Friday, July 6, 2018

It took a while but a quilt is finished.

Back in December, 2017, Deb from hearts2hands let members know that there would be another New Years Day Mystery Quilt Event.  A number of us started the new year going between our computers and sewing machines.  A great way to start the year!  And a quilt top finished.

Seven months later the top is still sitting on the frame.  As there are a lot of tops that need to get quilted, it was time to start up the Bailey.  Several hours later, the quilting was finished and the quilt off the frame.  Not the quilting pattern I wanted to do.  Instead a simple meander.  But it's done.

The binding was finished yesterday. The quilt has been in the washer and dryer.

Today I've been piecing the backing for the next top to go on the frame.  This one can't take seven months to get done.  It's a Christmas present for DS.  And the quilting will be very fussy.  Time to get at it!

Monday, July 2, 2018

Quilt Tops and Sewing Machines

I had promised myself that I would be better with my blog updates.  Yeah, that didn't happen.  It's been ages.  But a lot has happened.

A molar broke, requiring multiple dentist appointments.  I now have a shiny new crown (I wanted a tiara). 

Volunteer sewing wrapped up for the summer with a great pot luck.  I was challenged to bring vegetable noodle dish.  Never one to do things the easy way (like purchase pre-made spiralized vegetables) I went all out and started by looking for a spiralizer.  Fortunately I lucked out and found a $109 electric one on sale for $39.  Better yet, the store was having a one day sale on the item so my final cost was just under $30.  Not bad.  Now to figure out how to use it.  That lead to a lot of experiments.  Some successful, some not.  My contribution to the pot luck was reasonably received and very little came home.  So I guess it was okay.

DH decided I need another sewing machine.  So he picked up a Sew Handy on eBay.  She should be here in a few weeks, and I can't wait!  We're not sure what year she was manufactured.  Once she's here, cleaned up, and researched, I'll put up a post all about this little machine.

At volunteer sewing, the gals were talking about quilted rugs made from jelly rolls (2 1/2" strips).  They are lovely.  A lot of fabric, batting and fusible web used to join the bat is used.  All the talk about rugs made me think of toothbrush rugs.

About 30 years ago I was shown how to make these rugs.  It was fun, but then other interests took over.  I found the toothbrush tool (toothbrush with a hole to hang it up with, the brush part cut off and shaped to a point).  But I could not remember how to make the knot used for the rug. 

A quick YouTube search and I found several methods, including the one I had been shown.  Naturally, I sent a link to the video to my Mom.  She immediately emails me back to say she was making rugs this way back in the 1930's when she was 5 or 6 years old.  These rugs were used beside the beds on winter mornings when the wood stove would have burned out and those floors were ice cold!  A lot of memories were talked about!  If I ever produce a rug with decent tension, I'll post a photo of it!

DH's parents love going to garage sales.  MIL brought over one of her finds:

A huge pile of flannel.  All in large triangle shapes.  I only remembered to take a photo when the pile was 2/3" cut down into usable squares and rectangles.  It took several days to get all this fabric cut down.  But it will be great for the fidget quilts the volunteers make.

Susan from our MeWe group posted a photo of a quilt she's working on.  As soon as she named the book I realized I have the same book.  And I've never made anything from it!  Off the the sewing room.  Sunny Lanes from Pat Speth's "Nickle Quilts" was quickly made.   This top made a small dent in my 5" scrappy squares.  I might have to make a dozen more to notice any real reduction.  But it's a start!

One of these days I'll get to the quilt frame, finish the quilt already on it.  Then finish the 5 or 6 waiting to be quilted.  Then get this one done!

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Another Month!

I'm not doing very well in keeping this blog up to date!  And there are no excuses this time.  I can't even say that I've been busy quilting.

I did make a birthday present.  And it was well received.  I love this wallet pattern.  It's very practical.  And light.  Of course that depends on what's in it.  But at least it doesn't start out as being heavy.  Some wallets (and purses) are heavy before anything is place in them.  Which is why I use fabric bags, wallets and purses. 

This wallet has Daisy Duck on it.  My friend loves Daisy.  But it's really difficult to find anything with "The Duck".  Even at the Disney Parks.  I'm hoping that changes in the future.  But in the mean's "Her Duckness".

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

It's been over a month!

Where did the month of April go?  Birthday's have been celebrated.  Funerals attended.  And dentist appointments....too many dentist appointments!

I broke another tooth.  After the repair, I agreed to getting a crown for it.  The dentist didn't appreciate that what I wanted was a tiara.  We had words, he won. 

Then the tooth broke further down.  A temporary filling has been used until the gums heal enough to figure out if I'll need the crown or have the tooth pulled and an implant put in.  Or some other solution.  Who knows. 

I had been happily quilting along with Angela Walter's free motion challenge.  Then the haze on my cataract lens got so bad that I had to take a break.  The lessons have been saved.  The laser procedure that hopefully will fix the lens is scheduled for tomorrow.  If it's successful, then it will be catch up time for the free motion challenge.  I'm really looking forward to that!

