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Upcycle summer stitching

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

I've in love with my new backyard. The summer here in Duncan, B.C. is lovely, ocean breezes ripple across the back deck with refreshing scents from the many flowers in bloom right now. The heat wave we had a few weeks ago, while a wee bit of a shock has gone and more normal temperatures have returned say the locals.

1. Its official, I love thrifting, mixing and blending in my clothes to fit my kinda crazy girl personality. And while this is not news to anyone who knows me, it is a new way of looking at what I can do with all my crazy scraps and snippets so small, its a wonder I waste the thread on them.

This winter scarf stitched in my own version of Boro Stitching is a fun way to use up all sorts of scraps.

Then came two blankets tuned up with more scraps and odd orphan blocks hand stitched onto two halves of one moving blanket, which were donated to the Muddy Boot Prints outdoor children's learning program in Vancouver.

Thrifting and stitching are my middle names. This beautiful denim wedding quilt made for a rustic couple on their wedding day in Alberta was a fun project for sure.

Then the purple shirt upcycle began and well quite frankly I've been having a lot of fun with that. This shirt was the true start of upcycling for me and I've not looked back until today writing a long catch up for all you dedicated readers.

This was one t-shirt and one t-shirt skirt blended in one upcycle fashion. I get a lot of compliments from this little number, it just long enough to go without pants or shorts and not too long for wearing with jeans too.

This pink t-shirt was stained and really not anything to look at until this total fun upcycle fashion craze hit my sewing mind.


2. Living in the largest population I've ever lived in and this means events, resturants and places where I feel happy with a sense of belonging more everyday. You know how it goes. Moving is just a tonne of work,then the boxes have to find new homes and it all takes time. 

The famous Empress Hotel in downtown Victoria is a must to see and visiting Victoria, and the greater Vancouver Island is highly recommended. 

And USD to CAD is a great exchange, so no excuses, come and visit us in Canada.

This handmade wicker chair has my name on it and is sturdy and comfortable. Courtesy of Duncan Farmer's Market.

I purchased a lovely hand woven wool wrap from this gentleman and for only $150.

4. People are finding me, even in Duncan and even after I've moved, moved and moved again and from far away places like Toronto and Montreal. 

I have some commission work to do, quilts to finish and much to share in the coming months. 1st up is another wedding quilt, reversible and modern. I will share more on that in coming year. And with all sorts of wonderful art galleries to choose from, I'm working on a special exhibit that I'll be sharing more on that too.

I love to visit with the Cowichian Heritage Quilters and missed last weekend one quilt show up in Parksville that I'll have to wait for another two years before its held again. I came down with bronchitis and was coughing so bad, I couldn't hold down any type of conversation. But alas, in Duncan, 39 Days of Music is just around the corner.

So see you soon with more on how my 1st summer is going in our new home of Duncan, B.C.

Thrifting Upcycled Clothing

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

When I completely opened my mind to the possibilities of upcycling I was instantly in love. I have many items that once they were washed, they became too small.

Just having fun is where it is at.

 This started out as a t-shirt that was a a special t-shirt. You  know the one I like to wear working in the back yard or going camping. It had a statement on the front that had become stained from years of wear. And upcycling saved it from disposal.

I added all sorts of lace, bits and pieces of new cotton and Voila!

Thanks for popping in and reading what I'm up to these days. I am in springtime full on, with higher than normal hot days for this time of year. Leave me a comment and let me know if you'd like to read more about my journey of upcycling?

Happy Quilting, sewing, stitching etc!

Duncan Farmers Market- Robert Cirens Art Jewelry & More

Thursday, April 26, 2018

In the early hours of any Saturday, Duncan Farmers Market vendors begin their Saturday task of setting up booths filled with handmade or handgrown lovelies. Artisan banners, flags even small stand up signs start to fill out the rush of setting up, readying the day for the drove's of locals and tourists alike.

It was raining steady, just steady enough that your back became cool when you stopped working, but soon, the melodic music begins in the distance, while the aroma of coffee and bread fill the air. The tarps and shelters begin to take shape and laughter can be heard. Its a happy place in time. I savour these moments of a Farmer's Market that has been a growing concern steady and is now one of the largest Farmer's Market according to their online information.

