Thursday, August 31, 2017

Goodies and an Exchange

Sorry ladies (and gents) but, I have the best Daughter in law.  Want proof?  Well, on Thursday, a box arrived on my doorstep.  Inside (besides one of the sweetest notes) were some great things.

When I was in Anchorage last August, my DIL took me to 5 different quilt stores (twice EACH), but, she visited one of the quilt stores that we didn't get to, and found some patterns for me.
3 patterns

My DIL didn't know that I follow Barbara Brackman's blog (middle pattern) she just saw it and thought of me. 

Next in the package was something else that she just knew I needed.  Hmmm.... RED and with sewing notions on it.  DUH!  Check out this great wallet she found.


Lastly, on the very bottom of the box, was a tiny little box.  Inside, it had a necklace (silver, even though it looks gold in the picture).
says 'Grandma'

See, I told you I had the best daughter in law! 

In yesterday's mail, I got a pin cushion from a pin cushion exchange I'm participating in.  This pin cushion came all the way from Norway.

Front, see the bee?

fun print on the back

Thanks Turiid! 

This is the pin cushion I sent to Turid.
pin cushion made for Turid in Norway

You can find the pattern for the Ladybug Pincushion here.  Since I'm doing 5 pin cushion exchanges, I made doubles of some of them, so, you'll be seeing another Ladybug pincushion in the next few weeks.  Yes, it was made on a hand crank sewing machine. 

While paper piecing the Wendy blocks, and sewing the last seam, my machine didn't want to go thru all of the layers.  That was strange, since it usually has no problems with all those layers.  When I finished that seam, and turned it over, I found out the reason it didn't want to sew ( but did sew, with help).  I'd sewn thru the flower head pin, several times.
see the thread still in the pin head?

I had to cut the pin out, then restitch that seam.  Not sure most machines could have sewn thru this, but, that lovely, 92 year old machine did.  Hmmm....... after that, I think maybe I should change the needle on that machine.

Hubby is back home, safe and sound.  I took yesterday off from sewing.  Now to start a new block. 

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Wendy #1

I finally finished the first Wendy paper pieced pattern for the baby quilt.  It's been a stressful week, and I didn't get nearly as much stitching done as I expected to. 

Hubby bailed out on his 106 mile hike, several days early.  It took all day, Sunday, to finally be able to contact him, and make sure they were both ok.  No stitching done till late that night. 

Also, we have quite a lot of family in the Houston area, and, I've been trying to check on them, what with hurricane Harvey flooding the area.  Everyone is ok, but, we don't know about everyone's homes at this point, since some were out of town when it hit, and other's had to evacuate. 

Well, here is Wendy #1, by Alida P.
up close of one of the blocks

both blocks

Here is the piecing picture.  99 pieces of fabric in this 10 inch block.
paper piecing picture

I'm pleased with this block.   All the mistakes were mine alone.  I did make several mistakes, but, I caught them, and corrected them in time, thank goodness.  There are 2 mistakes that I still have to correct.  As I was pulling the paper from the back of one of the blocks, I accidentally grabbed a thread, and pulled a seam out.   Oops!  Then, I did it a 2nd time.  Ok, that was time to stop taking the paper off, and wait till I had my tweezers.  I'll have to hand stitch those parts back together, since it can't be done by machine.  Oh well. 

Oh yes, I'm still piecing these blocks on Tinkerbell, my 1925 Singer 99 hand crank.
1925 Singer 99 hand crank, 'Tinkerbell'

I did get 2 more pin cushions finished, while making these blocks.  I mailed out packages for 6 different exchanges yesterday, too.  Only 3 more exchanges to finish this year, thank goodness. One is almost done, but, I haven't even started the other 2 exchanges.  I'm also behind on Kevin's Mystery Quilt.  I haven't done Clue #2, and he's already released Clue #3.  And if I haven't commented on your blogs, sorry, I haven't read a blog post since last Thursday.  

Hubby gets home sometime today, so, I don't know how much I'll get done, sewing wise. 

