Ali In Wonderland!!!

My neighbor Ali is quite the little artist.  Can you believe someone picks up a pair of scissors goes to cutting and comes up with the cutest appliqués to go on a quilt. This is just the beginning of a new quilt artist. I am amazed at what this young woman can do. This is by no means the end. She just got started today on her Alice In Wonderland and here is the results. Now she will go back around with thread and highlight the pieces but I think you will get an idea of how some of her work is going to be.. Stunning!  Linda and I enjoy her company on Sunday so much. She has an eye for choosing fabrics. I can not wait to see this quilt finished. DSCN0254 DSCN0255 DSCN0257

Posted in 2015 New Posts, Tin Lizzie | 3 Comments

Halloween In June

Well people have Christmas in July so we are having a Halloween party in June of sorts. Today my sweet neighbor wanted to learn to quilt so she came down to our Sunday meeting.  Linda was more than glad to teach and mentor her and I was more than glad for the company and also the learning experience.

I normally do not cut, I am learning. Gary used to do all my cutting but I am trying to take some work off him and also I want to learn so I can cut when I need it. Well that means when we are sewing a lot of the time Linda is cutting handing to me to sew and now today I saw the process from the beginning to end.

I guess you wonder what is wrong no one used the long arm.. Well do not get me started *&^$#$   it is down for the count again after having a service doctor here this week I do not know what is going on but I need to find out soon we are getting behind.

Well Ali came and she loves Halloween. I believe when she gets her own home it will be decorated up 365 days of Halloween.. I love Halloween also and so does Linda so it was just a wonderful day. Ali went home with her quilt top finished. Now when my long arm machine gets well she will come back and quilt it and then we will bind it and she will have her beautiful quilt. We have gotten another person addicted to fabric and sewing. She made us both laugh “I can not believe you have a sewing machine that cuts the thread and you do not have to use scissors.”

Here is Ali’s Happy Halloween Quilt. I look forward to seeing her make many more beautiful works of art.

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Posted in 2014, Main, Tin Lizzie | 3 Comments

We Had Another SNOW (Sew) Day

Lizzie is still down for the count. Hopefully this week the long arm doctor will travel here and get her running and ready to go.

Linda and I have been clearing up UFOs so it is not a total waste. We also have been trying some new things. Sometimes you need to just chill out and do whatever else you can find to do. During this down time I learned to cut. I can hear most of you “surely you jest.” Well hello for all these years I have been quilting my number one cutter was Little Precious. A rotary cutter never touched my hands.  I think Little Precious is tired of cutting because he sure has gotten behind in his job. Maybe he is just taking a much needed rest.

Today Linda showed me how to cut. I had some idea and have done some parts of the cutting but I never have squared up a block. She showed me a really easy way to square up the blocks. I decided I was going to work on Anita’s Arrowhead.  The creator of this is Anita Grossman Solomon. This was particular technique was featured in Quiltmaker Magazine 2011.  I am not sure of the month. I probably have it written down in the sewing studio and I will look for it when I go back to the studio.

I decided on using a beige background for my blocks. I may go ahead and change that while I have not made a lot of the blocks. I think I would like it to have a more scappy look. I do not know.. I may and I may not. You can never tell about me. One thing for sure I will just do what feels good the day I start on it.

Here are the blocks I got finished today.

DSCN0102 DSCN0103 DSCN0104 DSCN0105Do not pay attention to the purples in the background. It is not a part of the quilt. It was an actual quilt on the bed. I just placed the blocks down so I could keep up with how many I had. I think I will finish it out with this beige and these blocks are so easy I will start another one with different colors.

Linda was working  Hunter Star Quilt by Dianne Gilley. It was very easy to put the blocks together and she as really enjoying them. I was amazed at how perfectly they all matched up. I think this is going to be a really beautiful quilt but then when does Linda create a quilt that is not beautiful?

