Friday, December 30, 2016

The Great Christmas Reveal

I make things for folks -- no surprise there!

But that means that through out the year I take pictures and file them away so that I can show them to you after the gifting is over

So here is the haul for 2016:

for several years I have done knit toys for the Christmas socks -- this year Mr Cute got BB8 and the son in law got Yoda

for my daughter's sock I did a cup cozy that was not wool -- so she can carry her cup without having to wear gloves to keep her hands from itching!

the sweater knitting for this year was the lovely "eggplant" cardigan for my daughter and a hoodie with Ninja colored stripes for Mr Cute


not that there was any lack of sewing machine work going on for all that knitting!

the Christmas Eve pjs for instance

 the custom aprons for my mother and my sister

 and a little something warm for the two "grand dogs"

now that Christmas is over I can reveal this piece too

this commission piece was done from agreement to delivery in less than 2 months 

it is not a real big piece (measures about 11" by 15"), but along the way I had problems with my sewing machine and at one point I was not sure I would get it done in time

even with all that work and the two Christmas gatherings hosted at my house two weeks in a row, I have continued to work on this piece too --- the silos are just pinned down so I can be sure to fill in all of the grasses that are the base of this --- which means this piece will soon be heading to the sewing machine for quilting

which means I'm thinking about what the next pieces on the design wall will be

we'll see who gets to go first

Sunday, December 11, 2016

counting down to Christmas

the stockings are hung by the chimney with care

these, of course, are just "decorator" stockings -- the ones we have used for years for the "real thing" won't come out of the bag until Christmas Eve
many of the pieces that are out there on the newly built mantel haven't seen the light of day for quite a few years -- for at least 5 years we had not been at home for Christmas, so we had done much less decorating, and even last year (when we went all out) they didn't come out because we didn't have a mantel to put them on

I think this may be one of my favorite bits in the whole house this year

work on other things continues

the fusing work on the commission piece is complete, and I have started doing the quilting -- I hope to have this done in the next few days

the third silo is complete and ready for the next step

and I have started working on the rail road tracks

and of course at this time of the year there are a good number of sewing projects in process that I can't show you right now!

from time to time someone asks me where do I get the ideas for my art quilts

these three photos (and quite a few more) were taken from my front porch this morning

there is something about that thin line of blue below the gray clouds above the housetops that caught my eye, and has me wondering if I could create this look in fiber

time to get to work!

Sunday, December 04, 2016


when I last posted, I had just started quilting on this piece and I had about a week before the deadline to get it entered for a call for entries

I was feeling good -- figured I had plenty of time because I had a clear plan

uh, well, the machine had other plans

mid way through the quilting, the top tension on my machine simply would not hold -- it was like it was always in "baste" mode --- ARRRGH!!!

a day later, and after several text conversations with my cousin and another quilter nearby, I very carefully took apart the whole bobbin compartment of my machine and cleaned in as many areas as I could and tried again (there is very little that a Viking machine is designed to have done by the owner -- it is mostly designed for the [expensive!] authorized shop to work on)


I was able to finish the quilting, get the facing done and get it entered -- but much too close to comfort for me.  I hope to not go there again.

and now the waiting begins for notification

some work is still being done on the silos -- this is the third and final one in process

I'm working on a lot of other things just now, but I can't show you any pictures because Christmas is coming!

this time of year there is a lot of on line chatting about the Elf on the Shelf

these two little cuties are my version of that -- handmade by me back in the 90s -- one of them still has her hang tag from when she made a trip to a craft fair or two

wish I could get them to do some of the more mundane work around the house -- but no, they are going to just sit here on the couch and look cute

time to get back to the studio and get that commission finished!