And Just like that…it’s nearly Christmas

Good thing I finished those placemats.

They came out OK. It does make my dining room look festive. My Santa chair covers also help. The stuffed dogs? Well, Raising Cains chickens sells them every year. I recently got 2 new ones (Charlie Brown and Snoopy). Proceeds go to help dogs. My daughter thought they needed to be in the photo. They are always yellow labs in a costume. Super-Cute.

The placemats came out ok. After I made a couple, I was unhappy with my thread choice. It was a pretty red/green twist. It just looks dark to me. Fortunately, my lines are pretty straight so it does not look that bad. I wish I had used thread that matched the background fabric. Next time.

So, I sent my Plaid Challenge Quilt to my brother-in-law. He had a rough year, so I thought it might make him happy and he does have to live with my sister. LOL. They sent me this picture last night of it over thier love seat.

I do love it when I see one of my quilts in use or displayed.

Everyone at my house is not feeling well. Not horrible illness, just enough to annoy you. Makes it difficult to get things done for the holidays. We have been avoiding everyone because it certainly could be the “Rona”. My daughter and I lost smell and taste. I am about 10 days in so on the back side. It just felt like a crappy head cold.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Merry Christmas

Happy New Year

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner…..

Last night my quilt guild, The Marysville Crazy Quilters had their Holiday party. It was also judging for “The Plaid Challenge”.

Great fun and food was had by all!

I placed third in the plaid challenge.

I won $25.00. WooHoo!

How will I spend my riches? I think that I will buy a Creative Grids Ruler with it. I only have 2 and find them very useful. That way I can look at that ruler and remember why I have it. LOL. I am such a dork.

I really do enjoy a creative challenge. Here is some really ugly fabric that does not go together. Go make something with it.

The rules were that you had to have some of every fabric in your quilt. It could be any size of a quilted item.

So, from left to right in the photo the quilts were numbered. I am number 7 (Carpenter star). Number 5 won 1st (looks like a planet in the middle) and #3 was Second (Tumbling blocks).

I think I do have plans to gift this quilt to someone. I know someone who could use a little happy and might appreciate it!

To me, it looks like a “dude” quilt. Not feminine at all. I need to wash it first. I once had a problem with black fabric that had been stored a long time and this was from my stash. I have no idea how old the black was. Better safe than sorry.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Santa Chairs!

So many many moons ago, I bought Holiday chair covers. They were made out of very thin felt-like material. I used them nearly every year. Well, they are finally worn out, so I made a pattern and started making new ones. I chose fleece. I am hoping that will stop fingers from going through them every time a chair was moved. I actually saved/used the pom poms from the old ones. For some odd reason, they make me happy. Only problem I have is tht I did not but enough of the red fleece to make six, so hoping that I can match it fairly closely. I will be able to wash these if needed. The other could not be washed. They would have never made it through the washing machine.

If you can, I suggest trying this….

While I was at my mini-retreat, my Friend Lynn introduced me to these OLFA ENDURANCE blades. I am usually a skeptic, especially about blades. Wow, do these make a difference. She had one in her rotary cutter and when I used it, I was not even aware that I was cutting anything. There was no resistance and it was completely silent. The best thing for me or anyone with arthritis or anything in their hands. They can be pricey, but I have seen them on sale. Lynn had been using hers for a while and it was still as sharp as ever. My package is clearly empty because I bought one and it is wonderful!

Dog Beds for Hospets

There is a local group in my area called Hospets. They support Seniors with Pets. They help them with appointments etc so that they don’t have to choose between their pet and something else. I donated 5 dog beds to them to pass out as they see fit. I will continue to donate dog beds to them. They were very grateful. My daughter and I are also sponsoring a senior for the holidays. They submit wish lists for themselves and their pet and you help them out with items from their list. Our person is local to us and has a pet bird.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Seriously…September is over?

You have got to be kidding. September is over this week? Where is time going? I think there is a black hole and all my time is being sucked into it.

