Friday, July 23, 2021

Moving Right Along

 


Now that I have finished the two blue/cream quilt tops (one is quilted and ready for binding) and the top for a table runner made from those same fabrics (BIG WHEW!)....I'm moving on. Summer is almost over and Sadie will be with us every day very soon, so I'm spending a couple of weeks cutting more bow tie blocks for my cheddar bow tie quilt. I hope to get back to work on this over the Fall season. I think I'm almost halfway done with this quilt top.


I started a new quilt. This is the Courthouse Steps quilt I mentioned a few posts ago. I hope to make a few of these blocks in the next week or so. I really love the fabric and colors and plan to hang this quilt behind our bed. Eventually....

Last week I had a wonderful lunch with some of my high school girlfriends. We met in Birmingham so I wouldn't have to drive all the way to north Alabama. Wasn't that nice of them? I have not seem some of them in decades and we had fun catching up.

I also made another day trip to Wetumpka with some of my Auburn friends. We had a lovely time, though it was sweltering hot. We walked around town, shopped, and had a nice lunch at Coach's Corner. I came home with three new dresses and two tops. Yay me! Yes, I bought a few things at Tapp 18!

And that's the update from here! Are you watching the Olympics? We are watching a good bit. We'll be rooting for Suni Lee, one of the female gymnasts who will be a freshman here at Auburn this Fall. Go Suni!

Continue to stay safe!

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Quilting with my Embroidery Module

 

This was my third time attempting machine quilting with my embroidery module. This time went very well. I have my Weightless Quilter frame set up, supporting the weight of the quilt to prevent drag. I'm using a magnetic hoop, making re-hooping fast. But the best tip I can share, if you're interested in this, is the batting. 

I tried out Birdie Bird batting. This is a game changer! The batting is advertised as needing no pins or basting spray to baste the layers together. The batting is supposed to simply cling to the quilt top and backing. I was skeptical. But it worked beautifully! I was amazed at how well it worked. I will admit that I did put a few safety pins around the outside edges...because of my skepticism. But I really didn't have to. The quilt has NO puckers or tucks on the backside. I LOVE THIS BATTING!

I'll show the final results soon.



I finished the other quilt top I made with the remaining fabric from the bundle. I plan to prepare it for quilting in the next couple of days.


I celebrated a birthday with family. Here's my yummy cake.


I'm still walking every morning before it gets hot.  I spotted this fairy tale worthy snail on one of my recent walks. I've never seen a snail quite like this in person! 

That's the update from here. Continue to stay safe!


Monday, July 5, 2021

Progress


I was only planning to cut this quilt out this summer, ready for Fall sewing. Well, I got carried away. Top is complete. It's will be a lap size quilt.



And then I finished the strippy thing I was making into a table runner for our 9 foot dining table - the runner is 100" long - will be perfect once I quilt it. It was cloudy today - sorry for the dark photo.


 For some reason, I want to use up the rest of the fabric and get it out! I bought it as a large fat quarter pack, so I hate to put the scraps back in my stash separated by color. So  I cut the remaining fabric into little rectangles.


And I started making this quilt. It will be another lap quilt. 



The pattern is in this book; in fact, it's the cover quilt. I like this book - every quilt is made from rectangles, but are so different and pretty. This quilt is going quickly! I expect to be done with the top in a week or so.



Hubby and I recently took a day trip to Wetumka, AL, where HGTV's Hometown Takeover took place recently. We loved it! We had the best time walking around town and appreciating all the beautiful changes. Wetumka is only an hour from here - lucky us! We'll definitely go back again soon.

Continue to stay safe!

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Summer Sewing

 








 

Here's what's going on around here.

On the left is Glitter, one block per day. They're adding up, aren't they?

In the middle is an old UFO. I'm determined to get getting some older projects completed! When I pulled this out of the archives I had three block units made. Each block unit has one large plus sign and two small ones. Making progress!

On the right: 

While making the plus sign quilt, I'm ending up with lots of strips of fabric. I started sewing the strips together, cutting them into different widths, and sewing them back together. Just playing. And somehow I have started another quilt. Wait a minute! I'm trying to finish up old projects, not start new ones! How does this happen??? But I like it so I'll keep going - maybe a leader/ender project?

If you're interested...the strips are 1.5 inches wide. Some are cut to 2.5", some are 3.5", and some are 4.5".

