Sunday, December 13, 2015

Slow Stitching Sunday

I'm getting lots of stitching done today.  I stitched the binding down on 2 sewing caddies.
one of the sewing caddies, finished

showing hexie pin holder, and pockets on sewing caddy

pin cushion on sewing caddy

both sewing caddies, showing backing

you can tie the caddy shut, when not in use
I got the free pattern from Jenny of Elephantz.  I changed mine up a bit.  I still need to finish 2 more in this colorway, and 4 in another colorway.  You can see the other colorways in this blog post.

When I head back to my sewing room, I'll finish the last bit of stitching on the binding for the Frog Churn Dash quilt.  You can see what little I have left in this picture.
last bit of binding, left to stitch down
All of these are gifts.  All my Christmas presents are almost done.  Now to wrap and ship most of them.

Friday, December 11, 2015

A Finish! A Win! and a Gift!

I've finished the Frog Churn Dash quilt!  Well, all but the last 2 feet of binding (don't hold it against me).
Frog Churn Dash quilt

up close of block

up close of block
Have you purchased chances on raffle quilts before?  I have purchased enough to buy a quilt, I think.  Well, it finally paid off.  I won!!!!!!!!

This raffle quilt was to raise funds for breast cancer survivors in the Peru, IL area, so that they could take yoga classes.  The Ottawa quilt guild made the quilt.
quilt I won
It is so large that hubby couldn't hold it so that all of it showed.  Each Ohio star represents a breast cancer survivor.

Here are the 2 labels on the back of the quilt (sorry they are washed out).  

1 st label on back of quilt

label about who made the quilt
My mother, her sister and their niece (my cousin) are all breast cancer survivors.

I met up with the lady who called me, at Kohl's on Saturday.
Sonie presenting me the quilt
My little quilt guild had it's Christmas party at my home on Monday.  We did a mug & mug rug exchange.  No one could spend more than $1 on a mug, and had to make a mug rug that matched the mug.  I wish I had taken pictures of all the mugs and rugs.  They were GREAT!  Here is the mug & rug I made (29 cents for the mug, in Texas).  The cross stitch was found in a thrift store about 2 years ago, and saved until I found the right project for it.  When I saw the mug, I knew why I'd saved this cross stitch.
mug rug I made

mug rug I made
Here is the mug & rug I  received.  I love the tractors.  The mug has a barn on the other side.
mug & rug I received

showing the whole mug rug
There were candy canes and hot drink mixes in the bag, along with snacks.  Yum!

I'm headed to church, shortly, for a ladies night, where we have an ornament exchange.  The rules are like a White Elephant exchange, so, lots of 'stealing' going on.  Lots of fun and laughs (and good food, too). 

Have a Great Weekend!

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Busy! Busy! and an interruption

I have been busy lately.  It's Rush! Rush! Rush! season.  I'm having my little quilt guild's Christmas party at my house on Monday, but, I've had a few interruptions, so, I haven't decorated yet.

Our oven has slowly been going out for the past 8 years.  At first, if you wanted the oven to reach 350 degrees, you set it for 355 degrees.  Now, you set it for at least 375 degrees, and hope it stays there.  It is a oven/microwave combo, so, when the microwave 'smoked' on me, just before Thanksgiving, I decided I wasn't waiting any longer to replace it. 

I found a double oven at IKEA, and bought it.  We purchased a microwave on Monday.  On Tuesday, a friend helped us remove the oven/microwave unit, and told us what we needed to do before we could install the new double oven.
old oven/microwave combo
Well, with a double oven, I knew that I'd lose one of the drawers under the oven area.  Hubby had to do some 'construction' to make everything fit properly.  Of course, the people who built the house had to make it difficult, by gluing the wooden supports to the cabinet walls, thus making it almost impossible to cut them down to size.  Hubby finally figured out how to get everything done.
oven cabinet area, see our new microwave?
Oh yea, and while we were doing the construction, the new double oven had to go somewhere.
new double oven, in my kitchen
Our friend came back over yesterday, to help us finish installing the new double oven. 
New Double Oven
We tested it out last night, and it works!  Woohoo!  I've wanted a double oven for years!  This sure will make Christmas dinner easier to make. 

In between the oven interruptions, I did get some stitching done.   I quilted the Frog Churn Dash quilt.
top, before quilting
I have also made the binding for it.  I just need to sew it on, and stitch it down.
frog quilt, quilted, with binding, waiting to be attached
I also made some more mug rugs.  I saw these mugs at the thrift store, and knew I had the perfect fabric for some mug rugs to match them. 
2 mugs with rugs, and 2 spare mug rugs
I also made 3 more pillowcases, bringing my total up to 20.
frogs, text speak & emoticons, and confetti
We have a tree up, with lights, but, because I've had the dining room table covered with the frog quilt, I haven't unpacked any ornaments yet.  All my Christmas decorations are still in the basement, since we've been involved with the oven.  At least I can cook for Monday night now, even if the house isn't decorated. 

I still have lots of stitching that needs to be done.  I'll be rushing around for the next few weeks, I'm sure. 

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Pillowcase Party!