I did get some stuff done. The pictured quilt top I have made for my Aunt. I plan to go and visit her this year. She is 94 (I think). She was always one of my favorite people. She is the only living relative (among the aunts and uncles) that I have left. I remember all the trophies for golf she had in her living room as a kid. They also had a pool table and a bar downstairs where we would often play. She was the oldest of my grandparents children. My Dad was the “middle child” Maybe that is why he understood me so well. While this is a scrappy quilt, as I made it I remembered all the other quilts and projects these fabrics were a part of. I think I will put minky on the back so it is nice and soft for her.

I did get other things done. I bound a couple of of table toppers. I also finished up that binding last night on my “Plaid Challenge quilt” for a competition for my guild. I wont show it yet. The contest is the first week of December. Everyone that wanted to participate had to provide a yard of plaid fabric and $$$. I don’t remember how much money. The money will be divided between the top three quilts, I believe. Figuring out what to do with a bunch of weird plaid fabrics was challenging.

On the Neck Surgery recovery…. Still have issues. I may always have issues. Have managed to lose about 30 pounds. I’ll take it. I can walk over 1/2 mile, but some days I can’t do that at all. Need to figure out how to live with changes. Ugh.

Need to get my Aunt’s quilt pin basted.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Well, How about that….

So, I finished something else. Can’t remember the name of this table runner. I swear it is something with the word “Windows”. As you can see, I am still sticking with small things. So far so good. I am practicing some different quilting techniques.

Interestingly, I have several Bernina sewing machines. I have many attachments that were purchased for me that I have never used. Well, I learned to use two more things. Hurray for me. Only had them about 20 years… I had all kind of ruler attachments for my walking foot. They were very helpful in sewing even lines. I thought the quilting came out very well in this one. Then, I found a box of magnifying glasses that just hook on to the front of my machine. Holy cow. I wonder why I had not investigated this before. It let me see things sooo much better, I kind of feel stupid for not investigating these toys til about 20 years after I got them. Pretty sure my 1st late husband had bought them and he has been gone for 13 years and I know I had all these things before my daughter was born and she is 17. Funny but not funny,

What else have I done?

Shockingly, a project that was many years in the making. Well, not in the making, just thinking about it. My dining room table and chairs is well over 20 years old. The upholstered bottoms have seen better days and have needed to be recovered for years. They truly look like someone has peed on every chair. Well, I have been recovering the seats. I have completed 5 of 6 and my hands are killing me, so the sixth one is going to have to wait a bit. Maybe sometime next week. The hardest part is that each chair had at least 100 staples that has to be removed. My fabric choice is a bit wild, but they look much better, so that will do for now. Ruger is my little photo bomber.

and then there is my situation…

Not much change there. I am still only at 6 mailboxes and have been unable to go on my walks most of the week. I just seem to have an over whelming sense of weakness. Hoping it will get better. Trying to take the long way on anything that I do though. Fingers crossed.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Cool tool for Quilting, Wal-Mart, and other goodies

Wal-Mart

I know many many people hate Wal-Mart Fabric. Not always my favorite, but sometimes, I can’t help myself. This year’s Wal-Mart valentine Fabric was all Dog stuff. Being the crazy Dog lady, when I could by 47 yards of fabric of dog prints for under $20, I was not going to say NO. Even If I used this to make charity pillowcases, it could not be beat. And, it’s Dogs. Along with these 1 yard cuts I got about 50 fat quarters. I have a couple favorite dog rescues and hope to make something for them with all the cute doggie stuff.

Cool Tools – A RocketBook

So, at Christmas, I received a RocketBook. While I intitally got it for work, the first thing I did was use it for quilting…..

So, What is a Rocket Book? It is a reusable Notebook that allows you to save stuff to crazy places.

How it works: The Rocket Book uses erasable pens. You can write, draw and scribble and have them automatically save to wherever you designate. Sounds crazy, but the geeky nerd in me finds this little gem quite useful. The second photo shows where I am sending my pages to. You will notice that there is a QR code in the bottom left of each page. Once you download the rocket book app on your phone or tablet, you tell it where you want things sent. On the bottom of each page there are shapes that are tied to where you want your notes/drawings to go. Once you complete a page, you put an X through the picture (tells Rocket Book where to send) and use the app to snap a photo and it automagically goes there.

