A Spider that Mimics Job’s Tears Seeds?!

I was harvesting Job’s tears last weekend and I found the most amazing little friend!  Here’s a little spider that mimics ripening Job’s tears seeds, right down to the pale green spot on his back that’s just like the pale green spot at the tip of a ripening Job’s tear seed!  He/she was eating an… Read more »

How to Make Fresh, Authentic Mexican Salsa (Pico de Gallo)

How to make a fresh, authentic, Mexican Pico de Gallo salsa (you know, the one they give you with chips when you're waiting for your meal!)

Pico de Gallo Salsa Base If you have a ton of fresh tomatoes pouring in from the garden/CSA/farmer’s market right now, then you NEED this recipe!! This is an easy, authentic Mexican salsa recipe called Pico de Gallo (which literally means “beak of the rooster”, but it’s a double entendre because pico can also mean… Read more »

How To Drill Small Beach Stones

Slate Petals river stone statement necklace by Jenny Hoople

Want to learn how to drill holes in beach stones? Well, I’ve got good news for you: drilling small river stones is easy and I’m happy to tell you how it’s done! I had been making this Natural Stone Jewelry for several months with pre-drilled stones that I purchased from fellow Etsy artisans. It took… Read more »

Schtwawbawy Revolution – How the Handmade Movement Is Like a U-Pick Strawberry Farm

Hubs (at left) and my brother-in-law picking (and tasting!) schtwawbawiesat the U-pick farm. Doing their little part to forward the good work of the Schtwawbawy Revolution! Uh…Shtwawbawies?? Let me explain:  We went to the U-Pick Strawberry farm last weekend and that’s what this kid told his grandparents that he was picking!  “Yeah, I’m gonna pick Shtwaw-bawies!” he said… Read more »

Why Are Natural Materials More Meaningful Than Synthetic Ones?

Real gemstone necklace (that I made!) from a rainbow of semi-precious stones. Do you gaze in awe at jewelry made from real gemstones instead of swarovski crystals? Do you prefer a wool sweater over one knit from acrylic yarn? Would you pay more for a real, solid oak dresser than one made from oak-printed veneer?… Read more »

5 Ways That Buying Handmade Creates Community

Buying Handmade Supports Community –  I made this faux bois stone necklace with stones from a fellow artisan in Idaho.    Rhonda’s more than my stone supplier, she’s become a part of my community.   She’s a fellow bunny lover, what a small handmade world! When you support the handmade movement by buying interesting handmade… Read more »

Why Buying Handmade is More Fulfilling – Best of Etsy

Me Knitting Socks! Creating something with your own hands brings a sense of fulfillment that’s hard to beat, whether it be home baked muffins you made for your kids or a sweater that you knit for yourself.  I think that the closer you can get to the real business of life, the closer you come… Read more »

Rust is not just Rust Colored – Re-learning how to See

Rusted Mustard, Umber Crumbling, Pink Mouse Grey, Mushroom, Ochre, Turmeric,  Color is an interesting and complex animal. When we are small, we’re capable of spending hours staring at something and really looking at all sorts of little details. This fun childhood game is slowly lost to us until we look around one day and realize… Read more »

The Beauty of Imperfection – Wabi Sabi

Wabi Sabi: Rutilated Quartz, The Beauty of Imperfection I often think about how imperfections and flaws are part of what absolutely make natural materials so beautiful.  This is what makes all of us imperfect humans beautiful, too!  The Japanese have a whole aesthetic philosophy that studies and worships this feeling, it’s called Wabi Sabi.  Like… Read more »