Friday, April 30, 2010

the quilting is finished!

Whew, what a relief!  Of course there are still a million things to do...trim,wash,block,bind; add sleeve, label and bling.  And attach the 4 Moon Quilts to the wholecloth.  But the big stuff is done! I feel as if a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders.

I took some quick photos... they'll give you an idea of what it will look like all put together (minus bindings and bling, of course).  The photos aren't the best but that's all you get until it makes it debut at MQS .

The wholecloth background ...I didn't bother to move the bedpost for the photo :)

With the  4 moon quilts sort of pinned in place

above Sultry Moon

below Sultry Moon

above Harvest Moon

below Harvest Moon

above Snow Moon

below Snow Moon

above Jellicle Moon

and below Jellicle Moon

Thanks for following along this journey with me!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A good and productive day!

So I might be able to preserve the little bit of sanity I have left.  Everything worked like it is supposed to and I got a lot done.  I probably am tempting fate, but I feel I can finally see the light at the end of this tunnel!  I just hope things hold together for a few more days.

Here is today's progress.

I think I deserve a nice glass of wine for all that hard work!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Day from Hades

First of all when I got ready to post the lesson for my class at 6:30 am...I had no internet connection.  It was restored about 7:30.  BUT...I had no wireless. All three of my computers (and iPad) are wireless. Don's is the only one that is hard wired to the modem.  Obviously, none of the files I need are on his computer.  But with the help of a jump drive I was able to transfer what I needed to his and finally get my lesson posted.

Don't know what the heck is wrong with the router.  I did all the troubleshooting...spent hours on the phone with Linksys and tried says there is a signal, but All of the computers in the house say there is not.

Finally, out of desperation, we called comcast and scheduled them to come out and set up their wireless network.  They can't come until Thursday, so no wireless till then.  But at least a solution is in the works.  I'm just tired of fooling with it.

So, now it's 2pm, and I've yet to turn on the gammill.  Well I do, and while I'm running the programed warmup, I noticed excess oil dripping from the bobbin area and I grab a cloth to wipe it you know where this is going? (Hint, the machine is running)

Yep, the spinning hook grabbed that cloth and of course locked up tight.  Can you say STOOPID? duh. I turn the motor off,  take the throat plate off, and very gently rotate the hook by hand to get to cloth unwrapped. Every thing seems fine, so I resume my warmup.

After I get it all threaded and go to check my tension, etc... It won't pick up the bobbin matter what I do.  $%#^&.

So I take the throat plate off again, inspect the hook very carefully, hoping I didn't damage it.  I can't see any damage, but as I'm rotating the hook by hand, I notice it dosen't line up right with the needle.

Okay, so I re-time and now everything is working perfectly. WHEW!

But it is now 5pm.  So I decide to start my background fill...I'm really getting short on time.  I got a little done, but then decided to just quilt for the day...I'm so frustrated by now I'm afraid I'll do something else stupid and get even further behind.

Better to wait and start out fresh in the morning.  But here is the little bit I did get done.

Not too bad, considering the day.   Tomorrow will be a better , and I will get this done and shipped on time!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Motifs are done!

Tomorrow I start on the background fill. I forgot to take a picture of the Harvest Moon section, and I'm too tired to go do it now. So all you get tonight is the last one...Sultry Moon.

Oh look, it's wine thirty! :)  See ya!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

What a difference a day makes

Today I am feeling much better about this wholecloth.  I made good progress today and I am pretty happy with the way it looks so far.  I also figured out a way to be able to use black thread for the background fill AND see it!  A really stupidly simple solution too...a yellow light bulb in my side light.  It cuts way down on the glare from the shiny fabric and from the side, still creates enough of the right kind of light to be able to see the stitches... even when using black thread.  Whew! Is that ever a load off!

So, I'll leave you with some progress pictures (ignore the chalk marks) while I take my wine and go float in the pool for a bit.

Have a great night!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

I think I've Lost My Mind...

Today I loaded the fabric for the "Seasons of the Moon" wholecloth.  Black crepe-back satin.  I love the weight and the sheen.  I needed something that would be heavy enough to support the weight of the four smaller moon quilts without distorting. This seemed to fit the bill.  But.... there are a whole host of issues.

