longarm quilting · machine quilting

Finally Made It To the Green Thread


Today, I finished up all the quilting with white thread, and started on the green.  I had already been at it for about three hours by then, and my shoulder couldn’t take anymore, so I didn’t get far with the green.  But I wanted to give Joanna a quickie update, and answer a previous question wanting to know what I was going to put in the outer border.

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I love the movement that CC (continuous curve) give to the pinwheel blocks.  It really seems to  make them “spin”.

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Off to bed now…I’m exhausted!

embroidery · fabric · feather quilting · freehand quilting · longarm quilting · machine quilting · pretty fabric · quilt top · quilting · quilts · stash busting

Stash & Quilting Report


  • Incoming Yardage to date: 75 yds.
  • Outgoing Yardage to date:  56.25 yds.
  • Total Stash Busted to date: -18.75 yds.
Ok, so my time in the positive was short lived.  But I love my new batiks! (see previous post for the full disclosure with photos you will drool over) So, I’m not feeling too bad about it.  Ok, not bad at all.   I don’t think I will, either, as long as there is movement going through my stash.  Some in, some out…just not all in, in, in.
During my lunch hours, or while I’m cooking something for dinner, and I’m waiting, I’ve been sitting down at the sewing machine and working on the pieced borders for my Boston Commons.
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I also got labels made for my friend’s comfort quilt.  I haven’t finished trimming the jump threads, so just ignore them. It took me right at an hour to get the first one all programmed into the machine.  The stitchout was 74 minutes, and that did not include the time it took me to change thread colors.  I thought I was never going to get done with it.  I started on it after work one evening, so I was already tired, but it was worth it.  I also made a small label to go beside it, just stating that I made the quilt.  Couldn’t fit it on the other label.  A more experienced embroiderer might have been able to, but this was the best I could do.  I don’t have any embroidery software yet, so I have to sit at the machine and program each letter in one by one, and it will only let me put so many characters on a line.  So the machine stops after each line of stitching, and even if I’m not changing colors, I have to be close by to restart the machine.  I hate to invest a bunch of money in embroidery software that I’m not sure I will use that much.  There is a lot about the embroidery that still confuses me.  I may address some of that in a future post.  Maybe some of you embroidery gurus can clear up a question or two for me.
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I started working on Joanna’s quilt a couple of days ago, but until today, I didn’t have anything to show for my efforts, except SID (stitch in the ditch).  I’m sure she is anxious to see how it’s coming, so if you can stand a dose of cuteness, I’ll show you a peek!
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Enjoy the rest of your Sunday and have a great week, y’all!
longarm quilting · machine quilting · quilt top · quilting · quilts · stash busting

Stash & Progress Report


First, I will get my complaining and whining out of the way.  I had great intentions to get so much accomplished this weekend.  Then wham! Wake up Saturday morning, early, with a headache.  Get up, take Imitrex, back to bed, next time I wake up it is after 9! And I still feel cruddy.  Head is better, but I feel cruddy, sluggish, achy all over.  So needless to say, my Saturday wasn’t what I hoped it to be.  I did manage to get the cute piggie quilt finished and ready to be delivered this week. Today, I felt better, but my shoulder & rib pain has really been ramped up the last few days, as well as my allergies.  Some of you know the latest on my issues with my shoulder blade & ribs, but for those that don’t, I am now seeing a physical therapist, at the urging of my chiropractor.  I had my evaluation with her Wednesday, and she agrees that it is not normal, the way my shoulder blade is moving.   No one can really figure out WHY I am having the issues I am having, which is frustrating.

I go back next Wednesday, and she is going to show me how to tape my shoulder blade, to try to stabilize it, and will have some exercises for me then, also. She has had one other patient in her eleven years that had similar symptoms. She said my shoulder blade is the only one she has felt doing what mine is doing. Apparently, it is moving around way more than it should, and going where it shouldn’t. And, my chiro has to keep putting my stupid ribs back in place. My entire right side rib cage is lower than the left, and there are three that keep “popping out of place”. He can get them back, and within days, they are out again. My shoulder blade sounds like it is grinding against bone. It sounds, and feels, terrible. Pain ranges from moderate to excruciating, and is near constant. I also think it causes some of my migraines. The PT said she hopes that we can get some improvement, but that it will probably never be all the way better. But some better is better than none better.  Sorry to bore you with all that, but you never know when someone else might be having the same problems, and either you help them with sharing your information, or they might help you with some advice or answers you haven’t found yet.

