• Wrapping paper, newspaper, alpaca yarn and fabric from a second hand store

    Wrapping paper, newspaper, alpaca yarn and fabric from a second hand store

    Okay, it has been a long time since our last post…sorry ’bout that. We’ve been discussing the focus of Cupernickel and have decided to make a few changes.

    First, we’re focusing on weaving as the main technique behind our products. It has a long tradition in the indigenous cultures that reside both in the north and south of Chile.

    Second, this change has also prompted a modification of Cupernickel’s image. That’s been the hardest part. Are we vintage-y, folk-y, craft-y? We’re not sure yet, but I think every step we take is bringing us closer to what Cupernickel really is.

    Third, we’ve been designing and testing out these designs like mad. Weave, think, unweave, reweave, think, take-a-picture-so-you-don’t-forget-cuz-it-might-be-a-good-idea, start another piece. It’s ca-razy! But, that’s the life of the self-employed crafter.

    The picture is one of our “crazy weaves”…just one more step in the creative process. :)

    -P

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  • chileanflag

    Chilean Flag

    September is a cool month in Chile. It means that winter is almost gone and spring is around the corner. It also means a month of all things Chilean. The 18th and 19th are national holidays that correspond to Chile’s Independence Day and the Day of the Armed Forces, respectively.

    The celebration begins early. From the 1st, flags start going up everywhere. Schools have a week of Chilean traditions. And everyone prepares themselves to gorge on barbecue (known as asado) and traditional food, like pebre and empanadas.

    This year we’ll be going to a typical “ramada” to take some pics and eat, of course. A ramada is a temporary locale that serves asado, anticuchos (shish kebabs), empanadas and chicha (local alcoholic beverage made with fermented apples or grapes. It’s really sweet and quite tasty) as well as other non-traditional foods.

    The official ramadas open tomorrow and will definitely last until Sunday. Next weekend, known as “Dieciocho Chico” they will probably be open, too, offering the last of their local cuisine until next year.

    We’ll be posting new pics and info as soon as possible.

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  • 08 Sep 2009 /  Handmade Supplies No Comments

    I’m no professional photographer so getting the right picture for our products is a real challenge. We’ve seen some really nice pictures on Etsy and other sites and we’ve also seen some seriously poor images. So we had to learn a little about how to set up and light a product shot.

    Fortunately, I found a video tutorial about how to do just that. It was actually quite thorough, so now I’m excited about starting. But as always, I have to take several steps before I’m ready to snap the shutter.

    Right now, I’m in the process of making a small, white box to serve as the backdrop of our products. I still have to paint the inside and make a diffusor so no photos yet. But, I’ll be getting a picture of the box and products by the beginning of next week. Wish me luck.

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  • 03 Sep 2009 /  Handmade Clothing No Comments

    A while back we blogged about our first made to order garment. Well, here’s the final product and the happy customer.

    Daniela and her Poncho in Peru

    Daniela and her Poncho in Peru

    I’m glad you liked it, Dani. :)

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  • 07 Aug 2009 /  Chilean Food No Comments
    Whipping up the mayonnaise

    Whipping up the mayonnaise

    In the States we grew up eating my mom’s homemade mayonnaise. A lot of people freak out because it’s made with raw egg yolks and loads of oil…and it’s yellow. But, it is truly a traditional condiment in Chile.

    When we were kids my mom would banish us from the kitchen while she was making it, because she said it would curdle if anyone watched her whip it up. I always thought that was such a old wife’s tale, but it would always curdle.

    I am very American when it comes to following recipes, but with this one I just go with the flow. So here are some guidelines if you want to make your own mayonnaise.

    You’ll need:

    Egg yolks. 3-4 make about 3/4 to 1 cup of mayonnaise

    Vegetable oil. If you’re feeling adventurous, use olive oil (yummy)

    Lemon juice

    Salt

    Garlic clove (optional)

    Place the egg yolks in a bowl and add a pinch of salt. Start beating until the yolks start going a pale yellow color. Then, start adding the oil a little at a time. Don’t rush this part, because the mayonnaise will curdle if you put too much oil in at once.

    The amount of oil you will need depends on the amount and size of the yolks. A good indicator is the consistency of the mayonnaise. If it’s runny like cake batter, you still need more oil. When it starts getting stiff, you’re almost done (see first picture). Keep adding a few drops at a time. When it takes longer for the mayonnaise to absorb the oil, you can stop.

    Finished mayo

    Finished mayo

    Add a good squeeze of lemon juice…usually, half a lemon will do. If you like garlic, cut a clove in quarters but not all the way through and place in the mayonnaise. Let it set in the refrigerator for about an hour and serve.

    It’s really good! If you have any questions, just let us know.

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