First, I couldn't keep it stable enough to mark before loading so I decided to load it and mark as I will decrease the precision somewhat, but time is more critical at this juncture.

Second, finding a marking tool that would show up enough to see, without tearing or picking the fabric. There were many rejects.  I finally settled on the clover white marker for critical detail stuff and school chalk for the more forgiving parts.

Third, the thread...I can't see black well enough to use it, even for the background fill. The darkest thing I can see is So Fine Smoke. But there is still a good bit of contrast with the black, so all the wobbles will show.  Also, it presents a problem delineating the design motifs from the background fill.  I think(and hope) if I echo all the motifs with a 1/4"  outline, that might solve that issue.  Normally I would use a high contrast for the wholecloth, but in this case I don't want the wholecloth to overpower the smaller moon quilts that are attached to it.

The batting is warm and natural...I needed something very heavy and very dense to support the weight and hang decently.  The backing is a moda marble wideback, prewashed.  And I'm getting some batting poking through the back!  Moda marbles are notorious for this.  Just one more headache I didn't need!  But at least my tension is perfect.

I'm  hoping it starts going a little faster now that I've gotten the marking and other  issues worked out(I think), I could sure use all the good mojo you care to send this way!  Quite a few times today I almost quit and took it off the frame.  I considered just putting black cotton on and doing something less stressful that I could do freehand.  But, the little bit I did get done looks decent enough to encourage me  on.  So I'll keep at it and hope for the best.

If you're still with me after that rant, I guess you deserve a look.  Ignore the weird color...the color really is black...the flash washed it out.

Time for a glass of wine!

Thanks for listening.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Last Moon

"Jellicle Moon"  quilted, though like the others not trimmed or edge finished.

[caption id="attachment_894" align="alignnone" width="128" caption=""Jellicle Moon""][/caption]

I struggled with how to incorporate these 4 quilts into 1  to be shown.  My solution  was to quilt a wholecloth using some of the designs from the 4 individual quilts and then mount them onto the wholecloth...just at the top so the rest would be free . That way the judges can inspect the backs of the 4 moon quilts and the wholecloth underneath.

The wholecloth is in progress now.  It's a race against the clock.  They have to be received at MQS by 5pm May 6th.  Which means I'll be shipping mine next day air, I'm sure!   I always seem to be down to the wire....

Guess I'd better get back to work!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Another Moon

As promised...

Here is "Snow Moon" is finished. Not trimmed or edged finished, but quilted.

[caption id="attachment_885" align="alignnone" width="132" caption=""Snow Moon""][/caption]

With the dark fabrics, it's hard to get good photos of the quilting.  Here are a few of the back so you can see the details better.

Next time, you'll get to see "Jellicle Moon".

Have a great night!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Seasons of the Moon...

I'm making good progress on my quilts for MQS, though still quite a bit to do.  This morning I finished quilting "Sultry Moon" so I thought I let you see that.  Not trimmed or edge finished yet, but at least it's quilted!

[caption id="attachment_876" align="alignnone" width="143" caption=""sultry moon""][/caption]

Tomorrow I should have the quilting finished on "Snow Moon" .

Time for a dinner break, then back to work!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Home Again

Did you miss me?  I had a nice trip and saw lots family including of course, my sweet grand-girls.  I took lots of pictures...but with my DD and DIL's cameras...none with my own.  Hopefully they will send me some of the pictures so I can share them.

Now that I'm back at home, the rush is on to finish my MQS quilt entries... and to finish the final prep for my classes.  I'm working dawn to dusk in order to get everything done by the shipping date that is less than 2 weeks away.

I'm on schedule so far, in that I have gotten a lot of appliqué done,  and should be ready to load for quilting by Sunday.

One of my quilts requires buttons (again). Not as many as last years quilt, and these were less time consuming to make.  But again, I made my own buttons...never can seem to find just what I need already made.

So, button pictures is what you get tonight.  This is what I start with;

And then add the charmeuse:

And they become this:

Add some swarovski crystals in colors to coordinate....

And viola!  Custom buttons.

Looks a bit glitsy now, but it works with the overall me :)