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501  Craftster Community Inspired Charm Bracelet - Craftster is all of us. in Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General by Mistress Jennie on: August 13, 2013 10:33:52 AM
What does Craftster mean to me?  Inspiration and Community.  I visit Craftster every day, usually a few times a day, and every time I stop by, I am inspired by at least one thing I see here.  I can be inspired by something that makes me smile, or something I want to try my hand at, or something ordinary made into something extraordinary by a fellow Craftster who wasn't afraid of a little hard work.  I am inspired by the community of people who have been brought together here by our mutual love of making and doing.  We all have different backgrounds, interests, beliefs, and lives, but each and every person in this lovely little community has a heart that longs to create, and that binds us together.  In short, Craftster is all of us.  All of our imaginations, all of our creativity, and all of our hard work.  Craftster is us.  

The best way I could think to commemorate that thought was with one of my infamous charm bracelets.  Wink  The creation of a good charm bracelet is not all that different from the creation of a wonderful community.  You need to collect diverse elements which come together to create a harmonious whole.  I have tried to cover as many crafts and interests as possible, but I have by no means captured them all.  And I'm okay with that.  Because I don't think you can ever truly capture everything about this beloved little corner of the internet, since every single day, someone here creates something new, and brilliant, and never-seen-before.  I have tried to honor some of the folks who inspire me on a regular basis, and noted them below.



My bracelet contains 17 pewter and Tibetan silver charms, including:
~a safety pin, for when hot glue won't due
~spinning wheel for the fiber artists
~scissors, for the paper crafters like Knickertwist, cackle, phizzychick, and rackycoo
~dress form for the clothing mavens
~sweater being knitted for the stitchin' bitches & happy hookers like pinkleo and WhistleFish
~paint brush, for the home improvement folk
~sewing manual, since we all get seduced by pretty craft books



~ruler, to remind us to measure twice, cut once
~clock, for all the hours we spend here being inspired
~wrench, for that stubborn project you just won't give up on
~embroidery floss, for the needlework & hoopla crowd like noodle-bug and AugustBell
~paint palette, for the painters, sketchers, and fine artists like FoxyBlue
~sewing machine, for my fellow stitchers



~rotary cutter, for the ever-patient quilters like MareMare and sloth003
~tape measure, which we've all whipped out of our purses while shopping
~glue gun, for when safety pins aren't enough
~embroidery scissors, for the fine and delicate work we all aspire to  



The beads are a mix of glass, shell, semi precious stone, and crystal, in shades of blue and brown, the colors Craftster used when I joined back in 2008.  Although it was hard to capture in photographs, several of the beads are fire polished, or have an arora borealis finish, to add a bit of sparkle.  Because who on Craftster doesn't love a bit of sparkle?



Thank you all, for being my friends and my crafty-family.  Especially to my crafty-BFF, pinkleo, who inspires me here each and every day.  
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502  Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: August 04, 2013 03:56:35 PM
Ok, off to do a batch of Zucchini Pickles and Bruschetta in a Jar with my friend Amber.  Happy crafting everyone!

Well hours later and my feet are sore, but my kitchen is full!  Amber showed up with a bag of huge zucchini from her garden.  Somehow they got forgotten about, and each one was about 20"-24"  long, and weighed 6-8 lbs.!  They were WAYYYYY too big to make pickles out of so we went in a new direction.  We ended up finding a recipe to make a huge batch of creamy vegan Zucchini Soup, which we did in the crock pot (placed on my living room floor, because the kitchen was soooo full of canning supplies).  Next there was a quick trip to Kroger for normal sized zucchini, which we turned into 8 pints of Zucchini Pickles, flavored with lime, cumin and peppers.  I'm excited about the Mexican inspired flavors, but a little afraid of how hot they'll be when we crack them open! 



