I got my baby back!

I picked up my sewing machine last Monday after we got back from Myrtle Beach. They said the reason the feed dogs were acting up is because too much lint had built up! I clean my machine after every project but I can only reach the area around the bobbin case. With a Pfaff you need to take it in for a service cleaning to get deep down inside and obviously it was time!! She’s working great now 🙂

Unfortunately I didn’t get much sewing in this week – we had friends stop by for a few days who were traveling from FL to MD and we’re about the halfway point. Before they arrived, I finished fusing the stabilizer to tshirts for the commissioned tshirt quilt I’m making but didn’t start piecing them together until our friends left.

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I played with the layout until I got the colors pretty well balanced – there are a lot of white shirts.

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I started trimming and piecing last night and hope to have the top put together by tomorrow morning because we have more friends coming in to visit tomorrow afternoon. They’re staying until Wed and I’ve taken time off from my day job so I should be able to get it done. The client hasn’t decided on the backing yet so I guess there’s no real hurry.

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Other than this, I haven’t sewn anything!

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I’ve been sticking to my daily workout regimen and even ran with my running buddies yesterday!! We’re all signed up for the July 4th – 4 miler so I know I’ll get to run with them again soon but hopefully we can plan a few more weekend meetups before that.

Sunday 6/11:

Cardio: 30 min beginner HIIT video

Strength: 10 min ABS video

Stretching: 15 mins

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That’s all for now…let me know what’s happening where you are!

 

Keeping my word?

Last week I committed to extreme ownership regarding my health and fitness which meant I needed to workout with some form of cardio, strength and stretching every day…so let’s see how I did:

Monday 5/29 I completed a run and did my stretching

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Tuesday 5/30 I followed YouTube videos for 30 min Cardio and 15 min Lower body strength training ending with a 15 min stretch.

Wednesday 5/31 I completed a run, followed by 15 min upper body video and 15 min stretch

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Thursday I completely bailed – UGH!!! We drove to Myrtle Beach for the weekend and I blew off all my workouts 😦

Friday 6/2 I went for a run and did 15 min stretching

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Saturday 6/3 & Sunday 6/4 – I totally blew it…I did NOTHING – I’m so pissed at myself!! We drove back from MB today and tonight I’m going to re-watch the video that got me so fired up. I WILL be back on my plan tomorrow!

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As for sewing & quilting – since my machine needed servicing for the feed dog drop function I couldn’t do any quilting but I could do piecing, so that’s what I did. I finished a flimsy top using a pattern from Block magazine called “Piece Out”. I pulled two 1/2 jelly rolls that had coordinating colors from my stash and followed the pattern instructions making 3 piece strip sets then cut them into blocks.

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Then I used the sew & flip method to attach 80 squares – one to each block, here they all are arranged on my design wall.powall

And here’s the completed top, folded and laying in the spot where my machine usually sits. I dropped her off at the sewing center Wed afternoon before we left town.podone

I’ll pick her up tomorrow and start my next project, the commissioned t-shirt quilt. I received 5 more shirts in the mail last week so I have everything I need to get going.

That’s about all for me…how are things in your world?

 

 

Doggies are done!

Get ready to be over-loaded with pictures of The Doggies!! I put the finishing touches on this quilt last night so I’ll spare you those ‘bad lighting’ pics. I went outside this morning to get better ones in natural light – ha! I really need to hone up on my picture taking skills 😉

Out back on the deck, the colors are a little muted…

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On the front porch in full sun…yep, the colors really sing!

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Here are in-progress and up-close shots of the quilting…I decided to go with my standard quilting motif – all over meander!

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doggiequilting

The only thing left to do is run it through the rinse cycle to get the basting spray out and I’m SUPER NERVOUS, worried the backing fabric (Island Batik in Branch Blue) might bleed so I’ll be throwing in about 10 color catchers just to be safe 😉

I worked on a few other things this week, like one of the Bonus blocks from The Honey Pot Bee QAL. I still need to make the bonus Crown block! I’m using all Blueberry Park fabrics for this QAL…my absolute favorites!2017

While at QuiltCon last month I picked up some free fabric for a mug rug challenge to be entered for more prize giveaways from Marcus Fabrics and Studio 37 Fabrics. I finally pulled that out and made a WINE rug from 4 layer cake squares of beautiful batiks.

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[Off topic…speaking of wine, I had my first glass of Pinot Noir while in Savannah and really enjoyed it so now I’m trying different brands to find my favorite (is ‘brands’ the right word when talking about wines?).]

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I really love doing a tracker in my bullet journal…it helps me stay focused and when I complete a lot of the tasks it’s just so pretty! For March I used random colors for each habit but for April…

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I gave it a little more advanced thought and I’m using a ‘rainbow’ of colors…If I keep up with all my habits this thing is gonna be gorgeous!!!

at

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No running again this week but I started taking my dog for 20 min walks every day…she needs to lose weight too 😦

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That’s all for me this week…what have you been up to?

 

 

 

A quick note

I know I just posted earlier today but I wanted to share a couple things…

I was outside earlier today with my fur baby and noticed our purple azaleas had really exploded with blooms and then I looked a little closer and saw a pop of deep pink blooms on the inside…I’ve never noticed that before!

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And speaking of my fur baby, this is the best shot I could get…she hates having her picture taken!