I did make it to volunteer sewing last week.  Bringing my trusty Featherweight machine.  But my little machine would not stitch.  After a half hour of frustration I moved over to the pressing and pinning station and let others do the sewing.

Turns out that when I cleaned and oiled the Featherweight, I failed to put in the bobbin casing properly.  There's a little latch ((for lack of a better word) on the bobbin case that has to be secured by the needle plate.  Fortunately, DH was able to figure the problem out right away.

What's happening with hearts2hands Yahoo quilting group?  Looks like we may be moving over to a new platform.  With the Facebook privacy issues happening, a lot of social media companies are in a panic to cover their butts.  Yahoo Groups has new owners and they will be insisting that everyone agree to new privacy contracts.  Which most of us are refusing to do.  If we don't agree, we will be dropped from the groups.

How will we keep in touch?   Over the past 10 years members of the group have become close friends.  Some have met IRL.   We get inspiration and support from each other.  The hunt was on for a new platform for our group.  And Facebook isn't where most of us were willing to go.

One member suggested MeWe.  We checked it out.  Watched and read reviews not only on how to use this platform, but also the privacy protections.  Not bad!  The group has been created under the name A Scrappy Life.  Members are still not only getting used to it, but testing the privacy limits.  So far, it's looking good.  A bit more time consuming.  And there's a learning curve.  But I think we'll get used to it.

That's it for now.   Off to yet another medical appointment.  Hopefully I can spend time in the sewing room this evening.  Even if it's just to clean machines so they are ready to hum after my laser treatment tomorrow.

Next post I hope to share my secret (from DS) project.  I'm loving how it's turning out so far!!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Free Motion Challenge - So Far

The free motion challenge has been a lot of fun.  First there was meandering.  I didn't think I'd enjoy meandering.  Now with a bit more practice it's kinda fun.

We've done Dot to Dot quilting.  I didn't do that practice, although when you see what I have done in the past, you'll know that I really need to spend more time at it!

 Both of these quilts are from a hearts2hands virtual retreat where we played with the L Block and different ways to put the blocks together.   On one of them I also practiced a grid pattern using ruler work.

Angela had us using an all over leaf design.   You know I had fun with this.  My go to is leaves.  It all started out trying to quilt continuous line hearts.  But the hearts never looked like hearts.  So I went with leaves.  No one ever expects them to look all the same. I've had hours of practice both on a DSM and on the Bailey with frame.

 I still have to try out the serpentine, which is this weeks design.  And get better at curves.   One of these days I'll get a photo up of the practice curves.  The air was blue with my first attempt.  But looking back at the sample now, I think that if an entire quilt was done with these curves, it would be okay.  Depending on the thread choice of course.

On a side note:   I pulled out the Phoenix kit that DH gave me a few years ago.  I'm very confused with the instructions.  But it's not that the instructions are not really good.  I'm sure they are.  It's just my mind set.  I'll get it figured out.  What has me confused is that the pieces are to be fussy cut from one piece of fabric.  But there is also some piecing before some of the cuts.  Because of my blurry eye, I'm not able to concentrate for any length of time to figure out the instructions.   Hopefully when my eye heals things will become "clearer"  (sorry about the pun).  Here's one of the fabric panels (there are four in the kit).

If I make a mistake in the cutting...there is no extra fabric.  Not even on the designer's web site. 

Monday, March 12, 2018

The Dragon Fly Quilt Is Finished!

Finally finished the binding on the Dragon Fly wall hanging.  There is still the mitered corners to stitch down.   And once the decision is made on where to hang the quilt, the sleeve will have to be added.  But the hard part is done.  I know where the mistakes are.  But hopefully one will have to get up very close to notice them!

Before I show a photo of the wall hanging, I have to mention the Virtual Retreat we had with the hearts2hands Yahoo group on Saturday.  A one day event, with lots of emails back and forth.  Virtual meals and desserts were enjoyed (best way to stick to a diet).  Along with quilt block bingo and a mystery quilt for those who wanted to play along.  A big thanks to Karen for doing this for the group!

Here's the top that I made following Karen's instructions:

A Sudoku Puzzle quilt!  What a great way to use up some novelty fabric FQ's that I have.  I'm thinking the next one will be a Yogi Bear quilt.

And now for the Dragon Fly Wall Hanging:

I don't think there is a right side up.  So we'll check out the different ways it hang on the wall.  Yes, there are a few tucks and puckers on it.  But I'm still happy with the quilt.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Quilt Re-Made

Just finished the Star Trek quilt for DS made from salvaged fabric from the house warming gift I gave him back in May.   That quilt had seams that would give way with every washing.   The issue was one fabric that was fraying.

Here's hoping the new quilt stand the test of time.   I used meandering for the quilting since that's what the Free Motion Challenge by Angela Walters had us practicing.  The quilting went very quickly.  I can see why it's a go to for a lot of quilters!