August 29, 2011 in Knitting
August 24, 2011 in Quilting
I am entering the home stretch. The Gator quilt is finally ready to quilt.
This quilt is being made without batting; just the quilt top and the fleece backing. Sandwiching it was not fun and very hard to get flat. When I am doing this, I generally use my hands and do a lot of flattening and smoothing out. I do this with spray baste. However, with the Gator quilt, I was afraid that if I ran my hands of the quilt top too much, my chalked quilt markings would be rubbed out. So then I tried to do this with the quilt top on the bottom and laid the fleece on top – DISASTER! Everything was wrinkly.
The problems didn’t end there. The backing is tight on size. I only have about 2″ on the top and bottom to spare. Twice I sandwiched it and couldn’t get the fabric centered and ran out at the ends. About 1 1/2 hours later (did I say I was doing this in the garage in the heat), I got it together, but it wasn’t perfect. The top was smooth and flat – the quilt marks stayed perfectly – but this is what the back looked like:
I think the fleece got stretched out at some point. So what I did was move this wrinkle slowly – remember is was spray basted – and little by little it moved to the edges. It was kind of like moving an air bubble when you put on a screen protector. In the end all turned out well.
August 22, 2011 in This n' That
Anyway – as proud as I am of Morgan, I am 100 times prouder of my son. This has been a great year with him. He is finally “getting it” and working harder in school and has a goal. He ended the year with all A’s and B’s – this is first since 2nd grade.
Those of you following the podcast understand the struggles I have had with Dustin. I feel bad complaining at time because I know my problems could be so much worse. We have never had behavior issues and most teachers enjoy having him in their class. In the past it was because he was quiet and kept to himself. We never had a problem with test scores – he has always tested well above his grade level. Our problem has always been that he refused to do any class work or home work. And, what he did do, he wouldn’t turn in.
We tried everything. Every suggestion. Punishment. Reward. Nothing got through to him. The school was very little help because he was maintaining a “C” and never got in trouble – they could care less and never returned my calls or emails.
But this year, his Sophomore year, something was different. He did all his work and never missed an assignment. His teachers raved that he actually participated in class – raising his hand several times. The school added a way for me to monitor his progress online – even daily if I wanted. Dustin was grounded the entire school year for getting and F in Algebra; but we allowed him to earn days off grounding by doing A or B assignments. And it worked! Basically he was never grounded and I put a foot down to any missing assignment (failing an assignment was better than not turning it in).
He is now working on getting an academic scholarship to a Florida University! He will need practically straight A’s this year to make up for the screw up in the Freshman year – but he wants to work toward it. Can you believe it?! Two years ago I was loosing hope.
What is even better is the man he is turning into. He is kind, thoughtful, a leader who does his own thing, he is smart and has a great mind of his own. I am so lucky to be his mother.
One parental belief I have is to let your children be themselves. Let them find their own way and you just worry about the core values and point them in the right direction. That brings me to his hair.
August 20, 2011 in Quilting
Today, I finally finished marking the quilting on the entire Gator Quilt. I ended up using a combination of two marking tools.
- Bohin chalk pencil for the orange and blue sections
- Quilter’s Silver Marking Pencil for the white areas
I marked the quilt before I sandwiched it because I wanted to quilt it in the “Gators” and “University of Florida” logos. So I used a light box to help with the marking.
The marking wasn’t difficult, it just took a while. I have decided that marking the quilting is my LEAST favorite part of the process. And it was making my neck hurt and gave me headaches looking down and tracing.
But I will soon be at my FAVORITE part – the machine quilting!
Here are some more pics – hopefully you can see the marking. I am off to go sandwich it.
August 19, 2011 in This n' That
You hear my voice, you see my picture – have you ever wanted to put the two together? Well check this out http://igg.me/p/34076?a=189606&i=shlk and you can see me in action. Be sure to look at the Gallery Video as well as the main one.
The hair will be cut off and donated soon. This might be your last chance.
August 18, 2011 in Crochet
A few month ago my 17 year old niece had a baby (don’t get me started on that). As a baby gift, I made her a few pairs of baby booties (sorry, I didn’t take pictures).
Crocheting the booties made me realize how much I enjoy crocheting with thread. I could have sat there for hours making booty after booty. At one point the thought crossed my mine to make an inventory of them to have on hand or sell.
