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Archive for February, 2012

I have been busy trying to work through the quilting on this monster!

07 aug 112 001

I don’t have the money to send it to a longarm quilter and even though I paid a couple hundred dollars learning the basics of longarm quilting so I could rent time on one at a local shop I’ve never made it over there again… So this quilt sat for a long time until I decided that I was just going to do it, the way I’ve always wanted to do it and I was going to do it on my own machine! The problem? Well I wanted to quilt concentric circles. I asked my husband to make me a giant compass so that I can stitch the circles one inch apart but he got bogged down in school and I never say down to do it myself. Instead I got the crazy idea of using my 1/4 in foot. That’s right I’m stitching quarter inch concentric circles on a full sized quilt on my home machine, I am in fact crazy…

I’d show you a status picture but that would require me to remove it from my machine and I’m not going to do that. All I can say is I’m really glad that I offset the circle because I cannot imagine working the whole thing from the center. As it is I can only work on this for 20-30 minutes at a time because it’s just so exhausting manhandling the quilt around to ensure the circles are generally even (they are far from perfect) and that the stitch length is mostly the same.

I’m hoping to be done with this in a couple weeks. I’ve been trying to work on it everyday but I’ve been distracted by knitting.

I asked my SIL to make me a knit cowl for Christmas and she made an amazing one but as I started looking for patterns I started seeing more and more things that I loved and wanted. I figure she can’t be my personal knit slave so I would have to learn myself. This pillow is my second project. What I really want to make are sweaters and knee high socks but I figured I should try a couple smaller projects first.

28 feb 12 003

I love how the pillow came out, unfortunately my cats really “love” the pillow as well so it only sat on the couch for about 30 minutes before I had to pack it away…

But high on my success I did start a sweater (actually I started another “skill building” project but quickly got bored. I’m not big on learning on smaller projects. Instead I’d rather go big and if it doesn’t turn out perfectly that’s okay). I bought the yarn from a local yarn shop because if you do then they will help you with your projects! Now that’s win win as far I’m concerned. I’m maybe 1/5 of the way throught the sweater so we’ll see how it goes…

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I didn’t realize that it had been quite so long since my last post! I spent a lot of that time just hanging out with my family and enjoying not having to travel for work but I did get some crafting done.

This was my last finish of 2011 and one of two that I made solely for donation. I noticed last year as I went through my stash that fabrics that I like when they come out (but don’t love) often ended up sitting in my stash unused. Since then I’ve tried hard to purchase only those fabrics that I really love and in doing so have saved myself money and space! I’m also trying to complete more non quilt projects. I mean how many quilts does one person need? Not to mention the fact that I have so many quilt tops already completed that still need to be turned into actual quilts!

12 feb 12 010

This was my first finish of 2012 (although all but the basting and quilting was done in 2012). I’m working hard to finish everything I’ve already started before I let myself begin any new quilts. At the rate I’m going I won’t be making any new quilt tops until 2013!!

12 feb 12 007

I let this project (and so many others) languish in the WIP pile because I didn’t have the skills or the time to quilt them the way I would have liked to. My original intention was a simple loopy loop quilt design but doing so required time and patience that I didn’t have. And because the the quilt itself ended up a bit wonky any attempt at straight line quilting would have drawn attention to the wonkyness. So I used this as an opportunity to try out a different quilting skill- free motion stippling. For a long time I was scared of dropping my feeddogs and I thought I would stitch myself into a corner and not be able to get out. But overall it wasn’t too bad. There was a bit of ripping when I first started before I got the tension and speed just right. I got myself some gardening gloves to grip the fabric and knocked it out in about a week. My stitch length isn’t totally uniform and I did cross my lines a few times but you can’t really tell. For a first attempt and on such a large quilt I think I did exceptionally well!

12 feb 12 008

Over the break I also bought a bunch of fabric to try sewing my own clothes and I picked up knitting! So far I’ve made a cowl that I gave to my mom and I’m about halfway through a pillow cover. I’m trying to make sure I sew and knit items that I will actually use. When I bought fabric I stuck to neutral colors in simple patterns or solids. I bought enough to make a skirt and two blouses. I figure if I make them and like them than I’ll branch out and the same with knitting.

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