Here are her  blocks. If you look closely you will tell you have to put four small blocks together to make one big block.. then when you put two blocks together you can see how the star points are going to work out.. I really like this block. I am going to do one next maybe out of African print fabrics. This was VERY EASY. If you find this pattern at your local quilt store and want to do something very pretty and very easy I suggest either one of the quilts here today. I am going to be working all week on Anita’s Arrowhead and Linda’s homework is on her Hunter Star quilt. I was telling Precious that I was working on Anita’s Arrowhead and he said “who makes a quilt called Anita’s AIRHEAD.”  Pray for me America!  He is a character. To make it worse he was serious.

DSCN0106 DSCN0107Well I shall be working all week on my homework and Linda has homework. We hope Lizzie gets up and running real soon. She just has a tiny problem. Nothing major I hope. I think we have decided every other Sunday we are going to have a “snow day.”  We call it that because it is like work, when it snows you can not report to work. Ok Lizzie is sick so we can not long arm. Just having nice snow days and with 90 degree temps this week I may welcome some snow this winter. No as it always goes I will be fussing because how cold it is and waiting on summer, summer gets her and I am fussing how hot waiting on winter.. You know we are never satisfied are we?

 

 

Posted in Tin Lizzie | 3 Comments

If Patience Is A Virtue… Well Then Count Me Out On Being A Virtuous Woman

Most of the time I have approximately  a quarter of an inch of patience, more like a scant quarter.  All you quilters know what I am talking about. This past Sunday Linda and I both lost our patience. We just did not take it out on each other. Thank goodness our friendship is still intact. We normally finish our projects around 7 pm this Sunday it was after 10pm. I was so tired all week and so was Linda. Yesterday was the first day I got my strength back. It was run run run all week long on top of this past Sunday fiasco.

Having a long arm machine regardless of the brand is a new day every day, new problem,new adventure and new headache. Whatever you want to call it. Last Sunday was no exception. I could only hear the words of my MIL,”My Grandmother always said that for every stitch you sew on Sunday you will have to take out seven with your nose in Heaven.”  I hope there is a lot of seam rippers because I have sewn quite a bit on Sunday’s. Miss Gerry is no longer with us so I hope she put a good word in for some of the words that I was thinking while this machine of mine was testing us to the point of no return.

Linda had put together a wonderful quilt. Before she got here I had it already loaded on the frame, threaded and bobbins waiting to be filled up. We usually fill up about seven bobbins to start with. I had already picked out what I thought was a good color but you know it was her quilt her decision. She was ok to the one I had selected. I was smiling.

She got here we talked for a few minutes and she got started. ALL WAS FINE, until we decided to take a break, ALL HECK broke loose.  Every few seconds the thread would break. We knew it was nothing we had done because no one touched anything after we stopped for a few seconds.  We tried everything. Changing bobbins, cleaning the machine, changing the needle, you name it we tried it. I swear sometimes there is gremlins hiding in the sewing room we turn our back they start turning knobs and dials.

It took about one and a half hour to get about two feet finished.

Today the service guy came to the house to get it fixed up ready for tomorrow. He found out what was wrong and he will be back one day next week to finish the job. I really like my service guy. I refer to  him as  “Have Doctor Will Travel.”

Well here is a picture of Linda’s beautiful quilt. I think she needs to name it “Patience.”  You know even though we had a difficult time for close to two hours we still have a wonderful time talking, laughing and trying to diagnose the problem. At one time Linda was on her hands and knees looking for a screw that I dropped out of the bobbin case. I am not a hundred percent sure that she was not down on her knees sending up prayers for me having a hissy fit!  For a “mature” gal she still has it going on. It is like Lucy and Ethel most of the time.  First I am going to show you a couple of pictures I have been wanting to share. After that her quilt.

HMMM I wonder what is under this Singer case and yes that is an Accucut. It is like those Go’s you all love but this thing is heavy and can do some serious work. I have a lot of dies.  Projects coming in the future with this. I probably have had it for ten years. I would not take anything for it.