While I was obsessed, I pulled out my old crochet patterns. Morgan couldn’t get enough of them. She immediately asked for a doily – a blue one. Luckily I had some blue bedspread thread.
My obsession only lasted a week or two. This is now in the pile of unfinished projects. I am sure, one day soon, Morgan will remember it and bug me to finish it.
August 17, 2011 in This n' That
Do my pictures seem any better to you? I think so, I know they are brighter.
It is all thanks to my wonderful husband. Look at what I got for Mother’s Day:
It is so AWESOME!!! it is a Nikon 3100 DSLR. The pictures are brighter, clearer, and it shoots super quick.
I was so tired of looking at everyone else’s pictures and seeing how good they looked. While mine were dark and blurry. If you are on the fence on getting a fancy camera – I say “go for it”. For me – it has been worth every penny. There is nothing better than hitting the button and the picture being taken instantly instead of 2 seconds after the action.
August 16, 2011 in Notion Review
Well the first time I saw them and saw them demonstrated, my mouth dropped open and I had to have them. I didn’t care about the price.
What they are is a regular ink pen. They are made to write on paper. However the ink is erasable by friction.
So as with many other quilting notions, the community figured out that you can write on fabric with these babies. And because they erase by friction (friction creates heat), you can iron your markings and they disappear!
You heard right – mark your quilt with these and iron the markings away!
My quilt shop even bragged that it leaves nothing behind like those brown marks water soluble markers leave.
But not so fast
I brought them home and was curious about what I read on the back “If pen is exposed to temperature that reached 140 degrees F, the ink will be colorless when writing. To restore color, cool to at least 14 degrees F in freezer and the ink will again write in color.” What does this mean?
- Colorless does not mean gone
- Will the color come back?
So, I put it to the test. I wrote on some fabric and ironed it. Sure enough the color was gone. But when you looked closely you could see the ink residue. I threw the sample into the freezer. In a matter of a few seconds the color was back. This was not good.
I know what you are thinking “You’re not going to put your quilt in the freezer!” But you may use it in the cold – Isn’t there the chance you would snuggle up out int he cold with your quilt. So the sample went into the refrigerator – and the marks came back; not as dark, but definitely visible.
Word of Caution
I know that many quilt shops are selling these pens. It was something going around the latest Quilt Market. But I also know that many of them don’t know the limitations – even though it is stated on the package. So be aware. I wouldn’t mark my quilt top with them. But I may use them to mark applique or to mark the back of my fabric if the need arises.
August 15, 2011 in This n' That
I am writing to tell you about something I am very excited about. A new great website for quilters and fabric crafters; ‘www.SeamedUP.com’! The site is still in development, but when it is finished is will be a one stop site for sewing, fabric crafting and quilting. It combines shopping, browsing, learning, friendship, and community all in one. Best of all, it is FREE to join and you can sign up now even though they are still working on it!
Websites like this are a great asset to the craft, but it takes a lot to put it all together. The SeamedUP.com team is made up of only two girls and they can really use our help. They are currently running a fundraising campaign to keep the site up while they are working on it. Doing this allows them to test it and get feedback from its members. One of my favorite things about SeamedUP.com is that they listen to member’s suggestions and members can really help mold the site into what we want it to be. But to continue to do this, they need money to upgrade their servers.
The link below will take you to their Indie GoGo fundraising campaign. Please take the time to visit it, watch the video and read their mission.
There are many ways you can support this project. You can donate money, share it on Facebook, Twitter, or Google +, blog about it, add their button to your website, blog or email, leave a comment on the fundraising page, and add it to your Indie GoGo favorites. I hope you choose to do all of these, but I am asking you to do at least one thing for me:
Copy this letter and send it to everyone on your email list
The more people that know about this great idea, the better the chance we will have to use it.
Share it! Together we can make SeamedUP Happen!
August 14, 2011 in Quilting
I have decided that Little Brown Bird by Margart Docherty will be my next applique project.
After my magazine review podcast I heard from Errin telling me all about this pattern and where I can buy the CD. I immediately ordered it, but when it came it, I knew that I would need more than just the printout of the pattern to complete such a difficult quilt.
The book is currently out of print – but a used copy was finally affordable on amazon. Look what came in this week!
I am super excited to get started. But you know me – I don’t stash – I am I going to need about 50 fat quarters to complete this one. Plus background and border fabrics. For now, I am slowly collecting everything that I need. I guess in the meantime I will try to finish all my other hand projects I started that are sitting around.