So now, back to stash reporting.  After today, my stash amount busted is now back in the positive for the year.  A whopping 4.25 yards!  I busted another 4 yds. this week, backing the comfort quilt for our friend with breast cancer.  I got the quilting finished on it today.

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I love the pink thread over the cream strips.

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I also managed to get zippers attached to my leaders on my longarm.  I hope I like using them.  I did NOT enjoy the process of attaching them! But they are on, and I am looking forward to giving them a try.

I’m looking forward to getting started on my next customer quilt, but I still have some finalizing of the quilting plan to finish.  Joanna, I hope to be sending you some more ideas over the next day or two, if all goes as planned.  I will try very hard to be able to get started on it this coming weekend.

Speaking of weekend, I am sad that it is almost over already, especially since I wasted most of Saturday, just trying to feel better.  Oh well.  Have a blessed & wonderful week y’all!

longarm quilting · machine quilting · quilting · quilts · stash busting · stencil quilting

Sunday Reporting!


Hi y’all! I’m back from our trip.  Golf was not kind to my son last week.  But he kept an amazing attitude the whole time.  I am so proud of that kid.  He never lost his cool, and put every hole behind him and tried his best on the next one.

I also wanted to say I am loving using Google Reader to keep up with my blog reading.  I caught up with so many posts yesterday, and it was so easy.  I got my whole blogroll moved over to it, and will be adding some new ones to it, as it makes it soooo much easier to keep up with all y’all.

I looked for a cool quilt shop to visit while in Abilene, but wasn’t able to find one.  So, as far as my stash report, it remains unchanged.  None in, none out.  However, this weekend I have gotten to get back to quilting on my 9P & stripe, and it is a stash project. A big one. I have another set of borders finished, two to go.  And, I’m afraid the final two will be problematic, because I did not follow the rules.  I did not have enough fabric to leave myself enough extra backing on the edges.  Since it’s my own quilt, I’m going to try to forge ahead, but I may end up having to try to add some strips, which will not be easy at this point.  Someone slap me.  I know better, really.   Yesterday, I quilted the swags and beadboard, and today I did the Georgian feather strip.  I love feathers.  I love quilting feathers.  A few progress pics for you, even though they aren’t much different than what I’ve posted from this one before.  But, I’ve been seriously lacking blog content lately, and I guess same old, same old is better than none at all.

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feather quilting · freehand quilting · longarm quilting · machine quilting · quilt top · quilting · quilts · stencil quilting

Wednesday WIP, 5-27-09


More 9P & stripe…26.5 hours into it…y’all are going to get tired of seeing this one.

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I’m not sure I am making all the right design choices…but, this is a learning project for me.  A project to expand my skills and challenge myself, so I’m ok with that.  For example, I’m not sure the large size setting triangle feather is working that well, but even so, I’ll probably just go forward with it.  I’m having fun!

That scroll-y design is a Karen McTavish stencil.  The setting blocks are stencils, as well, but I forgot to see who from.  I’ll get that later, for anyone interested.  I’m at work now, but remembered that I forgot to mention that.

feather quilting · freehand quilting · longarm quilting · machine quilting · quilt top · quilting · quilts · stencil quilting

Quilting Feathers, Feathers, & More Feathers


First, I cannot let Memorial Day go by without stating my thanks and appreciation for all the brave men and women that have served, or do serve in the armed forces, to afford the rest of us the wonderful freedom that we enjoy.  So many sacrifices they have made, many the ultimate sacrifice.  And thank you to their families.  Though saying thank you  doesn’t seem enough.

With the crosshatching behind me, I got to start quilting feathers today.  I love feathers.  Love quilting them, love the way they look.  I did not want to crosshatch the striped border, even though that would have matched the stripes in the interior.  Instead, I chose this pretty stencil by Barbara Chainey.  I’m liking it.

First, is the chalking.

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Then the stitching begins.

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Three hours later, one border done.  (it didn’t feel like it took that long)

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Much more fun that crosshatching.  So, I guess I have about 9 hours left to finish the other three of these borders.  This one is going to be on the machine for awhile yet.  I have a plan for that little inner border that matches the setting triangles.  I have a plan for the setting triangles.  I have not yet decided on the very outside border…maybe swags.  Maybe not.  Maybe more feathers.