After that we did a batch of 8 half-pints of Bruschetta.  There's a bunch of plum tomatoes and garlic left over, so I'm going to do another batch of 8 tomorrow or Tuesday, since both of us have family who will love it as gifts.  After all of that, we still had tons of zucchini left, so we dug through the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving, and came up with a recipe for Zucchini & Bell Pepper Relish.  Turns out I had just enough onions and bell peppers in my house from this weeks canning adventures, to make a batch of 5 pints of relish!



Oh, here's a pic of *some* of the Zucchini Soup. There was a whole other huge container because we doubled the recipe.  You can find the recipe here:  Vegan Zucchini Soup 


And after all of that, we STILL had tons and tons of those giant zucchini left over.  There weren't many recipes for them, since apparently they get tougher, and slightly more bitter.  But the internet informed us that we could shred it and either make bread with it, or freeze it already shredded to make bread later.  Thanks to my trusty food processor, we managed to grate over 12 cups of it, and poor Amber went home with about 2.5 more of the giant buggers.   Cheesy
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503  Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: August 03, 2013 06:03:22 PM
Note from the Deputy Headmistress....

A new Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Bean Mini-Challenge has been posted!  



What's this week's bean!?!?  Take the Portkey to the Deputy Headmistresses Office to find out!  And while you're there be sure to check out the inspiration projects from all around Craftster.
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504  Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: August 02, 2013 08:23:01 AM
Challenge: Quidditch - Bumphing
House: Gryffindor!
Project Name: Empire Waisted Apron

Brief Description: Last weekend I spent a day canning with my friend Amber.  She had the most adorable vintage inspired apron, with cute little owls all over it.  I was seriously jealous.  Especially when I got tomato juice all over me later that day, and red wine jelly the next day!  Cheesy  So, I simply had to make myself one yesterday at work.  It is made from vintage fabric we received in a donation.  Deep teal, with tiny white and lime green flowers, and black branches. The black is bias tape, and it ties at the back of the neck and the waist.  I'm considering going back and attaching the neck straps to go down to the back of the skirt instead of tying, since I don't like things touching the back of the neck.  But for now, I'm going to try using it this way.

Project Picture:





~*Advanced Studies Friday*~
I've made some more progress on my NEWT!  Monday afternoon I did a batch of 6 jars of wine jelly made from Norton grapes.  The wine is from my favorite local winery, Reid's Livery.



It's a beautiful dark garnet color.  Here are two thumnails that show off the color.


This afternoon I'll be doing a batch of Beer Mustard, and perhaps some Cranberry Syrup.  On Sunday I plan to do another canning day with my friend Amber.  We'll be doing Zucchini Pickles and Bruschetta In a Jar.

And now, I have a question for all of you!  Tuesday I started playing with making jar labels.  I liked playing with the different fonts, but now I can't choose between them.  Here are my 4 favorites.  Let me know which you like best!

Chocolate Box:


Fortuna:


Bijoux:


Vintage:


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505  Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: August 02, 2013 07:54:55 AM
Note from the Deputy Headmistress....

Our newest Witch of the Week for the semester has been posted!  Be sure to check the Witch of the Week Board to find out who it is!!!

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506  Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: July 31, 2013 08:18:07 AM
Challenge: Bertie Botts - Watermelon
House: Gryffindor
Project Name: Orange & White Starfish Dishcloths

Project Page Link: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=426063.0#axzz2adNQJwZh
Brief Description: More dishcloths for my Christmas stash!  This set includes pink, white and orange watermelon colors.  
Project Picture:




Challenge: Quidditch - Broomstick
House: Gryffindor
Project Name: Charlottes Web Bracelet

Project Page Link: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=426064.0#axzz2adNQJwZh
Brief Description: Far and away, my favorite method of transportation is reading.  Reading takes me to worlds I may never see with my eyes, but that I can see with my heart. This bracelet was a special request from a friend.  She wanted it for another friend's birthday.  The recipient loves the book Charlotte's Web.  The bracelet spells out "RADIANT", one of the things Charlotte writes about Wilbur in her web. The other charms include a tractor, 3 of Charlotte's baby spiders, a horse, Templeton the rat, Charlotte in her web, Wilbur, cow, and a tent from the County Fair.
Project Picture:




Challenge: Detention - August
House: Gryffindor
Project Name: Tan Starfish Dishcloths

Project Page Link: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=426063.0#axzz2adNQJwZh
Brief Description: More dishcloths for my Christmas stash!  These two are mismatched, as I was trying to use up the last bit of ivory yarn in my stash, but I like that they are the colors of actual starfish.  This set will probably go to my SIL.
Project Picture:




Challenge: Quidditch - Flacking
House: Gryffindor
Project Name: Favorite Things Bracelet

Brief Description: This bracelet is another custom request from the same friend.  She ordered it for another friend's birthday.  It contains a mix of charms to represent her friend's loves, as well as glass and semi precious stone beads in shades of purple, blue and turquoise.
Project Picture:




Challenge: Quidditch - Keeper
House: Gryffindor
Project Name: Purple & Yellow Starfish Dishcloths

Project Page Link: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=426063.0#axzz2adNQJwZh
Brief Description: More dishcloths for my Christmas stash!  I think this set will be going to Audrey & Steve.  
Project Picture:




Challenge: Quidditch - Seeker
House: Gryffindor
Project Name: Golden Corn & Zucchini Salad

Brief Description: This salad is just wonderful.  It's like summer on a plate.  I frequently make a half batch for dinner, since it's just two of us.  Usually I top it with salmon, paprika and more chives.  Give it a try!

Golden Corn & Zucchini Salad
4 ears golden sweet corn, kernels shaved off the cob
2 small zucchini, diced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter (or vegan butter substitute)
1 cup minced chives

Place the diced zucchini in a colander or small bowl and sprinkle lightly with salt and let the excess liquid drain out. Set aside. Heat a deep skillet over medium heat and add a drizzle of olive oil and the butter. When the butter foams up, add the corn kernels and cook, stirring frequently, until they are tender about 5 minutes.  Drain any excess water off the zucchini and add to the skillet, along with the chives and mint. Saut just until the zucchini is barely tender about 3 minutes.  Remove from the heat and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately while hot, or at room temperature.

Project Picture:
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507  Charlotte's Web Charm Bracelet in Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General by Mistress Jennie on: July 31, 2013 08:04:13 AM
This bracelet was a special request from a friend.  She wanted it for another friend's birthday.  The recipient loves Charlotte's Web.  The bracelet spells out "RADIANT", one of the things Charlotte writes about Wilbur in her web.  The other charms include a tractor, 3 of Charlotte's baby spiders, a horse, Templeton the rat, Charlotte in her web, Wilbur, cow, and a tent from the County Fair.  The beads are a mix of glass and stone.  Enjoy!









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508  Starfish Dishcloths for Christmas Presents in Crochet: Completed Projects by Mistress Jennie on: July 31, 2013 07:43:52 AM
I've been working on making crocheted cotton dishcloths to give away as part of my Christmas gift baskets this year.  This year I'm going to add in some homemade canned goods to make the baskets kitchen themed.  Here are the first 5 sets I've made. They are quite simple to put together, and look so pretty when they're all done.  The pattern is Starfish Dishcloths available for free from Coats.









