No March Lion!

For us March came in like a lamb, So I thought it would go out like a lion.  There is no forecast for lion like weather.  Almost every year this is a true statement, whether it comes in like a lamb or lion, it will do the opposite on it’s exit.  Because of the un-natural algorithm, I am anxious to see what will unfold in the upcoming months.  I looked up what all this means, and it is of pagan beliefs.  I tried to find astrological evidence perhaps with stars or constellations, and that information, if it is out there is hidden from me.

There are many sayings/proverbs like “If March comes in like a lamb, it will go out like a lion”.  This is clearly stated in the Farmers Almanac.  Other sayings:

  • A dry March and a wet May? Fill barns and bays with corn and hay.
  • As it rains in March, so it rains in June.
  • March winds and April showers? Bring forth May flowers.
  • So many mists in March you see, so many frosts in May will be.
  • Is’t on St. Joseph’s day (19th) clear,
    So follows a fertile year;
    Is’t on St. Mary’s (25th) bright and clear,
    Fertile is said to be the year

There are those of religous belief that nay-say about the Farmers Almanac.  I know my Grandfather used that knowledge for best planting days and spraying days for better yield.  Some say it is hogwash, actually these are weather algorithms.  Best days to cut grass or hair, castrate hogs, all have to do with the moons pull on earth and the sky full of stars and clouds.  Very interesting, and not commonly used today.

Switching gears….This week flew by!  I got in to see the eye doc.  New specs are on their way (and that can’t come soon enough!  Jeepers my peepers want to see without headaches or unfocused areas.  More accuracy with my eyes, I am all for that!

In reading back a couple of posts through my goals, I have met all but one and will be working on that today.

  • Finish 3 more 9 patches for a count of 25 (TOGA here I come)
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2 1/2 inch squares ready to come together for a TOGA kind of celebration!
  • Get ready for the toothbrush rug demonstration for TOGA
  • Go to TOGA
  • Quilt a quilt for Mom (her’s got bumped so I could do one for someone in pinch)
  • Find backings for two baby quilts
  • Sew some more bricks on my leader ender
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My bricks laying on the shelf at the back of my machine.  This is my sewing corner and everything is within reach.  I sew standing up at my Grandmother’s old Buffet.

I found out this week that a coworker of mine is having a girl (I am so glad as boy stuff in my stash has become meager).  For the last several months on my sewing table was leftover unsewn half square triangles.  This week I went ahead and sewed those seams.  There were about 50 of them and at 4 1/2 inches unfinished would really be a quick quilt top.  I cut a few strips and subcut squares to get a top made for this baby girl occasion.  This went together in a matter of a couple hours since all the hst’s were already made.  This one measures at about 40 inches square and will be easy to quilt.  I have that one as well as the jelly roll race airplane top placed in my bag to hop onto the quilting frame after I get done with my Mom’s top.

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Leftover hst’s from Jewel Box Flambe leader/ender
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My first customer longarm job, read more about this on my last past.

I am off this morning to an early start, which will probably parlez into a nap later.  I am looking forward to a nice, leisure Sunday.  May you enjoy your as much as I will enjoy mine.  Happy Sunday, and thank you for reading my blog!

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No Binding, yay!

This year I have had a lot of finishes.  A couple king size, a couple full size and a twin.  In learning the longarm, I have gained much wisdom.  For those of you who do not have one, they make life in the sewing corner messy.

I saw many posts of late where quilters snap photos and their area and it is a mess.  I never understood this until after my purchase of a longarm.

Pre longarm:

  • Finish your top
  • Send it off to the quilter (it can be there for weeks!)
  • Start another top

Post longarm:

  • Finish your top
  • Load your top
  • quilt your top (this may take a few days)
  • start another top at the sewing machine
  • When quilting is done, make binding
  • sew binding (Which means clearing out the project you just started…..fruit basket upset)
  • start sewing the top you just started before binding

This translates to more chaos at one time.  It is multitasking where there is a bottleneck, right at your sewing machine/work table

Notice in between all these bullets I never mentioned cleaning (giggle….I am guilty)  When a finish is so near, the excitement of the finish (for me) interferes with the rightness of cleaning.  It looks as if a tornado happened.  All we want to do is sew.  We find ourselves shuffling what is not needed instead of putting it away.  It makes chaos of a finish.  It also creates pressure.  Pressure in the back of your mind, your voice telling you to pick up, but your addiction to the craft say nuh-uh, nope, not now.

