I was looking for dinner inspiration on the interwebs the other day and you know how AdSense shows you pictures on the sidebar of things that you may be interested in. They have to rework their algorithm because I get a lot of promotions for power tools!!  I don’t think I’ve ever actively “googled” power tools for this to happen, but nonetheless.

This time however, there was this cool looking project tutorial by Jenny Doan of Missouri Star Quilt Co. I paused dinner plans and went on to watch the tutorial called Easy Cathedral Window – fascinating!  I didn’t really want to make a big project using this new-to-me technique. Pinterest showed me a pincushion version of the Cathedral Window and I bookmarked it. Perfect!

Cathedral Window 2Post dinner, using this tutorial from Riley Blake, I set to work and voila!

Cathedral Window 5

Such a cute little thing waiting to be jabbed with pins!  Oh, that didn’t come out right, did it!!

Cathedral Window 4

When I thought about writing this post, I was curious about why this is called a “Cathedral Window”. So, I dug around and found some interesting stuff.  The first quilt using this block was seen at the Chicago World Fair in 1933.  So, it’s been around for a while!  This block has many other names, Daisy Block, Orange Blossoms, Attic Window, Pain In The Neck (the person who came up with that name that should have stuck with making a pincushion!)

Cathedral Window 3

When the pattern became popular during that era, the colorful fabric that was used for the “windows” was usually lightweight muslin or gauze producing a stained glass effect just like those found in the windows of cathedrals.  The frames were made using a heavier weight fabric and usually solid in contrast.

For my project, I wasn’t really going for a stained glass effect.  I used regular quilting cotton for the whole thing.

Cathedral Window 1

Button on the top.  Done!

** Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish It Up Friday **

Who doesn’t love a pretty bag to store notions and other crafty essentials.  Bonus if it’s got a zipper and a pocket to store treats!

Goody Goody 1

The Goody Goody Binding Kit definitely checks all those boxes.  Vanessa Goertzen of Lella Boutique designed this bag and she has a free tutorial for it on her blog.

Goody Goody 3

Her trick for zipper installation worked like a charm.  Who knew that good old Elmer’s school glue would make installing the zipper such a breeze!  So much better than using pins and having your fabric pieces shift while sewing.

Goody Goody 2

I did have some shifting but nothing that can’t be concealed within the outer seams 😉

My Goody Goody is in progress and I love all the little details and different fabrics that you can use.  The possibilities are endless.

Goody Goody 4

The front is quilted with straight lines, 1/2 inch apart.  Gotta love that walking foot!

Goody Goody 5

Vanessa designed this binding kit to keep all of your quilt binding essentials in one place. However, I think it would work perfectly for a variety of craft related notions… hexie making stuff, knitting bits and bobs, travel organizer!

Goody Goody 6

**Linking up with WIP Wednesday and Let’s Bee Social**

After months of drought, it rained yesterday, finally!  So refreshing!!  We decided that a lunch of fish and chips was in order and where better than to taste fresh, west-coast fare than right at the heart of the fishing village of Steveston!

Steveston 2Steveston might look familiar to those who’ve watched the show Once Upon A Time.  It’s the filming location of the fictitious town, Storybrooke.  I stopped watching the show half way through the first season, so I don’t know if it is still on.  I was pleasantly surprised that other than the familiar buildings and main street of Storybrooke, there isn’t any visible Once Upon A Time paraphernalia which is just how things should be.   This is and always will be historic Steveston Village. Steveston 1

Our lunch was a delicious assortment of halibut, ling cod and Dungeness crab.  Oh my goodness, so amazing!

Steveston 5After lunch, we walked down Fishermans Wharf to the fishing boats selling their catch of the day.  Next time I’ll bring the cooler to take back some of that fresh seafood. Steveston 4We continued to wander in and out of little boutiques and stores that were charming and full of wonderful details. Established in 1880, Steveston has plenty of history and charm. Steveston 3Steveston also houses one of the Interurban Trams simply called “The 12-20”.  This tram dates back to 1912 and is being carefully restored piece by piece. Steveston 7

Sitting on those seats, it was hard not to imagine people taking the tram to work, or young couples looking forward to a night out at the theatre, or families riding the tram to enjoy a day of fun in the city.

Steveston 10The Interurban Tram network operated until 1958.  The 12-20’s route is quite similar to present day Canada Line right from Vancouver Airport into the downtown core. The SkyTrain which is part of Vancouver’s convenient urban transit system, all began with those tram cars. Steveston 11There are other tram cars from the Interurban network, being restored and displayed in other parts of Metro Vancouver and I’d like to visit them all.  I do love stories about this amazing city of ours! Steveston 14

Some of us really had fun hamming it up for the camera with our imaginary cups of tea… take my picture Daddy, take my picture Daddy!!!Steveston 13

Another “take my picture Daddy!”  Definitely a nice way to spend the afternoon by the seaside 🙂

Steveston 12

 

My jar of hexagons overfloweth!

