Thursday, September 29, 2011

September is National Sewing Month

My grandparents
 September is National Sewing Month.  Bloggers have been encouraged to tell about how they got started sewing or quilting.  My fathers mother sewed clothes on a Singer treadle sewing machine.  My daddy wanted me to learn to sew like his mother.  I wasn't interested in sewing when I was growing up.  I did love the quilts that my grandmother had.  Her mother and sisters quilted.  My grandmother developed Alzheimer's while I was in high school.  I didn't get interested in sewing or quilting until after her death.

My great grandmother
 My daddy wanted me to learn to sew, so badly, that he bought me my first sewing machine for Christmas when I was in 2nd grade.  He knew how to thread it and sew on it, but, I still wasn't interested, to his great disappointment. I kept that machine until it disappeared when we moved to Illinois.  I wish I knew what happened to that machine. 

 My great grandmother quilted.  She gave my parents a quilt when they were married.  As children, we played Matchbox cars on that quilt.

My parents wedding quilt
 I started a quilt in college.  I didn't know what I was doing.  I bought several fabrics and cut them into squares.  I never got any further than that.  I don't know what happened to that fabric.

 In 2011, I signed up for a quilting class at my church.  I made my first quilt, a mini quilt.  I rushed so that I could show the finished quilt to my daddy at Thanksgiving.  The rest of the class hadn't even started to hand quilt theirs yet.  Thus, I taught myself how to hand quilt and bind.  My daddy was please that I finally wanted to learn sewing in some form. 

My daddy

 My father died from Alzheimer's in November 2009.  As a tribute to him and his mother, I wanted to find a Singer treadle sewing machine for myself, and sew on it.  In August/September 2010, I acquired three Singer treadle sewing machines in 4 weeks.  I have sewn on the first treadle, a Singer 15 series from 1896.  My daddy and my grandmother would have been so happy.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Teapot Tuesday, Oops! Wednesday and fun at Lyons Farm

Cloisonné Teapots & Bell
Elias Howe sewing machine at Lyons Farm
 Oops!  I'm a day late.  I was shopping and cooking yesterday (and today) for the Wednesday night supper at church.  6 homemade lasagna's, 4 desserts, and various other goodies.  I still have to layer the lasagna's after I finish this post.

The small teapot on the right was a gift from my mother in law several years ago.  I have a great mother in law.  The bell in the center was from my mother in laws mothers bell collection.  Nanny (my hubby's grandmother) also quilted.  We have some of her quilts.  I can't remember where I got the teapot on the left.  I'm sure I'll remember as soon as I finish this post.  I've started adding notes to some of my teapots to help me remember when, and from whom, I got some of my teapots.
Elias Howe sewing machine at Lyons Farm

bobbin winder on Elias Howe machine
I visited Lyon Farms this weekend for their Fall Fun weekend.   In the 'Oswego house' I found this great treadle sewing machine.  The paper on the machine says it was an Elias Howe machine.  Elias Howe held the pattens on the sewing machine.  You can read all about him here.

Since I have never seen one of his machines before, I was interested in seeing the placement of the bobbin winder.  I've never seen a bobbin winder on the treadle irons before.  Interesting.

In the same house at Lyons Farm, was this bassinet with this Yo-yo quilt in it.  I thought all the ladies who are making yo-yo's in blogland would like to see this quilt.  There were two bassinet's like this at Lyons Farm.  A very interesting design. 

There are lots of buildings at Lyons Farm.  One is the old general store.  I enjoyed looking at the notions wall (picture below). 
Baby Yo-yo quilt

vintage sewing notions in General Store at Lyons Farm
 I also visited the school house, depot, and other buildings.  In one of the buildings, hand quilters from Oswego's 'Quilters Dozen' group were working on an embroidered quilt.  In the same building was a collection of Elephants that were donated by former Sen. Hastert's secretary.  My mother collects elephants, and I just had to have a picture of this elephant telephone.  Wouldn't it be fun to use this phone?  It even has a rotary dial.  I always wanted a 'princess' style phone.
Elephant telephone at Lyons Farm

I also talked with one of the workers at Lyons Farm about having a treadle and hand crank demo in the future.  Like I really need something else to add to my schedule. 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

A Finish and a box of goodies

Baby blanket done
 I FINISHED IT!  Yea!  This is a baby blanket for my best friends grandson.  I made the panel a few years ago, waiting for a baby to come along.  Well, the baby arrived in March.  Another really good friend machine quilted it for me last fall (Thanks Kay).  I started putting the binding on then, and then stopped.  I kept forgetting to finish the binding.  Oops!  Since it wasn't done last March when I went to Texas, I again forgot to finish it.  I grabbed it before we went back to Texas earlier this month.  I worked on it a bit in the car, but, didn't get time to finish it while we were there.  But, I got it finished in the car on the way thru Oklahoma.  Yipee!  Now I have to mail it.  We'll see how long that takes.
Thread from Belgium

This lovely assortment of threads and the postcard arrived yesterday all the way from Belgium.  I sent some muslin to Belgium, and I got all this back.  Such pretty colors!  I'll have fun with these.  Thanks Gregory!