I took time out this morning to relocate this litte guy from the back patio, to the front flower bed, so he would be safe from Tuffy and Libby. I took the top off of Tuffy’s feeder to catch him with.  The lizard was not happy about it…if he only knew, it really was for his own good.  Tuffy would have caught him and eaten him, eventually.  Libby would have just killed him.  I like lizards.

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Now he lives here.  Plenty of cover and should find lots of bugs to eat.

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freehand quilting · longarm quilting · machine quilting · quilting

Wednesday WIP, 2-25-09


Still working on Spiderman.  What I thought was going to be “light custom” is taking me much longer than I expected.  This is part of the longarm learning curve I am still trying to get around, determining what quilting goes in which pricing level.  This one is much more time consuming than I had envisioned it.  But live and learn.  I find these kind of quilts quite challenging to begin with, and I just hope my customer likes how I have decided to quilt it.  I am quilting word related to Spiderman, and the child’s name in the outer borders, along with some spiders, and then just an angular meander around that.

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I am putting four spider webs, in the four corners of the inner borders, treating them as one, then doing the same angular meander in between the webs.  For the very inner blue border, I just did a good old puzzle meander in the red thread.

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I decided to do a bit of outlining on Spiderman, and will quilt on the webs behind him, in the center panel.  I still have some outlining to finish, and I think I will connect the spiders with a wave black line.

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Yeah…”light” custom….well, I’ll know better next time…lol.  If it has Dorothy and her little dog on it, or cartoon characters, etc., unless doing a pantograph allover, it’s full custom. 🙂

embroidery · freehand quilting · longarm quilting · machine quilting · stash busting

Sunday Stash Report, 2-1-09


I used 1/4 yard up making labels this week, and 1/4 yard making guild name tags for myself and my friend.  So my official “out” for this week is only 1/2 yard.  However, I am plugging away on stash quilts I have going, and soon should have some big numbers to post.

YTD totals:

  • Incoming Yardage to date: 0 yds.
  • Outgoing Yardage to date:  17.75 yds.
  • Total Stash Busted to date: 17.75 yds.

I have border and backing fabric for the 2nd of my 9P & stripe tops, in the dryer as I type.  I pulled this  yummy Robyn Pandolph flannel from my stash, for the backing. My current plan is that this will be the next quilt of my own to land on the longarm.

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I’ve been sewing on my Boston Commons top, during my lunch hours, and have all the end triangles sewn to the 72 strips.  I have started sewing them into the big rows.  I am surprised at how quickly this is actually going together. Please ignore that I haven’t pressed the seams yet.  That is why it looks wonky.  It isn’t really.
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I also got the memorial t-shirt quilt quilted.  Here is a snippet of the freehand quilting on the back.  I will post a pic of the whole quilt after I get it completely finished.
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I have to say that t-shirt quilting is not my most favorite.  I feel like my machine is moving through sludge when I hit the shirt areas, and I had some thread breaking issues. That said, the quilt came out nice, and I know the family will love it.
My friend Betty and I needed name tags to wear to our guild meetings.  I loaded a small “quilt sandwich” on my longarm, quilted it up, and then used my embroidery machine to finish our tags.  They came out cute.  I finished mine out by just stitching a satin stitch edge around, in the lighter green thread, after I took this pic.
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Such a small project, but it still took me almost three hours to do these.  I enjoyed it, though.  And while I had my embroidery machine out, I made labels for two quilts that I made for my Mom, but gave them to her before I had the labels on.  She reminded me recently that I still hadn’t brought the labels to stitch on.  So next time we go to visit, I have some labeling to do!  🙂  One of her labels took 99 minutes to stitch out.  The other was almost an hour.  Embroidery is fun, but it’s not fast.  I love that I can work on other things at the same time, though.  Good job to my hubby for getting me the stand alone machine, rather than the embroidery upgrade for my Aurora.
Tomorrow starts another week at the day job.  I hope y’all have a great week!
freehand quilting · longarm quilting · machine quilting

Isn’t it Friday yet?


It’s only Wednesday, and for some reason, I woke up more tired than when I went to bed.  I feel absolutely exhausted this morning.  I just want to crawl back in bed, but I have to go to work.  It’s only 14 degrees outside, too.  Good day to stay in bed, all warm & snuggly.

I finished Joanna’s quilt, and it is in the mail on it’s way back to her.  Thought I’d share a couple of pics right quick.

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