This week I quilted my first “customer” quilt.  I had no intentions of doing this, this early in the game, but I helped out a fellow quilter who reached out to me.  She was panicked as her deadline for the gift of giving a quilt was fast approaching, and other longarmers in her life were booked up.  I had the right color thread, so why not.  I threw out a ridiculous price, and she accepted!  It took me a couple of evenings between supper and baths for the children.  I enjoyed doing it.  It turned out great!  I will hand it off to her at work on Monday.  The great thing about all of this?  I got to quilt (my favorite part of the process) and I do not have to finish it!  No mess of the interruption of my project at the sewing table.  No mess to clean up from making binding!  YAY!  (Note:  I now know why longarmers charge such a high price for binding, it is messy and interupts the flow of things)

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It seems the binding of the project makes things messy for me.  Over time perhaps my habits will change.  In the meantime reading other blogs, it makes me smile as the chaos from quilting, seeing the posts, I know I am not alone!

May future feng shui be better for all of us!  Look for another post about goals and accomplishments of the past week in the next few days, and thank you for reading my blog!

finishes!

 

As promised in my last post, the photo opps have taken place.  First up is the Treadle On Gathering Academy block swap from NE Texas last April.  This is finished before the next swap, which is good.  Also this used lots and lots of fabrics.  Scraps are slowly dwindling, but I seem to still be swimming in them.  I chose a feather free motion pattern using mother goose thread which blends very nicely with most of the quilt.  Did you see my feathers video?  If not click here to view.  More videos/tutorials coming soon!

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To get to this point I used 2 1/2 inch squares and a 4 1/2 inch large square to start these blocks.  Then I used my Simple Folded Corners ruler to snowball two different sized and got the triangle effect.

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I then used the snowballed corners on the edges of the quilt cornering two corners.  Every scrap was utilized.

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And I finished the baptist fans tumbler quilt.  The binding finally is on.  I made the binding from whites/neutrals for a scrappy look.

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Above shown is how it will lay upon the bed.  The narrow edge of tumblers as the border is made that way to hide under the pillows.  This looks like an extremely old quilt.  The fabrics came from thrift store scraps, an ugly fabric swap, as well as using a train panel and other fabrics in my stash.  The stash is slowly busting!tumblerdonetogadone

Here the pair are folded and stacked on a sittin’ bench on a lovely warm spring, sunshiny day.

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On Ringo Lake looks more fantastic than I remember.  The turquoise looks like a lagoon of color.  When I got to the top being complete I did not really care for this, but now with an additional year of wisdom under my belt, it is like I am seeing this with new eyes.  I really like it.  I thought the orange was too much, but actually the turquiose steals their show, and I love turquoise!

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I was delighted to use up some of my cotton and steel fabrics!

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The backing is very dated fabric.  Rather than call it dated I am going to call it vintage!  Crows and watermelons, an interesting combo….

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Some of the weird quilting I did on this is shown above.  I started this on my small sewing machine and got tired of wrestling with it, it won the first round.  But with time and patience, I finally loaded this on my longarm to finish the bits and pieces that were unquilted.  I won the final round, which is the one that counts!  I am not feeling the quilting on this quilt, but it is done and now useable!

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And lastly the quilt above was a top my mom found for sale for a little bit of nothing.  It is huge!  And I am very happy with the quilting job for this free motion edge to edge design.  I will practice this one lots as it is forgiving and easy!  She bound this in a beautiful blue, perfect for this vintage top.

My most exciting news?  I was contacted by a coworker needing a quilt quilted by the 10th of april, and everyone is booked, except for me!  I named a ridiculous price, and she said yes!  I am sew happy, my first commision.  I want to take this exhilerating quilting ride slow.  I am afraid it may lead to a regular day job behind me.  Logically, those are just quilty pipe dreams.