I am hoping to get several things basted this weekend.  I really need some more finishes.  I have LOTS of starts, but no other finishes in sight.  I may (don't quote me on this) even try to machine quilt some small things.  I can only do 'stitch in the ditch' on a machine, or follow the straight line.  I mess up everything else I try to machine quilt.  What do you think about part machine and part hand quilting???  Is that cheating? 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Treadle Tuesday (Sorry, no teapot this week)

veneer is buckled
YEA!  I'm finally home!  Sorry, I was gone for 2 weeks for a wedding and vacation.  After the 7 out of state trips in 7 weeks, and now this trip, too, I'm tired of traveling.
ceramic knobs on drawers

Sorry, no Teapot Tuesday today, instead, I'm showing a Singer 66 treadle I was gifted yesterday.  I'd answered an add on a freecycle site the morning I left for Texas about a treadle.  I didn't think I'd even be considered, since I told her that I'd be out of town for 2 weeks and couldn't pick it up until I got back.  I also told her to pass it on if she could.  Well....guess what!  I got an email to come pick this lady up.  This treadle has only been used as a plant stand for most of the past 30 years.  The veneer on the top needs to be replaced.  I've read about replacing veneer, but, I haven't tried to do it.  I'm not real good with wood refinishing.  The rest of the treadle base is in good shape, it just needs a little cleaning.  After a coat of Howards wax,
really dirty Singer 66 head
 the rest of the wood will look really nice.
really dirty chrome & head

really dirty head

spider web underneath
 The treadle head was really dirty!  I don't think it had been dusted in 30 years.  The chrome parts were all brown.  Luckily, there wasn't any rust.  The parts all moved freely.  I learned how to clean the machines at the TOGA I attended in July.  I pulled out my supplies and got started.  If you look a few pictures down, you will see my dirty hand from all the grime on the machine.  I used no pumice Goop.  It is white/clear before use.  I cleaned this machine twice.  If you want step by step instructions, then contact me and I'll write them up for you. 

Check out how much lint was in this machine!  Yuk!  I've never seen this much lint behind the face plate before.  The bobbin area wasn't as bad.  I HAVE seen worse in the bobbin area.

I didn't want too many screws loose, so, I didn't clean the bobbin winder until the rest of the machine was done and reassembled.  I'm good at taking things apart, but not so good at remembering where all the parts go :O

The head and parts cleaned up pretty well.  I oiled it every place I could find to oil it, including the paint.  Everything moves nicely now.  In a few days, I'll get time to clean the base and put the head back in it. 

look at all that lint!
I already have a Singer 66 treadle head that I want to turn into a hand crank.  I won't be keeping this one.  I need to find it a new home, now that it has been cleaned up.  Anyone want a treadle?  It'll only cost you shipping, and that could even be worked out, maybe.  I now have two treadles that need to find new homes.  I can't keep all the treadles that follow me home, I just don't have the room for all of them.  I still want to find a White treadle base and irons for the White treadle head my dear hubby found for me on the way to the TOGA.  Oh this S.M.A.D. (Sewing Machine Acquisition Disorder) is so bad!!!!  What fun!!!!!
lint filled bobbin case area

dirty bobbin winder

this is some of what I got off

after cleaning and oiling

doesn't this look better!?!

Singer 66 Red Eye cleaned up

now you can see chrome!

even the back looks pretty now

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Teapot Tuesday & Something (re) finished

Art Deco cloisonné teapot
Ann's Train quilt top
I received this cloisonné teapot from a friends Aunt several years ago.   I had met her Aunt several times when my friend and I lived in Tulsa.  After my friend moved to Denver, I went for a visit, and we visited her Aunts home.  When her Aunt found out that I loved teapots, she took me into another room and handed me this teapot in the green box.  After oohing and aahing over it, she told me it was now mine.  This is an extra special teapot to me, especially since the Aunt has now died.

