Friday, June 22, 2012

Road Trip!

I've been on a road trip for business this week, and what a delight to sit on my hotel room balcony and see these views! Some road trips are just better than others!


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Depths of the Deep Blue Sea

I live in the mountains, yet I am always drawn toward the sea. It's a 700 mile trek to get to the Oregon Coast, which is the shortest distance from my mountains to the sea. It's a trip I don't get to make very often.

So, to remind me of the great peace I feel when I get a chance to walk the shoreline, I made this wall hanging.

It was so much fun to make! Part of the fun was collecting the cajillion different fabrics to add to the waves. It was definitely a work in progress for many moons.

Another neat thing about this wall hanging, is that I added real seashells that I scavenged along the beach, or bought at a gift shop - a great reminder of the good memories I have of the ocean!

I used a pattern from Skinny Quilts and Table Runners called By the Sea by Karen Eckmeier.  The quilt measures 12 x 48 inches.   I've placed it in the stairwell that leads to the lower level of our home where I have my office and quilting room, so I get to see it many times during the day. Heavenly!

It was such a fun little quilt to make. When I look at it, I can almost smell the beach and surf and feel the breeze blowing through my hair. It's all good!

If you like my Skinny Quilt, hope on over to the Summer Sewing Contest at Ellison Lane Quilts to vote for this in the Home Decor section. Or, vote for whichever quilts you like best. There are a lot of talented quilters out there!

Linking up to: Summer Sewing Contest 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Quilting in the snow. In June.

It was supposed to be a work weekend.

We came to our cabin in order to finish the painting and repairs to the lower level after the snow melt had seeped in and ruined the sheet rock. Then, in order to prep the house for staining and then chinking the logs, we were going to start stripping out the old plastic chinking that a previous owner had put on the outside logs.

We did get the painting done and the family room put back together. But the outside work:  zilch! Here's why:

It snowed all day! One flurry after another. Got up to a whopping 39 degrees. I even had to shovel snow off the deck.  Someone pinch me. Isn't this June?  I know we're in the Idaho mountains, but I sure could use a dose of summer.

The hummers are confused, but still hungry!

Come to think about it, they're always hungry!

So, what's a girl to do after the chores are done on a cold, snowy, summer day? Quilt, of course!  Fortunately I brought my sewing machine along and threw together a few necessities, and I was in business.

And this is the quilt I was working on. It is my Work In Progress quilt. About three years In Progress, in fact. It was my first big quilt project, a queen size, and I have done so many things wrong with it.  I did buy nice quality flannel for the top, but not knowing any better, I wanted to save money and found some 'cheap' flannel for the backings. Big mistake. It shrunk to about half its original size, and then I had to figure out to manipulate it to fit.

Then I bought thread from a quilting shop that was going out of business. It was Aurifil thread, so I figured it had to be good. It was good thread, but it was a 12 weight. It worked out beautifully on this flannel quilt with a lofty polyester batting (I had wanted it to be a really comfy, cozy, comforter-type quilt for the cabin.)  But the large spool I bought quickly ran out and I soon found out that nobody carries 12 weights! I searched and searched and searched until finally I found an online store in the Northeast - Follow That Thread - that had some of the same thread on order. Yeah! I was back in business.

I finished the machine quilting last month, and yesterday I cut out and attached the binding, and began hand-stitching it to the back. That's a long process! After 90 minutes, I thought I should be getting about done, but much to my dismay, I was less than half finished. Oh, well, I should be able to finish it up today and then decide which bed it will grace.

It has been quite a fun project to work on, and it was something just for me!

What's on your docket for today?

Fresh Poppy Design

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Schedule Your Facebook Posts

I ran across this little tip today from Craftblog UK and I thought it was such a neat way to save time. And after all, if it saves time on the computer and allows me to sit at my sewing machine longer, I'm all for it!

If you have a Page on Facebook, you now have the ability to schedule postings within Facebook, and it's as simple as clicking on the little clock that appears in the bottom left-hand corner of your Status Updates.

Click on the clock and it brings up selection for  year, month, day, hour and minute.

You can check all your scheduled posts by going to your Activity Log, which is within the Edit Page tab in the Admin section.  This is one nice addition from Facebook!

Plus, it might give you a little more time to enjoy your weekend!


Sunday, June 3, 2012

It's official: I am a quilter!

Get ready for some extreme silliness. Yesterday I finally declared myself A Quilter!

I really shouldn't put myself out here like this, exposing all my foibles for the world to see. But learning to use my long arm quilting machine has been a Work In Progress. I have been playing with it, and practicing with it, and figuring out tensions issues and balance issues, and then practicing some more. I have an almost queen-sized practice piece that sat on my machine for a month!

But yesterday was D-Day. Determination Day.  Just lay aside my fears and just DO it!

I had already done several free-style projects, with swirls and loops and leaves (that looked like hearts) and a few feathers. I'd always back myself into some corner and have to get real creative on how to quilt myself out of it. At least it has been a good exercise in keeping my brain refreshed and young, you know, trying new things and forcing myself to think differently.

Oops, I digress.  But the point is, yesterday I loaded up a lap quilt I'd made and quilted it with a pantograph. And you know what? It actually looks like a real quilt. I AM SO EXCITED!
I still have to bind it, but I just wanted to share my joy with you. I have my first paying customer to quilt for this week - three quilts! I'm on my way.


Linking up with  Quilting by the River, Sew Modern Monday and Quilt Story!

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