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Tiger Lily #1

My first grandchild is due next February.  The nursery is being decorated in Peter Pan.  The last Peter Pan fabric came out in 2009, and despite looking REALLY HARD in many places, it just isn't available.  Ok, I'm creative, so, lets look elsewhere.  Back in 2014, I'd made 2 Tinkerbell blocks (missing at the moment).   I figured if Tinkerbell was out there, then other Peter Pan characters would also be out there.  Well, not many.  After searching, I found a Peter Pan, Hook, Smee and Tic Toc the Crocodile, but, nothing else.  Where were the girls from Peter Pan? 

I contacted all of the pattern designers listed on Fandom in Stitches (no, I didn't realize that there was a form on the site, to ask for patterns to be considered).  Fandom in Stitches was the site that I'd found all but one of the Peter Pan paper pieced patterns in my search. 

Well, I sent messages to all the pattern designers on Monday, August 7th.  I was contacted by 3 of the designers that day, and, by Saturday, August 12th, I had the first pattern.  Wow!  Talk about quick! 

Kristi Lehane sent me that first pattern (I received more, that same weekend, too).  Kristi sent me Tiger Lily.  Tiger Lily is a 10" pattern.  It has 140 pieces of fabric in it.  It is very detailed. 

As usual, I decided to make 2 of each block.  That way, I'll have a block for the baby quilt, and a 'spare' block for whatever else I decide to make. It really doesn't take much longer to make 2 blocks than it takes to make one block.  That being said, most blocks don't have 140 pieces of fabric, and aren't broken down into 24 different parts. 

chain piecing

I got most of the pieces made Monday night and Tuesday, but, the eyes kept messing me up.  It wasn't the pattern, it was stupid mistakes on my part.  I had one of the eyes (23 pieces in that eye) over half done, when I accidentally trimmed it 1/4" too small.  There was no fixing that mistake.
Oops!  I cut 1/4" off the cut line.  No fixing this mistake

I also realized, after I'd stitched most of both of the 2nd eye pieces, that I'd used the wrong white fabric for the eye.  I'd used the white star on white background fabric, and it showed up.  No fixing those 2 eyes, either.  I decided to put the eyes away, and just work on the rest of the pattern. 

Yesterday, I printed off new patterns for the eyes.  I started over.  I kept making mistakes.  I'd forget to fold the fabric in place before I'd pin the next piece (you don't want to know how many times I did this over and over and over).  What a pain to keep un-stitching those tiny pieces, and having to redo them. 

2 of the eyes, done correctly

If you see a difference in those eyes, you are observant.  They eye on the right follows the pattern (23 pieces, some as thin as 1/16" of an inch wide).  I'd finished the right eye on Tuesday (only eye I didn't mess up over and over).  On Wednesday, I decided to see if I could 'cheat' and use a Sharpie to draw in that tiny black line, and skip 2 pieces/seams.  I think it worked out. 

Last night, I finally got all the pieces stitched together, and finished both Tiger Lily blocks.
finished Tiger Lily (correct eye)

both blocks finished

Woohoo!  One pattern down! 

Part of the agreement for these great designers to design patterns for me, is for me to test them in a timely fashion, and send them the pictures, and any problems with the patterns.  Kristi is currently working on Katie Nana (the dog) for me.  I should get that pattern in the next week.

Next up is Wendy, designed by Alida P.  Alida designed 2 different Wendy's for me, a paper pieced version, and an appliqued version.  She also designed me a Tiger Lily, that is pieced differently than this Tiger Lily.  I'll be testing that Tiger Lily, too. 

I still have one pin cushion, for an exchange, to make.  I'll get that done today, before I start Wendy.  

Oh yea, I forgot to let you know that all of these Peter Pan blocks will be made on 'Tinkerbell' my 1925 Singer 99 hand crank
1925 Singer 99 (3/4 size machine) hand crank, Tinkerbell

Hubby is in Utah, on a 106 mile hike in the Uintas Mountains.   While he is gone, I've set up in the living room, where it is cooler (about 8 degrees cooler than my sewing room, which is the hottest room in the house) and I have surround sound.  I'm having fun, watching musicals, and singing along.  I can't do this in my sewing room, since it is 2 doors away from my son, who sleeps days, and works nights.  No cranking up the sound in there, unless I wear headphones, and, then I can't sing along.  My son can't hear me downstairs. 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017


Some goodies arrived in the mail this week, and some at the thrift store.

