I realize that my immune system is total crap as evidenced by my dozens of allergies. But I used to be able to weather colds pretty well. Last year I had one that lasted over 4 weeks and this current one is starting it's 3rd week. From what I hear, my experience is not unique. Instead of flu shots maybe we all need cold shots. Poor Chris has it now but a 2-week-long cold for me is usually 3 days for him.
One of my problems is that I'm really limited in the meds I can take so I usually just have to ride it out. Plus I always get laryngitis and that can last for weeks. Today I feel much better which is good because I'm having lunch with some former work friends that I haven't seen is a while. They will just have to do all of the talking!
I seriously spent most of last week napping, coughing and watching TV. I did try to work on my ornament some but ran out of that gold braid. In over 130 kits that's only happened twice. I called and they immediately sent me replacement braid. Unfortunately I bought this kit a few years ago so they've since replaced the braid and the new stuff is too yellow. When I go out for lunch today I'll be stopping by Hobby Lobby to find something else that I can substitute. I think it only needs to be narrow and gold because no one really looks at these very close.I really, really want to get this finished and call an end to my ornament phase.
I've also started working on my Christmas postcards. I didn't make a ton of progress but at least I've made some!
My goal today it to just get myself reorganized and see how I've left things. I need to catch up on dyeing orders and get my sewing room reorganized. Since I can't talk to anyone maybe I won't get too distracted!
Here I was worried that I'd have nothing to share this week and my best friend comes through for me.
I am feeling better but, according to my doctor, this is a 14 day virus. My energy is coming back but the normal cold symptoms hang on ....and on...and on. Plus I have the laryngitis that I always get with these colds. Anne asked me to help her with the binding on her quilt so she came over yesterday and I whispered instructions so she could finish this very cute quilt.
She made this for her husband for his 50th birthday. Anne works pretty much non-stop so I'm very happy for her that she was able to get this finished before his birthday this weekend. She made the whole thing from stash fabric too. He will love it because it's purple and soft and snuggly!
She took it to Virginia Longarm quilting and they had a perfect quilting design with words of love all over.
Even some Xs and Os to go with the blocks. Perfect!
If you follow me on Facebook you have probably figured out that I generally do my blog posts ahead of time. I like to be a few days ahead just in case something happens.
Like last week. I believe that the flu has arrived in Virginia because I was sick all week and it wasn't a normal cold. But, then, with my immune system, who knows.
Normally last week I would have been working on the things that I would be posting abut this week.
But I didn't do much of anything last week. I did start and work on the 3rd (and last!) of my ornament kits. I only got this far because I ran out of one of the ribbons and you really can't work on these ornaments out of order. I expect that the new ribbon will arrive to day or tomorrow and I could get this last one wrapped up this week.
I do hope I can finish up some postcards that I started over a week ago so that will be something. But if I skip a day this week, don't worry. One I get some additional meds today I should recover pretty quickly.
I have 2 friends locally that are new Innova quilters. One purchased a machine and one rents time at Virginia Longarm. Both have taken classes of mine and have asked for additional help or private lessons. I don't give private lessons but I have come up with an ingenious way to help them while mostly helping myself.
It involves veteran's quilts!
Last week Tina came over to practice some ruler stitch-in-the-ditch and today Marcy is coming over to practice free-motion. I load and baste the quilts and then they quilt them for me. They get a little lesson and practice time and I get some veterans quilts done. Since I have 16 waiting to be quilted this is a huge help for me right now.
I've got these 2 quilts loaded and the thread picked out. Marcy will be ready to get started as soon as she arrives. There will be no dilly-dallying. Well, maybe a little dilly-dally will be OK....and then we must get to work.
If I work on my wall while she is quilting I can be close by but not looking over her shoulder.
Or I can be a few feet away loading more bottles on the kiln. Over the next couple of weeks I'm going to try to get a lot of my stockpile of bottles slumped in case any of you want bottles for Christmas (or other) gifts.
Looks like this poor bottle moved as it heated. I had it perfectly centered on the mold but it rolled a little left and now it's a reject. Maybe I'll donate it to the Country School trash-to-treasure sale next week.
After all of the excitement and fun today we will get to end the day buying a new HVAC system. Oh joy!
I don't have a lot to share today because I have been singularly focused on getting the "Paula" quilts done. Of course it would have taken less time if I had only made the ONE that was asked of me. But you know how inspiration works and you just have to go with it. So I made 2 and I'm happy I did. I love both of them.
This weekend I got the bindings and sleeves done and started on the labels.
I know, there's no real need to hand draw labels but I started the tradition and I'm keeping with it.
Beware of Lust s the name of one of the quilts. It's not because I'm a prude. It's a play on the name of the fabric line, Wonderlust, and the particular layout of that quilt. It will make sense when I can show it to you at the end of October.
I expect I'll miss another couple of days posting this week while I finish these up but you will know what I'm doing. I want these quilts in the mail by Friday.
Yesterday was dyeing day and I dyed over 60 yards. That's a big week for my little business!
Yesterday was also the day that I finished quilting the "Paula" quilts and I officially now have a new favorite quilting thread. I'm blocking them today and binding this weekend.
I have previously used a lot of Monopoly invisible thread but I've never been happy with the sheen that you get from it. It's invisible in color but still shows because of the shine.
Val, at Virginia Longarm, recommended that I try Invisafil.
I first tried in on this class sample. I used gray Invisafil for the background quilting (clamshells, wavy lines, pumpkin seeds and bubble lines). I was really impressed with the way this thread disappears into the quilt. Last night I used it on the lone star sample that I made. I used the gray again and quilted through the black, red and orange. I just love it! Setting the tension was much easier than invisible thread and I had no thread breaks.
