Creative Thoughts

Creative Thoughts

Monday, 31 December 2012

Happy New Year !

We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called "Opportunity" and its first chapter is New Year's Day.
Edith Lovejoy Pierce

Then sing, young hearts that are full of cheer,
With never a thought of sorrow;
The old goes out, but the glad young year
Comes merrily in tomorrow.
Emily Miller

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Martha's Quilling and waste Creations

This month's guest on my blog is my younger sister, Martha.  She is a teacher and the head of a kindergarten school in Mumbai.

Here are her creations in quilling and using waste paper:

Another picture of her at her school.

Monday, 24 December 2012

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Orchids & Butterfly

This was made for a friend who wanted to give someone a handmade gift.  She left the choice of design to me and had it framed later.  The orchids and butterfly were taken separately from Chantal's free stained glass patterns.  The choice of colours is mine.  It's a pity the glitter does not show in the picture.  When the paint was still wet, I sprinkled matching glitter on the deep purple orchid petals.  Actually it was the first time I attempted glitter on glass paint and the result was rewarding.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012


A few bookmarks I made recently.

 glitter on double sided tape and gems

 closeup of the gem lady

 drawing with gold tip pen and emerald gems

in a different light...

and the ones below in my favourite colour

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Simone's birthday

Today is our daughter's birthday.  I made this card and bookmark for her to enclose with the Tailoring Book we sent her as a gift.  Simone lives in the UK.  A few months ago she expressed a wish to learn tailoring.  As a little girl, she would often sit at one end of my sewing machine - the kind that has a wooden extension you can pull up for laying out fabric to cut.  I was delighted to know she wanted my old notes and I made her a Tailoring Journal.  At that time, my blog did not exist and I just did not think to take a photo of the journal.  Now I wish I had.

The paper and label are from Papermania UK.  I sketched the perfume bottle
and wrote out the Coco Chanel quote.

the inside of the card - image also from Papermania

Simone is beautiful and classy.  She loves to dress and was always good at designing clothes even when she was very young.  This is a recent photo of her.

Happy Birthday Simone !

Friday, 14 December 2012

Christmas Window Cards

I am happy to say we get lovely handmade paper here in Mumbai.  The ones I've used below look and even feel like fabric.  They are also easy to craft with.

Here are three "Christmas Window" cards I made using the handmade paper for curtains.
Green rickrack and red lace ribbon add a festive touch.

I drew and painted the snow scene.

This one and the other below are old Christmas pics I'd kept aside 
only because they are so pretty to look at.

I have this obsession with windows (and doors with creepers over the top).

Some of my old cards

These are not-so-good pics of some cards I made in the past (and thought to take photos).

Two First Holy Communion cards for a boy and a girl.

Origami shirt birthday card

 Satin, lace and glitter for a dear old friend who loves the colour pink

Wanted this to be "rich" as it was for a friend who is a crafter.

and this one for Shawn's friend's wife.  The couple now have a baby boy.

Christmas Tags Gift Pack

Hi everybody,

I'm sure most of you are busy preparing for Christmas and having a fun time doing it.  It's my favourite time of year.  However, "winter" seems to be playing truant in our corner of the globe.  It's still very warm and sunny.  If you had hot sunshine the year round like we do, you would, believe me, long for some chill in the air.  It goes with the Christmas decorations in the shop windows and the artificial Christmas trees, poinsettias and holly piled up at Crawford Market, Mumbai.  

I've been away for quite some time.  First a short holiday to Goa and immediately on my return the computer crashed.  Our techie could not make it to our place for a week so it's only just been fixed.  It was a restful holiday but I'm glad to be back, doing what I like best.  

I am a hoarder and these tags were made from bits of leftover cardstock.  Hoarding includes a lot of pictures cut out from old greeting cards and cookie boxes. I should be crowned Queen of Scrap.

Tag Gift packs

Why not gift tags to people you know who would make good use of them ?

Long ago, I found this tutorial on the net.  I wish I could remember the site so I could give credit where it is due.  This tag gift pack holds 6 tags.

It's made from metalic cardstock as I find this strong and easy to work with.  I measured 3 1/2" from top of cardstock and made a crease.  Folded to form flap and used a corner rounder punch to soften the flap ends.
A little below the crease, I adhered a polythene bag to the cardstock with double sided tape.  Then using my one-hole-punch, I punched 2 holes into the cardstock - one on each side of the polythene bag about 11/2" below the crease of the "flap".  Threaded a ribbon (you can use fancy cord) through these holes so the ends come up the front, over the folded flap, to form a knot or bow.  Decorate flap as you desire.
Strip off the protective tape off the polythene bag top.  Fill bag with your handmade tags and adhere it closed. Fold decorated flap over and tie the ribbon to secure it. Your gift tag pack is ready.

Last Christmas I made 50 tags all at one go and my friend, Niloufer, offered to sell them for me.  She makes Christmas theme crochet gifts and when she went out to deliver her goods, she took my tags along.  To my surprise, all of them were sold.

Thanks Niloufer, for all the times you've helped me sell my other craft work as well.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Beef or Lamb Curry

My late Mum's most popular dish.
Meat Curry (Beef/lamb)
Half kilo meat - Cut into bite size pieces.
2 medium red onions chopped very fine
2 or 3 tablespoons red or white vinegar
Salt and sugar to taste.
Grind to paste:
9 Kashmiri Chillies – soaked in hot water & deseeded
1/4 tsp cummin seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
5 cloves
4 or 5 small sticks of cinnamon (each about 1" long)
1 teaspoon ginger-garlic paste
1/2 teaspoon peppercorns
Fry the onions in a good amount of oil.   I use sunflower oil. When the onions have browned, add the ground masala (spice mix) and fry for a minute.  It will give off a wonderful aroma. Add the meat, vinegar, pinch of sugar, salt and enough water to make a gravy.  Mix well and cook till meat is tender. 
Garnish with coriander leaves.
For more gravy add 2 tablespoons tomato puree after frying the onion. Be sure to add 2 or 3 extra chillies to the spice mix.
Potatoes and carrots go well with this dish.  If you love potatoes like me, peel and quarter 2 large potatoes and add to the meat when it is half cooked.  Same with the carrots. 
As we all know, meat dishes cooked on low flame taste best.  However beef or lamb tends to be tougher where I live hence it takes about an hour of slow cooking. So if you are using a pressure cooker (like we do in India to save on fuel and time) bring the cooker to full pressure and then cook on low flame for 20 or 25 mns.  Don't add the potatoes or carrots to the cooker as they will get overcooked.
Note: I like to marinate the meat in a little vinegar, salt and turmeric powder.  I keep this in the fridge overnight or at least for 4 hours.  It tastes a lot better.  If you're doing this, then ofcourse the vinegar you add later will be less than mentioned in the list of ingredients.  Taste the cooked gravy before adding more salt. 

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Kellogg Cares Day 2012

Kellogg Alumni Club of Chicago 

On 13th Oct. Kellogg Alumni and full-time students (KWEST Iceland) cooked up a great lunch for families and kids at Ronald McDonald House Chicago! 

"Sous Chef" de Cuisine, Shawn Misquitta !

 Shawn (second from left) with Kellogg Alumni of 2009