I think back to 1994ish when I really started getting into this.  And then thinking about the year 2001ish.  I found a local longarmer.  Meandering, no pantos.  A disaapointment to not be able to get it how I wanted it because I lived in the sticks.  After a few of these disappointments, I just decided to start quilting them myself.  That was extreme wear and tear on my good machine let alone on my bones….lol.  Then the quilty dream of owning my own longarm, as the reality of prices of custom quilting would be half of what the machine cost.  And here I am today, much research, and study of all things quilty, knowledge being power.  Quilting is a super power!

So now I am the one behind the machine, offering custom quilting.  Full circle.  I have sew much to look forward to with this hobby, the future tense will be an enjoyable ride!

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog!

Reflection, 3rd Week of March 2019

This week in reflection started off good, and then went to pot!  We all have good intentions.  The goals I made for myself were ready to easily meet.  And then life happened.

Lately I have been getting a stiff neck, like I have slept wrong, but this doesn’t happen during sleep, it happens gradually during the day.  In my wisdom years, it either means I need to buy new bras or new shoes LOL.  Nope, this time it was not the fix.  Today, I figured out what it is.  I keep jutting out my chin to get the sweet spot in my bifocals.  Apparently after paying very close attention today, my bifocals are just not strong enough causing me to favor the better eye, cocking my head, and in doing so, getting a stiff neck.

This also caused a Migraine.  No work for three days.  Light was too much, noise was too much.  Screens could not be viewed.  No sewing happened.  Three whole days of just laying about getting sore from laying, and not moving.  This certainly helped my headache, but everything else suffered.

So some of my goals listed from last weeks post did not happen.

Goals stated from last week:

  • Applique stitch the fans by hand (completed)
  • Apply/finish binding on tumbler quilt (completed)
  • upload free motion feathers video to you tube (completed)
  • Finish free motion quilting of feathers on toga quilt
  • Apply/finish binding on toga quilt
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I did get the handwork done!  This quilt is complete……need a photo opp
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Free motion feathers video is uploaded to youtube and this completion will probably not happen for another week.

When I loaded this quilt, in my excitement using the red snappers, I loaded the backing the wrong way, which when I got to that edge, could not complete.  I will have to add fabric for the last inch and a half, and walking foot it together.  I do have the binding ready to go just as soon as I can, I aim to hit the completion milestone.

This past weekend I worked on a few more scrappy nine patches.  My count is more than I need, but others may have signed up so I may need to make a few more.  I love the fact I am using up all those scraps.

And I found out today I have to work on Saturday.

I am going to set three main goals for the upcoming week:

  • Finish to Toga quilt
  • If needed make a few more 9 patches
  • Load one of my mother’s quilts and start quilting on hers
  • Get some photo opps of the quilts I have completed so far this year (the weather is finally starting to permit)
  • And tend to my brick road leaders/enders as seen below

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Ok, so after reading this while editing, I see I have more than three goals.  Some of these will happen, I just know it.

Oh and I did get the red velvet cupcakes made and they are indeed red, and the family is eating them, I am just not a fan.  They are moist, but pretty flavorless, so the recipe did not make the cut.  Perhaps another experiment will happen, And I will use less beets.  To be determined.

I am off to try to catch up life things like laundry and dishes.  I hope everyone has a great weekend, and thank you for reading my blog!

 

Free Motion Video Baptist Fan

Ah at last I got a youtube account.  Start following my channel, My Quilt Projects.  Currently I have the baptist fan video showing how there are no gaps while free handing it.  This is a very brief video, and watching free motion quilting videos is mesmerizing.

Click here to view the video.

This was the pattern used on my tumbler quilt top.

tumblerafterquiltingtumblercloseupquiltingtumblerquilting2This is what I have to show you this week.

Goals from last week’s post equaled one!  I worked on getting the 9 patch units made.  I only have two left to make!  As for the rest of my list, I totally deviated from my plan and did nothing on my list.  Daylight savings time recuperation happened.   acclimatizing…..

I did however try out my new Red Snappers on my quilting machine and within minutes my quilt sandwich was loaded ready for the thread to stitch it all together.

I chose my TOGA (treadle on gathering academy) quilt top from the 2018 quilt block swap in NE Texas.

 

I chose a neutral thread and decided to give a go at feathers.  This will be my first attempt at free motion feathers on my Longarm.  While doing this on my regular sewing machine, to get the feathers to look balanced on both sides, I always had to be working in a north/south movement, if I tried an east/west movement, my brain did not give me the right vision/hand eye coordination, and so those always looked odd.  Same holds true for the longarm.  It will take me much practice, and that will be my next free motion video.  But all in all I am pleased with the result.

