I started holiday baking over the weekend. This year I am going to make fudge for my friends and neighbors. We have a pretty close-knit group of neighbors, about seven families, and we all exchange little gifts every year. My mom has a great recipe for fudge that I am going to use — I will post that, and photos, when I do it, probably sometime this week. It's so nice and easy, and really, who doesn't like lovely, smooth, chocolately fudge? Even I do, and I am not a huge chocolate fan. But fudge I love.
These little berry-buttons, above, are my mom's raspberry thumbprint cookies, making their national debut in this month's Hallmark magazine (and that link will take you to the recipe). They are a standard part of my mom's awesome Christmas-cookie plate. She makes plates for all of us kids and her local friends, and even ships lots of cookies to peeps back home. Though we drizzle these thumbprints with icing, the editors didn't like the way the iced cookies were photographing, but unless your cookies are going to be in a magazine, I would highly suggest adding the frosty drizzle. Deliciousness! And so perfectly red and white.
In other red-and-white news, I have an embroidery project out right now in the current issue of Holiday Decorating Ideas by CraftStylish. This is a version of a traditional Hungarian folk-art design and I think it is so simple and sweet. Done entirely in three strands of dark red embroidery floss, this design can be completed with only two stitches — backstitch, and lazy daisy (both are explained in the article). If you are a beginning embroiderer, I highly recommend starting with a project like this! It is so, so much fun, and will give you lots of confidence to tackle more complicated color-and-stitch combinations. You can find the magazine at most craft and fabric stores, or just click on the link above. It will include the template and an illustrated tutorial for this project, along with many other wonderful wintry things to make.
Like the crocheted pillowcase edging here, which was created by my amazing friend Linda Permann! Look at some of these other recent sewing and crochet projects she has out there in magazines right now, too. That cupcake teapot cozy? Genius! And the darling gingerbread mobile is by the incredibly talented Kayte Terry, whose book, Complete Embellishing, will give you countless ideas and very thorough technique tutorials for embellishing all sorts of clothes and accessories — Kayte is a former visual manager for Anthropologie, and her aesthetic is so lovely and sophisticated in that perfectly rustic way I love. Isn't this cardigan from the book just gorgeous? I love the woolly ruffle. Yummy.
Isn't it a great time to be a crafter? There is so much out there for us to make. I LOVE IT.
Now. The auction! I am loving this auction stuff!!! Thank you so much to everyone who bid yesterday — you are awesome! But I want to update you on some stuff and answer some questions that came in yesterday.
Secondly, about international shipping for the auction: So, I wasn't going to do this, because I was worried about the time crunch before Christmas, and not being able to get to the P.O. to ship overseas, but I got a lot of email about it yesterday so I'm reversing this decision. Although I ship all of my domestic packages on-line (where you print out the labels from the computer and the postperson comes directly to the house to pick the package up), I never ship international on-line because, although it is much more convenient, it is more expensive than taking it directly to the P.O. I ship enough overseas packages every week that this just doesn't make sense for me, so I take them all in myself. BUT, if you are overseas, and you would like to bid on the dolls, and either pay a higher shipping fee to get it quickly or wait until our weather makes it safe to drive, that is totally cool with me! Please bid! Thank you!!!
And thirdly, I was talking to my friend Shelly on the phone last night and she said that she didn't realize, from looking at the photos of the dolls, that they all have braided hair twisted up on top of their heads. So I thought I would mention that the hair on all of them is the same, but you just can't really tell that from the photos of the brunettes, because their hair is so dark. But they all actually have the same twisty-braid hairdos as Ingrid and Devon. Don't you wish you could do your hair like that? You CAN??? You lucky!!!!!