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What is under this nice box that belongs to my Little Precious (Husband Gary) Well according to the way the pictures loaded you will have to wait for a few minutes. I forget that WordPress will take the pictures put them in their order not the order you load. But that is ok.. Like life, not everything works out perfectly you just adjust.DSCN9964

The finished quilt. It is a variation of a Gordian Knot pattern. I really like the combination of colors.DSCN9965 DSCN9966 DSCN9967 DSCN9968

This is the back. I like how she went around the flowers. We like to freehand our work. Anyone can have a computer design but freehand is our thing. Now do not get me wrong one day I may have a computerized long arm but I probably would still use the manual option. I just like doing what feels good!DSCN9970 DSCN9971 DSCN9972

If you look closely you will see a dragonfly. I bought some templates from Checker Distributors to sell here in my store when I get a chance to list the items. I kept one for myself for a test. I took a pen that the ink dissolves with air or water and drew on the fabric the dragonfly then Linda just guided the machine over the marked lines. DSCN9974 DSCN9975

Now here is what was under that wooden box. Can you believe this? This machine is in mint condition. My MIL and FIL lived in Trinidad when my husband was a small boy. Mr. Jack was stationed in the Navy.  Mr. Jack ordered this machine from Sears through the commissary.  I think Miss Gerry said she used the machine maybe three times. It came back to the states and was hidden away in her laundry room in a cabinet. She gave it to my husband which means it is mine also but since it was his mothers I call it his machine. If I did not make a mistake it was manufactured January 19, 1954. DSCN9960

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It seriously looks like it has not been used. The light spot on the machine is just a flash from the camera. We did replace the cord because over the years even if you do not use the machine the cord gets brittle and deteriorates.DSCN9963

 

Isn’t she a beauty?   Linda will be here tomorrow. We are having a “snow” day. You know when you do not get to go to work because it snowed. Well we are not going to be able to quilt on the machine but we have some UFOs that we are going to try to get ready to put on the machine this week when it is hopefully finished. Stay tuned!

Posted in 2015 New Posts, Main, Tin Lizzie | 1 Comment

It Is All Over But The Binding!

In the South we have a saying, “It is all over but the shouting.”   Even Rick Bragg wrote a book with that as the title.   Well it is all over but the binding on my Puzzler quilt aka MP and Linda or Agent Wade as I call her will know what that means. An inside joke at our secret sewing heaven. We laugh and say we have two members in our secret organization of long arm quilting like crazy and one of us has to either quit or leave this world for someone else to join which neither one of us is going anywhere and if we do the other will not let anyone else join so no use trying to knock one of us off to get in the club.

Today I finished it. I have been working on the Puzzler for a couple of days now. Not fulltime during the day but thirty minutes here and thirty minutes there. You get the idea. This morning before Linda arrived I FINISHED ALL but the binding! Never mind the quilt top has been finished a long time. Maybe eight or nine years. I will have to look on the magazine to be for sure. It needed the piano key border. I finally got that finished and on to the frames to be quilted. Lizzie sure has gotten a work out lately. Agent Wade I know you can see this and you can look on your magazine which you probably have at your fingertips and see what year it was.

I did not have it exactly straight on the bed.

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Nothing fancy on the stitching just whatever came to mind. DSCN0159

I love all the colorsDSCN0156

The below pieces will be cut in to strips sewn together to make a very colorful border. I always think of my mother in law when I am quilting “Chris how in the world can you stand to cut up perfectly good beautiful fabric only to sew it back together!”  I laugh when I am cutting and sewing. She was serious!

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Is it me or does this fabric look like aliens ,cavemen and hippies?DSCN0175 DSCN0174 DSCN0173

Yum.. I love it.

