Sunday, October 22, 2017

I’m having a lazy day today. I did some cleaning this morning before heading out for a few groceries and a bit of other shopping. I was annoyed with myself when I got home and realized I had neglected to shop for a couple of things; I didn’t have them on my list but I was certain I would remember them. Oh well, I guess I can go back out tomorrow, or the next day, or another day.

I finished stitching the binding on my Twinkling Stars quilt last night. A mini meeting is coming up soon so I decided, while it was nice out, I should spray baste and sandwich. By the time I got a backing pieced, the batting cut, the outside table wiped down, and everything set up the wind had picked up. I went ahead and did the spray basting but I’ll start quilting it fairly soon in case the wind took more of the spray away than I thought.

I’ve done a bit of tidying up in my craft rooms but the floor still isn’t clean enough to do the vacuuming – maybe tomorrow.

While I was out today I bought yarn for a new project and pulled some yard quantities from my bins for some prayer shawls. I might do more tidying before heading downstairs to start some of that knitting.


Saturday, October 21, 2017

Our Community Quilt weekends are usually on a Saturday/Sunday but, because we sew in a Church, our “weekends” are Friday and Saturday. No wonder I am completely confused on the day of the week.

Twinkling Stars

I worked hard and managed to get a lot done. Project #1 was an easy finish – I just had to cut and machine stitch the binding to this quilt (started in 2015 according to some photos I found). I’ll probably hand stitch the binding this evening and it will be handed over at the next Guild meeting; I expect it will go as a donation to the Oncology ward at the hospital.

Criss Cross (where it looks like the lines are broken I’ve used a colour that blends in too much with the background – I’m still learning)

I had to add the borders to Project #2. I was trying a new method of squaring the sides by measuring the two sides, dividing by two and then cutting the border piece to that length. It worked well on the sides but because I wanted to add the cornerstones my math skills had to come into play. It took some figuring (a napkin and a piece of paper) but I finally got the numbers to work out right. This was my leader and ender project from last year. I didn’t like any of the backing fabric we had in the community quilt bin (although nicer stuff was added later in the weekend) so I had them cut some batting and I brought it home last night. I found some fabric so I had the quilt sandwiched today. It is ready to quilt next week.

Rail Fence

Project #3, another leader and ender project, is a lot further along than I expected. I have the three rows (of six) finished and enough blocks (partially sewn) to finish the centre portion. I found some nice soft peach-coloured fabric that I will use for borders. This won’t be done for awhile as the way I planned it there will be a centre, middle and outer portion each with borders attached. But technically this is my leader and ender project for this year so I’m already (sort of) ahead of the game.

I finished my knitting project last night. I don’t know if I’ll have time for knitting tonight but I have two new projects picked out just in case.


Thursday, October 19, 2017

I spent most of the morning on my computer – paying some bills and booking my flight to Saskatoon in November. Before my lunch break though I had time to trim my Twinkling Stars quilt and cut out strips for the binding. I’ll attach the binding at the bee on Friday but I wanted to have the cutting done ahead of time (often there are too many distractions at a bee for me to concentrate on my measurements). That particular project won’t take long but I have another community quilt that needs borders attached. I dug out the top and found the border material; once the border is attached I’ll have the other bee workers sandwich it for me. We have several stations at these Community Quilt bees so people who don’t want to sew do the pressing and the sandwiching. I think this one will be mostly straight-line quilting but I think I will bring it home to quilt. My project for the second day of the bee will be to continue with my Leader and Ender project. I have enough blocks ready that I think I can sew them together and at least get the centre part of the top done; if not done it will at least be better than the hundred blocks I currently have sitting in a bin.

But before all that happens we have a demo night at the Guild tonight. I packed up the fabric and bits that I need for the project and they are ready to go.

Since I’m doing a lot of sewing this weekend I decided I should clean and oil my machine. That was almost a disaster as when I got it apart I had a hard time getting it back together. And the part that really should have been oiled was missed but I didn’t dare take it apart a second time! It is very noisy when I’m stitching but there will probably be enough chatter in the room that I won’t offend anyone.

Pat went across to the studio this afternoon so I’m on my own for a few days. I know I need lunches for the next two days so I’d better get some eggs boiled and find something for my dinner.


Wednesday, October 18, 2017

I know you think everyday is a quilting day for me – Pat certainly likes to spread that rumor around. But today was “real” quilting, not just cutting, piecing or sandwiching.

I’ve been working (in very short burst) at quilting a Community Quilt I’ve had on the go for a couple of years. The stabilizing was all done and my goal, before Friday (our Community Quilting day), was to have it ready for binding. The free-motion in the centre of the quilt went really quickly. I used my standard looping pattern. The thread I used in the centre of the quilt hardly shows at all. In fact I had to feel the top to be sure I had all the blocks done. The backing has a pattern on it and you see even less of the quilting on the back.

I looked for something different for the borders but since getting it done was the priority I decided to loop the border as well. The quilting shows up more in the borders but, from a distance, my errors blend in well. By my lunch break I had one side of the border done so, as long as my machine behaves, I shouldn’t have any trouble getting it finished tomorrow.

Gail, the woman who hosts our hand stitching afternoons, has a long arm quilting machine and has said she would rent time on it. Today four of us spent the afternoon with Gail for a brief introduction to the machine. By the end of the afternoon we had all had a chance to “drive”. I’m really going to like this option for larger quilts, but I’ll start with something small (which I don’t have made yet). We are going to work in pairs, one quilting and one watching and learning. I’m pairing up with a woman who does feathers and I’m hoping to learn from watching her.


Tuesday, October 17, 2017

I usually take Carola with me when I go to sewing as she doesn’t drive. Last week I was asked if I would contact one of our more senior members who no longer can drive to offer her a ride to all our events. I said I would but when I called her yesterday to see if she wanted to come to the bee today she said she was going to Vancouver for a few days. So I was on my own.

Its a good thing I took several projects with me. I finished off my Row-by-Row block for one of the monthly challenges at the Guild. I had already done the hard part, and the cutting for the rest was done, so it didn’t take long to finish. I’m hoping the rest of the rows will also feature some places around Powell River. The water wheel on the highway advertising their campground is very visible, but it wasn’t until last year on my birthday that we actually investigated the beach.

Once that project was done I started in on my mini for the next Mini Meez meeting. Yesterday, as I was packing up, I cut the strips I needed for the project and read the first page of the tutorial to put it together. It was too long to remember so I saved the pages onto my iPad and intended to take it with me to the bee today. As with many of my good intentions I completely forgot the iPad so didn’t get any further than sewing the strips together. It is a Hallowe’en-themed project so, if I want to use it this year, I’d better get it done quickly.

Luckily I had a third project with me – my hexagon sewing kit. This project was taught on a series of two Tuesday at least two years ago but, like so many of my class projects, it never got done. My attempt this year is to finish off some of those old projects and over another week or two of bees I just may get it done.

I have one ball of yarn left to knit on my baby blanket and then I can move on to something else. Sadly I’m on a reverse knitting pattern just now as somewhere in the pattern I lost a stitch. After that is done I think I’ll call it quits (for this year) on Salvation Army donations because I have two other groups I want to knit for. As soon as I can get the proper yarn for Jennifer McKnight’s Twinkle Star project I want to knit up a few for her. The church where we sew also has a Prayer Shawl ministry and I volunteered to do some work for them; one of our Guild members gave me a few books to pick some patterns from so I’ve copied out three patterns and hope to use up some of my worsted weight yarns.