Quite frankly its magical, inviting and I'm thrilled to be part of it. I'm looking after the very popular booth of Robert Cirens Art To Wear jewelry, which are fabulous earring and pendants. If you haven't seen his work, I welcome you to his online presence. His lovely wife the Business Manager of their enterprise is such a fun person to hang around with and we laughed many times enjoying the popularity of his work. Stephanie Cirens has a well set out plan of operations and I'm learning!

Across from our booth is a local farmer/butcher, veggie grower and a winery! Dogs, children, old and young alike don't mind the rain. Between chatter, greetings and dogs getting to know each other you can hear the conversations pass by revelling when the rain stops and the sun immediately brightens the crowd.

As you can tell, when I'm working at the market, I'm not upcycling but totally enjoying the immersion into Duncan culture with each day I live here.

Next Market is April 28th 9 to 2 pm, come in your pj's or your jeans!

CQ Winner & The Duncan Farmers Market

Thursday, April 19, 2018


Easter is over and it was lovely to visit, eat and share our backyard with family and friends! 

But I must admit, the gardening to be done has taken over my life, a wee bit. Its always a push in the spring time to get ready for planting. I had sort of forgotten about how fast weeds invade as soon as the spring warmth returned to the soil. 

Without much in the way of freezing temperatures over the winter, I dreamed of the brocolli , kale, and tomatoes to  be grown in my new garden space, but its been kinda soggy here this spring I'd say!

Our days have mostly been cloudy with just a rare glimpse or two of sunny skies. And its not so very different from the spring time in the Bulkley Valley of Northern B.C. minus snowy days of rough driving conditions and shoveling snow for sometimes 4-5 months. 

And its quite lovely to be able to experience walking without ice. But quite frankly, we've lost the access to the backroads and wild parts of the forest. In most parts of our beautiful province, we are able to access crown land via forestry roads and respectfully co-exist with forest company logging developments.

This beautiful lynx is one example of public access to the back country. I most likely would not have seen this wild creature so readily if gates were on all the back country roads.

But enough of all that weather reporting and complaints of privately owned large forested areas of the lower Vancouver Island. 

We had hands to help and we picked a winner from the hat of all the entries into my Crazy Quilting Giveaway. April 1st was the end of the giveaway. 

It was most funny to ask a friend to pull a name out of a hat. She blinked and dutifully pulled out a name. Uncrumpled the paper and spoke "Mumbird3, who is that?"

Drum roll as Mary Anne would say and yes, we have a winner for my little crazy quilting fabric kit give away.

MUMBIRD3 is the winner. I apologize for this late post on this winner. Unforutunately, mumbird3, has no contact details on her profile. So Ms. Mumbird3, this purple package of lovelies for crazy quilting is waiting for you to contact me and claim your prize. 

email me at carli the quilter at gmail dot com

I've been playing around with postcards! One which has been bundled into the giveaway!

And onto other interesting things happening in my life, as it is when you open up your life to new adventures that adventures do come. I've spoken before of the beautiful earrings made by our friends Robert Cirens and his lovely wife Stephanie.

Image result for robert cirens art to wear

They are off on a trip and asked me to look after the popular booth Art To Wear Handmade jewelry at the Duncan Farmer's Market. I'm really looking forward to it and a little bit butterflies in my tummy too.

Image result for robert cirens art to wear

Duncan Farmers Market is such a hoot of a good time. To hang out and yack with people all day, well that is one job description I can get into!

Near our booth, last Saturday,  a local musician called Homeless Harold, sung away the entire time between 9-2 pm. And he was really good, had the just the right songs that many of us know and enjoy.

Homeless Harold has a lovely introduction on YouTube if you are interested.

The Cherry trees are blooming all over Duncan and its such a sight to see a whole street full of pink blossoms.

My purple plaid shirt dress is finally coming to an end and I'll be able to wear it for this coming Saturday!

I fell in love with this twig wreath.

And I've begun upcycling a favorite pink t-shirt is becoming a new fashion! I'm having some awesome fun!

You can kinda see where I'm going with this t-shirt upcycle. Sorry, these photos are so dark!

This was my garden patch with just a low level of weeds coming on back in March 17, 2018 and I've made a stab at it and its been raining so much that I just couldn't get out there. And since then the green ground cover is so bad, I went out last night before dark in a rare no rain moment to pick off the dandelion head before the start spreading over the rest of the garden.

But Johanna Wagstaffe, CBC Senior Meterologist says we have sun on the way. 
So we can hope that doesn't change and wishing you all a great sunny day wherever you are.
Made With Love By The Dutch Lady Designs