Sunday, June 25, 2017

QUILTING!

After our morning walk I got started working on the Red Love quilt.  First I had to figure out the stupid bobbin winder.  I want to use Aurifil thread - I have a spool of red I ordered for this quilt.  But, I couldn't get the damn stuff to anchor itself to the bobbin so that it would wind.  It just kept slipping.  I tried some polyester thread and it wound on there fine.  Darrell suggested that I just tie the red thread to the polyester that was already on the bobbin.  Great idea - that worked!  So I got one bobbin wound and started quilting.

I'm using the HandiQuilter Versa-tool ruler.  Doing little arches - and I'm doing much better than I thought.  I was practicing with this ruler yesterday and was having a difficult time.  Maybe sometime in my sleep last night my brain figured out how to use it.  It's looking good!




I got maybe half of it quilted, but it took hours.  I finally had to quit because it was too hot up in the studio.  It's supposed to be 95 degrees today.  Too hot.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

LOADED FIRST QUILT

Well, I finished the practice quilting on the small piece that Kim loaded up on my A1 Quilting Machine after she put it together.  I used up all the space.  So, I unloaded it and loaded on a real quilt.

This is a quilt top I made years ago using 4" red squares from a fabric exchange I participated in.  I can't remember if it was through Pieces Quilt Shop or through Issaquah Quilters.  Either way, I ended up with two red quilt tops which have been languishing in incompleteness for 10 or more years now.

I purchased some quilt backing from Connecting Threads a while ago, thinking I'd use these tops as practice when my A1 got here.  The backing is icky, too.

For the last few days I've been thinking about how I want to quilt it.  I'm still conflicted.  I think I'm going to use the Versa-tool ruler from HandiQuilter, and do a gentle curve on each seam, but I may change my mind tomorrow (but probably not).  It seems boring, but I need the practice.


The back is on the frame.

I used the table to size and cut the batting - worked great!

All loaded up, ready to quilt.

I decided to add the centering tape to the machine.  I did it while I turned up Dread Zeppelin and let the neighbors enjoy that one song, too.  I can't help myself - I love their songs!



So, then I tried to wind some of the thread I want to use onto a bobbin using the Bobbin  Winder that came with the A1.  What a piece of junk.  Kim was having trouble with it and fussed with it when she wound some bobbins for me.  I'm having a different kind of trouble with it.  I fussed with it a little then gave up.   I hot and tired.  I'll give it another try in the morning.  I'm not sure what to do with the bobbin it messed up; half of it is wound good, the last part is screwy.  I don't know enough about tension to know if this is acceptable or not.



Friday, June 23, 2017

FIRST DAY

I was still tired this morning.  It was a long day yesterday and the dogs make it almost impossible to get a good night's sleep - one on each side of me and they are way too hot.

I took them to the dog park this morning.  They enjoyed that and got some good exercise.

When I turned the machine on, the tablet didn't come on.  I checked a bunch of things, turned it off and tried again.  I ended up calling Randy in Missouri.  He was very helpful and all it was that I wasn't holding the on button on long enough.  Oops.

I played a little more trying some allover swirl designs - see, I don't even know what to call them.

I then felt I had to finish sewing the rows together on the Dandy Flowers quilt.  The top is done now!

Then I played a little more on the machine - I guess I need to get a name for it (him, her?).











Thursday, June 22, 2017

MACHINE SET UP DAY

The missing parts showed up this morning a little after 7am.  It was the same driver that didn't delivery them yesterday, he was kind of surly about it.  (He probably got in trouble).

Although Darrell was teaching a Blanket Chest class, he helped me uncrate and carry the parts upstairs.  Things were ready when Kim from A1 showed up to put it all together.





She got it all put together and we put a quilt sandwich in and did a quick run through.  It was almost 6pm before Kim left for her drive back to Aberdeen. 

Thanks, Kim.  You went above and beyond to make this happen today.

Happy Birthday to my Dad who would have been 90 today.  It's a good day.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

MACHINE ARRIVES, SORT OF

Finally, the day I've been waiting for since March arrives.  My new A1 Quilting Machine was scheduled for delivery.  Listed on the bill of lading was three items, a pallet, and two crates.  Only the pallet showed up, and the truck driver knew nothing about the others.

I quickly called Missouri where A1 is made and told them.  They were great, they called the trucking company in Kent, where they found the missing pieces and arranged to have them delivered first thing in the morning because Kim is coming to put the machine together tomorrow.

In the meantime, I kept busy working on the Dandy Flowers quilt.  I got all the parts made and put it up on the wall.  It only fits crossways.  I got two rows sewed together, but stopped because I was too worried.

the pallet

I'm a little worried about this top piece that is smashed.









