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13 posts from September 2013

We Welcome :: Jess Greene

This week, we welcome Guest Curator, Jess Greene (of Seek Your Course).
Read her ART SAVES Story here.
Keep up with her curated links all week long here.

Jess Greene

The Difference Between Art and Craft

So I was recently at lunch with two of my girlfriends and one of them asked me how I defined ART and how I defined CRAFT.

I've been asked this many times before.

This time, as I was responding to the question, I felt that I had developed a perspective about the topic that I felt pretty good about. Good enough to write down my thoughts here to share.

Here goes.

Jenny Doh

I think art is the expression of a person's unique essence. I think art can manifest itself on canvas, through yarn, a piano, a frying pan, a computer, accounting books, the written word, dance, song, film, boxing ring, tennis court, and so much more. I think practically anything that humans can do can become vehicles for humans to express their unique essence.

I don't think art has instructions per se. I think it just spills out and can't help but become expressed.

Craft I think has instructions. I think it's frequently project-based. There's sometimes also a kit. For example, I recently wanted to learn how to do sashiko, which is a type of Japanese embroidery. I did my research and bought a kit and a few books to learn how to do it. After making the cute little coaster from the kit, I felt that I learned the craft of sashiko. I followed instructions and finished the project.

If I were to compare my coaster to the coaster made by a different person with the same kit, there may be slight differences but I would predict that for the most part, our end projects looked very similar. I do want to note that in the process of making my sashiko project, I did find times when my unique essence was coming through. I say this because I think art can come out through craft. But I'd say that my unique essence might not be as visible in these projects because there are so many others who have presumably made the same project in similar fashion.

I've never liked it when people pooh pooh craft as being less important than art. I don't like having the two pitted against each other or a crafter being made to feel less important than an artist. There is honor in craft and I'm proud to claim the title of crafter as one of my many human facets.

So when does my sashiko become art?

I think it's when I take the craft I've learned and apply it onto a piece of fabric to create something that I dream up myself, to express my unique essence. I say this cautiously because what I dream up isn't just something that happens on an island. I dream things up because I have my eyes wide open to all that is around me. My eyes have been open since I was a baby ... and when I was a young girl ... the time when adults encouraged me to mimic, to imitate, and to copy as I learned to write, speak, color, draw, dance, sing, and just develop every facet of myself. I don't know of any boy or girl who wasn't raised in a similar way ... where it was not just ok but encouraged to try on the styles of others ... because I think adults know that when kids try styles on, we eventually develop our unique voice and point of view.

I think about my sewing machine. It's a machine that allows me to make straight stitches, zigzag stitches, free motion stitches and more. No one owns the straight stitch. No one owns the zigazg stitch. No one owns the abiltiy to free motion stitch shapes or words.

I think about paint. How it can be splattered, applied with a brush, a stick, fingers, boxing gloves (yep), and more, to make circles, squares, lines, squares, arrows, scallops, dots, squiggles, and more. No one owns the brush, no one owns the ability to apply paint with a stick or the fingers or to make circles or to make arrows or to make scallops.

And as we all pursue the development and expression of our unqiue essence, we learn how to use tools like the sewing machine, like the hand needle and embroidery thread, like the paint and canvas. We look at nature and find scallops and leaves and trees and birds. We look at books and find more birds and squiggles and words and color combinations. We look at clothes and find chevron shapes and splashes of neon.

Our eyes are wide open and as we learn craft, we also learn processes and preferences and styles of those willing to share with us ... through books, articles, workshops, online classes, and more.

I think about cooking.

My go-to spices are usually garlic, onion, white ground pepper, salt, liquid aminos, honey, and sometimes curry, basil, and oregano. I don't reach for the turmeric that much because I haven't really been taught how to use the spice. I don't grill pineapple much because among other things, I haven't had the chance to take a cooking class with Bobby Flay who loves to grill pineapple. I'm sure that if I did, I'd be grilling it all the time. ;)

But does Bobby Flay own the pineapple or the act of grilling pineapple? Does somebody own turmeric or the act of adding turmeric to a stew?

I think art is about keeping eyes wide open as we learn how to do certain crafts and how to operate certain tools and materials ... like the gelli plate, or the stencil, or spray paint, or watersoluble crayons or India ink. Art is about keeping eyes wide open to the art around us, and to step into the space of artists who welcome us to be in their presence as they teach us their style. And from these experiences, we try things on ... differenet colors, different spices, different strokes ... and we become that little girl who might declare:

"I don't like turmeric and I won't ever use it in my cooking"

or the one who says:

"After taking a class with Bobby Flay, I've developed a passion for grilled pineapple, which influences the new dish I've made for you ... with added flavor twists that honor my Korean heritage."