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For reasons I’ll explain in a minute, I got focused this evening and finished piecing the top for my Hands2Help charity quilt; all that’s left to do is square it up.  Now I’ll have a few days to contemplate what I’m going to do for backing.

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Lastly, I’ll be on a little sewing hiatus for the next 5 days…for a couple of reasons. First, my Pfaff is going in for service tomorrow and it won’t be ready until Thursday – but – we’re going out of town on Thurs for the weekend. Hubby is taking his new corvette to a car show in Charleston and I’ll be tagging along. The weather looks promising so we should have a good time.

I snapped this impromptu shot in the driveway this evening

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ttfn and … G’night 😀

 

 

 

Plugging away

Each night I’ve been working on the pumpkin table runner and I’m almost done. Last night I sewed the binding to the front and turned it to the back intending to stitch in the ditch on the front to secure it. But…I don’t like how much binding shows on the front versus the back.

I cut my strips 2 1/4″ and used 1/4″ seam to sew it to the front which leaves about 3/4″ on the back. I really wanted a little more binding to show on front so I’m going to go back over it tonight and add about 1/8″ stitching to the front and then hopefully when I turn it, it will be a little more even on the back & front.

Here’s a shot from last night before I went to bed:

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And here’s a close up of the first pumpkin. I used my new Pfaff to do all the stitching and FMQ…wow, the FMQ was so much better on my new machine! Of course I need to get better at moving the fabric at the right pace without jerking…that should come with time 😉 And can I just say how great it is to have speed control when doing applique…#gamechanger!

Close up almost done

I’m really happy with the overall project and I learned a lot too, like:

  • Get all my fabrics together BEFORE starting the project. There were many stops & starts because I didn’t have enough of something…grrr!
  • I used the needle-turn method for the pumpkin, stem & leaf and wow, what a little starch will do to help get that fold! I really like that no raw edges are showing and they won’t unravel over the years with use.
  • Stitch the lines on the pumpkins BEFORE appliqueing the edges to prevent puckering at the bottom.
  • Write down all stitches used and the sizes so when I stop & start I don’t use the wrong stitch/size (I had to rip & re-do the applique zigzag on the first pumpkin because it was the wrong size).
  • I can replicate a finished item without a pattern…albeit with plenty of mistakes and lessons learned!

I’ll post more pics tonight after I finish…ttfn…

Projects rolling in

I’ve got a couple of topics today…first, some very BIG news…

I BOUGHT A NEW SEWING MACHINE!!! 

my new machine

It’s a Pfaff Ambition 1.0. I had been shopping around for a new machine – I looked at Baby Lock, Bernina, Janome, Juki, Brother and Singer. I had a couple of ‘must haves’: needle down and speed control. After looking at and trying out several models the Baby Lock Rachel was in the lead…and then I measured the throat space (that area to the right of the needle); unfortunately she was 1″ smaller than what I have now with my 40 year old Singer! There was no way I was giving up throat space!

While shopping at a local sewing store, the owner pointed out this Pfaff machine. I was not immediately sold. She’s nice enough but I still kind of had my heart set on the Rachel (this was before measuring). He made me a very reasonable offer on the Pfaff, throwing in the extension table as well…but I wasn’t ready to buy. I left the store and the next day I went to Mary Jo’s with intentions to purchase the Rachel…that’s when I measured the throat…my heart sunk!! I looked at the next model up that had my must haves and at least the same size throat I have but they wanted over $1200! Ugh. I left there and went home to think and browse reviews of the Pfaff Ambition. I found mostly overwhelmingly positive reviews, of course there were a few where folks didn’t like certain features but the quality and workmanship were rated very high…so…I went back the next day and bought her!

Now I’ve got the task of organizing and setting up my sewing room to accommodate both sewing machines – NO, I’m not getting rid of my Singer! I’ve enlisted DH to help with building/buying a work table for cutting and measuring…this should be interesting!! We’ve still got to get the queen size bed out of there…ugh.

So as you might expect I’ve already been using my new machine and have a few finished objects to share. First, I’ve finished the hanging fabric book holders for my cousin…and with some of the left over fabric I made her a reusable market tote too:

This is just one of two. It's just hanging there make-shift. Once they get to their new home, she will hang them properly.
This is just one of two. It’s just hanging there make-shift. Once they get to their new home, she will hang them properly.

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Then I just had to make a new thread catcher to sit next to my new machine:

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I used In-R-Form Plus to give it body.
I used In-R-Form Plus to give it body. I think I may still add a lining…

Since I posted a picture of my new Pfaff in Instagram & FB I’ve had two requests for new projects!

First is a baby blanket, this time for a boy and she wants his name appliqued on it. Luckily he’s not due until mid-Oct so I have plenty of time!

Second is a friend of a neighbor, I haven’t actually spoken with her yet so I’m not sure what she wants but my neighbor is going to give her my contact info.

Lastly, an old work buddy that’s since moved to California saw my post about the Patchwork Pumpkin table runner and has asked if she can buy one. WOW…if this keeps up I might be able to start a little side business!

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I didn’t get any running done during the week – the heat and humidity have been at record levels…however, we got a bit of a break this morning so I went out for 3 miles. Now I won’t feel guilty about sitting at my sewing machine for hours!! lol… I’m still doing 2/2 run/walk intervals and I actually picked up a few seconds on my average pace today…woohoo!

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ttfn…