Friday, May 29, 2009

Professional Tote

My niece Nicole will start her student teaching this semester and requested a "Professional Bag" like the one I made for my daughter. Here is Nicole's bag. I hope she likes it!

Friday, May 22, 2009

It's been a beautiful Spring

It's been a beautiful Spring and lots and lots of yard work has been done around here. I basically act as a "sidewalk supervisor" as my DH does the work. But, even supervising outside caused this redhead to get burned to a crisp over the last few days.

Today - DH will install my new little fountain and I have flowers to plant. I can no longer work on my knees, so will be putting flowers in various barrels and pots about the house.

Then - back to my studio. I have lots of things lined up that need to be done and even more things in mind that I WANT to do.

Monday, May 4, 2009

I MUST learn to use this serger!

I needed to use the new serger I got last summer and when I pulled it out, I realized that I didn't have the foggiest idea what I was doing! I have used a serger for years, but this new Babylock Imagine serger is still very new to me!
I was able to make the "jet air threading" mechanism work - and I love that as much today as I did the day I purchased it! I was also able to use the needle threader. Another big plus! But then, I was stuck......

I reviewed the book that came with the serger and I reviewed the book that I downloaded by by Janet Spink who is an authority on the Babylock overlockers.

I really think that I need to sit down with this machine and take it thru all of the different feet that came with it and see if I can duplicate all of the neat things that Ms. Spink says it will do!

If I get to the big city this week, I may stop by the dealer and see if they have one of the workbooks that Babylock put out to assist people in learning to use this machine. They are very pricey and that is probably why I didn't purchase it when I purchased the serger.

I will put that on my list of things "to do" this week. The first thing I need to do is finish the "special request" bag for my sister in North Carolina. Then I need to make sure that I have enough tumbler blocks cut for my newest quilt top. Then I can start putting them together. Looks like it could be a busy week in the studio. Have a great day!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Hand Piecing a Trip Around the World

One of my "stashbuster" friends was looking for some easy hand piecing to do while away for a few days.

Several years ago, I went home to live with my parents to be a private duty nurse for my dad during his last few weeks. I took with me a box of squares, all cut from Christmas fabric. I also took just a few needles, several pins, a spool of white thread and these fabulous directions on "Concentric Piecing".

It is believed that the pioneer women pieced the Trip Around The World in circles around the center piece, rather than in strips as often done now. Here is the link for the directions to do the piecing. I do not know who the person is that posted these directions in her Webshots album, but she is a genius!

I did finish that quilt top before my Dad died. It did take me a few months to be able to put it on the frame to quilt it, but I did - it's done - and one of my most precious quilts! Here is a picture of that quilt.

Another bag finish

Another bag is finished.

The bag is pretty, bigger than I expected to be and most of all DONE!

This was the bag from #$%^ The pattern itself - not for the faint of heart - and definitely not a "first bag" had no pictures or diagrams, only text to explain what needed to be done for each step.

Now, I've been sewing for 40 years, quilting for 20 and making bags for a couple of years and this one was awful! The company really needs to do something about the directions for this pattern!

Also - the pattern specifically called for each piece to be basted to lightweight cotton batting. I used the lightest bat they make and there were times I was sewing thru 8 thicknesses of "stuff".

Before I make this one again, (and I'm sure I will) I'll be rewritting the directions and deciding what does and does not have to be padded! Whew! My shoulders, wrists and hands will need a day or two to recover.

Have a great day

Beth (in rainy Michigan)