Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Books, Dragons and a Fantasy Land!

 I've stitched a few things since I last posted.  I made 2 fabric books for my grandkids.  I didn't want to use batting between the pages, so I used fusible interfacing instead.  One is a Christmas book.

The other book is a color book in both English and Spanish.

My Treadle On group started years ago with lots of fun and fantasy.  Captain Dick (who started the group and ran it until 2013) has quite the imagination, and invented a whole other world for sewing machines.  It was the Island of Olde Treadleonia.  For several years I've wanted to turn the map of Olde Treadleonia into an embroidery.  Well, I finally got started on it.  

map of Olde Treadleonia

First, I traced the map onto white paper.

my traced map

Then I took my traced map to Office Depot to get it enlarged 180%.  I had to settle for several different 'parts' of the map that I had to tape together.  Then I traced the enlarged map onto fabric.

map traced onto fabric

Well, the original map has colors, so I decided to color my map, too.  I've never colored an embroidery before.  A while back I bought some fabric pastel dye sticks at Goodwill (unopened).  After reading the directions, it seemed simple to do.

I think it turned out well.

colored map

I prepped it for embroidery.  I've done quite a bit now, but don't have a photo of what I've done.  

ready to stitch

We moved all the chatter about Olde Treadleonia to another group (also started by Captain Dick), called Quilt Along.  

Well, Olde Treadleonia has magical creatures, including Dragons!  The Quilt Along group decided to have a challenge: Dragons! Well, my Thunder of Dragons has grown!  The day I got the map enlarged, my son and I went to Blain's Farm & Fleet.  Guess what jumped into my cart?  Meet Fred the dragon.  

Fred wanted more dragons around, so I started stitching 2 dragons.  I had a pattern...

Remember, I've never stitched clothes or followed patterns other than quilt patterns (till Gwendolynn's dresses in the last blog post) and I've never made 'stuffies' before, either.  I decided to make my dragons in an unorthodox method, since I knew that stitching on Minky fleece and fake fur would be difficult.  I made copies of the pattern using my printer, and stitched thru the copied pattern pieces, like paper piecing.  

see all that black fake fur sticking out from the pattern? Messy!

body of dragon

Stitching thru the paper really helped, especially trying to match all the points on black fake fur (you can't see the dots or other bits on black fake fur).  

These dragons were very fiddly (and very messy, with black fake fur parts all over my sewing room).

Meet Scarlet.


It took 2 stores to find Scarlet's yellow fabric.  I'd found a gold fabric, but didn't like it with the red.  Since I liked the gold, I found the black fake fur and decided to make 2 dragons.  

Meet Bumble.


Scarlet & Bumble

Bumble got his name from the gold fabric.  It has honeycombs and  bumblebee's on it.

Bumble's fabric bumblebee

Here is my Thunder of Dragons!

I mailed my grandson's quilt (and Gwendolynn's dresses) to Alaska. They arrived almost 2 weeks before expected (great job USPS).  When they opened the box, Gwendolynn decided she had to try on each dress (no photos, but I got to see them open the box on Skype).  Gwendolynn LOVED her new dresses!  Don't worry, I got Korin some new clothes, too.  Well, Declan was asleep when they opened the box, but my daughter in law sent photos of Declan with his new quilt (Fractured Diamonds).

all three grandkids on the quilt


A diet update:

As of Sunday, I've lost 49 pounds.  That is almost 50 lbs in 6 months (6 months will be tomorrow).  It has slowed down, partly as expected, and also because I haven't had much time to exercise the past 5-6 weeks (traveling and crazy work schedule).  I'm not shooting for a weight, but for a size that I can maintain.  I still have a ways to go.  So far, I've been able to stick with the diet EVERYDAY for 6 months!  I've found ways to cut calories (reduced calorie breads, etc.) and still have dessert (low calorie ice cream).  My eating habits will have to change for life.  I will get to add some things back in (in moderation) when I reach my goal size.  Till then, I keep taking clothes to Goodwill.  

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Some Finishes

 I've had a few finishes the past month that I haven't shown.  Just before both of my trips, I finished the embroidery on 2 more Harry Potter blocks.

The Dark Forces: A Guide to Self-Protection by Quentin Tremble
Broken Balls: When Fortunes Turn Foul
Curses and Counter-Curses

both blocks

On the trip, I finished the binding on my grandson's baby quilt (only 2+ months late, and still not mailed yet).  The pattern is called Fractured Diamonds.  It was really quick to make, I was just really s-l-o-w getting it quilted and finished.

I don't put labels on quilts that I back with Minkee, but I do use my little labels I bought a while back.

