Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Wedding quilt progress and fawn update

My goal was to put a good dent in the getting the wedding quilt underway and I am happy with the progress I made. The only time I left the house to plant my cannas on Sunday evening and water them on Monday morning. I sewed Saturday from 7 am to 9:30 pm. I made three of those giant log cabin blocks and then decided that I wanted to not have so many blocks that looked alike. I was also getting a pile of pieces that were too short to use that method with. It took longer to make the individual half square blocks, but I love the result. Of course, I ran out of the tan and brown fabric so I had to dye more linen and of course it did not come out the same color as the previous fabric, but that was ok. It just added more interest. So by end of day Saturday I had 19 out of 25 blocks done. The blocks measured 18" X 18 1/2" before they were sewed together.
Sunday I was up early again and finished up the blocks and sewed the top together. I dyed the fabric for the back, planted my canna rizomes and call it a day at 8 PM.

Here we are on Monday about noon all pin basted and ready to quilt. I have so many quilts pinned basted that I did not have enough pins to finish this job so I found another quilt that is mostly quilted and took a bunch of pins out of it. I guess I really need to get some quilting done!

If I would have more time I would quilt this piece using lines, but since I am in a time crunch my usual all over design will have to due. I was having a hard time staying focused on Monday. I did have a small interuption when the woman who needed a bridesmaid dress altered stopped over in the early afternoon. I have to take out the zipper and take in the bodice a couple of inches. The dress is strapless so I need to make it good and snug for her. I don't think it will take long to fix the dress. I need to really concentrate and get it done quickly so I don't lose too much quilting time. The wedding is June 11 so I think that will be a weekend job this coming weekend.

I finally saw the mother deer Sunday morning at 6:30 am. She was nursing the fawn and grooming it. After Bubba's breakfast they wandered across the backyard and into the bushes.

Friday, May 27, 2011

First blocks of wedding quilt done

I got the first blocks for the wedding quilt sewned together last night. It came out about 36" x 36". I am using my technique of no measuring and improv piecing. The linen is easy to sew with. It is interesting because I cannot press all the tiny wrinkles out, but I think it adds another layer of texture to the piece.

Here is the big block cut into four.

I have the beginnings of the next block layout and ready for me to attack once I get out of work today. Let's hope they let us go a little early today.

So my plans for the holiday weekend is to work on the wedding quilt, finish fixing my brother's pants, and take in a bridesmaids dress (YUCK! on the dress). I don't have any plans on going anywhere for cookouts or other socializing. I would like to start quilting the wedding quilt by Monday.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Fawn, broken dish, and questions - lots of questions

I saw the fawn, Bubba, last night. It was chillin' before the storm. It was gone this morning. Still have not seen the mother. We had a lot of wind and rain, but no major damage last evening thank goodness.

Last night my company came. She brought dinner which I proceeded to heat up in the microwave. I took the first plate out of the microwave and it cracked. You can see the juices from the lasagna seeped thru the crack. This is one of my Royal Doulton plates! I bought one place setting at a time when I was first married. A five piece set cost $35.00 which was a lot of money back then. This china just sits in a cupboard and I was thinking I ought to use it. I am going to contact Royal Doulton to ask if I goofed by putting in the microwave or if it may have been a manufacturing flaw. Heck, I have 9 more plates so it's not like it is the end of the world!

My friend had lots of questions: how to take in a top for a friend, how to get her machine set up for satin stitching the applique shapes on the blocks she is working on for a baby quilt, how to get a 1/4" guide set up for stitching the strips together, and stuff that just came up. She said that she will get the top put together over Memorial weekend and will be back next week for a quilting lesson. The baby this quilt is for is due in July so she is anxious to have it done before the baby arrives.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Fawn, cleaning and more linen

I have not been able to post for the last couple of days - when I tried to get into to post I would get an error message. I don't know what the problem was, but I'm back!

Here is the fawn. I was out mowing Sunday late afternoon and saw it jump out from under the deck. I went inside and grabbed the camera. I keep walking toward it as I talked to it. It wasn't shaking like it was scared. I got within 3 - 4 feet of it to take this picture. I still have not seen the mother and I did not see the fawn Monday evening. Later after the fawn wandered off I stood by the daylillies the fawn was standing in and the day lillies come up to my knees. I am 5' 2" tall so that will give you an idea of how little this fawn is - about 20" tall.

Do you have one of these rooms? I am bearing my soul and showing you this mess. Now you don't have to feel bad that you are the only one that has a room that you have to keep the door shut from company! This is my catch all room. I don't have a basement so this room is full of holiday decorations, furniture that has not found a place, and construction materials that still need installed, the canna rizomes that need planted, extra lamps, the dehumidfier, quilting frame rails, and just stuff! I keep the shop vac in here and about kill myself tripping over stuff to get to it. My goal was to get rid of the empty boxes, consolidate and label, vacuum up the dust bunnies and dead bugs, and put stuff back where it belongs.



After. I feel much better that the mess is now more orderly and under control. I need to redo this room - remove wall paper borders, repair walls, install a closet system and doors, paint everything, replace baseboard and flooring. Now that I have cleaned up it will be easier to move what I have when I redo this room.

I dyed two more pieces of linen for the wedding quilt. I did a lighter piece - the second piece from the left - and a dark piece. Tonight I have company coming - one day later than was previously discussed, but it worked out great for me (I got the dishes done last night!) and better for her.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Dyeing, animals, and ToC

I finally got brave yesterday and cut up the French linen fabric I bought for my nephew's wedding quilt. Here are the fabric stewing in the dye brew.