Kathy at Sparkles, Sprinkles and Everyday Crap had a giveaway for one of her hand made Birthday cards.  Guess who won?!?!  I got to choose a card, with a Birthday number on it.  I chose one for my mother, who will be 79 in November.  My mother loves elephants, so, Kathy incorporated an elephant into the card.  Isn't it cute!
79th Birthday card
Kathy also included a little something extra.  I love my new, personalized mug rug!  Thanks Kathy!
mug rug
I also won some great blocks from Julie, at Julie K Quilts.  Julie's picture of the blocks is much better than mine, especially since I missed putting one of the blocks on the design wall.  Oops!
Oops!  I missed a block
 My daughter in law loves orange, so, these may turn into a baby quilt (my first grandbaby will need LOTS of baby quilts, I'm sure). 

Julie also included some 'extra's' in her package.  I got a lovely card, and a magnetic pin cushion.
card and pin cushion from Julie

Last week, at the thrift shop, I discovered this, on the wrong shelf.  It had fallen behind all the craft items, onto a lower shelf with glasses.  Boy was I glad when I decided to see what it was.
bag with 4 wool pin cushions in it
 I've been wanting to make a wool pin cushion.  Now I have 4 wool pin cushions to choose from, all for $1.99. 
4 pin cushion kits in the package

picture of the completed pin cushions in the package

Everything is there, including the directions, so, I just need to get started on these. I still have 2 more pin cushions to make, for the 4 exchanges I signed up for.

Speaking of pin cushion exchanges, my partner received her pin cushion, so, I can now show it off.  This is the pin cushion I sent to Norway.
pin cushion I made

I also have a finish to show.  I finally got around to putting the binding on the watermelon table topper. 
on my table

up close

with the watermelon dish I found

I finished another table runner, and just have part of the binding left on another one, but, I don't have pictures.  You'll see those later this week. 

I have been stitching up a storm around here.  I cut out the rest of the 14 project bags, and, they are all stitched together, EXCEPT the handles and the binding.  The backs were quilted on a treadle.  They were pieced on a hand crank.  Unfortunately, because the binding is difficult to work with (I need 2 hands to work with it) these will have to be finished on my Featherweight.  For 2 of these, that are part of 2 different Treadle On exchanges, that is cheating, but, I'll include a note, to let them know.  They just won't look very good if I don't have both hands to finish the binding on them.  Darn!
stack of 14 Project Bags, almost done

I'll finish 3 of these, then the rest will just have to wait a while to get finished.  Not only do I have some 'deadline' projects to finish (all for exchanges, so, I can't show pictures yet), but, some of the great designers at Fandom in Stitches have been busy, making new Peter Pan themed paper pieced blocks for me, so, I'll be busy testing them out.  Kristi and Alida have each made patterns for me.  I have 2 different Tiger Lily's and 2 different Wendy's to test for them.  I spend yesterday prepping one of the Tiger Lily patterns.  There are 140 pieces in that pattern alone.  These will NOT be quick patterns.  I can't wait to get them done, so that I can show them to you. 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Book Review

The Legacy, by Michael Phillips.

This is the third, and last, in the Secrets of the Shetlands Series.

I didn't read the first in this series, but, I did read the 2nd book in this series.  I thought the 2nd book was really good, but, this book is even better!  We find out more about the characters that started this journey, Brogan and Emily.  Not only do we get to see their personal stories, but, we also get to see their spiritual journeys.  We see how their beliefs can change lives, including, but, not limited to their own lives. 

This story would still be good as a stand alone book.  There are many mentions of things that happened in the first 2 books, but, they come with some back story, too. 

Decades ago, I read a book that was set in the Shetland Islands, and, I've been fascinated with that area ever since.  This book (and series) gives lots more insight into the Shetland Islands and it's people.  This book also includes Shetland history during WWII, when the Shetland people helped in so many ways, to aid the war effort. 

