Make This: This and that from the world of craft
Sep 29, 2013 | 4002 views |  0 comments | 35 35 recommendations | email to a friend | print

In my sewing room I have a teacup from a set that I inherited from my grandmother, who had several tea sets because her mother had been a switchboard operator at Syracuse China from 1929 to 1965.

In this teacup are my craft room odds and ends — a coil of silver jewelry wire, a couple butterfly clamps and a small pendant of a crossed pick ax and shovel, to name a few.

This week’s column is an assortment of odds and ends too — the Sewing & Quilt Expo in Birmingham, a new market for vendors in town and a recipe for Pumpkin Spice Latte.

DIY weekend in Birmingham

The Original Sewing & Quilt Expo is coming to the Cahaba Grand Conference Center in Birmingham Oct. 10-12. General admission will get visitors in to see stage presentations, how-to demonstrations, trunk shows and fashion shows, as well as the Made It Myself social and tons of shopping.

For an additional charge, you can sign up to attend your choice of nearly 70 classes, which range from quilting, sewing animals, making bags and sewing tips for different types of fabric — knits, silks, etc.

General admission is $8 online (plus $3 processing fee) or $10 at the door. Classes can be purchased for $19 per session, and value packages — ranging from $95 for five classes to $228 for 15 classes — are also available. Other perks are included in the packages as well. Group discounts are available for parties of 30 or more. Visit for more information.

New pick for local pickers

Calhoun Pickers, an antique mall and flea market set to open in the former Kitchin’s building off Alabama 202 in Anniston, is looking for vendors to rent booths. The market is accepting vendors of antiques, furniture, unique crafts, jewelry, art and the like. Booths are $1.50 per square booth, so an 8-by-10-foot booth would be $120 a month.

Hours will be Monday-Saturday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sunday from 1-5 p.m. Calhoun Pickers plans to be open by Nov. 1, with vendors moving in sometime in mid-October. For more information, including a list of items forbidden to sell, email or call 334-399-3869.

Enjoy autumn a latte

My Pinterest feed is filled with pumpkin recipes of all sorts, so I indulged in a few this week, including the copycat Starbucks Pumpkin Spice latte. While I’ve never had the original — I’m pretty frugal when it comes to coffee, i.e. Folgers and Maxwell House — this copycat was delicious.

2 cups half and half, whole milk reduced fat or skim milk
2 tablespoons canned pumpkin purée
1-2 tablespoons sugar or sugar substitute
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
2 tablespoons high-quality vanilla extract
1-4 shots very strong coffee

Brew very strong coffee, or some espresso. I just doubled the amount of grinds of my Maxwell House. While it's brewing, in a small saucepan combine half and half, pumpkin purée, sugar and pie spice, whisking gently over medium heat until well blended and very hot, but not boiling.
Remove the mixture from heat and add 2 tablespoons of vanilla extract.
Carefully pour the hot mix into a blender or use a milk frother or immersion stick and blend until frothy. Pour about a cup of the frothy pumpkin milk mixture into your favorite latte mug and add coffee to the top. Dust with a touch of pumpkin pie spice for a little kick (I skipped this completely and just poured the hot milk into a mug half filled with the strong coffee. That’s how much of a coffee snob I am not).

The website where I got the recipe,, also has a tasty-looking gluten-free pumpkin banana bread recipe that would be great for the leftover pumpkin.

If you have a pumpkin recipe of your own you’d like to share in an upcoming Recipe Swap in the Food section, send it to Deirdre Long at

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