Thursday, October 24, 2019

Keep Out the Chill

 #1 SOLD
Sometimes I get cold, and sometimes I get hot, so it pays to have something to toss on or off depending on my temperature. Here's my solution. A lovely silk and merino handknit cowl, which can be worn several ways, is light as a feather, yet cuddly warm. One of a kind, available for $60, email me.

 #2 This is a favorite scarf which doubles as a headcovering on those really cold and snowy days, handknit in variegated merino wools, $50. SOLD

 #3 And one with a few more colors, also handknit in merino wools. $50.

 #4 For a bit of luxury, this is merino, cashmere and silk, in solid lavender and a multicolored contrast. $50

 #5 SOLD Really fun, long and funky, this cowl is knit from cottons, silks, wools and viscose and comes in any color you like, all at the same time. $50. Pick one for yourself and one for that hard to shop for person on your list. Paypal and personal check accepted. Shipping included.

Monday, October 21, 2019

New Charity Work: Solids

If you look at Pinterest like I do (a daily coffee time perusal) then you will have seen Marla Varner's prize winning cross quilt, At the Junction. I love love love that quilt and had to try my hand at making a bunch of cross blocks. First I bought fat quarters of every color Waverly cotton from my local Walmart and began cutting them into equal size squares. Stacking three pieces and cutting through and reassembling, was the process. I HATED THE PROCESS. I made a bunch and lost interest and put the whole collection in a bin. 
Recently it dawned on me to square up a few blocks and then they wouldn't be so difficult to use. But I soon lost interest again. Back into the bin. Then the Thursday quilters found my bin and immediately began to put the trimmed blocks and leftover strips up on the design wall. INSTANTLY it was thrilling and whamo! We had our next project. With coordinating rectangles and scrap strips sewn together, it was ready to assemble. The session ended with most of the design ready to sew, and the following day I made a dozen more crosses to fill in the bare spots and voila!

None of this could have happened without the enthusiastic response of my fellow quilters, and the new design wall. When I began to make these crosses, I had only a tiny 48" square wall and was stuck on the idea of just using cross blocks for the finished work. Spacing them out with strips and rectangles made it all work beautifully. The unquilted top is 61x83". Good news: I have lots of squares leftover, plus some skinny edge strips which I began assembling today. Stay tuned for more work in solids. 

A note on the scrap situation: It is still unresolved. We got distracted again by fun sewing, with fun shapes and fun colors. Most of our scraps are blah leftovers, so it is no wonder they sit in multiple bins. I did spend several hours cutting them into various size squares, and eventually those will be used, yawn.
But you know, one comment was so right on point. 
 ...we hang onto far more things than we need and as a consequence instead of motivating us, they become talismans of guilt and shame... you hold onto things based on hope. But when you don't use the stuff, the items begin to control your freedom and you get stuck in the past instead of moving forward.
If nothing else, I think this really needs to be part of the internal work we are doing.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Bye Bye Bins of Bits

 We are winding down our scrappy projects as we had previously decided to end in November, which (gasp!) is only two weeks away. 
This simple top is made from our leftover four patches paired with white with red dots, aka Dotted Swiss. 
Despite the aim of using up our Original Instigator's stash, we have actually used more of our Downtown member's and my stash, for which we are GRATEFUL. Unfortunately, we still have mega bins of leftovers and one must have intestinal fortitude to decide what to do with them. I am voting for tossing them, but I only have one vote. We meet today and I'll see who I can sway. 
There comes a point where we must face that it is far nicer and easier and more expeditious to start and end with fresh cut fabrics, rather than try to make scraps work into something worthwhile. Those of you who sew clothes are not so distraught over tossing out those scraps which wouldn't work into anything else wearable. So since we are not pioneers out on the vast prairie, and still have mountains of uncut yardage on our shelves, would it be so terrible to say Bye Bye to bins of bits?

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Today's Cardivest Ensemble

One of my all time most fave knitting designs, the Cardivest in Noro Silk Garden and Malabrigo Rios, a yummy combo of silk and merino wool, soft, drapey and not itchy, with flattering vertical ribbing. Mother of Pearl buttons. This size is 48" by 26.5" long. 

 I am including in this offer a coordinating scarf in Noro Taiyo, in cotton, silk and a bit of wool. It measures 50" at the wingspan by 18" at its deepest point.  $100 plus $10 shipping. Email me.

Monday, October 7, 2019

My new table

 At last my new sewing table has arrived! I asked for suggestions and got them, so thank you all. The best deal was the SewEzi and it was just what I expected. My machine fits in it perfectly and the surface is super smooth and white with purple to match the purple on my machine.
Assembly was easy too. I am expert at anything using an Allen wrench! The height is exactly where I want it to be, lined up with my larger table, thanks to the furniture moving pads I placed under the feet.
As for sewing on it...I can make it jiggle if I am going a hundred mph but I know this is not going to be my quilting machine, just my piecing machine which means slower sewing, usually. The insert is specifically cut for my Janome 6500P, and they offer inserts for all brands.

 It has little wheels, which imho are superfluous, as picking it up to move it is easier than picking up my dog. Only 23 pounds, sans machine, which you wouldn't be dragging as a unit. 

 The smooth transition to the bigger table is the best part, and of course the fact that the machine sits level rather than on top of a table is why I had to have this. Yup, I'm a happy camper.

Friday, October 4, 2019

Assembling Tops

 The Thursday girls had a day off since I had a doctor's appointment to deal with my aching knees. I was lucky and got right in at 10am and 40 minutes later had been shot up with cortisone in both knees, after having X-rays taken. Wow! What a difference. I am so optimistic that I won't have to live in pain night and day anymore. 
To celebrate, I got up early and started assembling the sewn parts to two Tuesday Quilters tops. This first one is 16patches and measures 62 x80ish. We have oodles more 4 patches to use up from this collection. Starting with 2.5" strips and sewing and cutting them down. 

 Then I sewed the 12 big rail fence star blocks. Each block is 18.5" so the finished top is about 54x 72"and will probably or maybe get a border. We'll see. 
 The Thursday quilters finished our Dutch Wax top and got it sewn together triumphantly last week, but it is only getting posted today. 
Next week my Tuesday quilters have off and I was bringing in the Thursday quilters in their place but now, Dave has a doctor's appointment in the same time frame so again we'll get a day off. 
This works out for me, because there are a huge stack of finished quilts that need binding, which is my job. 
Happy to do it. Actually, happy to be doing anything without pain. And praise God there seems to be an end to our horrific heat wave coming this weekend. I am so over summer.