Beach lovers will enjoy getting these delightful beeswax seashell candles, which look right at home in a glass terrarium filled with sand.
If you are looking for the perfect gift for Mother’s Day that says, “you are my sunshine”, check out the Garden Therapy Handmade shop. Order now through May 3rd to ensure your purchase will arrive in time to make it for Mom’s big day and use the code “SPRING” for 10% off your entire order.
Garden Therapy Handmade pillows are made from fabric designed with photographs from my garden. Macro imagery of each flower has been carefully giclée-printed on a gorgeous a linen-cotton blend. The fabric is sturdy and the print is washable making this truly art you can use. For more information, please visit the Garden Therapy Handmade Shop.
Some things seem to be drawn together organically, like the flavors of blood orange and raspberry. It’s citrus season here now – the only time of the year blood oranges are available. Since raspberries are abundant in late summer this jam recipe has been in progress for 6 months. Despite having very different seasons the tie between these two fruits is undeniable. When I first tasted the blood orange juice it was kind of, well, blah. Not as sweet and vibrant as an orange, albeit the juice is beautifully rich to look at the flavor lacks punch. But what I did taste was a slight hint, a murmur maybe, of raspberry. It was immediate and undeniable that these two fruits must go together. Hence this blood orange and raspberry jam recipe was born.
First made last winter, the jars were quickly gobbled up as it is my all-time-favorite jam of all time. Then in the summer when raspberries were ripe and ready, I hunted for blood oranges. In this day and age of abundance I though someone might stock a few. Nope. I settled for making the recipe with cape gooseberries and it was good. Just not my all-time-favorite of all time.
But now it’s time, my friends, time for blood orange and raspberry jam. Finally. Here is the recipe:
- enough blood oranges to get 4 cups freshly-squeezed juice
- 4 cups raspberries
- 3-4 cups sugar (this really depends on your preferences and how sweet the fruit is) I used 3 cups and my jam is perfectly sweet and tart
- Put a couple of plates in the freezer.
- Juice those bloody oranges until you get 4 cups. Take all the membrane and seeds out of the peels and tie into a square of cheesecloth (I used a 4-ply thickness of cheesecloth, i.e. a large square folded in half twice). Tie the ends of the cheesecloth around a large wooded spoon. This is your pectin bag.
- Add juice to a large pot with the raspberries and sugar and bring to a boil on medium-high. Stir frequently. Hang bag of orange guts from the edge of the pot. I rigged up something with a chopstick and a clip on the side of the pot, but the large wooden spoon works great too.
- When boiling, reduce heat to medium-low and continue boiling and stirring until reduced. Remove pectin bag and let cool. When cool enough to handle, squeeze the bag so that a creamy gel comes out of the pores of the cheesecloth – that’s your pectin! Scrape the pectin back into the jam and stir. Then you can discard the bag and membranes.
- Jam is ready when it passes the gel test: put a spoonful of the jam on a plate from the freezer. When the jam has cooled, drag your finger through the middle of the glob. If it spreads back into a puddle, it isn’t gelled yet. If your finger mark stays put, then your jam is ready to be canned.
- Process 125ml (aka 1/2 cup) jars for 5 minutes, or 250ml (aka 1 cup jars) for 10 minutes in a boiling water canner.
In other news, just as these flavors came together organically, it seems that right at the same time I’m all ramped up about citrus, I have a few new Garden Therapy Handmade pillows to launch. This one seemed particularly fitting to announce today, given the citrus-y color of the crocosmia blooms. For those of you who haven’t yet, please visit the Garden Therapy Handmade shop and take a look at all the bright-colored blooms. Hopefully they will bring some cheer to your winter’s days.
2011 was without a doubt an exciting year full of garden therapy. It all began with some Proposals for a New Year which really launched the Weekend Project series of tutorials that go up each and every week. It took a little while to get a groove going, but now Garden Therapy is loaded with crafty/garden-y/foodie projects that will hopefully inspire you to dig in. After all of the blood, dirt, and paper cuts it was hard to choose the best of 2011. Nonetheless, here they are.