I also put my new foot on my quilting machine, and love the extra control I have with this.  Less hopping, more pressure equals better control.

Goals for the upcoming week:

  • applique stitch the fans in the tumbler quilt
  • apply/finish binding the tumbler quilt
  • Finish quilting the TOGA quilt
  • Bind the TOGA quilt
  • Upload free motion quilting of feathers

I found out yesterday where I get my Janome serviced is going out of business.  Thomas Sewing Center is having a closing business sale of 45% off machines, embroidery designs, machine feet, and fabric.  I am saddened by this as their competitor will get all their business I am VERY unimpressed with their tacticts and rudeness.  Not sure if this sale applies to internet sales but this store is located in Mesquite, TX.  Not sure if the going out of business means all stores either.  That is why Thomas Sewing Center was not at the Dallas quilt show and their competitor was.  Probably worth a look either way.

Be looking for a recipe to upload at on my other blog.  I am going with red velvet cupcakes with no food coloring, we shall see how those turn out.  Be looking for that post soon.

Thanks for reading and have a great weekend!

It has arrived

This time every year we roll back the clocks.  And every year I am horrified by that change.  I no longer eat lunch at the same time, get off from work at the same time, nor go in at the same time (this part is the hardest).

accurate alarm alarm clock analogue
Photo by Aphiwat chuangchoem on Pexels.com

Last week it was nice to fumble around in my purse in my comute when there was light. But in thinking about it, on the longest day of the year if our clocks did not spring forward one hour, it would be 100% daylight at 5:00 a.m.  As I have aged my body starts to automatically get up a bit earlier in the preceeding weeks.  Not sure if this is an old thing, or if it is simply a sun thing.  Every year in trying to prevent exhaustion, I schedule time off to adjust.  The DST woes.  But we will adapt.

In preparation of this, I have crammed so much into my stay-cation, I will be going back to work pooped.  It was nice to have the freedom to stitch with my hobby all day long 3 days in a row, but now I am running out of gas.

Thursday was an all day sew day.  I got On Ringo Lake complete.  Friday I went to a quilt show.  If you have not viewed that post click here.

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Some of Thursdays work

Saturday started by attending an estate sale of a quilter.  This was spread via social media.  It was a 40 minute drive, got there, and was disappointed there were so few items.  We were the first ones there, no furniture, mostly patterns, books, and a dining room table of neatly fanned out bits of measured fabric.  I did buy a bag of scraps for 2 bucks as well as other scraps.  Normally quilters amass quite a collection, perhaps she is still holding on, 🙂

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Right after my return from the “estate sale” I got to quilting on my tumblers quilt.  I quilted until about 10:30 and decided the family was needing me, only to discover when I got home two of the three people were napping.  So I quietly moved about the house, tending to some trash and dishes.  Once everyone was back up and running I returned to the quilting machine.  I stayed until I was done.  I even took a video of my quilting, but found it hard to run/position the camera while running the machine.

Yesterday started with a deluge of rain followed by the prettiest clear, sunshiney day.  A great motivator to wanna be outside!

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In lieu of quilting two large quilts for mom (one has not happened yet) she purchased red snappers for my longarm.  The will allow me to load a quilt much faster.  I got those installed ready to use the next time I quilt.  Next quilt on the longarm will be my toga quilt from 2018 swap. I got the backing measured out yesterday and sewn, see below.

My mom is great, she really believes in me, and no matter my failures, she gives me the  motherly gentle push forward.  I have had epic fails in learning the process of longarming.  Regardless of my problems in the learning curve, she wants me to learn.  She keeps quilts ready for success or failure.  Love you Mom!

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Here is the surprise I mentioned in my last post….I have video of quilting my Mom’s quilt and the problem I had doing so.  It has now been fixed.

Click here to download the video!

Looking forward to getting back to quilting.  Yesterday I also installed a new foot on my machine made for ruler work.  I was told by my mentor to install it now and work with it a bit as I will have no need to change between the two feet and to get used to less visibility.  The visibility is less, but the hopping of the foot is less to.  I think it is more controlled now.

