The Book Of Paper Quilling

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the-book-of-paper-quilling

Quilling is one of the few crafts, in which even today, it’s hard to find a really good book. The projects in most books tend to look old-fashioned and amateurish. Framed pictures of clowns and Santa Clauses tend to dominate many of the pages.

The Book Of Paper Quilling, by Malinda Johnston has its’ fair share of these types of projects. But it also has some very stylish things as well. Enough, so that out of the many quilling books I examined, this was the one I chose to purchase.

However, what makes The Book Of Paper Quilling really special, is the quality of its’ instructions. Malinda Johnston takes the beginning quiller through every stage of the process. From tools and materials, all the way through cutting strips and rolling shapes.

In addition, Ms. Johnston adds in a few extra goodies. The book includes some very inspirational samples of both antique and modern day quilling. It has instructions for some fabulous picture frame mats, a unique chess set, and a couple delicate pairs of earrings. And, most important, it shows how to use a quilling board, allowing the reader to design his own projects.

Not a perfect book, but all in all, an effective book for beginners.

Get your own copy of  The Book Of Paper Quilling: Techniques & Projects For Paper Filigree at Amazon.

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Glorious French Food by James Peterson

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glorious-french-foodI’m a great fan of Julia Child’s Mastering The Art of French Cooking, a book full of simple, yet delicious food.

I picked up Glorious French Food, by James Peterson, hoping for more of the same. My reaction to this new tome, however, is somewhat mixed.

On the one hand, I admire the way that Mr. Peterson teaches new tech­niques. In each chapter, a cooking method is first introduced in it’s simplest form. Then, the rest of the chapter is used to expand on it.

For instance, the chapter on Cheese Souffles starts out with a very simple recipe, and then proceeds onto more complicated souffles. After that first easy dish, comes Individual Goat Cheese Souffles, Twice Baked Cheese Souffles With Tomato Sauce, all the way to Twice Baked Cheese Souffles With Morel. With each proceeding recipe, the reader learns more of the technique.

The problem is, for me, the recipes themselves.

I find the recipes a bit too glamorous for my taste. While I loved that first, plain Cheese Souffle recipe, by the time the author started adding morels, goat cheese and and individual ramekins, he was out of both my price range and my interest level. If he had just stopped at that first wonderful recipe, all would have been well.

Bottom line? If you like a little adventure in your French cooking, this is a fabulous books for learning the how-to’s. If, however, you’re a culinary Philistine like me, stick with Julia. Julia is able to impart those qualities while still sticking (for the most part) with basic meat and potatoes ingredients.

Get a copy of Glorious French Food: A Fresh Approach to the Classics from Amazon.

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Olive Cheese Spread

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Olive Cheese Spreadsource: I Believe I Can Fry

This Cheese Spread recipe has evolved so much throughout the years, that it is no longer anything like the original.

Ingredients:

8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese

1 – 2 flat tablespoons cream cheese

1/4 cup finely chopped pimento stuffed olives

garlic powder (to taste)

onion powder (to taste)

pepper (to taste)

Procedure:

Using your hands, mix all ingredients until well blended. You want the mixture to be very stiff, so add as little cream cheese as possible. Serve as is, or roll the cheese into a log. Serve with a variety of crackers.

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Pasta In Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce

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Pasta In Sun-Dried Tomato Saucesource: thebittenword.com

This unusual recipe came from my favorite cookbook, The The 5 in 10 Pasta Cookbook.  However, I’ve made so many changes to the original, that it’s practically a new recipe.

Ingredients:

1/2 lb. pasta, cooked till tender but still firm

1-2 tsp. onion powder

1 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, plus 2 tbsp. oil

2/3 cup cream cheese

3 tbsp. milk

2 tbsp. dried basil

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Combine all ingredients, except for pasta, in a large frying pan. While stirring, cook till sauce is very hot. Add pasta and cook for another 1-2 minutes, continuing to stir. Serve immediately.

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Annette’s Classic Pasta Salad

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Annette's Pasta Salad

source: chrismar

I make this very simple and good pasta salad whenever I’m asked to bring a dish to a casual potluck. Everyone always loves it and asks for the recipe. As with so many of my recipes, I’m almost embarrassed to tell how easy it is to pull together.

Ingredients

1/2 pound firmly cooked pasta, rinsed in cool water

1/3 cup finely chopped carrots

1/3 cup finely chopped carrots

1/3 cup finely chopped green pepper

3 tablespoons finely chopped onion

Ken’s Italian Salad Dressing

Mayonnaise

Salt

Directions

Combine pasta and all the vegetables.  Chill. 30 minutes before serving, add dressing, mayonnaise and salt to taste.

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Great Paper Crafts by Judy Ritchie

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Great Paper Crafts

Look­ing for an­oth­er use for your enor­mous stash of scrap­booking sup­plies? Great Paper Crafts by Judy Rit­chie has the ans­wer.

Great Paper Crafts is a com­pen­dium of both proj­ects and tech­niques. The proj­ects in­clude greet­ing cards, gift tags, wall art, wrap­ping paper, sta­tion­ary and more. The tech­niques run the gam­ut all the way from col­lage and rub­ber stamp­ing to punch art and iris fold­ing, with tons in be­tween.

My favorite? The mosaic picture frame.

To make the frame, first stamp strips of color on white paper using stamp pads. Then, stamp small images onto the strips of color and cut into random tiny triangles. Finally, position the triangles onto a black frame mat in a pleasing design. The contrast between the black of the mat and the multi-colored triangles creates a striking finished project.

If you’re looking for a craft book that explores a wide range of subject areas, Great Paper Crafts is the book for you.

Get your own copy of Great Paper Crafts: Ideas, Tips, and Techniques at Amazon.

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70 Free Lingerie Sewing Patterns

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70 Free Lingerie Sewing Patterns

Free lingerie sewing patterns are hard to find on the internet. While free skirt patterns and tote patterns abound, free lingerie sewing patterns require sifting through hundreds of sites to locate.  Here are 75 patterns that I was able to find.

Bras

Caftans

Camisoles

Chemises

Complete Sets

Nightgowns

Socks

Pajamas

Panties

Robes

Slippers

Slips

Men’s Boxers

* Not originally designed as lingerie, but with a change of fabric, adapts very well.

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