Thursday, January 31, 2008

Red Floral Crumb quilt completed :)

Bad sewing machine day yesterday and the day before - Babylock not working properly again, and now the "new" (vintage) Kenmore won't even make a proper stitch. I don't know what I did in a previous life, but obviously it was pretty bad! I have 3 sewing machines here that don't work - it's very depressing, and makes me cry with frustration. My husband/kids think it's bizarre that I would cry over sewing machines, but I suspect my quilty/sewy friends understand where I'm coming from ;)

I borrowed my neighbours little sewing machine last night (another Kenmore) and happily, it worked GREAT. She never uses it - I'm not giving it back until they pry it from my cold, dead fingers!! ;) I forgot how nice it was to sew and sew and sew with no thread breakage, no needle breakage, no nesting, no seam screw uppage - I'm not used to smooth sailing with my machines. I finished up crumb quilt #2 -- 54 X 72" Red Floral Crumbs. This is another donation quilt :)

Off to the studio to decide what to work on today ;)

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Happy birthday, Shorty ... love you :) (maybe he'll let me post a picture later - I'll ask, lol).

I just finished up 2 9-4 blocks for a friend ... now I know why I like paper piecing or cutting blocks to size so much - piecing and getting accurate seams and block sizes is a BITCH!!! I hate 1/4" seams - they're too fiddly for me - I prefer larger 3/8" seams. I also prefer making blocks larger than required, then trimming them down to size. I didn't do that with these blocks, so they're not exactly square. Pat will have to trim them down when she gets them. However, they're done and they're not hideous, plus they're for a good cause - I'm sure I'll be able to post pics later when the project is finished :) Hope you like them, Spicy Patty Pat!! And I know the recipient will love the project :D

Monday, January 28, 2008

Fabricland shopping trip :)

I only went for TWO 1/4 metre pieces of red fabric for some 9-4 blocks I'm making for a friend. Hubby decided to leave me at the fabric store while he went to do some banking and get the car washed. It's his fault I bought 8 1/2 metres instead of 1/2 metre, lol. Everything was on sale, of course - the fabric cost me $33. That makes ... $33 + $36 so far in January on fabric ... $69. My goal this year is to spend no more than $500 on fabric --- that translates to $40/month. OOPS, over budget already ;)

Did a bit of sewing today - got 6 more Christmas coasters made, which used up the Christmas fabric I bought 2 weeks ago. Got 5 more crumb blocks finished - that makes 23, I think - I need 24 for each crumb quilt. I also got all the new fabric preshrunk/washed/dried so it can go down into the studio.

Tomorrow is a big day - our oldest son turns 19. Legal drinking age in Ontario! How the hell did he get to be 19 - I'm pretty damn sure that it was only 2 or 3 weeks ago that we brought him home from the hospital!!! I bet the farm he'll come home with his first case of beer, LOL. (OK, his first case of LEGAL beer). His special dinner will be - as per his request - chicken cacciatore, garlic bread and tiramisu. And beer, HAHAHA!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

It's Kenmore - iffic :)

With all the problems I've been having with my Babylock I decided I needed a back-up machine. I advertised on craigslist and heard back from a few people, and ended up buying the above machine. In the pics it's just sitting in my kitchen which is where I had it set up for a test drive when Richard delivered it this morning. It works fine, and I'll have the boys take it down to my studio. It's a very basic machine with straight stitch and zigzag (and a few stretch stitches) - it says Kenmore 10 on the front, and the label on it says it's a model 12621. It came with a cabinet but I'm not sure I'll keep the cabinet - I have to see how things will get set up in the studio, then I'll decide :)

It cost me $60 (+ $15 for delivery - very reasonable) - I think it's going to work very well, and I'm very happy! Thanks Richard, and thanks craigslist!

Sandra :)

An hour later: I'm definitely not using it in the cabinet - I can't sit at it properly (thats one of the reasons my Babylock is also out of it's cabinet and on a tabletop - so I can sit centred where I want to be) - but the machine is SLOOOOOOW. The foot pedal should control the speed but it only seems to have one speed - SNAIL!! Must investigate - maybe the foot pedal needs to be cleaned ... or replaced? AARRGHHH!! It sews like a trooper tho - a SLOW trooper, LOL.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Today's production line :D

This is what I've been working on today --- back row left is a crumb quilt that I'll be birthing with the fleece in front of it - thats's going to be my next UFO finish. Beside it is the purple crumb flimsy I finished up this morning (the alternating blocks are a deep purple, even tho they look blue in that photo). In front is another gift bag I made today - actually, it's an "envelope", and it's sized to fit a DVD. It velcro's closed. Beside that is another set of coasters I made for Christmas.

And because I'm just so damned efficient, I have a big batch of chicken cacciatore simmering away on the stove for supper - just waiting for hubby to get home before we eat :)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Just .... awwwwwwwww :)

My kitty Zoomer :)

Coasting along ....

Quicky post because I'm on my way upstairs to make the bed (before anyone gets home, HAHA) and to get supper started, but of course I needed to sit at the computer for a few minutes before getting to work ;)

There are the 8 coasters I made today (the white/green ones), along with the 4 crazy coasters I made a few weeks ago - Christmas gifts done in January - who on earth knew THAT would be possible??!! NOT ME!!!

Sandra :D

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Still waiting for the axe to fall ...

I haven't been sewing much because I'm so tired of the problems, but I sat down today to work on some stuff and other than the thread breaking once and two needles breaking (at a tough spot in a block), I had no problems. It makes no sense that I had so many problems for so many months, and in a heartbeat, the problems seem to go away, with no discernible reason??!!! I'm beyond puzzled!! HAPPY as hell, but puzzled!! I'm waiting for something to go wrong big-time, but until then, I'm LOVING being able to stitch almost problem free!! Still going to buy myself a backup machine, tho. It's too hard being without a machine when mine isn't working, or when it's in the shop. GOTTA SEW!! ;)

Today I made two Christmas gift bags (with an old Christmas tablecloth that has seen better days), a little coaster for my sewing table (because I always have a Diet Dr. Pepper on the go), and sewed together 3 rows of blocks on my purple crumbs quilt (6 rows now done, 2 more to go). A good day, to be sure, and it's only mid-afternoon! I'm going to get some housework done, and then I might try to get the last 2 rows assembled on the crumb top - the blocks are already made, I just have to put them together :)

OH! Found the most amazing tutorial yesterday --- the sweetest needlecase made by Khris, a blogger from Australia -- - isn't that the sweetest thing!!! I'm going to make one (or two ... or three!) - thanks for sharing Khris!!! If you have some time poke around her blog - it's great reading :)

Off to vaccuum - doncha WISH you were me! LOL!!!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Shhhhhhhh don't say it out loud ...

My sewing machine has been working fairly well ever since Sunday night - I think witnessing me sobbing my eyes out affected it!!! I did nothing different and don't recall anything dramatic happening, but it feels like the timing or the needle or SOMETHING kicked into the proper position and the nesting problems have all but disappeared. I'm sure it's temporary and I'll be wailing again soon, but in the interim, I'm SEWING, woooohooooooooo!!! And checking for nests every 6" - isn't that sad? But necessary!!

Finished up my first UFO/donation quilt of 2008 - Purple Floral Crumbs :) It's 54 X 72", birthed with light green micro fleece. I did SITD quilting in the seams. Had to rip out quite a few feet of nests (from when the machine was wonky) which p*ssed me off, but it's done, it's soft, and someone will be able to snuggle under it :)

I've been sending stuff to a nearby shelter for a couple of years, but now I'm looking for somewhere else to work with - I know my stuff was appreciated, but I'd like to be a bit more hands on :)

One crumb down, 9 to go (and one more set of blocks almost finished for the 11th crumb quilt, LOL).

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Babylock Woes - aka I hate my Babylock

I haven't been sewing much because I have so many problems with my sewing machine. I don't have a back-up machine, so I'm really stuck when the machine acts up. This is beyond frustrating - I can't pin down a common denominator, and things don't go awry the same way every time. AARRGGHHH. Will take it to the shop - again - on the weekend, I guess. GRRR!!

I did manage to finish assembling another quilt top - Red Floral Crumbs. Thats 8 crumb tops assembled, and the blocks ready for two more - if I ever get my machine working properly, I'll be birthing quilts (with fleece) until the cows come home!

I also whipped up 3 more crumb blocks - look at the top and right strips on the middle block - those are made from housedresses I from my late MIL - I nabbed them from her linen closet, and cut them up for scraps. I absolutely love that orange stripe - 70's or WHAT!!!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Weighing in at a bazillion calories each ...

Someone on one of my Yahoo quilting groups (you know who you are, JOY!!!) posted a link to Easy Cinnamon Rolls ---
I just happened to have all the ingredients, and I figured that cinnamon rolls had to make a crappy day better!!! Mine don't look like the ones in the recipe as I couldn't put them on their cut side - the filling kept spilling out. However, that didn't stop my teenagers from devouring them, LOL.

I won't be having any, but the kids are sure enjoying them :)

2008 - not off to a good start *arggh*

My mother-in-law Estella died suddenly on January 1, and my sister's father-in-law Jack died suddenly on January 7 - not a good start to the new year :(

My Babylock won't work properly, and hasn't for MONTHS. It's been to the shop several times and things have been repaired or replaced, but I still have problems every time I use it. I've about reached the end of my rope with it - I'll never buy another Babylock. I'm going to have to take it back to the shop AGAIN, and now I've decided to buy a back-up workhorse machine - maybe one with more metal than plastic. I came SO close to finishing my first UFO for 2008 but the machine kept looping on the back - now I'm going to have to spend hours ripping it out so I can redo it. Stupid stupid machine!

On a better note, I've lost 10 pounds so far this year - YAY!!!!! I'd use one of those weight loss ticker things but I can't find one that JUST shows the weight I've lost - they all announce to the world how much I have to lose - I'm not interested in posting that, LOL.


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