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Monday, February 21, 2011

Simple Yet Sophisticated Fillet Mignon

My mother and I love to cook...
But, like in everything, we approach it with our own unique style. Jeanine strictly follows recipe, enjoying the pleasure of nurturing her family and friends.  Jenn, on the other hand, loosely follows recipes, loving to mix up the flavors and enjoying the calm that comes from stirring a slowly simmering sauce.  Most of the recipes I'll share here will have a Jeanine 'Traditional' version and a Jenn 'Creative' version.  (Isn't our company name just perfect for us?)  That way you can choose the recipe that works best for you. They will both be yummy, though in my biased opinion most of the Jenn recipes are yummier. ;)

However, for the first Creative Tradition recipe it's a Jenn Original recipe!  It's what I made for my husband and I for Valentine's Day this year.  I took a picture of it to share with my friends on Facebook then suddenly I was sharing the recipe in the comments. So really this recipe is what led to me finally getting around to starting our blog. So let's get to the good stuff...

Simple Yet Sophisticated Fillet Mignon
Doesn't this meal look so sophisticated and yummy?  Can you believe it only takes about 30 minutes?


2 fillet mignons
1 bag of baby carrots with caps
1 bag of frozen Ore-Ida Steam-N-Mash Russet Potatoes

Friday, February 18, 2011

The Mother-Daughter Team

Jeanine Bass: Mother, Grandmother, and Seamstress

Jeanine has been sewing and crafting for most of her life. As they grew from babies to teenagers she sewed clothes for her children. Her most favorite items are the quilts she makes for her childen to celebrate important milestones including births and weddings. Jeanine made a quilt from scraps of the dresses she had made for Jennifer's first year of school.  Jenn still has it and treasures it.

She has made countless home decorations including curtains, table clothes, and placemats. Every month she redecorates the house with seasonal quilts, pillows, table clothes, and knic-knacks.

Through the years she has made countless children's clothes, PJs, costumes, bridesmaid dresses, and even her own wedding dress!

Jennifer Bass Colucci: Daughter, Newlywed, and Creative Designer

Jenn is Jeanine's eldest and most favorite ;) daughter.  Family always tells me stories of when I was 1 or 2 and already coloring in the lines. A lot of my fondest childhood memories are of creative things I like to do today including crafting, cooking, and gardening.

I create a lot of handmade items include clothes, aprons, costumes, doll clothes, quilts, baby accessories, and home decor.  My favorite projects are those with a story or a meaning. The best of which is quilt I made for my husband for our first-date anniversary called Hand-holding Walk On The Beach.  I knew he was the one when he grabbed my hand while walking at Dana Point Harbor and his most favorite romantic moment was a moonlight walk on the beach in San Diego. Every time I see the quilt I remember those moments.

My other creative pursuits include fractal artwork, photography, interior design, landscape architecture, and culinary delights.  You can see my other artwork at www.jennbass.com.

Creative Tradition: The Mother-Daughter Team
Jeanine is great at executing projects.  Give her a pattern, instructions or recipe and she'll follow it to the letter.  Give Jenn the same pattern, instructions or recipe and she'll get the gist of things and start making changes.

Jenn is great at designing projects.  Give her an idea, a photo, a quote, a piece of fabric and she'll make you whatever you asked for as well as some extra things you never thought of. Give Jeanine the same idea or photo and she'll find a pattern.

That's what makes our team so great.  When I'm up in the clouds dreaming of all the possibilities my mother is there to ground us.  And when my mom gets stuck with a problem, I'm there to think a way around it. She makes it work, I make it pretty.  I sell it, she records it.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

How It All Started

In fall of 2009 I had a few free months between day jobs. I had quit my job as a Business Analyst for a direct sales company because I wasn't reaching my creative potential.  During that time I reawakened my love for sewing.  I went through my mother's stash of fabric and made Christmas aprons for friends and families.  I also made a baby gift set including quilt, nursing pillow, and stuffed dog for my sister's yet-to-be-born son.  I had so much fun I thought... why not sell these online? If nothing else it would feed my own fabric stash so I could make more items.  I started a Etsy shop as Jenn Bass and posted my aprons for sale.

Several months later, after a new day job and got engaged, I realized all my wonderful branding for Jenn Bass would need to change with my married name.  During a lull in my wedding planning I was invited to a start-up craft fair.  I thought: "This was my big break!  But... I need new branding!"   I also knew I wanted to bring my mother, Jeanine, along with me on this adventure.

Within days we were working on expanding our inventory, preparing our booth space, working on marketing materials, making a web site and moving the Jenn Bass Etsy store to our new Creative Tradition store.  It was so exciting! Unfortunately the craft fair was a disappointment for us.  We had 2 sales, the first of which was my fiance who wanted to support me and provide us a test of our invoice and packaging process.

We kept going with our online store and within a few more days we had our first sale!  It was one of the historic colonial Barbie dress sets my mother and I had made years and years ago.  They were so beautiful but they never sold at the holiday boutiques we went to. Now, the Barbie dresses are our number one seller!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

It's About Time...

For the past 11 years my day job has been in Web Design, Development, Graphic Design and Marketing. I've built web sites, e-commerce stores, managed mass emails and social media and anything else you could think of on the Internet... but never a blog. Its about time that I started one.

So here it is, the Creative Tradition Blog!

Creative Tradition is a family run online boutique of handmade treasures. Our family has always celebrated life's big and little moments with handmade quilts, clothes, keepsakes, and recipes. Now we'd like to share these treasures and their stories with you and your family.

If you are interested in Creative Tradition, follow this blog, become a fan or visit our online store.