I'm in one of those moods this week where I'm sick of cooking. What's for dinner? I don't know! We'll figure it out! Are you sick of cooking? Easy, healthy dinner ideas are welcome! Please! 

Continue to stay safe!


Sunday, June 13, 2021

An Update

I've been away from the blog for a bit.  So here's a quick update on life around here.

I rode on a Harley! First time on a motorcycle - I was given a ride by our friend, Sam.  



We had a goat on our boat - that's me holding Sadie as a goat leaped on our boat from Goat Island. He was looking for a handout. And we gave him one once he got off the boat.

We've been going to the lake about once per week to ride the boat and the Seadoos - we don't stay overnight because the house is still in a state of demolition due to our water leak.

I started a new hand pieced quilt - Jen Kingwell's Glitter. I've been stitching on block every day. Every Sunday I cut out block kits for the upcoming week. It's amazing how the blocks pile up only doing one per day. 

I'm using colors from my sewing closet wallpaper.



Dark photo - but I have a new addition to my sewing machine family. Meet my Bernina 480. She makes a nice companion to my much larger Bernina 750 QE.  The 480 will go on retreats with me, go around town when sewing with friends, and be my backup machine when the 750 is in embroidery mode. I love her already!

I had a little scare when I found a lump under my arm. A week of worry. We went to UAB and after imaging and meeting with a few folks, all is well. It was just a cyst. Whew!

I'm still walking every single day. I have to do it either first thing in the morning or just before the sun sets. The summer heat and humidity have set in, for sure.

Continue to stay safe!






Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Machine Embroidery End to End Quilting Update

 



I finally figured out the error message I was getting on my machine while doing the end to end quilting with my embroidery module! It was DRAG! When I got the error, there was a bit of quilt caught under the hoop. Okay! Now I can deal with this. I finally got the Winter Blues quilted. I still have some things to learn doing this - I need to work on lining up each hooping a little better, but I learn something each time.


Here's the final quilt, trimmed and ready for binding. I added navy binding and now I'm about halfway around with the hand sewing.


We took a break from life one morning last week and went to the lake to have FUN instead of all the work we've had to do after the water damage. Here I am on my new SeaDoo.


And here's Hubby on his.  We had fun zooming around the lake for and hour or so and then stopped on the way home for some lunch. How wonderful it is to go OUT to eat again!


I also put together this little soft book for Sadie last week - it was fun to do!


And another finish! Here's the half square triangle quilt. My long arm quilter friend did her thing quickly. I got the binding on over the weekend. It looks great in our living room.



Here's the minky on the backside. Love the modern quilting pattern! Today is our 37th wedding anniversary and I gave this quilt to Hubby as his gift. 

Demo is done at the lake house. We're supposed to get the estimate for repairs later this week and send it on to insurance. New flooring is scheduled to be installed at the end of June. Not sure how long the cabinetry for kitchen will take. But we can still enjoy the lake. We can use the bathrooms and even sleep there - just no kitchen or sofas, etc. 

Continue to stay safe!


Monday, May 17, 2021

Retreat!


I got back yesterday from our guild's yearly quilting retreat. It was fabulous! It made life feel normal again. Wonderful fun. Lots of laughing. Met some new friends. Enjoyed old friends. Drank wine. Sewed LOTS! 

I usually work on a few projects, but this time I focused on this quilt top. I arrived with all the half square triangles cut with my Accuquilt. 



I sewed one row at a time. Sunday morning I finished the quilt top! Marathon sewing. Last night when I got home, I ordered minky for the backing. When it comes in I'll let a longarm friend quilt it for me. Boom!

Today has been for unpacking. I took way too many projects to sew! And I took way too many snacks - haha! Almost all of the stuff is put away now. 

Today was also for catching up on laundry - not my favorite, but I'm done now.

Now I can go back to my regularly scheduled quilting.

Continue to stay safe!

 

Monday, May 10, 2021

Updates on Quilting and Lake House


I still haven't done much sewing since our lake home leak, so I thought I'd share some photos of the hand quilting on Marshal/Blessings.


This was all done pre LL (Lake Leak). 


Friday night we actually went out to eat INSIDE a restaurant. The restaurant is called Dough and they make amazing pizza. Mine (above) is the Farmer with mushrooms, artichoke hearts, fresh tomato, roasted onion, tomato sauce, mozzarella, arugula. Fabulous!