I recommend reading this book.  I still want to read the first book.  I'll re-read these books again.

*I was given a copy of this book for my honest review.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Sewing Machine tables

Remember when I told you that I got a long arm table, with a machine?
long arm table on our trailer

sewing machine that came with the table
Remember when I said that this wouldn't fit down our basement stairs, because it was too long (12 feet long)?  Well, hubby has been working on this problem.  Hubby contacted the company that this table is from.  They suggested that we cut the table down.  Well, last week, hubby (with help from me and our son) cut 2 feet off the end of the table.
2 foot section, cut off
 See the square cut out, on the left side of this piece?  Well, the 'new' end needs to look just like this.  Hubby is working on that now.
10 foot table, still getting worked on
There is still lots left to do, including cutting all three metal poles down to 10 feet, too.  This project won't be finished anytime soon, but, it's looking much more doable now, thank goodness.  I'm not in a rush.

When we picked up the long arm and machine, there was a sewing machine table sitting in their garage.  They were going to throw it out!  They happily gave it to me, instead, yipee!  The opening  was a bit too small to fit my vintage sewing machine bases.  Hubby fixed that today. (the opening had already been cut out some, with wavy lines, so, not sure what machine would fit in there).
hubby working on the cut out section

new (to me) sewing machine table, finished

big enough opening for my largest machine bases

regular machine base (hubby made this one for me)
When we got this table, someone had added risers to the legs, to make it taller.  Not only would the legs not close properly, but, it was too tall to hand crank comfortably.  It would have made the machine too high, and made my shoulder ache.  We took the risers off, and put on slider feet, instead.
risers with feet, that had been on the table legs
Woohoo!  This will be  a great table to take to sew-in's, and also for demo's of my vintage sewing machines.  If you come to Lyon's Farm Fall Festival, you can see the new table, and play with some of my vintage machines.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Stitching & a few other things!

****Special Announcement at the very bottom of the post****

Between the 12 Days of Christmas in July blog hop, the Michigan TOGA and being sick (worst sick I've been in years), I haven't gotten a lot of sewing done the past few weeks.  I've felt better this past week, so, I'm trying to play catch up.

First, I finally finished the second set of blocks for the Family Reunion quilts.  I make 2 matching quilts, so that they can raffle off the first one, and, the second one is for me.  That means double blocks.  The quilt I'm making this time is from TheElecticAbuela blog, and is called String Crossroads.
98 blocks (2 quilts worth)

up close of one block

her version (pattern on her blog)

I'm making my quilt in 1930's reproduction fabrics.  I still have the string blocks to make.
blocks left to make
The reunion isn't until October 2018, and I only needed the signature blocks finished (the 98 blocks above), so, I don't think I'll get started on the string blocks for a while.

In making these blocks, I did get a bonus gallon sized Ziplock bag full of mini Half Square Triangles.  I haven't ironed or trimmed any of these.  There are 552 Bonus HST's in this bag.
bonus bag of HST's

On Saturday, hubby and I traveled about 2 hours from here, to pick up a long arm table with a machine, that a friend found for me. 
12 foot long arm table in our trailer

machine that came with it
The lady's sister bought this around 1985-91.  The lady got it when her sister died, a few years ago.  When we got home, we realized that the table is too long to fit in our basement :(  Other than taking the sides off the solid wooden base (they are screwed on, and also stapled on the base) I don't know how to get it in our basement.  Hubby is still working on this, but, I don't think there is anything we can do to make it fit around the stupid corner, to get it down the stairs.  This is an older model, unlike the newer models, that can be folded up, or taken apart.  Waaa!  Does anyone in the Chicago area want a long arm base (with 3 rods)?  The good thing, is that this was free, so, I didn't spend anything more than gas money to get it.  There was a bonus.  The lady was going to throw out a portable sewing table, similar to  this one (sorry, the picture won't work.  Someone had cut out the machine area (roughly) and added wooden extensions to the legs.  We removed the extensions (made it too high to comfortably sew with a hand crank) and hubby will make the cut out area neater, when he gets a chance.  I forgot to take pictures.  I'll do that when hubby has finished his part.