I have a Rocket Book Fusion – There are tons of different sizes with all different kind of pages. Project List, gridded paper, lined paper, calendar. Once you save your page, you wet your cloth (comes with it) and wipe off. It uses Frixion pens (comes with one), which many of us already have. I of course bought a pack of many colors (Wal-Mart has them, you can see my crazy quilt doodles)

Creative Notions Strikes again

This is my second subscription bag from Creative Notions. I really like this. It is $45.00 and I feel I really get my money’s worth. I love the panel and fat quarter pack that came in this month’s bag. I plan on making it for my front door. I better get moving, spring is right around the corner, hopefully. There is a pattern included (which I plan on using for the wall hanging). There is also a pattern to make a bag and all the straps/hardware are included. At my guild there are a couple of ladies that make the most beautiful bags, so I am anxious to try this. There are also two more patterns and a 45mm rotary blade and candy (always has some candy in there, which my daughter immediately claims). Just sharing something I think is cool. Looking forward to the next one. Happy Sewing, Happy Quilting

The “Unpaper” Towels

So, I completed my “unpaper” towels. I believe the actual pattern called them reusable paper towels, but I found hat an odd name since they were not paper.

Here is what I learned about making these:

Use a walking foot. I fought with it until I got the bright isdea to use my walking foot. After that everything went much better.

Put your opening to turn right side out on the side not where you want the snaps to go. It can make getting those plastic snaps more difficult if it is bunched and when you are closing up it is more likely that will happen (I sewed mine shut with the machine when I went around the whole towel.

I used three snaps on each end. The pattern called for 2. Initially I had such issues, that Iput three on each end. I will try 2 if/when I make these again.

The plastic snap tool – Watch a video on how to do it. I failed to do this and once I did, I had way more success. Use it on a hard surface (once I watched a video, I put a wooden cutting board under mine). Be prepared to waste some snaps until you get the hang of it. I did not buy my snap tool just for this, but also for baby bibs. They are not expensive maybe 20 dollars for tools and a whole box of colored snaps. I bought it on Amazon. It came with the the big box (top left). I bought some additional snaps because they were inexpensive.

The Practicality of “Unpaper” towels – Not sure on this one yet. I will have to review the actual use by everyone at our house. I am hoping to hear less harsh words over lack of dish towels and having them all over the counter. I made a roll of ten and then some spares (I think I had 8 more). Once it has been in use a while at my house I will let you know if it is a truly useful item. So far, it makes me happy to use up the stack of older towels we had.

I am feeling better every day. Looking forward to losing this neck brace. I am back to work, which is great. I am not good at sitting around doing nothing. Prior to my surgery, I got a new super expensive office chair (X-Chair). It has a neck rest and heat/massage. It has been a life saver and allowed me to return to work quickly. I did not want to sped the money, but Kevin made me……good call on his part.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Happy New Year – What’s going on?

I decorated Easter Eggs!

/Sounds a little weird for the beginning of January, but all the same that is what I did last night. Of course, not the traditional ones, but more of the fabric ones that I will put on my Easter table topper(Nanette should recognize some of these fabrics)

I found a shape/style that I liked and of course I am going to put my own spin on it. I could never follow the directions. It was actually a topper of the Bernina site that had a bunch of machine embroidery on it. Not my thing, so, I am going to do my own thing. Along with al my decorated eggs will be some brightly colored peeps (fabric of course).

I had a nice long break from work, where I did very little of anything, other than some cleaning and organizing, which was needed. I did sew one top, which I will get to on a later post.

Christmas was nice. My daughter got me a Baby Yoda. Yes, I am a grown woman who still loves some toys. He sits right next to my build a bear Wookie (yes, I am a sci-fi nerd). I do love The Mandalorian. Baby Yoda coos when you squeeze his hand. I am easily entertained.

What’s Coming?

So many people are working on their plans for next year. I am not good with year long plans, so I will be planning sorter spurts. I also got this cool new tool, called a Rocketbook. I plan to show you all it does, as I am finding it quite a useful tool for planning.

UFO’s – Good God – There are so many, that I don’t know where to begin. There are the tops that are completed and need quilted. Will have to count those. Then, there are the projects that are in the piecing stages. They are all in various stages. I would guess there are at least 15 of these. Can you tell I have Quilting ADD? I get bored and have to move to something else for a while. Likely why I am decorating fabric eggs instead of working on a UFO. We are not even going to discuss the quilt on the long arm that has been on the long arm for months. It glares at me when I walk by.