And if we are lucky, as we learn crafts and try on styles, and observe the art around us, then eventually our own unique essence, our own undeniable voice and point of view will erupt like a volcano.

That, I think is art.



Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies (Cakey Version)

You probably know by now (especially if you follow my IG feed), that I eat a paleo-based diet. At times, I embrace small modifications ... just because life sometimes requires modifications.

One thing I've been experimenting with is making paleo chocolate chip cookies. I've been experimenting with several recipies that I've found online and developed a modified version that I think tastes pretty darn good. This final recipe results in small cookies with a nice cakey texture with flavor that my kids love. :)

paleo chocolate chip cookies recipe

Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies (Cakey Version)


  • 2.25 cups Almond Flour
  • .5 cup Coconut Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • .25 cup Coconut Sugar
  • 3 Eggs
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla
  • .5 cup Maple Syrup
  • 1 10-ounce bag of Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chunks
  • .25 cup liquid Coconut Oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Mix the almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, salt, and coconut sugar in a bowl and set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the eggs, maple syrup, and vanilla.
  4. Add the dry mixture from step 2 into the wet mixture from step 3.
  5. Add the Chocolate Chunks and liquid Coconut Oil and mix.
  6. Place a small amount of dough into your hands and roll into a ball. Place it onto the cookie sheet and flatten with your hand. Note: Unlike traditional chocolate chip cookie dough, this dough should not be spooned directly onto the cookie sheet. It needs to be shaped by hand and flattened so that the dough does not fall apart while baking. Repeat until the cookie sheet is filled with 9-12 cookies.
  7. Bake for 12-13 minutes.

NOTE: Just because something is Paleo or Gluten-Free does not mean that you overeat them without consequences. Enjoy these cookies and all other foods in moderation. :)

Stitched Blooms Blog Tour + Giveaway!

Hello, hello, hello!
I'm very happy to be included in this Blog Tour to let you know about a really fantastic book titled Stitched Blooms, authored by the talented Carina Envoldsen-Harris. The book features 20 fresh and fun sewing projects, each with one of Carina's colorful embroidery designs. The book also contains more than 300 floral motifs that you can use to embroider designs onto practically anything ... a hankie, a napkin, a dress, a tote ... really anything that you want to embellish and elevate with a touch of embroidery.

For this blog tour, I am hosting a giveaway where one lucky winner will receive a copy of Stitched Blooms, along with ... drumroll please ...


This super cute sewing kit that Carina made for the book!
Sewing Kit

Sewing Kit 2

To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment on this blog post by Sunday, September 29th, 5PM PST, with one of your favorite memories that involves stitching of some sort. A random number generator will select the winner and the winner will be announced by way of an edit on this blog post. Please check back to this post after the 29th to see if you are the winner so that we can coordinate shipping of the book and sewing kit.

Happy stitching. :)

Order your copy of Stitched Blooms here on Amazon.

Visit all others on this Stitched Blooms blog tour here:
 Sept. 16th – Amanda Carestio - www.larkcrafts.com  
Sept. 16th - Shannon Cook - www.luvinthemommyhood.com  
Sept. 17th - Lynne - lilysquilts.blogspot.com  
Sept. 17th - Sara Lawson - www.sewsweetness.com  
Sept. 18th - Alicia Rosello - www.elblogdedmc.com  
Sept. 19th - Jessica Crapo - www.running-w-scissors.com  
Sept. 19th - Diane Gilleland - www.craftypod.com  
Sept. 20th - Mollie Johanson - wildolive.blogspot.com  
Sept. 21st - Aina Crescimbeni - www.casandersen.blogspot.it  
Sept. 21st  - Beth Wilson - www.sewmamasew.com  
Sept. 22nd  - APL Creations - http://aplcreations.com  
Sept. 23rd  - Jo Stafferton & Floresita - www.feelingstitchy.com  
Sept. 23rd - Rachel Hobson - averagejanecrafter.blogspot.com/  
Sept. 24th - John Adams - www.quiltdad.com  
Sept. 24th - Aimee Ray - www.littledeartracks.blogspot.com  
Sept. 25th - Jenny Doh - www.crescendoh.com  
Sept. 26th - Hanna Andersson - www.ihanna.nu  
Sept. 26th - Abby Glassenberg - www.whileshenaps.typepad.com  
Sept. 27th – Susie Stubbs - www.flowerpress.blogspot.com

EDIT: The winner of this Giveaway is Commenter #23: "Gill"
Congratulations, Gill. Please email us at mailbox@crescendoh.com with your snail mail address so we can get the book and sewing kit sent to you! Thanks.


