Thursday, February 24, 2022

I Like Thursday: Good and Bad

I'm not sure where to begin.  I bricked my laptop on Sunday.  I'm on a desperate search for a new one.  But... it had been backed up before it crapped out and Rob restored my setup on an old laptop from 2008 that's still working.  Well... working may be a bit optimistic - I click on a web page, go get a cup of tea, and hope that it has rendered by the time I come back.  Our five year old tablet is lightning-fast in comparison.  I sit with both of them in front of me to accomplish anything.  It's maddening and somewhat of a hoot all at once.

This was on top of a busy weekend with my mother visiting.  Along with purchasing a kitchen sink to make sure it's here before the cabinets get delivered which should be next week.  I wanted to get taxes done over the weekend and that didn't happen.  And another busy week at work.  Wait?  Monday was a holiday?  It didn't feel like a three day weekend.

One single photo on this post (too much work figuring out how to get it off my phone onto this computer!)  I'm making progress quilting Icy Colors.  It's fun!  It's frustrating!  Bulky seams cause skipping thread here and there.  I swear I've spent as much time ripping out and burying thread as I have been stitching it in. 

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Project Quilting 13.4: Stormy Heart

This week's Project Quilting challenge was Mining for Diamonds.  The first thing that popped into my head was Storm at Sea - lots of diamonds in that!  I was also looking at my design wall that had a patch of pink and red on it, and being February, I thought a heart would be cool.  I've always wanted to do a Storm at Sea heart.

The pattern was more complex than I wanted to tackle this week (it's been a very busy week).  When I looked for simpler diamond patterns, though, I kept thinking: that red is perfect for a heart.  So I caved - better to spend the time on the working on what I wanted to do rather than looking for an easier pattern.

Thursday, February 17, 2022

I Like Thursday: A Quick Flyby

So busy!  I don't have much to share with I Like Thursday.  Work has been taking up a lot of my time (but it's been fun! well... except for on-call problems on Sunday...).  In between that I've been sewing (and ripping stitches) like crazy.  Making slow progress on my mini storm at sea (I keep mixing up the colors). 

I finished The Devil and the Dark Water.  It was a page turner and had all the twists and turns as The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle.  Although I really enjoyed the book, the ending was just a little too neat.  But I hope Turton writes more books.  These are a fun read.

We just finished season 2 of The Indian Doctor (PBS online has some good stuff!).  It was about an outbreak of smallpox in a small Welsh town.  Hard to believe it was filmed in 2012, because it uncannily paralleled the pandemic.  Speaking of PBS, we've rewatched the first season of Vienna Blood to watch the second season, and have been enjoying All Creatures, too.  (Around the World in 80 Days is pretty, but we've been unsatisfied with the plot.)

I found this video really interesting: Drying out a house.  That's a lot of chain mail! 

That's it.  Short, sweet, and I need to get back to my stack of correspondence. 

Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Switching Gears

I was sprinting towards the finish on Shady Lanes when I hit a snag.  Or rather, a series of skipped stitches.  Checking tension, swapping needles had no effect.  Online advice suggested maybe the the thread?  Sure enough, I swapped thread and suddenly the section of fabric that would not hold a stitch quilted up, no problem.

Well, dang.

I spent several hours picking out all the cinnamon stitching I had done in preparation to switch to different thread.  What a stinker.  Could have been worse.  I contemplated slapping the binding on before finishing the quilting, just so I could stitch binding in the evenings, but I decided it was smarter to set it aside.

Sunday, February 13, 2022

First of Four

I've made progress on the Shady Lanes quilting.  

I picked one pattern to quilt, got through two of the square areas and hated how it felt and looked.  Ripped it all out and started with another design.  I sewed that for a while and thought of yet another design... but was unwilling to rip it out again.  The current pattern is looking better the more I worked on it. 

At this point the colored areas are all quilted:  one design outside of the diamonds and another design inside.  I've starting quilting the black diamonds, which are fighting me.  Initially I was going to use black thread, but I couldn't see what I was doing.  The grey thread I had was lighter than I wanted.  I usually love blue, but nothing auditioned well.  I ended up picking cinnamon, which surprisingly looks better than I anticipated.

Thursday, February 10, 2022

I Like Thursday: Birds, Boars, Being Busy

Goldfinches have been taking over our feeders this week.  Every single feeder has been packed. 

Even the suet feeder!  (Which they have had a much easier time using than the juncos did.)

Saturday, February 5, 2022

Project Quilting 13.3: Tea Time

Project Quilting 13.3 would have been the perfect challenge to make cover for the stand mixer.  But with very little free time and not knowing where the mixer will end up when the kitchen is redone... I decided to keep it simple.  Besides - I seem to be on a mug rug kick with this year's challenges so far.

Thus my submission is a large mug rug with teapot and teacups.  The pattern is called Grandma's Tea Party by Beth Maddocks for Piece By Number (I can't find a link of where I downloaded the pdf).

The light green fabric seemed brighter when I chose it, but I wish I had picked a darker color for the teapot.  The first teacup went together no problem, but the second one fought me - I had to do the handle three times before I got it right.  Sheesh. But it gave me a chance to test out the sewing machine after resetting the tension.  Feels great!

Overall, not bad.  Better yet - it's done!  Hopefully I'll have more time and inspiration for the next challenge.

Sharing with:
Persimon Dreams - Project Quilting 13.3

Thursday, February 3, 2022

I Like Thursday: Humming Along

Welcome to February, and it's Thursday!  Time to share some happy things with Lee Anna at Not Afraid of Color

I spent a couple of hours cleaning out, oiling and resetting the tension on my sewing machine on Sunday.  I pulled off the throat plate and discovered a wad of felt under the feed dogs.  Even though I cleaned under there regularly, I clearly didn't catch it all.  This was the first time I had disassembled it.  Can't help but that contributed to the tension issue.   

I'm so happy that the user manual had instructions on how to reset the tension.  It appears to have worked!  The machine hasn't felt this good in a while.

As you can see, I'm still playing with the half kites.  I'm making a few mug rugs.  I seem to be on a mug rug kick!

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

February OMG

I have four pieced-together and sandwiched quilts.  The first one has been hanging on my wall since April.  The latest one was just sandwiched on Saturday.  All of them are overdue to be quilted and gifted. (It would be nice to hand over the baby quilts while they're still babies.)

I also seem to have fixed the tension on my sewing machine that had been broken for the last two weeks.  Yay!  (and whew!) 

Therefore, my February goal is to get one of them quilted.  I'd like to start with the Icy Waters one, but I'm not committing to that.  I'm simply aiming to get any one of them quilted.  

Maybe if I'm lucky, more than one?

Sharing with:
Elm Street Quilts - February OMG
My Quilt Infatuation - Needle and Thread Thursday
Wendy's Quilts and More - Peacock Party