Tag Archives: Sewing

Sew Much Sewing, Sew Much FUN!!!

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Just back from the Quilt & Sew-In Spring Retreat and WOW! It was such a good time. I am always impressed with the fun attitude and amazing camaraderie at retreat. I am also always wowed at how much everyone accomplishes and their exceptional talents. There is so much to show, I will do this in two parts.

Our Venue:  The Meadowbrook Inn, Blowing Rock, has been home to the Quilt & Sew-In Retreat for five years. The sewing room is bright and each sewer gets their own table. There are 3 pressing stations that are counter height, and 3 cutting stations counter height. Each day we start out in the pretty windowed breakfast room.

Thank you Island Batiks for the pretty charm packs for everyone!

Free Spirit and Rowan Fabric also generously donated hexie charm packs with Kaffe Fassett, Joel Dewberry  and Denyse Schmidt fabrics. Building up our stash!!

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The “Mad Button” game was played and lasted 24 hours. It was brutal! If someone said “quilt” or “fabric,” one of their red buttons would be taken – she with the most red buttons won. (Thinking about how often you say those two words? ) Cindy played with a fun and ferociousness that couldn’t be beat – 21 buttons gave her the win! She scored  a ceramic magnetic pin dish with pins.

Quilt! – the Quilt & Sew-In’s very own first cousin to Bingo, was played several times over the weekend. Winners enjoyed the new Oly Fun craft fabric by Fairfield. Great opportunity to try something new!

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Whew! There’s LOTS more to share – tomorrow. Visit again to see the amazing creative projects by all who attended! Sorry, I have to use this word again – “WOW!!!”

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Pressing Matters

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“Quilters don’t iron, they press.” How many times have you heard that?  And, I press a lot.  A good pressing surface is so important to me.  For several years I had a standard size ironing board and then upgraded to a larger ironing board.  Not good enough!  My hubby had a large piece of plywood in his stash that I commandeered. He willingly and quickly made a “big board” to fit my ironing board.  I made the cover and LOVE it!  It is not the standard size you usually see patterns advertised for, but using what was on hand was the economical choice.  And on the very, very rare occasion I iron clothing, the big board easily lifts off.

Wall Iron Board up (Medium)

Wall iron board down (Medium)

Down and out of the way. See the tile at the end? That’s for the hot iron!

 

For little pieces – ironing open seams when sewing small pieces together, I use my travel iron.  I had a travel ironing board that I kept at the end of my cutting table.  However, after rearranging my studio, that no longer worked because the cord was in tripping position – and if anyone is going trip over the cord, I am!  I told hubby that I would love a wall mounted board that would fold down when not in use, but they cost more than I was willing to pop for – need that $ for fabric. Mr. Handy Hubby found that to be an easy fix – he mounted my existing travel board on the wall near an outlet.  All quilt pressing issues solved. I’ll admit, it’s great to have a willing handyman at my disposal and I try hard not to take that for granted!

Irons (Medium)What do I press with? Oh…I have a few irons. Different weights and sizes. There are several more that travel to retreats for all to use. No one big favorite –  I change them out every so often, usually when the one I’ve been using needs a cleaning. And yes, I use steam, starch and a water spray bottle.

Wish I had all Pressing Matters that well under control!

NOTE: There is still room in the Fall II Retreat – check it out today!

Linking up today with Em’s Scrapbag and Let’s Bee Social.

A Southern Quilt Shop

 

 

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The “Reading Room”

 

Two weeks ago a friend and I visited Charleston, SC with a side trip to Summerville, SC which is just outside Charleston. It is a charming little town with shops and restaurants and best of all, a great quilt shop. People, Places and Quilts is in a fine old building. It is such a treasure hunt as you go from room to room, each filled with fabrics, tools, threads and so much more.

Diane, the owner is a delight as was the other staff members there. They are all friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. Above is Diane the worker bee, Diane the Owner and Diane my traveling companion. Then there is me and my cousin who lives in Summerville.

There are quilts on display everywhere – such inspiration! Some on display were also class samples.

Lots and lots of fabrics. Prints, batiks, solids and many scrumptious flannels.

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This antique cash register was not only a joy to look at – it works and is used for all the shop sales! Do you embroider? Applique? Work with wool felt? There was a whole section devoted to all of those!