Then there are the things I want to do. I have finally figured out a plan for memory quilts that will include my sister clothes as well as my parents. I will need to make 5 of these ( or 6 f I do one for myself). These take a lot of prep work. Many of the clothes are not woven so they need some interfacing. I spend an evening here or there cutting the clothes into usable pieces. It is really hard to cut into the clothes knowing who they belonged to. But, I keep thinking about my niece and nephew and carry on.

I even tried to figure out what I will be making for gifts for Christmas next year. I only make a few, so not super critical, but it would be nice to get them done in advance.

In between, I work on my charity items, pillow cases and dog beds. I have about 5 dog beds filled with scraps ready, but I wanted to make Dog food Bags to put each one in (pictures later). They don’t take a lot of time, it is just a matter of doing it.

Need to update my blog in general. Have not done that in quite a while. Slacker, I am.

Hoping that I get better at blogging and reading everyone’s blogs. You would think with covid I would have all the time in the world to do it, but nope. Seem to spend a lot of time aimlessly staring into the abyss. Need to stop that.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

A blast from the past and something new

I have been on a mad cleaning rampage in my studio and general area.

In my cleaning, I came across a couple of quilt blocks from a quilt that I made for my niece about 15 years ago.  It was a quilt full of family photo’s mostly of her but a smattering of everyone else.  The blocks were about 8 x 8 and each one had a photo in the center.  The back had Georgia Tech 20200229_164038fabric.  She got it for her college graduation from …..Georgia Tech.  Oh, and yes, I made the Minnie Mouse costume she is wearing.  I used to have a photo album of all the quilts I had made way back then, but they were lost in a flood.  I should ask her for a photo.

The other photo was in my parent’s back yard.  It was a really cute quilt.

20200229_163918So, What is new?  Well, I made myself an ironing station, finally.  I love it.  There is so much storage.  I don’t even have it filled yet (almost).  I love it.  It is fabulous.  A hare but still awesome.  I had been looking everywhere for the right storage and found it at IKEA.  Each set of drawers cost about $53.00.  The top is made out of birch, which I am told can deal with moisture and is very durable.  I hope so.

Happy Sewing, Happy Quilting

FB_IMG_1581463485613 (1)

Another finish….and just in time

My family from Germany is coming to visit.  They should be arriving in the states today.  They have three weeks planned out.  We will be meeting up with them in Washington DC in a couple of weeks.  I have never met my cousin’s wife or daughter.   I am very excited to meet them in person.  We do chat and sometimes talk on WhatsApp.

So, Sophia and Christine, love horses.  They send me videos of Sophia riding her horse frequently, which I enjoy.  So, I made a horse quilt for her.

IT gave me such grief.  Mostly due to the fact that sometimes, I am just a dumba$$.

So, this was one of the quilts that I was basting when I had the spray debacle.  Funny thing that turned out to be the least of my problems.  I had this all rolled up ready to be basted.  Thought I was ahead of the game.  Hahaha.  Turns out that as I reached the bottom of the basting, I failed to measure this quilt.  I could say I improperly measured, but truth be told, I never measured it at all.  So, turns out my backing and batting was a few inches too short.

No way to unglue all that.  I decided to quilt it and leave 6 inches unquilted and then figure out what to do.  I sort of figured that I will piece the batting and backing on.

Well, I managed to piece in the piece of batting, not a big deal.  However, I had left over 20190719_192622-1.jpgarrow fabric that I was going to use to piece across the bottom.  Wrong.  Came out totally wonky and looked like a crazy person did it.  I think the problem was that it was directional and sewing the fabric on was not as easy as I thought.  Ended up finishing the quilting without the back and hand sewing a piece clear across the back along the bottom (light green).

I really did not like this quilt the entire time I was working on it, however now that is is finished, I do like it.  It looks like a horse quilt for a little girl and that is what I was going for.  The back came out OK despite my issues.

I got word today that they were in New York.  Looking forward to meeting up with them!

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting