Monday, April 21, 2014

Retirement...More Time to Work?

It still feels a bit like vacation, maybe more like my summer vacations.  I have a list two pages long of everything that I need to do around the house.  I haven't yet made my list of pleasurable things I want to do... like design new wholecloth quilts or take classes or hikes.

I have been incredibly busy.  This is just the tip of what I have been doing.  

Tension Issues.......
First, I tackled an issue that has been plaguing me for months.  I have been having a LOT of tension issues.  I dealt with the problem by only buying Omni thread by Superior Threads.  It is the most maintenance free thread I have ever used.  I love it. However, it is thicker, and if I want to do heirloom quilting with backtrack feathers, I surely don't want a lot of thread buildup.   So for my everyday panto and e2e quilting, Omni is the best, and it is great because I don't have issues with it.

I finally had time to call during normal business hours to my Innova dealer, Teryl Loy, in St. George, Utah. She is so patient, and knowledgeable, and she talked me through an easy fix!  I just needed to loosen the entire tension assembly - not just the tension, but the assembly itself.    I loaded up some practice sandwiches and went to town with Glide, one of my favorite threads.  I must have 30 cones of Glide that I have not been able to use for months, so this was a happy day for me...
 I was not aiming for pretty stitching, just lots of stitching, fast stitching, and stitching without breaks!!  Yes, I believe (cross my fingers and knock on wood) that I have solved that issue.

Home Improvement...
Now, here is my solution for covering my brand new Skechers with memory foam and little mini trampolines on the bottom.  Duct tape!  I didn't want to spill paint on my brand new shoes.  (I read the reviews for these shoes on amazon and everyone claimed that they could wear these shoes all day long while standing).  They are great!
 This is just one of the rooms that we painted this weekend.  We painted a bath, a laundry room, two hallways and tons of doors.  Add to that the first coats of primer and paint to a bunch of cabinets.

One of the projects on my list is to do something about these really comfortable wicker chairs that have been scratched up.  Do you know how to repair the wicker so that the scratches are not noticeable?  Do I need to just buy new chairs?  

I'll be back with more results soon.... I hope!

Monday, April 14, 2014

One Week In...

Can you believe... one of life's major milestones and I haven't announced it on my blog?  A year or five ago I was thinking that I would be shouting it from the rooftops, but no!

Since this is primarily a quilting blog, first let's take a look at Diane's quilt, and this new pantograph - Flicker - I just love it, and think it's perfect for this quilt.

Now, for the announcement.......One week ago today was my official retirement date from my job as a school secretary.  I worked in that job for 20 years.  20 years seems like such a long time, but it sure went fast and other than a couple bad years, it was great.  I didn't make much money, but it was great being at the same junior and senior high schools as my daughters, having all the holidays off with them, and a lot of the summer each year.

I have been so busy this last week that my head is spinning.  I've been doing a lot of customer quilting, and hope to continue on for a long time.  I had hoped to have a good customer base when I did retire so I could enjoy a busy quilting business.

My list of tasks to accomplish in the near future is 20 items long!  That doesn't include all my long-term goals either.

Are you working at a job other than quilting?  Are you quilting as a business?  Are you quilting for fun?  I'd love to hear how this hobby obsession fits in your life...

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Sprigs of Holly

This is Angi's quilt.  I just love the bright fabrics!  Since there are hints of Christmas in these fabrics, Angi asked for a Christmas themed panto.  I used Sprigs of Holly panto on this, and I think it really looks great.  I have been BUSY with customer quilts.  I'll have more panto previews in the next few days.
 A view of the back...

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Freehand Flowers and Loops

This is Theresa's quilt...isn't it cute?  I love the colors!  Theresa asked for really simple quilting, so I did some...really simple quilting!  Theresa made this along with myself and a group of other women one night in February.  It was a mystery quilt night.  Of course I haven't finished mine yet.

This would be my lowest priced freehand quilting.  If you are interested in having me do something like this for you, please contact me.  I'd love to help you get your tops finished at a super reasonable rate!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

A Trip Around the World

This is Linda's TATW and she allowed me to quilt it for her.  Linda made it for her granddaughter.  I had a lot of fun with this little gem.  Let me know if you'd like me to quilt for you!  This is considered medium custom in my studio.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Who Doesn't Love a Scrap Quilt?

If you forced me to pick a favorite 'type' of quilt, I would have a hard time just picking one type, but I would have to say I have a special fondness for scrap quilts.  To me, a scrap quilt just epitomizes quilting and the entire history of the craft.  I love history, I love the intelligent use of making due with what you have and being frugal, and I love how I never have to struggle deciding on what fabrics to use when I make a scrap quilt.  I just use scraps with some type of a neutral.  

This is Sandy's bowtie quilt from 1997.  I am grateful that she has asked me to finish this for her.


The backing is a muslin so the pantograph really shows up nicely on the back.  Of course, this quilt makes me want to make a bowtie quilt, too!

 All folded up and ready to go!

 And here it is - the full picture.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Redwork and Feathers

This is Cathy's beautiful redwork Christmas quilt.  I tried to keep the quilting simple, so resorted to my go-to freehand feathers and then swirls in the redwork.  I hope I accented her gorgeous work so it would shine.  I think I may have to start doing some redwork - it would be good to have something to do when watching a movie or on a long road trip.  I've tried my hand at needleturn applique and it was really a struggle, so this may be my new hand work technique...

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Wow, Red and White!!

This quilt is just so striking with its red and white contrast, isn't it?  My customer Laura made this and asked for a pantograph.  I just love how it finished up.  It is another perfect example that pantographs CAN look great on any quilt.  She supplied Warm and Natural batting, and I used Omni on top and So Fine! on the bottom.  I just love the combination of threads.  I really love Laura's quilts and am definitely adding a red and white quilt to my 'to do' list.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Carpenter Star ala Naturals

This beautiful quilt will be a wedding gift for a lucky couple who were married yesterday.  I love the neutral tones used.  I am always trying something new and this is no exception.  I went with leaves and swirls as my theme and carried it through from border to center.  Thank you, ladies, for allowing me to quilt this gift for you.


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