I've been trying to figure out what to do with all the extra 'Wiggles' fabric left over from my granddaughter's quilt.  I found a pattern online for a T-Shirt dress, and decided to make these.  I did change a few things up.  Since I used white fabrics and light pink fabrics on two of the dresses, I decided to line those dresses with white fabric.  I also hemmed the other dress in step #3 instead of at the end of the process.  It just seemed easier that way.  I stitched these on a hand crank until the very end, when I used a serger to join the skirt and T-Shirt parts together.

1927 Singer 15 hand crank

With these dresses, I FINALLY learned how to use a serger!  My oldest son has used my serger's (he's made fleece vests and a Star Wars dress shirt) but I haven't.  I did try (for about 5 minutes) way back when I got my first serger (I have 3 serger's now), but I broke the thread, and never touched one again.  My son showed me how to use one.  I have a few more projects that I want to use a serger with.

I finished my fabric baskets from the TOGA class I taught.  I'd cut out 8 sets of fabric baskets, but gave 5 of the sets away so that other's could participate (there are always those who decide last minute to participate).  The first basket I finished at the TOGA.  The other 2 baskets just needed top stitching and the liners stitched closed.  The bottom baskets are holding some of the fabrics I got from the raffle table.

I got some goodies at the TOGA.  Here are a few of them.  A lady who couldn't attend the TOGA, but wanted to contribute, made several wood items that were sold for donations to the TOGA fund.  She made several binding tools (roll your binding on the spindle to keep it neat and easy to stitch onto your quilt).  She also made the 2 in 1 tools (wooden presser end and awl on the other end) and several different seam rippers.  The pin cushion was from the raffle table (who can't use another pin cushion)?

goodies from the TOGA

coaster from Missy

Now to go get some work done on some other projects.  

PS:  I'm behind on reading blog posts (sorry) since I didn't have time on the 2 trips, but I'll get caught up soon.  I miss reading everyone else's posts.

Monday, July 12, 2021

2021 Missouri TOGA

 Sorry it's been so long since I've posted anything, but I've been out of town.  First, we went to a wedding in Wisconsin, then we headed south to Missouri, and finally ended up in Texas, to see our parents.  Whew!  I'm tired from my vacation!

This post will be about the 2021 Missouri TOGA (Treadle On Gathering & Academy).  This was the 4th Missouri TOGA.  Previous TOGA's were in 2018, 2019 & 2020.

We met in a new place this year, Cross Point Church in Ava, MO.  It was a great place for the TOGA.  We started on Thursday, and Gina taught on the Proper Care and Feeding of Your Vintage Sewing Machine. 

Gina's class

What TOGA would be complete without a Hospital?  Floyd was our surgeon in residence for this TOGA, but there were lots of 'doctors' practicing on machines all weekend.

The 'Doctor' at work on a machine

We got to use the sanctuary as our main place to set up.  It started out with chairs...

But quickly looked like this...

I have to sneak in a photo of Missy and I in our matching t-shirts.  They were perfect for us, since we both have a hard time turning down vintage sewing machines.

All I Need is This
Sewing Machine
And That Other
Sewing Machine
and those sewing machines
over there, and...

As always, some of us get together for supper, too.  We had fun at Archie's Diner.

Friday was another busy day.  Missy taught how to make the block for next years raffle quilt.  I'd already made mine a few months ago, since I'm usually too busy at the TOGA to get much sewing done.

I taught fabric baskets...
first basket finished

Rhonda taught Snail Pincushions (mine isn't even started yet).
first snail pin cushion (almost) finished

We had a Trader's Dice game for 2 1/2" strips.

Here are some other photos.

checking out the raffle table goodies

slow time at the hospital

Drawing room treadle with Singer 66 Lotus on the raffle table

more machines and fabric bundles on the raffle table

another machine and stuff on the raffle table

this year's raffle quilt

Welcome and registration table

some items for sale

working on her new (to her) treadle

After the TOGA was done for the day, Missy and I (and a few others) went to see the fireworks.  We sat so close that we could see the cans that they were using to set the fireworks off.  Boy was it LOUD! being that close.

Saturday was our last day.  Dorise taught us how to make phone or tablet stands (nope, mine isn't started yet).  I took different views of the stands.

I taught Faux Binding technique using the mug rugs from my last blog post. I also taught some methods for removing rust from machine parts.  

We had our mug rug exchange.

mug rug and mug I won, with a bonus pin cushion

We had fun with the raffle table.  There was so much stuff to choose from.
Missy and I drawing tickets for raffle winners

Missy won the Drawing Room treadle, and she 'split' it with Barb (who wanted the machine in the treadle).  NO, I didn't come home with another machine.  

The last thing we did was draw for the winner of the raffle quilt.
2021 Raffle quilt
Nope, I didn't win the quilt this year.  Oh well, there's always next year.

I forgot to show you Barb's hair decoration.  She changed it up every day.
check out the sewing machine on her hair pin

A few of us finished up the TOGA with supper at Hucklebucks BBQ.

What a great TOGA!  I miss everyone already.  See all of you next year!