Well, hubby is going hiking in the Uinta Mountains, in Utah.   He asked me to make a table runner for the lady who will be shuttling him and his fellow hiker.  I saw this table runner on the blog hop.  Unfortunately, it uses a specialty ruler, and, I haven't a clue how to use that ruler.  The blogger doesn't show how to use it, either.  After some guessing, I came up with these table runners.  The first one is in 'frost' fabrics, the other is in patriotic colors.
2 table runners
I still need to figure out what backing I'll use for these, and finish them.  Sorry about the picture.  The 'frost' one is really lovely, but, the picture doesn't make it very pretty.  It looks like ice and snow in real life.

On Sunday, I was given a great gift, from one of my beginning quilters, that I taught a few years ago.  She had vacationed in Wyoming, and brought this back from a local quilt shop.
perfect fabric for me, don't you think?

Row by Row pattern

another view of the blocks in the pattern

 Between the sewing machine fabric, and the boot in the Row by Row, she said that these spoke my name.  I've never done any of the Row by Row patterns before. 

My little quilt guild is having a name badge challenge.

Somewhere, buried in the basement, is my last name badge, with my first Wego Quiltin' car pin.  I put it up, in a safe place, years ago (remind me to NEVER put something in a safe place, since they always get lost that way).  The only rule is that we put our car on the badge.  Easy enough.

I'm in 2 quilt guilds.  I've been meaning to make a new badge holder for the larger guild, for a couple of years now.  This is what I've been using for the larger guild.

I found this at a thrift store a few years ago.  I added all the pins, over the years.  I knew I wanted something along these lines for both quilt guild badges.  Here is what I came up with.
Wego Quiltin' name badge, with my 'car' on a road

Pride of the Prairie name badge, with printed name tag in a plastic sleeve
Of course, I  had to put the pins on the new badges.  Here they are, with all the pins added. 

I forgot to take pictures of the backs, but, I used my practice piece, from my ruler class, as the backings.
ruler practice piece
No need to waste that practice piece.  Now it has become useful!

Well, at the very top of the blog post, I said that there would be a Special Announcement.  I was allowed to share this back on July 14th, but, I was driving to the Michigan TOGA, and the 12 Days of Christmas in July blog hop was going on.  I didn't want to add this to any of those blog posts.


The baby isn't due till February 15, 2018, so, I have plenty of time to start making things.  My daughter in law has chosen to decorate the nursery in Peter Pan.  I love Peter Pan, but, there isn't much out there to work with.  The last Peter Pan fabrics were printed in 2009, and I can't locate any (still) available.  I did find a great fabric at the JoAnn's in Battle Creek, MI, the night before the TOGA.
Pirate Map fabric
This fabric is on clearance at JoAnn's.  This is the only fabric I've found so far, that is good for Peter Pan.  I've bought all of it at 3 of 4 JoAnn's stores (one store was out already).  I should have enough to make several things now, for the nursery, etc. 

The few Peter Pan things I've been able to find, are some paper pieced patterns at Fandom in Stitches.  They have a Peter Pan block, 2 different Captain Hook blocks, Smee, and the Crocodile.  They also have a Tinkerbell block.  I made the Tinkerbell block a few years ago (another thing that I put up in a safe place, and now can't find).
missing Tinkerbell blocks
I messed up those Tinkerbell blocks (looks like she has white eyeshadow, where is should have been flesh colored material). 

Now I'm looking for Wendy, and some of the other characters, so that I can make a quilt.  If you know of anything, PLEASE let me know.  I do have a couple of the Tinkerbell fabrics, but, since we want it to be gender neutral, I can't use very much of those fabrics. 

I finally joined a social media site.  I joined Pinterest, so that I could save ideas and share them with my DIL.  I have a whole folder of Peter Pan nursery ideas.  I'm listed as Cheryl Parker, if you want to find me.  (contact me, and I can give you more info).

I'd better get back in the sewing room, since I have several projects due before the end of August.  I"m behind again!