Thursday, October 25, 2012

Crib quilt

I'm continuing to work on my holiday gift list.  My nephew is getting a crib-sized quilt.  He's two and my sister has decided that he's old enough for a heavy blanket this winter, but when she priced toddler sets she decided it would be cheaper to let me make him one for Christmas.  Thanks, sis!

I made him a quilt where the top is just four wide stripes.  In each stripe I'm quilting some designs that appeal to him - his name, pirates, trains, and puppies.  So the interest will be in the quilting, not really in the piecing. 

This is my favorite picture so far.  Run, little puppy!
 This is part of a pirate scene.  There's also a dolphin and an island with a palm tree.  This is just the ship and the sea monster.
 One of the panels has a train, and it's my least favorite.  I'll have to think of some things to add to it to make it less plain.
 Finally, I'm stitching my nephew's name into one of the panels.  Since the letters are big it's taking longer than I had expected.  Those letters take forever to fill!  I still have one and a half of them left.
So that's my nephew's quilt.  Once it's done I'll move on to my son's teacher's gift.

Gift list:

Brother & his girlfriend: mug rugs
Sister & her fiance: mug rugs
Son's teacher: mug rug
Nephew: crib-sized quilt
Mom: quilt top
Dad: Pot cozy?  Or...something?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

I finally finished my double-slice quilt.  We're having an unseasonably warm couple of days here in Wisconsin so I'm not going to curl up with it yet.  But it's going to be back down into the 40s by the end of the week, so it'll be put into good use then.
 I like the texture that the spirals give the quilt.  I can't wait to see it after it's been washed!
 The loops in the border were my first project that was done with the 115.
My first quilt that was made entirely with people-powered machines!  I'm so proud of it!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Handmade Holiday

This year my brother, my sister, and I decided to make handmade gifts for Christmas.  Actually, I decided, and my sister jumped on the bandwagon because it would be cheaper.  I left a voice mail for my brother outlining our plan and saying that the kids and I would be very happy to get cookies, banana bread, or anything else he could bake for Christmas.  I assume he's in.

I have a long list of handmade gifts for Christmas.  For my brother, my sister, and their significant others I plan on making mug rugs.  The mug rugs came together really quickly...piecing, basting, and quilting took only an afternoon and evening.  Tomorrow I hope to bind them and cross them off my list.

I love log cabin blocks.  I figured this would be a good way to make the couples' mug rugs coordinate without matching exactly.  The blue ones will be for my brother and his girlfriend, the purple for my sister and her fiance. 

I'm going to buy some cheap mugs and roll up the mug rugs in the mug.  Then I'll add some homemade cookies if I have time, and candy canes if I don't (who am I kidding, I may as well buy the candy canes now, that's totally how I'm going). 

So, that's four gifts nearly knocked out and it's not even Halloween.  That's good, because there are some others on my list that are going to take a ton of time.

My list:

Brother & girlfriend - mug rugs
Sister & fiance - mug rugs
Son's teacher - mug rug
Nephew - crib sized quilt
Mom - Carpenter's Wheel quilt (at least the top)
Dad - pot cozy

I went to my local modern quilt guild's sew day and squandered my precious hours working on my scrappy log cabin quilt and my double slice quilt.  I should have planned ahead and done these instead!  I'll know for the November sew day.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Another addition

This weekend was my sixth wedding anniversary.  My husband and I went out to lunch and then went thrifting, which is what we did on our first date.

I was amazed when I saw this at Goodwill.
It's a badged National brand sewing machine, apparently made for the Montgomery Ward company.

The flowers were pretty a hundred years ago, and might be pretty again when I'm done cleaning it.

I usually don't buy non-Singer treadles because it can be tricky to find parts if things are missing.  But this one came with a bunch of attachments, a spare shuttle and several spare bobbins.  I think it'll work once I get a belt on.  It came with a long piece of wire that was being used as a belt.  It's so cool to see evidence that the previous owners used it.

I need to find a manual for it...that metal part on the top is the tension mechanism, and I have no idea how to thread through it.  I can't wait to try it out. 

However, this is my ninth treadle and my third that is complete in its cabinet.  I love getting them, cleaning them up, researching them and discovering their stories, but I don't have space to warehouse them.  I emailed a museum to see if they'd be interested in some of my non-functioning machine heads.  It would be nice for them to go somewhere where they'd be appreciated and admired.  There just aren't that many people out there who want them.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Zip it

Last month my husband and I went camping with our kids.  It was a miserable time...they're usually good campers, but everything was going wrong that weekend.  On Sunday we went to a flea market in a little town near our campsite.  I was on the lookout for antique sewing stuff, as always.  I found a plastic spool box with some feet and class 66 bobbins.  It was cheap, and I figured it would be worth it for the bobbins, which were the old kind and not the new cheap kind that Singer makes currently.

I didn't look too closely at the feet until later.  But when I did get down to looking at them, I noticed one that was different.

Is that a zipper foot?

I don't know if it really is or not, but it certainly functions like one.  I used it for the first time this morning and installed my first-ever zipper.  It was a little fiddly and took two tries, but it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be.

I'll be excited to start making pouches and other little items with zippers.  I'm pleased!  It doesn't quite redeem the weekend, but it comes close.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Finished wall hanging

I finished my wall hanging.  Although now I think I may cut it up and make it into a tote bag, or little pillows.  I just can't leave well enough alone.

The writing is kind of hard to read, but it says, "Home sweet home Milwaukee."

The squares puckered up...I think that's because I put interfacing on them before I stitched on them.  I was trying to make them stiff, but I think it just ended up weird-looking.  What a headache. 

For now it's gracing the wall in my bedroom.  Until I do something else with it.

Friday, October 12, 2012

In progress

Progress on my wall hanging.  I haven't embroidered the words, "Home sweet home Milwaukee," yet because I didn't have the right color of thread. 

I can't wait to finish it up and get it on the wall.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Mod in Milwaukee

My quilting is limited in a number of ways...I have limited experience, limited time, limited hobby allowance.  So when I decided against doing the Mod in Milwaukee challenge that's being put on by the local quilt guild it wasn't really heart wrenching.  It was just another decision being made because of my limits.

But then my husband went and bought the contest fabric for me for our anniversary because I liked it.  And when I got it I couldn't resist planning a quick project and cutting into the fabric.  And as long as I'm going to sew it up, why not enter it?  Not to win, but just for fun.

It's just four blocks, stitched together asymmetrically to make a wall hanging.  I'll use free motion quilting to spell out "Home sweet home Milwaukee."

I was still thinking about the bricks on my son's school, which was my original idea for a Mod in Milwaukee project.  I'll hang it in my room, or maybe by the front door.  I'm excited!

This sketch was made by using an app called Procreate.  It's not a quilting app, but I do use it to plan out my quilts.  Handy!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Collector's Day

Today was Collector's Day at the Milwaukee Public Museum.  I lugged all of my sewing machines downtown, and then lugged them all the way home again.  But it was worth it...I had a lot of people who said they'd look up the serial numbers on their mom's or grandma's old sewing machine, and I think most people walked away with a greater appreciation for old sewing machines.

Here's my table.

You can see the little cards I made telling a bit about each machine.

I didn't make the yellow card - the museum people did.  It even has a Singer model 15 on it!

You can see I had scraps of fabric in two of my machines.  I let people try out my 115 treadle and my hand crank Singer 66.  I don't know how educational it was for the kids, but the adults seemed to enjoy it.

The woman who runs it already said everyone that was here this year should come back next year, and I'm looking forward to it.  But I am glad it's only once a year, because those machines are heavy to move!