Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Fun Time at the Retreat

Well, this past weekend was our guild's retreat.  We all had a good time with a one mishap.  Good news first, I completed a few cell phone covers...

I usually make small cell phone covers, but I needed to make some for larger cell phones, like the Blackberry.  I plan on selling them at a St. Joseph's Regional High School craft fair that I will be at this coming April. 

I also made a few blocks for a new quilt using Moda fabrics.  I ran out of light fabrics while I was at the retreat, so I did not complete as many blocks as I would've liked...so now I have another UFO to complete.

The best part of the weekend was that I finally purchased a new sewing machine.  I have been researching  machines for a while.  I ended up narrowing my search down to two machines, the Janome 6600 and the Babylock Symphony.  The Janome 6600 is supposed to be a sturdier machine, but I have the Janome 1600P and an old Singer machine to handle my heavier projects.  The Babylock had more features, but was more expensive.  In the end, I ended up purchasing the Babylock Symphony.  So now I have to take some time and learn to play with my new toy.

Now for the mishap.  During the retreat, I was sewing and noticed that something was blowing on me.  At first, I thought it was the wind, until I felt a drop of water.  So I looked up to see if someone was playing around.  Well, I noticed a few more drops.  I looked up to find that there was a leak on the ceiling.  Everyone came to my rescue (thank you!) and quickly moved my machine and projects out of the way.  It was not until later that we noticed that my friend's machine and tool bin had been damaged as well.  It is safe to say that my Janome MC4000 had been through a lot!  Poor baby.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Funky Star Top Almost Done

I finished making all the blocks for my Funky Star Quilt.  I have sewn the blocks together and it ended up being about 53" x 68".  I am thinking about adding a border on the shorter side so that it will fit a twin bed.  I am sorry about the quality of the picture, it is the best I could do.  It has been raining here all day.

I am going away on a guild retreat this weekend with friends.  I have a lot of packing to do and decisions to make.  I know I will be working on my Christmas Through the Year Club project.  Other than that, anything goes.  In the past, my friends and I are always the first into the sewing room and the last to leave in the wee hours of the morning.  Hope it will the same this year.

Enjoy your weekend.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Oops...forgot picture and Some Sachets

In my last post I forgot to put a picture of the notebook cover.  Thanks Val for catching my mistake.  I made this very simple notebook cover to put in my purse.

I have made these covers before, but have not added an inside pocket like I did with this one.  I think it will come in handy for me to put my cards and all those other scrap pieces of paper that float around in my purse.  I always have lists of books, music, movies, etc. I would like to pick up when I am in the library, store, etc.  Does anyone else do this?

I have started my Spring cleaning.  I first start with making a new batch of sachets that I put in my closet and drawers.  Of course, the ones in my drawers are prettier than the ones in my closets.  The ones in my drawers are hand embroidered (by me).  They have flaps in the back so that I can change the filling when they are no longer fragrant.  Here is a picture of some of the sachets that go in my drawers:

The ones in my closet are made from linen (pictured below, on right).

How do I make them?  I usually use the dried lavender buds from my garden, but this past year, they did not do too well.   So I ordered them from Rina's Garden (catey13@aol.com).  I was a bit apprehensive to order them sight unseen (I was worried that they would not be fragrant), but I was happy with her/their product.  The next step is to sew small pouches that will fit into the sachet covers (pictured above, in middle row).  Do you know what I use...dryer sheets.  I prefer to use them after they have been used because they no longer have a scent and they are more pliable.  I fill them with lavender (or any other flower buds/potpourri) and sew the opening.  Then I put them in my sewn sachet covers.  That's it.  So this is my start of Spring cleaning...I think that's enough for today, phew I am wiped! :)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Utility Apron and Notebook Cover

Well I have seen utility aprons at Bahama Dawn and Sew Fantastic blogs and decided it was time for me to make myself one.  I thought I could use it at craft fairs or whenever I needed to have my supplies at hand and my hands free.  I had some scrap batiks fabrics leftover from my last quilt, so I decided to use them.  I pretty much just measured myself to see how much fabric/tie length I would need and eyeballed the placement of the pockets. I tried it on and I have to say it looks chic (mainly because it hides my middle, LOL).  Here is the result:

I wish the lighting was better (the fabrics are a bit more vibrant than they appear), but the weather is not cooperating.  We need some sunshine around here!

I don't know about anyone else, but I used to be a pretty decent speller.  I never noticed how things had changed until I started blogging.  Most times I would look at a word and know that it was spelled incorrectly and other times spell checker would highlight them for me (thank God).  So, now, I find myself looking words up in the dictionary (no not in book form) on the internet and have found that practice does improve your skills.  Just another great thing about blogging...so if I spell anything wrong, please forgive me.  I am trying.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A Funny Story and Kings X Quilt

This past week I went to a hand specialist (orthopedist) because I had a bump on my thumb.  It was not hurting me at first, but then when I went to use my scissors, I could not cut a thing.  Well, we can't have that, so I set up an appointment and the doctor told me it was a cyst.  I could either let it go (out of the question if I cannot use a scissor) or have surgery to remove it.  He said that it happens to women my age.  To which I replied, "What do you mean?"  He said, "Well, women between the ages of 45 - 60."  I said, "But I am only 22, don't let my gray hair fool you."  I thought he was going to pass out, he took a step backwards, put a hand on my file (which was on the counter), and was looking for my age.  I finally started to laugh.  He said, "Oh, I thought, oh I thought..."  I am glad he had a sense of humor.

Anyway, on another note, I finished my Kings X quilt top.  Here it is...

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

A Pot of Tea and Some Projects

Every morning I try to exercise before my day begins.  I am not always successful, but I try.  The best part of the day comes when I am finished and I put on a pot of tea.  My husband bought me this tea pot...
Isn't it pretty?  It makes about 4 cups (2 mugs) of tea and it is the way I start my day, officially.  The thing I like most about this pot is that it is pretty hard to break...yes, I have broken a few in the past.

I have been working on my Kings X quilt the past day or two.  I put this border on and found I did not like it at all.

So I was thinking about taking it off and redoing it.  I let it sit on my wall and kept looking at it (while I was sipping some tea).  And then I thought, "What if I just make the border a bit narrower?"  So, I think I will be cutting it to about 2" finished and see if I like that before I proceed.  And while I was waiting for it all to sink in, I decided to make an eye glass case.

This fabric is somewhat hard to find, it is faux leather, but it works beautifully.  As you can see I do not have to finish the edges.  I picked blue because it matches the blue beaded chain I use for my glasses.

I usually do not have any problems with snaps, but I think I may have gone through 4 of them before it worked properly.  Even using the heavy-duty snaps did not help.  Oh well, at least it is fine now.  The last time I made an eyeglass cover, I used Velcro which I do not like to use, but the cover was too thick for snaps.  Here is a picture of my first eye glass case...

That's it for now.  I am currently working on a UFO and making an apron to wear at craft shows.  Will have pics in a day or two.