At the quilt show I also purchased more bobbins.  This will be great!  I have empty bobbins!

I have put away the fanciful flight quilt kit for now and am changing gears to get ready for the next TOGA block swap.  TOGA stands for treadle on gathering academy  Click here to see my follow up post.  It’s purpose is to keep vintage machines of interest, and where like minds gather.   I will try to start on this today.

Goals for the week:

  • work on the binding of the tumblers quilt
  • there is some handwork that also needs to happen on the tumblers quilt
  • figure out what kind of pattern I will be using for the TOGA swap quilting
  • Quilt some on the TOGA 2018 quilt
  • Start making blocks for the 2019 TOGA block swap with this one set as a priority.  I have 25 blocks to make in less than a month….perhaps those scraps will be put to work.

I have pictures and made a few now for the 25 blocks.

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  • Get used to getting up an hour early!!!

I met all and exceeded my goals from last week.  I even worked on the toothbrush rug that has been in process since…er….October.

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I am thinking of having a giveaway.  You, my followers, what would you like to see me giveaway?  I have almost reached a milestone, and would like to give back to one lucky follower.  Be looking for this announcement soon.  And please leave a comment in the comments section!  Thank you for reading my blog!

Celebrate National Women’s Day!

How did you celebrate your day today?  Today is National Women’s Day and I celebrated by going to a quilt show!  The Dallas Quilt Show was lovely.  I learned much there today, and there was even a quilt displayed that was a teaching tool.  It taught me all about the wonderful women who proceeded me, paving the way and making a difference.

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Factoids above, who knew the inventor of Kevlar (saving many lives was a woman!)

Here is the quilt.

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I am not sure why the green bars have appeared on this photo, but I am not going to take the time to figure it out.

Here is the remaining pictures I took at the show.  Unfortunately with the day being a wonderful weather day, many chose to get out, and the place was swamped.  Moving was difficult compared to years past.  I only snapped about 20 photos.  I have a couple of favorites, I really like the Martin Luther King quilt.  I took a close up of his nose to find that it was a floral fabric.  Neat!

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There is a quilt of waves with white, upon closer inspection I found the quilt to actually have it’s batting showing.  What a neat technique.  I also admired the bedazzled quilt.  Wonderful work.

There is an eagle that is quilted on painted leather, that was absolutely stunning and nice machine work.  A leather quilt at the quilt show, a first for these aging eyes.

I did very little shopping as the crowd was too much to move about.  So no fabric score of any kind.

On the home front, being off from work is bliss!  I finished On Ringo Lake!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Please ignore the bath mat in the picture, I had a cat hack on it, and it got hosed off and is airing out LOL.  Such a photo bomb!

And here is the back.  I selected what I had in my stash.  Very dated fabrics in neutrals that worked fine for this job.

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And a couple of weeks back I mentioned I would be planning a baby quilt for a former coworker.  Working in the Aeronautics industry, sometimes when planning a quilt for a boy, you just have to get planes involved.  After much brainstorming, I got out my charm packs, and during this spelunking adventure in my old buffet I found a jelly roll called Flight by Moda fabrics.  Perfect for a little boy.  So another Jelly Roll Race quilt top is completed.

 

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There will be more quilty news in the weekend edition of my blog post.  So much to say, sew little time.

Enjoy and have a great weekend!

Mid Week Camel Hump

Wednesday….named for the God of Woden, knocking on wood (which was to keep bad stuff away), pagan stuff all is associated with the middle of the week known as hump day.  The Monday is behind us, and just as far as Monday is behind, Friday is equidistant to the work week being OVER.

This week I am taking a mini vacation (so today was my Wednesday!).  Thursday(#1 off day) is recuperation from the mundane (I may make a cake).  Friday is Dallas Quilt Show day, yay!  (expect lots of pictures)  Saturday is estate sale of a quilter, am going to that to see if there is anything for me.

If you visit my last post, you will see the goals I set for the next 7 days.  I am really liking the technique of goals in a 7 day increment.  Most goals are met so far, but those that are not, I give myself another 7 days to complete.  This is doubling the time, which is doable in most instances, and has very good productivity results.