Announcing :: Behind the Faces Workshop with Pam Carriker!

Hi everyone. I'm super excited to announce a brand new workshop in Studio CRESCENDOh with the talented Pam Carriker! It's titled Behind the Faces Art Journal and it will take place Saturday, January 11, 2014.

pam carriker
The class will begin with Pam teaching how to make faces with her face map stencils and then transform them into a journal. Super duper fun.

Enrollment is open right here.

See you in the studio. :)

pam carriker

Announcing My New Book :: Crochet Love

I am thrilled to announce my NEW book! It's titled Crochet Love, and it features 27 sweet and simple zakka-inspired projects. They are small, adorable projects that I had a ball designing and hope you enjoy making!

crochet love by jenny doh

crochet love

crochet love
crochet love


crochet love

Crochet Love officially hits book stands October first but can be pre-ordered right here on amazon.

With gratitude,

PS: Here's a little video that provides a sneak peek of Crochet Love. Enjoy! :)

Recap of Painting Mojo with Tracy Verdugo

So fab, right? This is a group picture that we took after a weekend of painting with the awesome Tracy Verdugo who traveled all the way from Australia to be with us. Thought I'd share some photos to help capture just a few of the many memories we made during the weekend.

studio crescendohHere's how Tracy's teaching canvas looked at the end of the weekend. So fantastic.
tracy verdugoAnd here are a few more shots of students works during our show-and-tell circle time. Everyond did a great job.

studio crescendohWe even had a dude in the group!

tracy verdugo and ben tomlinsonAt times, we worked on the floor ...

studio crescendohAnd other times on easels, on tables, or on the wall ...

tracy verdugoWe used paints, inks, brushes, fingers, skewers ... and other things.

studio crescendohWe worked really really hard and each made works that benefitted from all that Tracy taught, mingled with our individual points of view and styles.

Here's the first piece that I did, which I finished. It was also a thrill and honor to have this piece sold to fellow student, Tina.

jenny dohHere's the second one I did which is ALMOST finished.

jenny dohIt was a joy and privilege to host Tracy. A great teacher and human being. And the best part? She'll be back in Studio CRESCENDOh in March of 2015 to teach again. Thank you, Tracy. Thank you, students. Thank you, life.

tracy verdugo and jenny doh

We Welcome :: Stephenie Hamen

This week, we welcome Guest Curator, Stephenie Hamen.
Read her ART SAVES story here.
Keep up with her curated links all week long here.


Knit Cross Apron

I'm diggin' my new apron I made with a cross motif that I knitted with Crochet Hemp and appliqued. Here's how I did it.


  • With worsted weight natural Crochet Hemp, cast on 4 stitches on size 8 (5 mm) knitting needles.
  • Rows 1–7: Knit
  • Row 8: Knit 4, cast on 4 (8 sts)
  • Row 9: Knit 8, cast on 4 (12 sts)
  • Rows 10–15: Knit
  • Row 16: Bind off 4, knit 8 (8 sts)
  • Row 17: Bind off 4, knit 4 (4 sts)
  • Rows 18–23: Knit
  • Bind off all stitches and bury all ends with a tapestry needle



  • Spray the back of the knit cross with fabric spray adhesive and place onto apron. Use hand-sewing needle and thread to stitch the cross along all edges to the apron.
  • Use black perle cotton to add a running stitch to the top and one side edge. Add small cross stithces near the knit cross.




Announcing My New Stamps :: You Taste Like Birthday

I've been having a whole of of fun with my latest stamp set: You Taste Like Birthday.

Jenny Doh

It's one of my larger sets with 13 of my doodle designs ... made especially for art journaling, cardmaking, and doodling!

Jenny Doh

The rubber stamps have lots of open space in them that can be colored with markers, paints, and pencils.
Jenny Doh

So much fun to be had with these stamps. Want some? You can get them here!

Happy stamping. :)
Jenny Doh

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