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509  Re: Summer Nerd Games --May15, 2013-September 2, 2013-- JOIN ANY TIME! in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: July 29, 2013 07:50:09 AM
Battle: Battle Royal - MARVEL
Team: Team-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named

Project Geekdom: Comic Books/Movies
Bonus Points: Nerdy (Comics)
Project Name: Fire Star Dishcloths for Phoenix
Brief Description:  There's not even a competition in my heart between these two.  All my favorite comics are always Marvel.  One of my favorite characters has always been Jean Grey & Phoenix.  These dishcloths were inspired by that fiery heroine.
Project Picture:




Challenge: Textbook - July: Gut's & Glory
Team: Team-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named

Project Geekdom: None that I know of.
Bonus Points: None
Project Name: Coffee Lovers Charm Bracelet
Brief Description: Caffeine acts as a stimulant on the central nervous system.  It also happens to be one of my very favorite things. Wink  This charm bracelet is my ode to the smell of freshly ground beans.  It contains glass, stone, ceramic & shell beads in shades of brown, black, cream and caramel.  The charms are Tibetan silver and pewter and include coffee cups, coffee beans, cake, fancy cup, croissant, java mug, quart of milk, "With enough caffeine anything is possible" mug, percolator, latte mug, pie, coffee pot, chocolate, half cup, and sugar packet.
Project Picture:




Challenge: Multimedia - July: Companionship
Team: Team-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named

Project Geekdom: None
Bonus Points: Possibly Discovery.  I've quilted before, but never tried the "single block design gets enlarged into a whole quilt" thing.  I leave this to the Game Maker's discretion.
Project Name & Page Link: Giant Star Block Quilts
Brief Description:  Just like the Doctor always travels with a Companion, so sisters travel through life together.  This pair of baby quilts was made for my cousin's two young daughters. (My second cousins.)  They are the same pattern, but different colors, so each girl is individual.  And even when the sisters are apart, they can always have their blanket companions with them.
Project Picture:




Challenge: Wordy - July: Proverbs
Team: Team-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named

Project Geekdom: Harry Potter
Bonus Points: Nerdy + Declared Geekdom
Project Name: Prisoner of Azkaban Bookmark
Project Page Link:
Brief Description: "Don't judge a book by it's cover."  It's something we hear all the time, and understand the meaning of, yet I know I for one frequently pick out books based on their covers!  This little bookmark will hopefully remind me not to do that quite so much.  It depicts the Weasley's flying Ford Anglia about to crash into the Whomping Willow.
Project Picture:




Challenge: Fandom - July: Fanfiction
Team: Team-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named

Project Geekdom: Harry Potter
Bonus Points: Nerdy + Declared Geekdom
Project Name & Page Link: Ultimate Harry Potter Charm Bracelet
Brief Description: I've been tinkering with more charm bracelets during the quieter summer months.  (I don't get nearly as much free time during the school year when I'm teaching.)  This is a bracelet I've been dreaming up for a while.  It's 31 charms from the world of Harry Potter, and I tried to capture bits of all of my favorite parts of the books.  This is a variation on my usual style, and does not include any bead work. The charms include: Cauldron, Acceptance Letter, Lighting Bolt, Gryffindor's Lion, Broom, Phoenix, House Scarf, Sorting Hat, Whomping Willow, Snitch, Wand, Diadem of Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff's Cup, Ravenclaw's Eagle, Steam Engine, Deathly Hallows symbol, Hogwarts, Cat, Dark Mark, Hufflepuff's Badger, Sword of Gryffindor, Slytherin's Ring, Hedwig, Mad-Eye Moody's Eye, Mermaid, Slytherin's Snake, Fireplace, Dragon, Quill, Cemetery Gate, Potion Bottle.
Project Picture:




Challenge: Randomizer - July: Our Ancestors
Team: Team-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named

Project Geekdom: None
Bonus Points: None
Project Name: Hudson's Baby Quilt
Brief Description:  Quilts have been made by women for hundreds of years to bring warmth and comfort to their families.  This pattern is known as a 4 Patch, and while there is no record of it's first recorded construction, it has been popular with American quilters (and especially with Amish quilters) for over 200 years.
Project Picture:
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510  Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: July 29, 2013 07:13:24 AM
Note from the Deputy Headmistress....

Since I might be going out of town on Thursday in order to meet my brand-new nephew, I have decided to post our August Detention prompt a few days early!  Be sure to check the Detention Page to read all about it!

 
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