We Are Shifting Gears!

It’s 2015 and we are in the midst of some exciting transitions over at “Hammer Like A Girl”.  We are inviting you to come along.

Heidi is focusing on creating functional (and not so functional) art.

“I’ve been slowly realizing how important it is for me to create art and so I’m looking forward to focusing on that. Please check out my new blog, “Old stuff. New Stories” at HeidiFavour.com. I would love to hear from you as I free fall into this new adventure.”

Mary Jean is off supporting her family.

“Although I’ll miss our weekly “get-togethers”, house projects and lunches, I’m certain that focusing on my family is where my heart leads me at this point. Keep following Hammer Like a Girl and check out Heidi’s blog, too. These are two women who continue to amaze me every day.”

Monica is still hanging out at Hammer Like A Girl.

“I will miss my girlfriends, our lunches and jokes and wish them the best of luck! I plan to continue to collaborate with friends and professionals, write about recycling and creative re-use in design, green ideas and DIY. I hope you will follow both our blogs, linked by a love of the “urban forest” – foraging from our beloved second hand stores and street corners.”

Make This Tonight! Super Easy Pasta Sauce

Homemade Tomato Sauce, quick sauce

Here’s what you need. Does it look easy? It is! It’s the…

Super Cinchy Pasta Sauce that is Awesome

adapted from Marcella Hazan, Essentials of Italian Cooking

5 minutes of prep, 40 minutes simmering, serves about 4-5 with pasta.

Ingredients:

  • 1 onion, peeled and cut in half
  • 5 Tbs butter (We use unsalted but doubt it matters)
  • One 28 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Procedure:

The short directions:

  • Melt the butter
  • Add the onion, let it cook 2-3 minutes
  • Add the diced tomatoes
  • Simmer for 35-40 min, stirring occasionally
  • Remove the onion, add salt and pepper to taste, serve.

The long directions:

  • Melt the butter over medium heat, (a heavy bottom pot is best).
  • Place the peeled onion cut side down into the pot.
  • Allow the onion to begin to cook in the butter – approx 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Add the diced tomatoes
  • Stir occasionally to mix in the butter and to keep the sauce from burning to the bottom of the pot. (Hint: if it does burn a bit, just stir without scraping up the burned bits into the remaining sauce and call it “smoky tomato sauce”).
  • Once the sauce starts to bubble, turn down the burner to simmer gently for another 30-35 minutes.
  • Taste. Add salt or pepper if you like. Or not.
  • Remove the onion.
  • Serve the sauce over pasta, vegetables, potatoes, polenta etc.

Enjoy! Feed the people real food! Go paint the basement!

 

 

Upcycled Awesomeness in Kauai – KIKO simple goods

Kauai, Kapa'a, Recycled, Upcycled, Crafts

Aloha and Mele Kalikimaka (that’s Hawaiian for Merry Christmas – a tad late, but still –) We’ve just returned from a very fun trip to the Hawaiian island of Kauai. In between the (muddy & fun!) hiking, beaches, and dodging wild roosters, we explored the lovely low-key town of Kapa’a. This was one of our favorite finds, KIKO simple goods*, specializing in unique local art, upcycled goods and clever environmental products. It just made us happy (plus it doesn’t hurt to be located in paradise…). Be inspired, visit the web links and if in Kauai, visit the store!

 

 

* KIKO’s has opened recently and they don’t have a website yet, but when they do I will update this post with a link – because they really are awesome. This is NOT a sponsored post, just love from an admirer.

 

Pendant Light With Pulley

My sister hinted that she wanted me to make her a pendant light using a pulley she found. Actually it wasn’t a hint so much as a demand. My sister isn’t known for her subtlety. She also doesn’t read this blog, so I’m safe. :)

I’ve had the pulley for quite some time and I just now finished in time for her birthday.

diy light, how to make a light fixture, interior design, salvage design, up cycle, green design

The parts:

I found the bracket on Etsy, from a cool shop based in Wisconsin (Gizmo and Hoo Ha) with all sorts of vintage odds and ends. It was listed as a holder for horse bridles and tack, which is special because my sister used to be a big horse-back rider.

The lamp parts (wire, socket, plug, cage) I bought online through Sundial Wire. A big plug for them here (pun intended) – not only do they have very nice lamp parts, they also give very detailed instructions on how to wire a plug and socket.

(Side note: Unfortunately, I lost the photos I took of the individual parts before I put the lamp together. My memory card went kaput after I took the pictures and could not be recognized by the computer or the camera. The good news is the store exchanged the damaged card for a new card, but the bad news is all the photos were lost. Has this ever happened to you?)

Happy Birthday to my sister!

To see more of Heidi’s artwork, visit her at Old Stuff. New Stories.

 

 

DIY Halloween Tombstones!

IMG_3014

Here’s what my son ( and his amazing assistants, mom and dad ) have been up to most of the month of October. Tombstones. Realistic, detailed and creepy Halloween decorations. Check it out:

DIY Halloween decoration, DIY Halloween gravestone, Halloween cemetery

My initial plan was to write a “how to” post with these – but it’s so complicated and detailed that I think a simple slide show is far more fun, so here you go:

Add a little moss from Home Depot and a couple crows from Display and Costume   and you are all done!

DIY Halloween decorations, Halloween decor, How to make Halloween  tombstones

Happy Halloween from all of us at Hammer Like A Girl :)

More Functional Art

I’ve been working on some more functional art for Matter Gallery in Olympia. It was fun working on the pieces and a little hard to hand them off  – like saying good-bye to your children. Check out their shop either online or in person, Olympia is full of interesting places to visit!

You can see more functional art here.

To see more of Heidi’s artwork, visit her at Old Stuff. New Stories.

Vintage Railroad Crossing Sign

I’ve always coveted those big old Railroad Crossing signs. I’ve seen them at a couple antique stores here in Seattle, but they’ve always been super expensive. We were in Door County, Wisconsin, by Sturgeon Bay this summer for our annual family trip and I stopped by one of my favorite antique stores there – Richard’s Antiques. I wanted to back a truck up to the store and take everything with me, but settled on 2 sets of railroad signs (and some other things too numerous to mention here).

RailRoadCrossing

RailRoadCrossing_detail

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