1. Garden Therapy Handmade Shop Opens!
Opening the new Etsy shop to sell a hand crafted line of floral throw pillows was by far the most exciting thing that happened this year. The Studio Blooms line of throw pillows started from flowers grown in my gardens which were then photographed in macro, blown up to mammoth proportions, and printed on fabric using the giclée technique. Each pillow represents a piece of artwork for your home, yet artwork you can cuddle up to and read a book on. Every step was carefully (obsessively?) planned out and executed, so the final cushions are truly show-stopping.
A labour of love that took well over a year and a half to launch, it’s been a great success so far and I have very high hopes for 2012. Look for new designs, new products, and new locations where you can buy Garden Therapy Handmade in the coming year. And remember, each design is a limited edition so please snap them up before they are all gone.
2. Free Printable Canning Labels
It seems a shame to put so much love into a a jam, jelly, or pickle to then just label the lid with a sharpie. These printable canning labels are also meant for the canning jar’s snap lid so it get’s recycled when the lid does with no sticky glue to soak off the glass jar. Oh, and did I mention they are free? Yup, just download and print ‘em on label paper. You’re welcome.
While making bath and body care products isn’t technically gardening, these projects all honour nature by using only natural essential oils, colourings, and other ingredients. Tutorials for handmade cold process soap, bath bombs, sugar scrub, bath salts, and lip balm were incredibly popular and made amazing holiday gifts. Good news, there will be more recipes and tutorials to come in 2012!
4. Candles in Many Shapes and Forms
The first candles to be posted were these Citronella CAN-dles. And while no bugs bit me while they were alight, I was bitten by the candle-making bug! Soy and beeswax jar candles followed which were beautiful in their simplicity. The real star of the show, however, was the beeswax flower jar candles, where a 3-dimensional beeswax surprise hides under the lid of these. A perfect holiday gift, although so far, those who have them have not wanted to burn them and watch the flower melt away. To that I say, light away and make more…and here’s how.
5. The Grinch Tree, Whoville Party and & Holiday Decorations
Speaking of the holidays, the Grinch tree was the singing Who’s that warmed up my Grinchy demeanour this holiday season. Feeling a little blue and growly before the holidays, I didn’t want to put up a Christmas tree this year. The compromise was to decorate a tree that mirrored the feelings, and the Grinch tree was born. And just like the movie, my spirits warmed up and the true meaning of Christmas was revealed: to make festive holiday planters and decorate the house and throw a Whoville-themed party! Thanks, Grinchy.
6. Wreath Making
There is always a wreath on the Garden Therapy front door, and maybe another few scattered around the garden. Tutorials for Making an Evergreen Wreath, Lavender Wreath, and Halloween Hop Wreath were easy and fun projects that didn’t cost a penny. Love!
7. Halloween Planters, Jack-o-Planterns, & Rock Spiders
Now that Hop Wreath wasn’t the only Halloween decoration this year. Scaaary planters with severed hands, witch’s brooms, and kale (OK, not too scary) were unique natural decorations. But nothing was as fun as the Jack-o-planterns and DIY Rock Spiders (sorry, Elisabeth, I know they freak you out).
8. Concrete Garden Projects
Being lucky enough to receive a review copy of Concrete Garden Projects: Easy & Inexpensive Containers, Furniture, Water Features & More meant a fun afternoon making modern planters and leaf-print stepping stones. I’m totally addicted now!
9. Jammin’ Recipes
10. Tangerine Tango
The final highlight of 2011 was the announcement of Pantone’s 2012 colour of the year, Tangerine Tango which will undoubtedly be a popular colour in fashion and home décor (already seeing it everywhere!) but there are also some pretty cool plants that can spice up your garden. Also cool, a set of Studio Blooms pillows rocks out in Tangerine Tango. Hmmm. That is a really great way to start of 2012.
Thank you to everyone who has visited in 2011 and I so very much hope that you will be back this year. Happy gardening!