The cream piece is the natural color of the linen. I like the softness of the colors. Now I just need to make up my mind what I am going to do and get sewing!

My lower level can be damp and with the humidity we are having right now, I can smell that musty smell. This is an old cheap particleboard desk that was my son's when he was in school. I could smell that musty smell every time I opened the drawers. I went to Home Depot to pay my bill and found these commercial style open shelves that fit perfectly in the same spot. They were easy to put together and are very sturdy.

This bird has made it's nest under my deck. I can see it from my laundry/utility/dye studio window. Of course, I had to clean the windows and the screens before I could take this picture. They were so dirty, but now they sparkle!

There was also a newborn fawn in the back yard. I didn't see the mother and I wasn't that interested in taking a chance of getting too close to the fawn to take a picture and upset the mother. It was dusk so all the pictures were dark. I am sure they will be back and maybe I can get a picture then.

The peloton on the last stage of the Tour of California screaming thru Thousand Oaks, Ca.

This is the street level view of the final sprint to the finish line. It is just scary how fast these guys are pedaling those bikes!

Here is the overhead view of the sprint finish. Not nearly as scary.

GC winner of the ToC Chris Horner.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Red flag and the TofC

My brother needed to get his extension ladder out of my garage last evening. I needed to make a red flag for hanging of the end of the ladder. I found some cheap red flannel someone had given me. After a quick hem all around I sewed on some heavy duty velcro to make the flag removable. Here is my brother giving me the thumbs up for his new safety flag.

I thought I would show all the jersey winners from yesterday's stage of the Tour of California. I know many of you will raise your eyebrows, but I just love watch bike racing.

Yesterday race was 139 miles and they cover that in 5 hours 16 minutes and 3 seconds. That averages to a little over 26 miles an hour! They did have a strong tail wind which help to push them along, but you can see here the race profile and it was far from a flat stage.

21 year old Peter Sagan won Thursday's stage of the ToC. He got a HUGE bottle of wine, flowers, and a glass bowl. For such a young fellow he had the biggest legs! He is a very powerful sprinter and hopefully will get better with more experience. He is adding a lot of excitement to the sprinting aspects of bike racing.

Peter Sagan gets the green jersey for the most sprint points. Sprint points are awarded thoughout the stages at certain points and at the end of sprint stages.

And all the riders once they are awarded their jersey's get kisses for a photo op.

Chris Horner is in the yellow jersey for the General Classification overall best time for the event.

This is Patrick McCarty in his red King of the Mountains jersey. He has the most points so far for crossing the lines at different points during the stages that are set up for getting points and cash prizes just like the sprint points.

This is Tejay Van Garderen who got the white jersey for the best young rider. By young that means under 25 and he has the best time for the event so far.

Oscar Freire in his blue Most Couragous Rider of the day jersey.

Here are all the day's jersey winner posing together for photos.

Today, Friday, stage is the individual time trial. This could have a huge impact on the final outcome of the race.

This plan this weekend is to get the pants hemmed for another brother of mine and start on the wedding quilt. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pillowcase done and the Tour of CA

Scratch one thing of yesterday's list. This pillowcase measure 11" x 17". It is for a toddler's pillow. I just need to get it in the mail today.

Congratulations to Chris Horner team RadioShack for his stage win yesterday in the Tour of California. Here is what the stage profile looked like - lots of going uphill! I didn't get a shot of the entire profile because the finish line was a mountain top finish. So after the big HC climb they had one more mountain to climb. Those boys looked beat when they came across the finish line. At least the weather was better - no rain and some sunshine. Gosh, that sounds like Ohio. It poured again here yesteday afternoon, but at least the sun did come out for a little while.

This is a shot of the riders on one of the many hairpin turns while decending Mt. Hamilton. Scares the heck out of me!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

More straightening up - sewing studio

Last evening I cleaned up the sewing studio while I watched the Tour of California. Here is the fabric that was washed and sitting in a pile on my big table, but needed pressed. All pressed and moved to the fabric storage room.

Here is the scrap pile that needed tackled.

Here is the after. The boxes are not full - thank goodness - but I can continue to sort into the boxes rather than trying to sort into the grocery bags. I don't have time right now to work on this scrap smackdown, but at least I have a system set up.

My table is all cleared off and ready for the next projects which are 1. hemming a pair of pants for my brother, 2. making a pillow case (the blue and lime fabric) for a friend of my sister, and 3. the wedding quilt for my nephew out of the French linen shown here. My large design wall is also cleared off so it is full speed ahead.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Straightening up - laundry/utility/dye studio

I am having company next week so I need to get the house straightened up so I started Sunday with cleaning up my laundry/utility/dye studio. I was really tired of tripping over the mess. I am going to be brave and show the befores and afters. It is a lot better although in the pictures it still looks like a lot of stuff to me. The shelves contain dyeing supplies, electrical and plumbing stuff, wallpaper that needs to be installed, and painting supplies amoung other misc items.







I didn't get much done last evening. The Tour of California is this week and so I watched that last night and I had taped Oprah. Tonight while watching the ToC I have clean up at least during the commercials or I will never get the place shoveled out by next week.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Seventh finish of 2011

I finished the quilt on Saturday and handed it off to my sister-in-law. Unfortunely, Don Jamieson did not come to the show on Sunday. Don't ask - I have no idea, but that is just the way things roll in the music industry. The good part is I know I can pound out a good sized quilt in a short time if I stay focused. Next quilt - one for my nephew who is getting married on June 18. Shoot, I have plenty of time!