and someday I hope to be able to read a book again.  Man I miss that!  Just not enough hours in the day right now for me to get sucked into a good book and ignore my family though! (note from Laura-- sounds like Jenny needs to learn about audio books. With all the time spent in my dye studio plugged into my mp3 player I'm becoming very well read!)

Part 2:
1-      What is your favorite word? "Thank you"  It never gets old hearing my kids say Thank you unprompted.
2-      What is your lease favorite word? "But" usually means I'm going to hear an excuse or a complaint.
3-      What turns you on? Craft supplies in all shapes and forms: fabric, an empty notebook, paper, trim...
4-      What turns you off? a sense of entitlement.  Something I'm working on with my kids right now.
5-      What sound do you love?  The sound of the water at the beach.  I grew up on the Gulf Coast of Florida and now I live in the midwest so I miss the beach!
6-      What sound do you hate?'s like nails on a chalkboard.
7-      What is your favorite curse word? With so many little ears around, we keep everything very G-rated, so the worst it gets at our house is Darn or poop!
8-      What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?  Graphic Design.  I've always had an affinity for paper products, and would love to have the ability to do that. 
9-      What profession would you not like to?  Nurse.  I can imagine it has it's rewarding moments, but I have an aversion to seeing people in pain.  
10-   If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?  "Your zero calorie milkshake awaits."  But seriously, every Christian desires to hear, "Well done, good and faithful servant."

Find out more at Jenny's etsy shop and my Facebook page

*freebies will be included with orders over $30 placed in October, not including club or pattern purchases, while supplies last. Due to customs restrictions this month's goody will not be included in orders send to Australia or New Zealand.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

We've been "Harloted"!

Stephanie Pearl McPhee, aka The Yarn Harlot, has announced that knitting with Unique Sheep yarn is good for your health! Check out her post and beautiful project photos on her blog. You can find out more about the Guernsey Garden Cowl designed by Janine le Cras here. Get your order in ASAP, our dye queue is bound to fill up fast after Stephanie's post!

*the term "harloted" refers to being posted on The Yarn Harlot's blog. Whenever she posts a link to your website it a) crashes your website with all of the traffic and b) swamps you with orders. But we are happy to be introduced to new customers and welcome the orders. It just means we won't be doing much house work for a while!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Website Issues

You may have noticed that we have been having some trouble with the website and email today. Unfortunately it is out of our hands and we are waiting for the hosting company to get the problem fixed. If you emailed us in the last day or so and we haven't responded, its likely that we haven't received your email yet OR that we did receive it and responded but our response is stuck somewhere in limbo. Hopefully this will all be resolved soon. Thanks for your patience!