It felt so strange to be in a restaurant after more than a year, but we felt safe. All servers wore masks and the tables were spaced sufficiently apart.


Yesterday I was determined to sew, so I sat down at my Bernina with the embroidery module to start quilting Winter Blues. I was on my first hooping when I kept getting this message. UGH. I kept restarting and would get the message again and again. Then the embroidery module had sort of a seizure. Really. 

It was moving back and forth and making a weird noise. I shut everything down and quit for the day.

I'm about to go back in and try it again. Fingers crossed that the embroidery module is feeling better today after a good night's rest. 

Over the weekend I packed up the entire lake kitchen (insert sad face here!). ServPro provided us boxes, bubble wrap, and packing tape. Hubby has hauled everything from the crawl space that we want to discard. By the way, the crawl space is pretty tall - you can walk upright in most of it. 

ServPro will haul the pile away for us. Tomorrow (Tuesday) ServPro will tear out the kitchen cabinets and flooring. I'm hoping they can avoid pulling out the upper cabinets, but we'll see about that. After demo, they will continue to dry out everything and treat the mold. 

At this point our remodelers will come in and make a list of what they need to order to put it all back together. 

We were able to get the water on just to the bathrooms, so while we are there we'll have toilets and sinks. Hubby also scrubbed the screened porch free from pollen, so we'll have a spot to sit in the shade when we go for day trips this summer. 

Continue to stay safe!







 

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

A Long Week

 


Last Friday morning I spray basted Winter Blues in our driveway. I really don't enjoy spray basting, but since I'm planning on quilting this with my embroidery module for my machine, it had to be done.

 

Later that day...Daughter 2 graduated with her MBA from Auburn, achieved over the last 2 years while working full time. She has been BUSY! Unfortunately, Hubby had miss all this fun.

We found out mid day (from our lake neighbors) that water was pouring out of our lake home. Not good.

Hubby rushed there (it's about an hour away) with one of our son-in-laws. They shut the water off at the street, and surveyed the damage. There was a broken something in a pipe or fitting under the kitchen sink. The kitchen, dining, and living rooms were flooded. Ugh. We just remodeled this home a few years ago, as you may remember.

Long story made short....used a wet vac to remove the standing water. Set up fans and dehumidifiers. Serv Pro is now helping, or at least they will be soon. We know the hardwood floors will have to be replaced. Most likely the lower kitchen cabinets will have to be replaced also. We are hoping the subfloors can be saved. There is already mold growing in the crawl space - Serv Pro will take care of this. Luckily the furniture is fine, except for the living room rug. We have lost a few things stored in the crawl space. 

It could have been much worse. All bedrooms are fine. Once the mold is gone we could still stay there overnight, but there will be no kitchen for quite some time. 



Our view is still fantastic. So for now it will be day trips, but that's okay. It's life. Life happens.

So quilting....we've been so busy going back and forth to the lake to work...absolutely nothing has happing quilting-wise since I basted the quilt! I'll get back at it soon, I'm sure.

Continue to stay safe!

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

This and That and Wallpaper

 


I finally decided on a peel and stick wallpaper for my sewing room closet! I love this print!

It didn't take long to install it. I finished it Saturday (with a tiny bit of help from Hubby). I have ordered a ruler rack for the side of the closet - I'll share more once it comes in.



We had a huge hail storm here Saturday. I've never experienced hail like this before - it was like we were under attack. Luckly, no damage for us.


Strawberries! These became a delicious strawberry cobbler and strawberry bars. Yum!


I've been busy at my Accuquilt cutting half square triangle pieces. HUNDREDS of half square triangle pieces. Theses will be various shades of gray paired with a grunge white. I'm going to a quilt retreat in a few weeks (TRIPLE YAY!) and I'll take these to sew. 

I've made progress on my Blessings/Marshal hand quilting. I'll share a photo next time. 

Every single day is filled and busy with Sadie, quilting, and golf (for Hubby). We love our busy life. Sadie is walking a bit now so she is officially a 'toddler.' Fun times!

Continue to stay safe!






Monday, April 19, 2021

On to Hand Quilting and Jen Kingwell


This one little picture represents a lot of work/fun. Thursday I finished all the ditch quilting on Blessings/Marshal. That was indeed a big relief to my shoulders and chest muscles. A LOT of quilt wrestling!! 