Exciting news today, everyone. Pantone has chosen the new colour of the year for 2012: Tangerine Tango, a vibrant red-orange that they say builds on the verve and vigor of last year’s colour, Honeysuckle, by continuing “to provide the energy boost we need to recharge and move forward”.
For the garden, I can think of a whole bunch of really great blooms that I have been coveting (like the Hot Papaya Coneflower and the Geum magellanicum from Annies Annuals) and some that I have always been drawn to (tulip, gladiola, and crocosmia Lucifer all from my garden).
1. crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ 2. gladiolus 3. tulip ‘Ballerina’ 4. Alonsoa meridionalis ‘Red’ 5. Geum magellanicum 6. Antirrhinum majus ‘Defiance’ 7. Echinacea purpurea ‘Hot Papaya’ 8. Superbena® Royale Peachy Keen Verbena
Are people really going to update their wardrobes, homes, and gardens just because Pantone has chosen a colour for the year? Probably not, but I must say that in the past I have been strangely drawn to the colours they have chosen, and that’s before I knew there was a colour of the year.
Last year, I really couldn’t get enough honeysuckle. That pinky-gold colour graced my wardrobe and my garden. I didn’t bring it in the house though, it didn’t speak to me for home decor. That is not case for Tangerine Tango however. Apartment Therapy compiled some great images combining Tangerine Tango and Grey-Brown, which is exactly what I was going for with this set of Garden Therapy Handmade throw pillows which already grace my home (and look striking in my eucalyptus-colour bedroom).
So I suppose either Pantone is reading my mind or these trends are really based on something. Pantone says that the color of the year selection is a very thoughtful process. To arrive at the selection, they quite literally combs the world looking for color influences. This can include the entertainment industry and films that are in production, traveling art collections, hot new artists, popular travel destinations and other socio-economic conditions. Influences may also stem from technology, availability of new textures and effects that impact color, and even upcoming sports events that capture worldwide attention.
So what do you think? Do you like the colour? Will it have any impact on your choices next year in the garden or otherwise?
In celebration of the newly opened Garden Therapy Handmade Shop we are giving away a set of six Studio Blooms art cards. These cards have vibrant 4×6 photos of the flowers photographed for the throw pillows in the store. Each photo is affixed to organic, recycled paper cards. Givaway runs from now until December 15, 2011. Sorry, contest is open to the US /Canada only.
And the winner is….Yolande! What luck the very first entry was chosen.
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Here is how to enter (for each item, come back here to comment so we know that you entered):
- Like Garden Therapy on Facebook and come back here to comment – 1 entry (share on FB for another entry)
- Follow Garden Therapy on Twitter and come back here to comment – 1 entry (RT for another entry)
- Follow Garden Therapy on Pinterest and come back here to comment - 1 entry (share or like for another entry)
- Favourite any item or the Garden Therapy store at Etsy and come back here to comment - 1 entry
- Add a Garden Therapy shop item to an Etsy Treasury List and come back here to comment - 3 entries.
- And if you buy anything from the Garden Therapy shop, we will give you a set! Just mention it when checking out.
We are so proud to announce the launch of Garden Therapy Handmade on Etsy. This labour of love involved combining the passion for gardening, photography and home décor into one unique project: Studio Blooms.
But a harvest? Why, yes! Flowers were grown in our home garden, photographed in studio, then enlarged to mammoth proportions in order to showcase the magnificent details of each individual flower. The photographs were digitally designed to be giclee printed on a beautiful linen-cotton canvas and sewn to perfection. Little details like expensive hidden zipper closures and feather/down inserts were taking into account. Then each one was hand washed, dried, and ironed, ready to go to it’s new home.
Was it easy? Um, well, no. There were months of prints and reprints to get just the right detail to each inch of fabric. There was wash testing. There was cuddle testing (that was a particularly tough one). In the end, it was so worth it. We think these soft but durable pillows are the perfect art for the home. We hope that you agree!
Please visit the Garden Therapy Handmade store to check out all the designs, 9 in total. Favoriting, liking, tweeting, or any other social media sharing would be greatly, greatly appreciated and happily returned in kind. And thank you for your support.