Sunday, September 29, 2013

Paper ... ahhh!!

IIn one of my earlier lives, rather my life prior to children and family, I was a legal secretary.  It was always about pushing paper ... I pushed it to my boss, he pushed it to me, I pushed it to another secretary and her boss, they pushed it back ... accckk!  My life as a stay at home mom, wife and everything else has also involved lots of paper decisions.  My husband pays the bills, so all that stuff gets pushed to him.  Now my life as a quilter, teacher, and longarmer ... Well, the paper is endless!  There is a pattern to keep, where do you file it.  By season, size of pattern, type of pattern?  And then, do you put the patterns out where you can see them or do you put them in a file so they're tucked away?

This just makes me crazy ... I want things nice and organized, but it is a constant struggle to keep it that way.  It just means that I get into my sewing stuff every couple months and reorganize it all.  Weed things out, like patterns I have had for years, never made and now are so out of style will never make.  

In going through my sewing room in the last few weeks, I came across several fall, unfinished projects. One of them was a Halloween broken dish quilt from a year ago that was only needing a border.  I actually had the border with the quilt, I just had never put the border on.  I attached the border, made a backing, and quilted the whole thing with bright orange thread.  I love it!

I used several lines of fabric I had charm packs for.  One of them was Sandy Gervais Trick or Treat - very old.
Because the pieced blocks were going to be so bright (for me), I chose several different beige tone prints for the alternating solid squares.  
See the orange thread?  It's Glide, and I bought it last year in anticipation of finishing this quilt.  I chose a bottom line taupe prewound for the bobbin. I've never used those before, and did not want to take the time to wind my own bobbins with this quilt.  I thought the tension looked great on the back, but I did not love the cardboard wounds.  I just bought several colors of bottom line to try in my bobbin, so we'll see if I like the thread any better when I wind them myself.
I was thinking the quilt looked really drab until I added the three borders.  All that beige really needed to be stopped by a small black border.  Then the orange border made it pop, and the outer border was just a really fun polka dot with some green in it.  It was exactly what I was looking for to finish it off.  Now all I have to do is bind it.  So excited!!!!!  One more unfinished project, done!

Look at this cute little 7 month old playing with daddy's soccer ball!  I just want to grab that cute little face and kiss it!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Cars and money

I finally quilted and bound this fun charm pack quilt.  It has ric rack in the border and down two sections of the quilt.  I'm calling it Simply Done and am teaching it in November.  So excited to have another finish!  Now onto customer quilts.

I had to take my car in the other day for a recall.  I put it off and decided now was a good time.  Had a friend meet me for coffee and breakfast, and then a little shopping.  Well it was so early ... First pick to shop was Ikea ... Closed ... Container Store was on my short list ... Closed.  Okay ... Target is open.  An hour and a half later, my "free" recall service cost me  $$$$$ at Target!  I have been really good lately about not spending money, but I broke the damn about a week ago, and I can't seem to stop!

I splurged at T and got a new quilt and pillow shams; haven't replaced mine for at least 5 years.  I wanted something neutral that I could change the look of with my own different quilts, but dark because Sophie always gets up there and rolls around!
I really like it and hubby even noticed ... That means he likes it too.  My friend found this pack of napkins ... Four with a cute decorative tie ... Half price for $4.98.
They are so large that you could actually turn them into pillows.  I noticed the other night while on a different trip to Target with hubby that they have most of their summer back to school furnishings, linens, etc on at least 30% clearance.  They had at least 30 comforters for 9.98 a piece; they were all extra long twin, and we don't have those beds.  I couldn't think fast enough about whether I could use them for something else.  I wish I had bought several and held them to donate at Christmas.

I always send a Halloween box to the kids.  Daughter is in college, so her box had to be super fun.  I've started shopping already because I found if you wait too long, the Halloween stuff disappears fast.  I found these super cute melamine dishes at T and knew she would love this little vignette:
Just love the colors .. She is watching what she eats so I can't send too much candy.  Found this cute box of individually wrapped hard candy ... Creepy shapes; also a special Halloween box of nutrition bars; a scary, smelly marker; bat foam glasses, and my favorite find ... A ghost flashlight gadget where the inside twirls around and lights up.

On my separate trip with hubby, I scored on the dollar bins up front and filled in her box with some other fun goodies!  I think I get as excited as she does!  It is more fun to send a box to a girl than a guy!

Son and fiancé will also get a box, but there's will be easier since they are working parents!  I did find a sweet outfit for Kylee ...
It has ruffles on the bum!!!  So cute ... Okay ... Back to work!!!

I love this face ... She looks a lot like her daddy in this picture!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Old projects

We all have old projects or more affectionately referred to as UFO's. I was looking for something portable the other day (so I could keep cool in my air conditioned part of the house!), and ran across a wool banner project from the store.  It was a "block" of the month that started in Jan. and I think I joined a couple of months into the project.  I had only sewn one of them and decided if I didn't get them done, they would probably get stuck on a shelf somewhere.

Love the ease of wool appliqué.  No turning the edges under.  Instead of pinning the pieces down, I prefer using Steam a Seam.  There are several different varieties, and we carried one at the store that had an extra layer of paper to trace onto.  Apparently that particular product is no longer available.  We are now carrying the new S.A.M. lite; it is bumpy on one side (that's the fusible side), and waxy on the other.  The directions said to trace onto the bumpy side.  After trying that for a minute, I thought it was ridiculous trying to trace over bumps.  The flip side is slick, and not great to trace on, but using a permanent pen or the right pencil, it worked just fine.  The product itself adheres really well.  I have tried Heat N Bond in the past and I don't like it ... Have had problems with it lifting at the edges or not adhering all the way.

So as I usually seem to do things, I pulled all the kits out that I hadn't done yet ... Six!  I traced the pieces onto the SAM and then cut them out of the wool and adhered them down.  
We sell a stand that the banners hang from, and obviously they are rotated by season.  
There is embroidery to be done as well as stitching the pieces down.
The sail boat has a lot of embroidery to make it more colorful.
The bunny is my favorite!!!  All the bottoms of them are supposed to be scalloped and many have "pennies," or something on the bottom.  I don't think mine are going to be banners ... Pillows? Maybe a background that's in a frame and then rotate the centers each month?  Not sure yet, but I have several months to make up my mind... I figure it will take me at least that long to stitch them down!
Doesn't she look like she's saying "hey Grammama ... Come play with me!"