Fanciful flight now has paper pieces ready to block some stars together, I failed to capture a picture.  I am very pleased on this progress, it went much faster than anticipated.  Eight star pieces ready to become a star times 8.  I just love cutting instructions with this pattern, it makes it more of an assembly line process.  I am the kind of quilter who usually wings it a lot, so I may be cutting, ironing, and sewing all within 10 minutes of each task, which leaves a worldwide of mess in its wake and a sporadic rhythm.magicpresingmat2

I have sewn a few bricks, more of that will probably happen while I am vacationing at the sewing machine 🙂

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The tumbler quilt is loaded and is being quilted.  I will probably finish this on Sunday morning.

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And a Bonus!!!!!! On Ringo Lake is quilted!!!!!

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While it was on the quilting machine, I had to fill in a few spots of quilting. This was started on my domestic sewing machine. iIt was quite the work out pushing this thing under the needle. I am glad to have my large quilting machine to finish with the little touches here and there
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A close up of some silly stuff I did with circles. I think this only ended up on one block.
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Binding is on, and being stitched. More than halfway done with this.

No new goals as the week is not even halfway over.  I am feeling good, the machines are purring right along, which makes my heart purr to that (knock on wood LOL).  And speaking of that here is our wonderful cat named Momma Kitty.  She was a stray that followed us home walking the block to my parents house in June about 2 1/2 years ago (previously known as Baby Kitty)  She is fertile and has made plenty of little pitter patters of joy all over the house, whether it is us playing with the felines, or them playing and jumping and running with one another.  She is so calm and likes to find a lap.  I probably need to get her spayed to keep her healthy and more indoors.  She is amazing.

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My snuggle buddy on the quilt, I wish this happened more often.  But usually if the children are afoot she is in one of their laps or being carried crazy ways all over the house, tolerating the whole bit.

I am looking forward to my next post of adventures at the Dallas Quilt Show, so stay tuned.  And thank you for reading my blog!

 

Two Tops, 2 Goals

In last weeks post, I set a couple of goals.  The goals happened but my execution was flawed.  I wanted to empty my bobbins on a white quilt.  I wanted to trace a medallion from the rear of the machine.  This ended in a fail, and what I would call my best friend of late, the seam ripper, came out to play.

I ended up doing free motion quilting of C and S swirls, which showed nice puff on this old quilt top.  I also switched my thread to the thicker thread.  My machine LOVES thicker thread weight, and therefore I love thicker thread weight.  I also made the thread white, which was much friendlier to this quilt.  If anyone is interested in 3000 yard thread cones in some very nice colors, I will sell them to you at cost, $7 per cone.  I have black, white, tan, light blue, lavender, burgundy, yellow, and I will just have to snap a photo to remember all the colors.  This is longarmer thread, not cotton.

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The quilt pictured is no longer a UFO (unfinished object)!  Mother was delighted as she is the owner.  The top was a thrift store purchase.  “This quilt will be used”, said Mom.  I am hoping she is working on the binding today with her sewing group.

I am thinking I may need to go a-sewing with Mom again, Would love to go today but can’t”  I certainly have plenty of projects.  Like this one I started back in October when I last visited!

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I got this out of it’s storage and have started adding to the rounds.  All of the fabric panel that started this has now been used.  I had come across another piece of polycotton in the stash, so it’s addition is coming soon.  No goal for this one yet though.

And Good Fortune is now a completed top.  I learned a valuable lesson with my camera in snapping of the photos below.  If you are carrying a camera that is on with a touch screen, DONT TOUCH THE SCREEN!  All my perfect settings got messed up, I heard the camera beep like I had reset something.  I had to go back through the tutorial to figure it all out again.  These pictures seem fuzzy to me.  There is a setting to fuzz images apparently.  So sorry for poor photo quality, but it has been corrected since.

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The grass appears green, but that is decieving.  Those are just the February weeds that will look green when it snows and is cold.  A great contast to all dormancy of winter, hence the lovely show of green.

Goals for the upcoming week:

  • Start quilting the tumblers quilt (the backing came in the mail this week)

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  • come up with a quilting plan for Good Fortune (free motion of perhaps wood grain…a story for another post behind this thought)
  • Stitch some bricks for my leader ender

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  • Work on my Be Colourful Fanciful Flight kit

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Sew much to do, sew little time.

That’s a wrap!  Thank you for reading my blog!