Hexagoning 1

Instead, this has become my current “hexie station”.

Hexagoning 2

I discovered a new way (new to me) to make hexagons… glue basting!  So quick and easy and effective.

Hexagoning 3

I bought the pre-cut paper 1″ hexagons from Paper Pieces LLC and I’ve been putting them to good use with my fabric scraps.

Hexagoning 4

I use the Sewline glue pen for basting.  Easy, no mess and the glue is blue, so I can see where (and how much) I’m spreading it.

If my scraps are too small to go around the hexagon templates, they get stored away in my “ticker tape box”.  When I’ve accumulated enough bits, I’ll make another ticker tape mini.

Hexagoning 5

This week I’ve been listening to The Nightingale on audiobook and slowly adding to my hexie station… while indulging in summer treats 🙂

Summer Spoils 1

I hope you’ve been enjoying the slower pace of summer!

**Linking up with WIP Wednesday and Let’s Bee Social**

The house I grew up in was in Bangalore, India.  One of those old homes that were built during the British Raj with countless quirks and interesting bits.  As a child, I didn’t really stop to think about any of the curious details of that old house.  I took all the antiquities and weird nooks and crannies for granted and loved it all.

Home 1

The hand-painted tiles in our living room, the trellis on the front porch, the mismatched floors, the little courtyard out back, the secret alcove, the garden brimming with fruit trees – mangoes, guavas, coconut, custard apple – deliciousness!  Jasmine and roses, so many roses.  Home.

Home 2

When I was a teenager, my parents decided to modernize and make a more practical use of the space.  I was thrilled as any teenager would be!  So, they razed it to the ground and rebuilt that house.  No trellis, no quirks, no secret alcove.  Sleek and shiny.

Home 3

Then we moved.  I loved our new, new house too.  But, that childhood home with it’s cool, dark hiding places and secret doors will always have a extra special place in my heart.

Home 4

With my own little family, we’ve moved through a few cities and continents over the years.  So we’ve had to do a bit a whole lot of packing and unpacking!  One thing is always steadfast, home is made by those you share it with.  Home and family are just plain synonymous.

Home 5

Home will always be where the heart is.

This “home” block is going to the Peace Comforters of Evergreen, Colorado.  An organization that helps bring comfort to victims of crime and trauma.  #forkeepspledge

It’s been a quiet couple weeks.  Vineet is out of town.  He’s in India actually for a family wedding and as you may have heard, Indian weddings are one long, loud, crazy, colorful party.  It’s very true!!  Prithvi is at Aviation Camp on Vancouver Island.  So, it’s just us girls at home.  At first, I was happy with all this quiet.  But then that got old really quickly.  I’ve cooked twice since the guys left and as much as cooking is my least favorite activity, I’ve actually missed it!  All the same, it’s been so sweet to spend time with my Kiki-bee ♡

Color Pink 2

Back to my musings…

My morning ritual has always been to catch up on emails with coffee in hand.  Today, I decided to actually sit down and enjoy that first cup in the backyard.

Color Pink 3

That’s when I noticed that everything blooming right now is pink, or shades of.

Color Pink 4

Coffee forgotten, I grabbed my camera and got down to clickclickclick.

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Apparently, this summer is brought to you by the color pink.

Color Pink 1

Look at the teeny blue stamens.  Nature just can’t be beat!

Color Pink 5

I didn’t plan this particular color bonanza when I prepped my containers in the spring.  But everything is pink

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and more pink

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Then there’s this rebel 🙂

Color Pink 7

I’m blogging on a Saturday!  That’s a first for me 😉 I’ll be back with a crafty update on Monday.   Have a great weekend folks! 

Poor. Neglected. Blog!!!

I hope everyone is having a great summer!  We’re in the middle of a heat wave which us west-coast-wimps don’t handle too well.  But you aren’t here to talk about the weather.  Moving on!

For Keeps 1

I don’t know if you have heard about the “For Keeps” campaign founded by Amy Gibson, a talented quilt designer, author and all-round wonderful person.  While this movement focusses on sewing and quilting, I think that it applies to any creative process.  Being intentional and mindful of what we are making with our hands, helps us nurture the creative process which culminates in a finished product that is going to be used and loved and enjoyed and shared.

For Keeps 3

When I began this blog oh so many years ago, this space was a way for me to have placeholders for all the various projects I was working on.  I added a smattering of life  and everyday stuff, but this blog was mainly a creative journal.

For Keeps 2

I have to admit that most of my crafty endeavors have been swayed by the pursuit of “ooh shiny”.  It was only a couple years ago that I stepped back from acquiring more stash than I can knit or sew within this lifetime.  (Yes, I still continue to purchase yarn and fabric – I don’t think I can ever put a complete full stop to that!)  However, my purchases have become more intentional and focussed.  More and more, I am beginning to think about the end product and if it will actually get used before I commit to bringing that stash home with me.