I've been working on 17 pillowcases this week.  My sister-in-law suggested pillowcases for Christmas presents this year, so, I obliged.  I've only made a couple of pillowcases before this week. 

chain stitching pillowcases
I pinned pillowcases last night, until I ran out of pins.
pillowcases, waiting to be stitched
Near Chicago, we are getting snow.  Thank goodness I live in the far western suburbs, and, we've been lucky, and only have a few inches.  Other suburbs (north and west of Chicago) have been hammered with as much as 12-16 inches.  This is what it looked like out my sewing room window, as I was stitching the last few seams.
snow in the suburbs
And here are the finished pillowcases. 
the monsters glow in the dark

I purchased the Eiffel Tower fabrics about the time Paris was being attacked, last Friday.  We have a niece that is studying abroad, about 2 hours from Paris.  Scarry!

I still have lots of stitching to get done before Christmas.  I guess my break is over.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

More Machines, less stitching

I'm still cleaning machines.  I got 4 new (to me) machines this week, so, it's to be expected.  I've only cleaned 2 of those machines, so far.

The first two machines I picked up Tuesday evening.  They were FILTHY! 
1921 Singer 66

back of Singer 66
After taking the motor and light off (they are connected, so, both had to go), I went to take the machine out of the base, since it is easier to clean that way.  Look what I found when I lifted the machine back.
insulation and the remnants of the manual
There was a hole in the middle of the insulation.  I think something lived there at one time.  I did a thorough cleaning of the wood base, don't worry.  Lots of elbow grease to get the grime off, too.
cleaned & polished base

felt added to the bottom of the base, to prevent scratches
Doesn't that wood look much nicer now?

Next, I cleaned all the silver parts of the machine, then cleaned all the lint out.  I changed out the solid hand wheel to a spoked hand wheel, and, after cleaning the machine (LOTS of grime on the machine) I added a hand crank.  The hand crank is an original hand crank I picked up in Princeton, IL a year or more ago.

Here is the cleaned up 1921 Singer 66.
all cleaned up (you can see where they 'pinned' the decals on the arm)

back (this machine didn't come with a silver cover, since it had a light over the hole, instead)

face plate is much cleaner now

This is an original hand crank that I picked up a year ago.  Not sure if it will stay on this machine.

This machine came with a bentwood cover.  I also cleaned it up a bit.
bentwood cover (back)

bentwood cover (front)

cover half oiled
When I went to put the cover on the machine (it was sitting next to the machine when I got it, not on it), I found out that it didn't fit.  I put it next to another cover/base that I have, that is for a 3/4 size machine.

bottom is the cleaned & oiled cover, top is a empty 3/4 size case
Then I put a full size bentwood cover next to the 3/4 size covers.
bottom is a full size cover
The full size cover came with my new (to me) Gritzner that my sister-in-law found for me.  (it doesn't go with the Gritzner, either). 

Now it has a new home.  I'm hoping to get a handle for it soon.  No, I haven't cleaned up this cover (yet).
cover on Singer 66 base & machine
Next, I moved on to the other machine I picked up Tuesday evening.  A cute little 3/4 sized Singer 128.  This machine was pretty rusty, but, it has great decals.
1923 Singer 128 (3/4 sized machine)

back of Singer 128

notice the rust, and the broken light bracket
Someone decided that this machine needed a new spool pin.  Interesting way to re-purpose a knitting needle.
even the knitting needle was rusty

knitting needle was bent, too.
Because of all the rust on this machine, it took even longer to clean.  I had to use steel wool to 'sand' away as much of the rust as I could.  I also used Evaporust on the chrome parts (don't leave them in the solution too long, or they change color).

Remember that empty 3/4 sized Bentwood base and cover, from a couple photo's above?  Well, it isn't empty anymore. (yes, I still need to clean & oil the wood some more).  Look how pretty this machine looks when it is clean.

cleaned 1923 Singer 128

back (It still has rust, where the hole is)  the light covered this area before.

look at that face plate shine

almost no rust on the slide plates, and look at those decals

I even got the rust off the hand wheel
I was exhausted after cleaning all day and evening on these two machines.  I even worked on them while watching the CMA's.  I could have done more, but, I was too tired.

This morning, I decided to finally clean the Gritzner hand crank (original hand crank, not converted) that my sister-in-law found for me in New Mexico, earlier this summer.  I didn't get it until late September.  I've shown this machine in a previous post (Arkansas TOGA).

The Gritzner wasn't nearly as dirty as the first two machines, but, it still took a while to clean.  I couldn't take this machine out of the base, because of how it is installed.  I didn't want to damage the base by removing screws.

no hinge pins, but, screwed into the base

This machine came with some goodies.
lots of extra bobbins, some needles (regular size, thank goodness) and the original foot (not rusty anymore)

Here is the Gritzner, all cleaned up.
Gritzner hand crank

shiny face plate

back of Gritzner

Gritzner hand crank
I did go to the Quilts of Valor sew-in on Tuesday, but, I didn't sew (or stay long).  Before the sew-in, I helped a friend convert her Singer 66 into a hand crank.  (sorry, no pictures). 

Because of all the cleaning of machines lately, I have not been sewing.  I'm hoping to get some stitching done next week (Christmas is coming, and, I'm not ready yet).    I still have two machines to turn into hand cranks, too.