Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Knitting on a Stormy Spring Day

A stormy day here in New Orleans...tomorrow is predicted to be stormy too.  I don't turn on the quilting machine when there are thunderstorms, so no quilting today; probably none tomorrow either.

But that's OK...plenty of other things to do.  For example, I spent the morning burying threads on the "Queen" and painting the fabric for the binding, and printing my label.

After that, and some housekeeping chores, I took out the knitting.  I have really not done much knitting the last few weeks, so it was nice to get back to it.

You may remember, I'm working on 2 lace shawls...both red; both the same pattern.  One is lace weight merino that I'm beading as I knit; the other not beaded and with Aloft yarn (a lace kid mohair/silk blend).

They are both about 36 inches long now.  I work on the beaded one during the day because I need to sit at a table to do the beading  part; and the non beaded one at night.  I like both of them!

OK, photos..beaded first





and the non beaded one



different but both nice, I think.

 

 

 

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Bad Start Leads to Better Things

My morning had a less than auspicious beginning...

I ALWAYS clean my table and carriage tracks and machine wheels before I start to quilt...to make sure there is no lint or loose thread boogers in the tracks or wrapped around a wheel. Usually I do this during the 3 minute machine warm up.

Except today. I got distracted and then forgot.  Guess what?  There was a blob of loose thread wrapped around one of the carriage wheels. :(



So all those wobbles...caused by the thread caught in  the wheel. What took just a couple minutes to do, took almost an hour to pick out...ugh!

But, at least it wasn't micro stitching!  And the other good thing is, it gave me a chance to re-evaluate my thread choice AND to make a better one. So starting over can be a good thing.



Definitely like this color better



And then done with that section



Yep, it all worked out for the best.

And a couple corals that I finished detailing...red



and purple



Not a bad days work after all!

 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Bejeweled Harbingers of Spring

Today is the reveal of the Fiberactions Monochromatic color challenge.  One color, boy that's a tough one for me...even my wholecloth quilts are a riot of color!  Having been in the show quilting mode for the last few months, I knew this quilt would need to be fairly quick and simple in order to fit it into the schedule.  Also, the longarm is tied up  with quilting the "Queen", so this one would need to be done another way.

In the end I decided on green for my color, because of the time of year...you know spring and of course St. Paddy's Day!



The background is one of Vicki's delicious hand dyes. The leaves are wool felt, all cut with my die cutter. The shape differs from my usual choices, as does the quilting...a very simple freehand spiral done on the DSM.  The beads were added with a variation of mossing and encrusted beading techniques from Larkin Jean Van Horn's book Beading on Fabric. The beads add some interest to a very simple design and really give it a nice sparkle,even though the camera doesn't reflect it very well.



The batting is Quilters Dream Wool and the thread is Superior's So Fine.

Though this is very different from my usual work, I enjoyed the challenge. Sometimes it's good to shake it up a bit.  Be sure to go the Fiberactions to see what  wonderful things the others did.

Now for me, it's back to the  "Queen"  and  that riot of COLOR :)

Monday, March 5, 2012

AQS Paducah!

Today was a fabulous day!  First I found out that a quilt "Rose Abundance"  that my friend Sherry Southgate masterfully had appliqued and then asked me to quilt is a semi finalist at Paducah.  Sherry's applique is perfection itself, and I was so honored she asked me to collaborate with her on it.  I just love this quilt, Sherry's appliqued roses are just exquisite.

Another event of the day...my SIL and I went to the theater box office and got tickets to the musical production of the Lion King that is here in New Orleans from mid March to mid April. Add to that a really nice lunch at Maple Street Cafe.

On a crafty note...I need lots of silverware, dinnerware,glassware etc.  We have a lot of family and we have dinners,parties,etc.  I hate paper/plastic eating utensils...plus it gets expensive for stuff you throw in the trash.  So I found out  about restaurant supply stores.  You can get basic tableware in bulk for less than what you would pay for paper/plastic ware for one party.  Works for me!

The catch is...it's pretty plain.  For dinnerware, I stick to basic white...timeless.  The stainless is even more plain.  But I saw some beaded silverware online for sale...a little pricey if you need service for 36 or so.  But, then I thought...I can do that and I already have several gazillion beads.

So I bought the basic plain stainless at the restaurant supply place for next to nothing....  here is the before of one of the oyster forks



And the after...after beading, that is



How cool is that!

I'm happy with it, it is easy and quick to do. ... it took me less than 5 minutes to do  a piece, and I'm sure it will get faster now that I know what I'm doing.  So now I'll do the rest of the 8 piece place settings,  service for 36.

 

And not to leave out my babies...here they are this morning waiting for the sunbeams.



That's it for today!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Welcome to March!

It sure is better than the last couple days of February!  Working away on the Queen,  I finished quilting the tail fluke. I was using Lava "Sunset" thread..it's a vareigated orange/yellow/red.  Same colors as the tail fluke, yet something about it was bugging me the whole time I was quilting.  I should know by now, that I need to heed those feelings.  When I stepped back to look at the finished tail, I knew instantly, all that stitching had to come out...the red in the thread stuck out like a sore thumb.

Of course, it always takes much more time to take out than it does to stitch it.  But I finally got it all ripped out and re- stitched...this time in  matching orange thread.



Much better!   Hopefully, there will be no more ripping!!