Tuesday, June 20, 2017

DUSTING AND CLEANING

My studio is above my husband's wood shop.  He recently had an issue with his dust collection system and had to replace it.  While it was bad my studio was inundated with dust.  It was bad.
I left it until he got his shop under control.

My mom came over today with her dog, Reba, to help me get it cleaned up in preparation for the arrival of my longarm.

Thanks Mom!

Mom didn't want her picture taken...oops.







Friday, June 16, 2017

SOME STEMS

I'm making progress on the Dandy Flowers quilt.  I finished the last of the flower heads this morning and started on the stems.  I've probably been overdoing it.  Yesterday I had to spend the afternoon resting my hand - which means I couldn't do anything.  I watched a movie.

My hand feels much better today though.  No more Tylenol needed.

My beautiful white bandage is getting dirty and covered with threads and dog hair.






Wednesday, June 14, 2017

DAY AFTER

I had carpel-tunnel surgery on my right hand yesterday.  We checked me in at 6:30am and we were out of there by 9:00am.  I'm actually not sure about the time because I was still a little woozy when we left.  But amazingly I was feeling pretty good very quickly.  I had very little pain but I did take tylenol that day and today.

After a dog walk with just Jelly I sewed some more of the Dandy Flowers blocks.  But I probably over did it.  My hand is tired and so am I.

The day of surgery, back at home.

My left hand took a beating too.

The Dandy Flowers blocks.

I'm really loving these colors and fabrics!  




Monday, June 12, 2017

LAST DAY

Tomorrow morning I'm having carpel-tunnel surgery on my right hand (I'm right handed).  I'm trying to prepare for being incapacitated for a week.

I know I won't be able to cut fabric, but I might be able to sew.  So I've been cutting fabric like crazy.

Saturday, at work, I trimmed some half-square triangle squares, making that project all ready to sew together.

Today I finished sewing the rows together on my Wallflower quilt (kit).  I folded it up and put it away - I still need to make a back for it.


After walking the dogs in Lincoln Park and lunch out with the DH I started cutting up fabric for the Dandy Flowers quilt that I discovered online.  It was a quilt-along, but I didn't participate at the time.  I've been gathering fabrics and thinking about it.

I bought the fabrics for the stems and leaves at Missouri Star Quilts in Missouri last week.  Still thinking about what color to make the butterflies.


I had to sew one of the flowers together.

The stack of fabrics, all sorted, for the flowers.

All the fabrics, including the background, ready to go.

Here are the fabrics I used.



Thursday, June 08, 2017

LAST THREE SOLSTICE BLOCKS

 I got behind, but I caught up today making the last three blocks for the Solstice Challenge.

#23 Eureka!

#24 Lucky Girl

#25 Summer Rose

I need some fabric to use as sashing.  The only thing I have at the moment is pure white flannel, which is not the same as the white in these fabrics.   It's much to white.  I need more of an ivory.  I was thinking I should dye it.  But, how do you dye white to ivory.  I googled it, they all said use tea dye.  That seems wrong for several reasons.  I've heard tea dye is so acidic it will eventually eat up the fabric.  Plus, it seems the wrong color to me.  Too brown.  Ivory is not brown.  But, I'm not sure what it is either.

Maybe I should go to the fabric store.  

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

TUESDAY QUILT SHOP HOPPING

Things are open on Tuesdays in Missouri, so we hit some quilt shops.

I had just planned on two, the first being Quilting is My Therapy in Liberty, MO.  I need to find the fabrics I don't have for the Elizabeth Hartman's Fancy Forest quilt I want to make.  I found a few there, they didn't have much fabric. The gal working there told us we had to go visit Missouri Star Quilts in Hamilton about an hour north.  Darrell agreed and off we went.

Quilting is my Therapy 
 I'm so glad we did, this place is amazing.  They have 12 stores, taking up a city block.  Each store specializes in a different style of fabrics.  I headed for the Modern store, looking to find the fabrics I needed.




The Modern store.

Monday, June 05, 2017

MONDAY IN MISSOURI

Since everything is closed on Mondays in Kansas City, we decided to drive 175 miles to Jefferson City, the capital of Missouri.
We heard about the Thomas Hart Benton mural and really wanted to see it.









A scale model of Mighty Mo


We had lunch in Jefferson City at The Blue Skillet, soul food.


Chicken, collard greens, potato salad and corn bread.

After lunch, we got back in the car and drove back towards Kansas City, stopping in Independence to see President Truman's home.  It was very hot, 92 degrees, with 92% humidity. 






Back in Kansas City, Kansas with finally had our BBQ dinner at Joe's Kansas City BBQ.  I was unimpressed.  But I'm not a big fan of BBQ.