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I have done other things besides sew. Ceramics, porcelain dolls and soft sculpture fabric dolls.  Margaret Adams a friend of ours used to have a ceramic shop in Gadsden AL. I went there and took classes to get certified with Doc Holliday Ceramic Company. This was one project we did. I can not draw a straight line but I was able to do this. I for the life of me can not remember how we did it but I sure remember I had a great time! It is on a piece of plain tile.DSCN0170

Another bites the dust with Linda today. She got here this morning I had her quilt loaded on the frame and all we needed to decide is what thread choice. Oh she chose the one I was hoping she would. It had brown and turquoise in the thread. That was the colors in the quilt along with the brown. Does this not look like a bunch of monkeys swinging around? It is named some type of monkey but she was so tired she could not think of the name. I did not have many pictures of her quilt. It was not that I did not care for it because I love it, that was not the case at all I WAS BUSY. While Linda was quilting on Lizzie I was busying putting together a receiving blanket of a pattern I found online. I am still laughing. Linda said we could take the scraps and make a burp cloth. I looked at her like puzzled myself and was like “UM what is a burp cloth?”  I bet she is still chuckling. I never heard of such. I know as much about kids as I do how to build a car motor. NOTTA.. I never had any so I do not have a clue on all the burp things you have!!!!

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As always it worked out perfectly UNTIL THE LAST ROW. Then came the picking.

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I did not realize I took a picture of Linda’s scar on her hand. A couple of years ago I almost lost my dear friend to MRSA.  Life today would not be the same without this kind soul. Linda is a blessing to everyone that crosses her path.

She finished at nine this evening and I was sad to see her and her monkeys leave. Well until next time. Stay tuned.

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Posted in 2015 New Posts, Main, Tin Lizzie | 2 Comments

Sneak Preview of Coming Attractions

Well not many posts about my projects because I have been involved with trying to finish up this quilt I started several years ago as a group project. Linda, aka Agent Wade cut all the pieces out for a group of ladies in a guild I used to belong to and they all finished their quilt and I had all of mine finished but the piano keys for the border. I put mine up because for two years we were involved in having a new house built. If any of you have ever done that you know it is planning, picking and hoping all turns out well which it did and then moving in and I lost some of my luster on sewing during that time but it is coming back. All my creativity was moved to another direction. That is over and it is coming back. I decided to pull out the top and get started. Never in my life have I been so tired of sewing these tiny pieces together.

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The first thing was measuring the batting for the top. I tell you I love this Hobbs batting but it is like wrestling with a bear. I am 5’4″ tall and this roll is almost as tall as me. I made it with the help of Little Precious ( Gary).

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I interview thread like it was applying for a job.  I love KING TUT.

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My favorite brand of thread to date.DSCN0130

I got them all lined up like a bunch of toy soldiers.

 

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AND THE WINNER IS…………DSCN0134

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Quilt loaded. I float the top and batting. I find I have better control.DSCN0140

Now to fill up bobbins. I love my Luis Sew. When I first got it I had to unscrew the screw you see here adjust the slot so it would not over fill. DSCN0143

Now to check Bobbin Tension. I have spent months reading online looking at Jamie Wallen videos and others on how to adjust the tension. To me that is the only drawback of a Long Arm quilting machine. In my famous words “If we can send a rocket to the moon, test tube babies, heart transplants there should be some genius to develop a machine that self adjusts tensions and has about a 3 foot cone under the machine to keep the bobbin full at all times.” AMEN!  I do love my Towa tension gage.DSCN0141

I ALWAYS take my shoes off when loading a quilt and whenI am quilting. I just can not stand to accidentally step on something I have worked so hard to make.DSCN0126

To me this is just like me scrappy or as I always say “I am just an old Raggedy Ann living in a Barbie Doll world.”  I love scrappy.  I will show you the finished product hopefully by Friday.  Until then I hope you enjoy a sneak preview of coming attractions!

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Posted in 2015 New Posts, Tin Lizzie | 1 Comment

Well Another One Bites The Dust!

Linda and I eliminated another UFO today. Well actually two.  The day was a gorgeous day. I could not hardly wait for her to get here.

Last night I took a child quilt and tested to see how Lizzie was working. Worked very well thank you.

This morning I cleaned up the machine, oiled everything, loaded her quilt for today on the machine.

