Sunday, October 31, 2010

"It's Quilting Time"

Today I reset my sewing/quilting area so that I would have room to quilt several of the quilt tops that need to be quilted.  The one I've been looking at today to begin quilting tomorrow is the one in the picture.  Pebeo Paints were used to paint the small quilt top.  I've enjoyed using these paints and have a couple more quilt tops that I've done with them that I will be quilting later in the week.  All three tops are pretty abstract.  I do love the colors I get when I use these paints.  The picture I took doesn't show how bright the colors are--might have been better to have taken the picture during the day when the light was better.

Tomorrow is such a busy day but I should get a good start on quilting it.  I've come up with several ways.   Just need to decide which way is best.   A good night's rest seems in order.


Friday, October 29, 2010

"Back From The Big City"

While I was in Kansas City, I got to go to JoAnn's, which is a store that is totally unlike the JoAnn's close to me.  This one was  huge with just the coolest stuff in it.  I bought some beautiful red sheer fabric, some pink sheer fabric and some lovely camel colored wool which I hope to felt tomorrow.  I so enjoyed looking through the store and finding things that I hadn't had access to before.  I understand that this isn't the largest JoAnn's in Kansas City, but, you know, it was plenty big enough for me.  Several things found their way into my shopping cart and I'll enjoy using them in my projects.

The architecture and just the scale of the buildings are so different.  I took several pictures.  These are a couple of my favorites.

The entire month of October seems to have been swallowed up by unusual events but I am now ready to settle down and get back to sewing and quilting with maybe a little time for crafts, too.  

Monday, October 11, 2010

"Getting Sidetracked"

With the best of intentions last night I started on my gingerbread man but then realized that I needed to use just plain embroidery floss instead of crewel embroidery floss.  I thought the crewel embroidery floss would make him look quite special but half way through I changed my mind.  I didn't like the look.  So I got sidetracked and  watched Everybody Loves Raymond instead of picking out what I had done and starting over.   But I do have a picture of what I did this morning.

For the gingerbread man and woman I'm making I needed some red felted wool.   I had bought wool a couple of weeks ago but hadn't got around to felting it yet.  I like to felt wool almost as much as I like to dye fabric.  There are just a couple of things to watch out for when you felt wool.  The most important one is that it is 100% wool because otherwise it won't felt.  The other thing is that it does shrink so if you are buying a specific amount for a project and you are going to felt it, it would be a good idea to buy a little more than you think you'll need.  Then when it shrinks, it won't matter.

I had some additional small pieces of wool that I hadn't felted yet so I threw them in to the washer also.  These are different shades of red and pink so as you can tell the fabrics clash pretty good.  But anyway this is how I felted these fabrics -- or any wool fabrics actually that I use.

I take the easy felting route and use my washing machine.  Some women felt wool by hand and that is a little different set of directions.  Both work equally well.  But for me I always use my washer.  For this amount of yardage I used the setting for the small load and set the timer for about 10 minutes and filled the washer with hot water.  I changed the temperature setting for the rinse cycle to cold water and then let the washing cycle complete itself.  

The next part is just putting the fabric in the dryer and drying them on hot for about 20-30 minutes depending on how much fabric is in the load.  Mine this time was 25 minutes.  Then after the fabrics had dried, I used a steam iron and pressed all my wool fabrics.  And that's all there is to it.  I now have some really pretty red (different shades) wools to use in my projects.  I really like this one.

I have to work today so I won't get any more done on my projects.  But tomorrow I hope to get quite a bit done since it is my day off.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Two Projects

Two projects are in the works right now.  I'm doing a gingerbread man and a gingerbread woman off Megan's designs.  Thinking I might make a cute little drawstring bag to keep them in out of the heart fabric.  The cut out hearts are for a game that I'm working on and hope to get finished soon.  My hand is still bothering me so it might take a few days.  In the meantime there seems to be plenty to do.

The quilting books that I've been looking through have given me some neat ideas for small quilts.  Traditional patterns are a favorite of mine.  I love the old patterns from the 1800's and early 1900's like the Log Cabin pattern, the Courthouse Steps pattern which is a variation on the log cabin design, and the Drunkard's Path pattern which is also quite versatile.  But I must admit I do love the bright fabrics and the art quilts, too.

There are several things that I need to get done on the business side of Five and Nineteen Blackbirds this week so my time will be a little limited on what I can get done on my two projects.   The cards need to be  laminated also--probably on Tuesday.  The gingerbread people I'm going to work on tonight and I'll post a picture tomorrow so that you can see how they are coming along.