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January 2010 - Page 2 of 11 - Shivaya Naturals — Page 2

January 2010

A New Favorite

January 28, 2010


I have been spending a lot of time in my sewing room lately. I seem to go in spurts with my crafts, one day pouring myself into my knitting, while the next I can not tear my self away from the sewing machine

Back before Christmas, I had an idea in my head to do a journal/sketch book and colored pencil case for my little ones. The first design that I did just wasn’t working for me, and although I thought hard about revising that piece and trying to make it work, in the end I just realized that it wasn’t very functional.

I have been doodling off and on for a bit now, trying to decide what I wanted, and in the end, I went for simple. A sturdy book-like case that can easily carry a lot of pencils, markers or paint brushes, with a large enough pocket to carry many different sized sketch books.

I made this one for my kids, but mine is on the machine, and I am excited to put it to good use.

The Art Book

You will need:
2 fat quarters, one for the inside lining, the other for the outer cover.
1 6×16.5 piece of fabric for the inside pocket
1 16.5×16.5 piece of heavy weight fusible interfacing.
Ribbon, Bias Tape or ric rac for the ties


Cut each of your fat quarters to 16.5 x 16.5. Cut your pocket to 6×16.5
Following manufacturer’s directions, adhere fusible interfacing to the wrong side of your outside fabric


On the long edge of your pocket fabric, fold the edge over 1/4″, and then again 1″, and press. Top stitch the edge


Line up your pocket with your lining fabric, both facing up. Sew the three edges of the pocket to the fabric. Determine how large you want your journal pocket to be, as well as how much you want to space the pencil slots, and mark. Stitch along your marked lines, backstitching at both ends


Determine how long you would like your ties to be, and if you want them to wrap around fully, or to tie at the edges.
At this point you will need to find the center of the sides for ribbon placement.

To do this, fold the top of your case down to the desired length. You may want to use your art supplies or journal to help you measure.

Then center and pin the ribbons.

With right sides together, pin your lining and outer fabrics together. Beginning in the middle of one side, with a 1/2″ seam allowance, sew around the entire piece, leaving a three inch opening


Trim your corners as close as possible, being careful not to cut your stitches. Turn right side out, and press.


With the inner lining fabric facing up, fold over the top of your piece to your desired length. I wanted my fabric to cover the top of my sketch book/journal, as well as the colored pencils.
Once you have determined the length, top stitch down both sides of your piece, making sure to reinforce your stitches as both ends.


I love the ease of use with this book, and the endless possibilities. There is enough room to hold paint brushes, markers, crayons, and pencils. The journal side is able to hold two thin journals together, or one journal and loose leaf paper. It is really easy to make the art book larger or smaller for your needs. Just simply cut your fabric to the desired dimensions, and then follow the above directions.


Once your book is complete, simply tie it up, and enjoy.


I wanted to let you all know that Donna Ashton, the founder of The Waldorf Connection begins her next series of tele-seminars tonight. The seminars are free, and try to connect each of us to the next generation of Waldorf families.
The seminars cover subjects such as science, storytelling, handwork and foreign language. There are eight free sixty minute conferences, and they begin tomorrow.

I will be giving the discussion on handwork on February 11th, and I am excited to get started listening to all these amazing women. I hope that you will join us.

The journal above is a blank book, made of bamboo, which I painted for a little bit of fun

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The Creative Journey

January 27, 2010


Late last week I realized something.
I was tired.

Do you ever have those days where you just realize that you have a lot on your plate, on your mind, on your agenda? Last week was one of those weeks, and I really wanted to hide under my covers (perhaps this is why I found myself writing about the need for relaxation, nurturing, solitude and connection).

Everything I have going on, I have taken on myself, so no whining or complaining for me, but I knew that I needed to 1) Take a nap, and 2) get my life back in balance.

I wasn’t confused why I was feeling this way, but I wanted to avoid the issue for as long as I possibly could. The fact is that I have let life get a little bit ahead of me lately. I love everything that I do. I love writing, I love homeschooling my kids, I love being a full time mom, I love connecting with the incredible people in my life, I love the magazine, and the opportunities that life affords, but when they all come knocking at your door, at the exact same time, well that just never yields a positive result.


On Tuesday of last week, I had signed up for an e-course with Shannon Kinney called Inside Out, and by the end of the week, I was dreading the decision. Why had I taken on one more thing in my day? Was I just planning to never sleep again? On Sunday, with a heavy amount of frustration in my soul, I finally went in and looked at Day 1 for the course (by this time, we were supposed to be on day 5, so yeah, little bit behind).

As soon as I read through everything, I knew that it was the right path for me to be on. The course is designed around journal writing, art, yoga and meditation, and it does not ask the light questions, and it does not expect all rainbows and sunshine. No, this course asks you to take a look at yourself, deeply, to see if what you are living is authentic, creative and with purpose. The answers sting at times, but they have also begun to give me a great sense of clarity.


This is not the first time that I have found myself in need of this type of journey.

When the clock struck midnight in 2002, I found myself in my living room, with my roommate, Alison, and a very large box of art supplies. There were a lot of life questions weighing on my mind at the time, and Alison had filled a huge Tupperware box full of glitter, magazines, glue sticks, scissors, inspirational sayings, and a dream journal. The journal was huge, and filled with too many blank pages for that one night. She said “Don’t talk, don’t think, just create the answers.” I thought she was just trying to shut me up, but it turned out that she knew exactly how to help me find those answers, and we both spent all night doing nothing but creating dream/visions of what we needed and wanted from life.


The word collage


The vision of a family


The idea of healing

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That was me then. So where I am now?
Well, hopefully that is what this journey will help me figure out. I know what I love, I know what makes me happy, but I think that it is giving myself an opportunity to see what balance needs to take place that is going to help me to be the most authentic version of myself.


I suppose because it is me, and because rockin fabric always makes the world a prettier place, I needed two important things to help get my creative juices going.



a special place to hold the journals, clippings, letters, and books that inspire me daily. I took the pattern for Ezra’s Letter Satchel from Amanda’s book, and made it into the size of a large file folder. I used a heavier weight fusible webbing, and I think that this is something that will be with me for a really long time.


A moleskin journal, hand painted and stamped, ready for what ever my pen takes to it’s paper. I was thrilled to finally get my hands on some larger Moleskins to paint and play with, and they are perfect for the creative process that is ahead.


I am ready and excited to dive in a little deeper and get to know myself, at this point in my life, as fully as I can
Fingers crossed I like who I meet.

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