Agent Wade got here and after looking at a few patterns and talking about what was going on during the week she started to quilt.  LIZZIE STARTED ACTING UP LIKE A CRAZY WOMAN.  I started working with the top and bottom tension and after a while she was back on track. We threatened to send her to the dump with the rats. That straightened her up.

Every few minutes I went in with my mirror and looked under the quilt. It was equivalent to a cheating spouse. It was going to take a while before we could trust Lizzie again. She did not let us down. I used the mirror to look under the quilt to see how the bottom tensions were doing. They started looking pretty go so I gave her some slack and only looked at her every ten minutes or so.

Well if you have noticed the posts here mostly have been about Linda’s work. I had a UFO that I was trying to get finished so I could put it on the frames. I did. I finished today. Tomorrow I will clean Lizzie up again and start on quilting.

Well right during the middle of the quilt Linda wanted to quilt a bee. She tried on a place that would not show if it did not work out and she did not like it so I drew on with erasable ink and she went over it with the machine. Just as I finished drawing it she said “Oh I needed it upside down.”  I wondered why.. Well to make a long story short DING BAT here loaded the quilt with the bottom at the top and the top at the bottom.  She did not want to tell me so she took the challenge and quilted the quilt backwards. Did very well if you ask me.  Now granted it would have only taken about five minutes to pull out the pins reverse the order in which it was but she just decided to take the challenge.  VERY GOOD JOB. I will be paying attention next time.

Here is my project you will be seeing in a few days. Lets just say those 1000’s of tiny pieces I sewn together just about got the best of me.

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Linda’s project loaded UPSIDE DOWN. It was a Bargello heart and she started quilting at the bottom point instead of the top. Oh well it worked out. We float our tops. I like that much better than having to load that bottom pole.  You can work out errors if needed when you float or so we have found out.

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Up close of her designs.  DSCN0111

She had to quilt all these designs upside down. It would have been hard right side up but extra hard this way.DSCN0100

It looks good on the bed we use for the photo shoots.DSCN0105

You have to admit. Pretty dang good.  Now I can not wait until next Sunday.  DSCN0104

 

 

 

Posted in 2015 New Posts, Tin Lizzie | 3 Comments

Not Your Typical Log Cabin Quilt.

I think that is what Linda oh I mean Agent Wade called today’s project. It is not your typical log cabin but it is as beautiful as you can imagine.

This week has been a week of sorts. My machine messed up worse than you can even think of. Between Google and whatever else I could find, Jamie Wallen and all the best of the best of the long arm quilters I finally think I have the tensions pretty well set.

Yes it even meant a trip to another town with my pieces in a bag to show the technician and get some idea from the long arm doctor as to what to do. I continually work daily on it. I believe before it is over I can go to work for Tin Lizzie I have gotten to know that machine so well. You know my father was a sewing machine mechanic. He also could put the best zippers in clothes. I guess I have it in my DNA. I do wish I could take Tin Lizzie training so I would know how to do everything perfectly in tuning up my machine.

Well here it is along with pictures.

Linda is really working Lizzie!

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I really like this block.DSCN9990

 

I bought this from my neighbor this weekend at her awesome garage sale. It is a cigar box.DSCN9991

 

 

It is going to hold a lot of bobbins and supplies.DSCN9992

 

I have been working on these piano keys. There is enough here for ten piano’s or so it seems.DSCN9993

 

This is my project. You will see it soon very soon.DSCN9994

Here is Linda’s beautiful quilt. Thank goodness the machine did not give us one bit of trouble today.DSCN9996

 

The back of the quilt. I am in love with this fabric. (she gave me the scraps after I shamelessly begged.. Well I did not beg I just stated how crazy I was about it.)DSCN0001I have a lot on my list to do this week along with working some sewing in the mix. Stay tuned.  As always THANK YOU for reading my blog.

 

 

Posted in 2015 New Posts, Main, Tin Lizzie | 4 Comments