For Keeps 4

In the spring, I donated a bunch of handknit items to a local women’s shelter.  I am ashamed to admit that most of these I wore only the one time when I took pictures to write up a blog post!  I do however know that each item was created from the heart and I hope that the person who uses it will find some comfort from that in the midst of their often intolerable circumstances.

It was perfect timing when I read about Amy’s campaign while I was putting this donation bag together.  That was when I decided that from here on in, I will be more mindful in making things that I know will be used and loved. Projects that will bring joy to me and my family, benefit my community and those in need.

I’m taking the “For Keeps Pledge”!

For Keeps Pledge=

Do you have handmade items in your closet that you’ve never used?

**Fabrics are “Up Parasol” by Heather Bailey and “Violette” by Amy Butler and there is print in there from Amy Butler’s older lines.  I think all of these play nicely together!**

After I finished my Stripe Study Shawl (still waiting on the sidelines to be blocked, ends woven in, photographed), I was hankering for a smaller project.  I’ve been hoarding this skein of sock yarn from Sweet Fiber Yarns and it was time to just knit something with it already!

Cadence 2

This spring-worthy colorway called Grapefruit had to become socks with a lace pattern.  I picked Cadence Socks, a free pattern from VeryBusyMonkey (Ravelry link).  Turned out to be the perfect pairing of colorway + pattern.

Cadence 3

Considering that there are lace charts, I thought that this would be a project that I could knit slowly until summer rolls along.  Wrong!  These socks were finished in under a month, with no knitalong deadlines or anything… a first for me especially with socks!!

Cadence 4

I absolutely adore how these turned out and the color is just incredible!  The yarn has cashmere in it.  Now, that’s just mmm mmm!

Cadence 5

The lace pattern isn’t complicated at all.  The only thing you have to be mindful of when you are knitting the second sock is that the stitches are distributed differently to produce a mirrored pair.

Cadence 7

This pattern is well written and the finished project is so worth it.  I made no modifications, just enjoyed creating these 🙂

Cadence 6

Cadence (Ravelry notes)
Pattern: Cadence Socks by Verybusymonkey
Yarn: Cashmerino Sock by Sweet Fiber Yarns in “Grapefruit”
Needles: Size US 1.5 / 2.5 mm

Look! I’m knitting a sock!!

Cadence 1

Confession :: this post isn’t about knitting but a post without a picture is, you know, meh!

I just finished a book and the words continue to linger with me.  Does this happen to you sometimes when you read something powerful, or watch a movie that’s especially moving?

The Pearl That Broke It’s Shell by Nadia Hashimi is the book that I just finished and it was such a tender story with a powerful message.

At first, I picked the audiobook version to listen to and I wish I had switched to the actual book with pages earlier on because the narrator, while very good, sounded more Middle Eastern than Afghani.  However, this didn’t spoil the storyline and the way the characters were developed through this fascinating book.  I just couldn’t put it down!

Crisscrossing in time, The Pearl That Broke Its Shell interweaves the stories of two remarkable women who are separated by a century but share the same courage and dreams…

Ultimately, I wrote this story to share the experience of Afghan women in a fictional work that is made up of a thousand truths.

 

– Nadia Hashimi

If you’re looking for a great read, I highly recommend this book!

I used to read voraciously until the crafting bug sort of took over.  I missed reading but then, I discovered audiobooks! Craft and listen?  At the same time??  The ultimate match!  Some books however, are best read… crinkly pages and all!

I’ve challenged myself to read more this year (scroll down the right sidebar for my 2015 Goodreads challenge).

Are you a bookworm too?  I’d love to hear your recommendations.

While I don’t have the luxury of time set aside to craft each day, I am grateful for the slivers of creative time I do manage to squeeze in.  A few moments to work on a knitting row.  Scratch that, who am I kidding!  More often than not it’s just a few stitches moved from one needle to the other!  Or sometimes, chain piecing a few squares together at the sewing machine.

Shortcake 2

All these moments add up and yesterday, I finally cast off on a long term project, my Stripe Study Shawl!  Cue Hallelujah chorus!!

Stripe Study Done

A few days before that, I finished all the “Block 1” blocks for my Shortcake Quilt 🙂

Shortcake 1

These crafty moments do make a difference!

There was some other sewing too.  I attended my first ever Quilt Guild meeting last month at the Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild and what a hoot that was!  I had such a blast that I went again to this month’s meeting along with blocks for the evening’s block lotto :: Wonky Hashtags.

Wonky Hashtags

These were fun to make and to share!

Next up are the “Block 2” blocks for my quilt and my Five By Five Cowl.

Shortcake 3

Being creative everyday, even if it’s just slow and steady ♡

** Linking up :: WIP Wednesday and Let’s Bee Social **