A couple weeks ago my husband's cousin phoned to tell us she was getting married! Whoohoo! It was to be a very small affair, arranged at the last minute, and she was sure we couldn't come, but ... we went! We were so happy for Judy, and we have so much fun with the Canadian branch of the family, that we couldn't possibly miss the wedding! Turns out the groom's family is as crazy as we are, so the small crowd grew. Family and friends came from all over Canada, as well as from New York, California, Massachusetts, Illinois (us!), England, and Germany. It was a blast, and by the time we left we had become good friends with a wonderful extended family.
Ottawa never fails to charm me. I've been there several times but always in August, when the weather is warm and breezy and the foliage is lush. It must be great all year. My husband has a friend who works in Ottawa and in the winter she ice skates down the canal to her office each morning and back home at night. Wow. This trip we drank in the beautiful views of water and rolling hills, and managed to find time to see the Byward Market, the National Art Gallery, and the locks at the Rideau Canal. We also strolled by Parliament. I love the effect of the old-fashioned legislative buildings reflected in a modern skyscraper.
I'll limit the rest of my photos to things that, as a quilter, I found at least intriguing and inspiring. The wedding was on the balcony at the National Center for the Arts (it was supposed to be in one of the little rooms inside, but the day was so gorgeous they set up outside). The symbol on all the doors was, well, I don't know the name for it -- an interlocking shape related to a hexagon.
An incredible set of metal doors hung in the room where the reception was held. I was awestruck. Here's a photo of most of one side of one of the doors -- each was about 15 feet tall, covered with rich textures on both sides. I kept looking at them all through dinner.
The art museum had an exhibit of Inuit (aboriginal Canadian) art side by side with Sami (indigenous Scandinavian) art. No photos were allowed, but you can see some of the art and read about the exhibit here. I didn't see an inukshuk, but I love the idea of them and bought a necklace and earrings made to resemble them.
Inukshuk, which are symbols for a safe journey, are stone figures made by the Inuit to provide directions. What a wonderful theme for free piecing! You can read more about inukshuk and see two photos of them here. Do follow the link -- that first photo with flowers growing around and on the inukshuk is just amazing. Four seasons of inukshuk would be a great quilt.
Much more mundane but nonetheless charming is this grate we saw on the street. Another fabulous quilt-to-be.
And completely off topic, I have been thinking about using old clothing for a quilt. When clothes are in good condition but we no longer wear them, we donate them. But some clothes are stained or worn in spots and we add them to the rag pile. From now on I'll see if at least parts of those 'useless' items might have some good fabric left. Take a look at this shirt made of a woven-in plaid fabric.
I hope you can see in the photo how the inside is much brighter than the faded outside. My husband has had this shirt for years, and I love it, but I think a quilt is in its future.