Top of Quilt top
 Ann's Train quilt is a re-do.  Ann had problems with this quilt top.  Serious problems!  The sashing was coming apart in lots of places, it also didn't fit properly in other places.  The block edges were torn in several places, too.  Ann gave this to me to see if I could fix it for her last fall.  A friend (thanks Kay) helped me to rip it all apart.  I had to cut the blocks down to save them.  I just couldn't fix all the rips.  I found some material that was a close match to the sashing and cornerstones and cut it to fit the new blocks.  I used the border fabric that had been on the quilt before I took it all apart.  Ann did lots of appliqué on this quilt top.  It was really hard to repair without sewing over the edges of the appliqué.  There are lots of bias edges in each square.  I brought this re-finished quilt top back to Ann in Texas.

As you can tell, I'm on another trip.  This is the last one for a while, thank goodness.  We came to Texas for my nieces wedding.  It was a wonderful wedding.  While I've been here, I've visited several thrift and antique stores.  LOTS of vintage machines, but, most of them are way overpriced.  I've also seen lots of lovely antique quilts.  I wish I'd taken some pictures.  I did buy one small wall hanging.  I'll take pictures of it when I get home.  I haven't bought much, but, I've sure had fun looking. 
Bottom of quilt top

Monday, September 5, 2011

Thrift Store fun and a win!

 I didn't mean to tease anyone a few posts back.  I've been really busy traveling, and haven't had much time to take pictures and post.  Seven out of state trips in seven weeks is wearing me out. 

I took my oldest back to college the end of August.  On the way back home, I stopped at a few Goodwill stores in Iowa.  I've not had time to stop before.  I had lots of fun browsing. 

Doily's and thread 'chair'
 I found two different buttonholer attachment sets at the same store.  Would you believe they were only 99 cents each?  SCORE! 

I found the thread 'chair' at the first store.  I've seen them before (I donated one to the raffle for the TOGA I attended).  The other one's I've seen have a pin cushion in the seat of the chair.  I may have to make a pin cushion for this one.  The chair will hold three spools of thread on either side of the seat.  There is also a place to store scissors behind the back of the chair.  It also has a cute little storage area under the seat.  I don't know what is supposed to go there.  
2 different 'Buttoneer's'

Look what I won!
I love doily's.  I will someday make a quilt using some of my doily's.  I found these lovely doily's at one of the thrifts stores.

At the last thrift store I found these patterns.  They were only 25 cents each.  I bought them for the applique in the patterns.  I'll probably give the purse pattern to one of my friends who makes lots of purses.

Lastly, I found these buttoneers at two different thrift stores.  The gold set has all the little plastic pieces to attach buttons with.  I thought these were so cool when I was a kid.  I always wanted one, then I found two in one day.  The instructions for the gold one is written in English and Japanese. 

I won the second prize at Sandi's blog back in mid August.  These lovely Christmas goodies came in the mail the day before I left town for a week.  Sorry I didn't get this posted before now.  Sandi even included a note in a vintage Santa card. Sew cute!  Thanks Sandi!  I'll have fun with these great fabrics.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

I have a Hand Crank! and another new sewing machine, too!

Singer Spartan 192K Hand Crank
 Back in July, I posted about this little Singer Spartan.  Caryl Ann gifted this lovely machine to me so that I could convert it to a hand crank.  Well, I finally converted it.  I had problems with the spoked wheel (I still haven't worked on it again), so, I borrowed a spoked wheel off my Singer 66.  That is why the chrome is so pitted.  The Singer 66 was in rough shape when I got it last fall.  I cleaned her up at the TOGA in July.  I've been sewing up a storm with this little beauty. 
Singer Spartan 192K Hand Crank

Singer Spartan 192K Hand Crank
Princess sewing machine with a tail
She makes a great stitch.  Right now, I'm using her to make 1 1/2" nine patches.  She doesn't really like sewing across seams.  I discovered that while making blocks for the Disappearing 4 patch exchange.  I'm hoping that she'll like these blocks better.  Sew far, I've only gotten strips sewn, and I'm cutting them to piece the nine patches. 

I need some help with info for this little beauty I found yesterday at the thrift store.  Yes, she has a tail (electric), but, I just couldn't resist.  I've never heard of a 'Princess' machine.  She came with attachments, and the original fabric covered wiring.  She even has a cool case.  I'll post more pictures of her in the next few weeks.  I haven't plugged her in yet.  The wiring looks good, but, it's age worries me.  Sorry about the picture, I took it at the thrift store.  The owner lifted her up on the counter for me.  When he saw that I was putting her back on the floor, he came back to chat.  I told him that I needed another sewing machine like I needed a hole in my head.  He promptly reduced the price.  I figured that for the wooden base and the carrying case alone, it would be worth it.  If she sews, then JACKPOT!  If you know anything about this machine, please let me know.  She has the motor mount in the correct place, maybe, if I get another spoked wheel, I can convert her to a hand crank.  We'll see.