Thursday night was our virtual quilt guild meeting and we were fortunate to have Jen Kingwell give our program...all the way from Australia. She gave a wonderful program, just sitting and chatting about how she got to the point she is in her quilting career. She also shared lots of quilts she has designed, including Marshal. It was interesting that she said that she had to design Marshal completely before she ever took a stitch and this is different than she usually works. It seems she usually starts by making a block or two and letting the design evolve as she sews. 

Jen also said that because of the way she had to work on Marshall (she was hired to do this quilt by Quiltmania), she was not totally pleased with the final design and that she had seen other Marshal quilts (where the quilter did their own thing with the units) that she preferred over her own. I think she would like mine - I'll send her a picture when I'm done. 

Jen Kingwell handpieces and hand quilts most of her own quilts. After the program we could ask questions - I asked her what hand quilting thread she uses. Aurifil 12 weight. So Friday morning  I went to my sewing room to see if I had any. YES! I found one spool of 12 wt and it was the perfect color for this quilt. Lucky me!


Jen (we're on a first name basis now - haha!) also showed one quilt on which she quilting enough around the outside edges to sew on the binding early in the process and then she could go back and finish the quilt. Eureka! So I started the hand quilting process on Friday around the last border. I can do this because the entire quilt has been stitched in the ditch. Saturday morning I finished the border quilting, trimmed the quilt. and made the binding. Saturday afternoon I machine sewed the binding in place. Sunday afternoon I finished hand stitching the binding down.


And here we are now. Let the hand quilting continue! 

Continue to stay safe!








 

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Backside of Machine Embroidery Quilting AND Another Happy Bird

 


Paula asked on Facebook to see the backside of this little quilt. She wanted to know if the quilting looked as good on the back. I think it does - what do you think? I will definitely keep doing more quilts like this.


And here is the latest Happy Bird. Always good to finish one of these. 

I'm happy to report that my shoulder and chest muscle pain died down after a couple of days of rest. Tuesday I was able to quilt a bit more stitch in the ditch on Blessing (Marshal). I only have one more large motif to quilt around that involves quilt wrestling with my machine. And then it will be on to the borders
which require no wrestling at all. Yay! I hope to do this later today.

Continue to stay safe!

Sunday, April 11, 2021

One Thing Figured Out!



I called the sweet people at DIME (Designs in Machine Embroidery) and they knew what I was doing wrong. Yay! It worked! I made this photo big so hopefully you can see the machine quilting done by my embroidery machine. I still need some practice in lining up each time, but this was a good little top on which to practice.


Done!


Here's the backing I used. 

I've decided to wait until the next instructions (for the road) come out to fix my Color My World quilt. I think it will be easier to do the road first, and then put the houses together again.

I did a bit more quilting in the ditch on my Blessings (Marshal) quilt yesterday. Unfortunately, it was a bit too much. Today my shoulders and chest are sore. No sewing for me today. I hate my new body. It doesn't cooperate when I want it to.....

Continue to stay safe....

 

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

 


I have not accomplished much in the last couple of weeks. I did get these babies stitched together. And I've embroidered one more hexit.



I've made a bit of progress on the Needle Dance cross stitch project.


And we've bought oodles of plants and flowers for our yard. This hanging basket is one of my favorite finds - Trailing Fuchsia - Corabells Dark Eyes. I just love the buds - they look like little balls. And the blooms are lucious, aren't they?


Here's where my frustrations have come in. I bought a new machine embroidery hoop. It's a DIME (Designs in Machine Embroidery) magnetic hoop. Designs by Juju sells quilting end-to-end quilting software. I bought the hoop to try this out for myself. To begin, you have to baste the quilt with adhesive spray. That's the picture you see above - I spray basted this little scrappy top that I made over 10 years ago. I thought a small quilt would be good for practice.


Here I have the basted quilt in the hoop, hooked to my Bernina. And that's where I stopped. I couldn't get it to go. I think I'll call the DIME people tomorrow and ask for help. I'm determined to figure this out!


And here's my other OOPS. The April instructions for Color My World had me make the trees and then sew the house units together to make a circle. Trees made. BUT, when I sewed the units together...they don't lie flat. EEK. I have now taken it apart and will sew it back together again. It will lay flat by the end of the month. IT MUST!

Other than that, we've been busy with the lake. We bought 2 new SeaDoos and had them delivered over the weekend. We spent a nice day there yesterday and went on a boat ride. We are definitely ready for summer at the lake!

Stay safe!