The best part is that you don't need all of the colors. I expect that black, gray and white will be all I ever need.
The only caution is that you have to be very careful winding bobbins. It's a super fine thread that packs in the bobbin and I found out that if I fill it more than 3/4 full that it will warp the bobbin.
They keep showing up with bags of empty wine bottles. They were piled on a bench in the hall and yesterday was the day I finally got tired of looking at them. In between laundry and baking bread (the easy gluten-free kind) I finally got the labels removed from these. I have another bin this full in the basement.
It's time to get the kiln fired up and it's time for my friends to put their bottles in the recycle bin.
In other news, I now have both of my Payla Nadelstern tops done and I'll get them loaded and start quilting Thursday. Tomorrow is "dyeing day"!
I shared last week almost all of Mom's trials and tribulations with her cataract surgery. We thought it was over that day but, no! She had yet another reaction to yet another medicine. But she's finally on the mend.
While Mom was with me I was pretty good about letting her rest and relax for a couple of days after each surgery but then I started assigning tasks. She weeded a little, packaged some fabric for me for the shop, made the dog beds and then I found this project that kept her busy for a few days.
I got her to clear out my whole scrap bin. I pulled out several Go dies and she took every fabric and cut whatever she could get out of every fabric in the bin.
Every single fabric!
It was in the middle of one of these sessions that she got the migraine from the last medicine. I knew she was feeling better then next day when I found her cutting again.
We don't have any plans for them at the moment so really she just moved them from one bin to another. I expect that I will make some scrappy veterans quilts in future Friday/Saturday sewing days at Country School.
I made her promise not to do anything else to her eyes for at least 2 months. Just to add it's not a doctor issue. We love her doctor. The day she got the migraine he called 3 times, offered to see her any time over the weekend and called again the next day. It's nothing he did, she just reacts to everything. I'm thinking I should switch to him. With family history I fully expect to have glaucoma at some point. It would be nice to have a doctor that would already understand my weirdness.
We are both expecting an uneventful and pain free weekend this weekend!
That's a conversation that Mom and I had this past weekend specifically related to hand made items. Why are we suddenly talking about this?
It's because of this.
This is what's left of a pillow cover that my Grandmother, Lura Dove, embroidered around 1930. When Grandma had to go (unwillingly) into assisted living Mom took the pillow cover and framed it for her room. After Grandma died my Aunt had it for a while and then gave it to me. It's been hanging in my sewing room until a week ago.
When it fell off the wall and the frame shattered. Usually in this case I run right off to my favorite frame shop and spend a small fortune to have it re-framed.
When Mom framed this she wasn't loaded with a ton of extra cash and she was dealing with the stress of convincing her Mother that assisted living really was the right answer for someone prone to falling. So she did what most of us did 25 years ago, she used one of those mats with the stick edge. I started peeling the back edge of the piece (the front is not stuck) and realized that this fabric is incredibly fragile. It also has some pretty strong age staining.
So, what to do? For me the answer was to call Mom for a consultation.
Chris and I re-drafted our wills last year so I've been think a lot about what we leave behind. The result of my pondering is that we are leaving a pretty heavy burden of stuff on the next generation. That's especially true in my case where 2 kid will get stuff from their parents, from me and from Mom. Frankly, that's a lot of crap. Written into our special bequest lists of our wills is a comment that I added to tell the recipients of my stuff that they are under no obligation to take anything or to feel they must take special care of anything. They can refuse it, sell it, give it to someone else or keep it. It doesn't matter to me. I will not be there to pass judgement.
So Mom and I discussed it and agreed that this piece has served it's purpose in life. It made Grandma Dove happy to make it and enjoy it during her long life. I enjoyed seeing it while it was hanging on the wall but it's OK to let it go and that's what I'm going to do.
Not to worry, I still have some treasures from Grandma Dove like this dresser scarf.
This is my favorite piece. I had 2 of these bed covers. I know I gave the other one to someone in the family but don't remember. I kept this one and think I may quilt it some day.
In the first house that Chris and I owned I used this on top of the guest bed bedspread and my Grandma got to see it there once.
Oh my gosh, my next sentence was supposed to be "So I'm OK letting the pillow cover go." but just as I was typing I realized exactly what I will do with it. I'll be back in a week or so to show you.
Sometimes I really annoy myself. I just could not let them go. I had to do one more thing with the tiny scraps. I've made confetti fabric before and usually use it in postcards in some way.
the process starts with a base fabric. This time it was a fat quarter of white fabric but the fabric doesn't matter because I'm going to cover all of it. On the base fabric I fused a layer of Mistyfuse and then spread out my biggest scraps. I covered the fabric with a pressing sheet and fused that layer.
The next layers are:
I think I might use this "new fabric" for Christmas postcards so I added a layer of Angelina fibers, then another layer of Mistyfuse and, finally, I covered the whole thing in tulle.
Here's what it looks like now. Once I decide what to do with it I'll probably do some stitching to hold the layers together.
I've made several postcards with scrap-made fabric. This is one of the most recent ones. I just need to come up with a shape and I'll be ready to make a set of Christmas cards.
I promise you will not see another post about the rainbow scrap bits. The rest will end their days in a dog bed.
You have to admit, it's going to be really pretty in that dog bed.
I'm Vicki Welsh and I've been making things as long as I can remember. I used to be a garment maker but transitioned to quilts about 20 years ago. Currently I'm into fabric dyeing, quilting, Zentangle, fabric postcards, fused glass and mosaic. I document my adventures here.
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