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I strongly suggest you stop by to see this wonderful shop if you are ever any where near Summerville. I’ve checked out their class list and might just have to “visit” my cousin soon!!

Colorful 16 Patch

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Daffodils and so much more are in bloom, temps have been very moderate for spring, all of which makes staying in the studio a little tough. I also was gone for a week to Florida in January and last week four days to Charleston, SC. I did, however, manage to complete a 16 patch that was started two years ago! I love the brightness of this quilt. All shot cottons were used. These fabrics were a bit challenging to use especially when quilting. I found a secret to using shot cottons is to starch, starch, starch!

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It was an appropriate finish for this early Spring – I couldn’t resist a pic with the daffodils. When it was complete, I looked at all the finished quilts in my home (no, I won’t try to give a number!) and decided this quilt was better designated as a Hospice quilt. It should bring some brightness to a patient or family member.

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Today’s link-ups:  WIPS on Wednesdays, Em’s Scrapbag, Let’s Bee Social

A Little Bit Retro

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Know what this is?! For a little more than 40 years I have had an outdoor clothesline. All our laundry is no longer hung outside on a regular basis due to allergies from pollen, but I do manage to hang some things out, especially in the winter. Recently, when I grabbed the clothespin bag I’ve had since day one, I couldn’t help but notice how shabby and threadbare it was. How the clothespins were staying inside was amazing.

So…off to the home dec fabric bin to pic out something light and spring like. The home dec fabric is a heavier weight than quilting fabric and was the most practical choice.

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I simply copied the original bag making just a couple of tweaks. The original bag had a paper cord that I replaced with a cable from my hubby’s electrical supply stash. I used button holes instead of grommets and used the original sturdy hanging frame.

And Ta Daa!! A new clothespin bag sure to hold up for the next 40 years!

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Great First Month in 2017

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Paper piecing – I enjoy it but at times can wear me out. I just completed a paper pieced border for a wall quilt and wanted to sit and mindlessly sew. The first of the year I cut out several charity quilts so I pulled one out and sewed away! It was all pieced in just a few hours – how fun! It really needed something else, though. The fabric is a bit wild – all generously donated. There is one print among the batiks that is a lizard fabric. Ta Da! I’ll applique a few large lizards! Even better, I used my Scan n’ Cut – what a treat to have precise cutting done in just moments.

All in all, January was a very good sewing month, especially considering I was on vacation for a whole week. I revamped my Work in Progress listing. Yes, I do have more projects, but have not touched some in such a long time I eliminated them from the list for now. I have promised myself to only add charity quilts and gift quilts – there is a wedding gift quilt added to the list. Oh how I want to stay on task and shorten the list. Can I do it? Yes! Will I do it?  We’ll see!! Do you have so many projects started it seems overwhelming? Do you have an action plan? I’d love to know how other quilters deal with this.

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Today I’m linking up with Esther Aliu’s Blog, Let’s Bee Social, My Quilt Infatuation.

A New Toy & a Gadget!

scan-n-cut-largeAfter over a year of questioning and procrastinating, I bought a Brother Scan N’ Cut! What a cool machine. No, I haven’t used it very much yet, but did play a little before Christmas. I made some sewing related Christmas ornaments and Yoga related ornaments using sticky back vinyl. I also made Christmas gift tags. There is a learning curve, and I have a way to go, but I don’t think it will be difficult.

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Sorry for the camera reflection. Couldn’t take another pic – I no longer have the ornament!

There are a couple of fabric/quilting projects I plan to cut out on this nifty machine. I will use it for both fusible applique and hand applique cut-outs. I can see this saving me a LOT of time! I had to rearrange a few things in the studio to make the Scan N’ Cut easily accessible – it just wouldn’t get used if it were put away in a closet. “No more toys” – if I say that over and over again every day will I stick to it? Probably, at least until the next nifty gadget or tool comes along!

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Santa brought me a great gadget that I’m keeping on my coffee table for when I do hand stitching in the evening. The “Sew Darn Handy” holds a spool of thread, a pair of scissors, a thimble and has a side pin cushion.  Best yet is that I really use it! I’ve linked to their website contact page if you’re interested. No, this is not any kind of affiliate link, I just like to give other crafters a helping hand.

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Hmmm. Wonder what other nifty inventions other crafters are coming up with for the quilters and sewers of this world?!

Curly Q

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