Monday, June 3, 2013

Cooler Times

Yesterday, I went to make some more 5" tumbler rows and thought that it was odd that I only had two rows done already. So today I worked extra hard to make up for what I figured must've been a lackluster performance.
When I finished my session this morning, I got up and took a quick count of how many rows were done. THAT was when I realized that as I had been cutting, I had carelessly stacked the "I-already-used-this" fabrics right on top of about 4 rows, thus hiding them. Ahhha! Now I have 12 rows done! Yippeee! Not sure if that's enough, maybe I'll do a few more.
I really enjoyed Bonnie K. Hunter's Quilt-cam yesterday. Because I had forgotten that it was on, I watched it on the archived version here. Just go to the grey tab at the top of the page marked Quilt Cam to find the window for the quilt-cam.
But I was so impressed with what Bonnie was saying about not needing to ALWAYS be showing something new on our blogs. That leads to so many jack-rabbit starts that become a hundred UFO's. It is so true! I need to do the same repetitive steps that add up to completions. Stay the course, so to speak. This takes some self-discipline for me because I have the attention-span of a gnat, LOL!
So in the spirit of following through with a project, I'm still cutting and sewing 5" tumblers.
I figure that if I make the top 17 rows down, that's 17 x 5"= 85" minus 4"worth of seam allowances, it would be 81" of length. That sounds like a nice twin for couch cuddling, doesn't it? Only my Air Conditioners allow me to think of that.
Here's what the armload of rows looks like so far. Lots of Civil War stuff with a few juicy florals thrown into the mix for good measure. I'm such a sucker for a pretty flower, LOL!
I want to shamelessly endorse a quilting product that has been working for me. I'm not being paid to advertise it, but I'd just like to pass onto you what a boon June Tailor's Quilt Basting Spray is to me. It's about $14 bucks which is exorbitant, but I used a coupon at Joann's.
It has not gummed up my needle when I'm quilting layers that were basted together with it. It smells awful so I use it outdoors. It takes very little of this stuff to adhere the layers. I have only used it on small to medium sized projects like my neighbor, Ilse's, "Birds Wallhanging" or my friend Wanda's "Friendship Quilt". It really holds the layers as you quilt without having them slip, slide, or shift.

The way I do it, you make your complete quilt sandwich first. Place the backing, face down, then the batting, and then the top, face up, with all the layers together, just as they will appear as a finished quilt. I've done it on my swept-clean asphalt driveway or on the giant tables at the Taylor Community Crafts Room. You need a big flat surface. I never vacuum, so my floors are out!
Once everything is smoothed and patted into place, gently lift one of the short ends of the  quilt top and the batting TOGETHER, and fold them aside halfway back over onto themselves. Lightly spray the wrong side of the half of the backing, which has thus become exposed to you, then replace the folded back layers back onto the backing again after you sprayed it. By doing only half the quilt at a time, everything kinda hangs together in it's placement. After you get one side done, do the second half just the same way.
Continue by lifting just half of the quilt top, to expose the layer of the batting, and spray that layer and then replace that half of the quilt top. Again, repeat the process to finish the other half. After the three layers of the quilt are spray basted together, I let them sit for 15 to 20 minutes to set or dry. The spray IS repositionable, so don't feel too nervous. But I used the "half-at-time" even for this little wall hanging.
Click on this picture to see a close up
I did the simple little outline quilting around all the birds and leaves using my darning foot. I had my vintage circa 1949 White Sewing Machine stitch length set to zero. I did put on a pair of rubberized garden gloves that I'd bought at Walmart for $5 bucks. It took me a little over an hour to quilt it and I like it! I hope Ilse will like it, too! She wants to send it to her blind brother in Germany.

 I had put the very small and very unevenly cut bird panel into a brown fabric "frame" with an off white fabric"matting" to enlarge the piece and make it look even. I did a few free hand hearts and loops with white-on-white quilting in the cream matting, but left the brown unquilted. I cut the strips for a self-binding in the same brown fabric. Maybe I'll do that tomorrow when I'm fresh. In the meantime, there is another story to amuse you.

Spooky, the feral cat who came to live in my messy crowded garage during the fierce storms this past winter, has gotten a lot more used to me. I have no illusions; this is a wild creature and I respect that.
But it amuses me to feed her (I think it's a she?).
At first, she would not allow me to even see her, the food would just disappear. This closer shot was taken by using the telephoto option on the camera, not by my getting any closer. I giggle at how innocent she looks here because she growls and hisses at me almost constantly.
The flash does not work when I use the film so I'm sorry that this is so very dark.
Happy sewing!


Glady said...

Hi Vic, Your free motion outline quilting of the birds looks lovely! I'm very fond of dogwood flowers! I'm just starting to learn how to do free motion quilting and got a new machine. It takes some practice, for sure. You'll see it on my blog. Your tumbler quilt reminded me that I started one of those last summer and then forgot about it! The little cat-cam was fun.

Debra said...

Hi Vic, Your tumbler quilt will be gorgeous! Loving those fabrics. So pretty......Your Kitty sure knew which house to hide in. You're an angel for letting her stay in your garage & feeding her. She doesn't look that old. Hoping she warms up to you.

Nann said...

With those ears, do you think that Spooky is part Abyssinian or another exotic breed?

I do like the tumblers. Have you had trouble getting them to line up? (That's my problem with those odd shapes. I over- or under-match for a few blocks before I figure them out.)

Marge Gordon said...

He or she will warm up to you as meals go by and hopefully he or she will be a good mouser.

cityquilter grace said...

yikes, vic, thought you were using the 2.5" tumbler template...that's what happens when i read fast...but i do love your rows so far, what's not to like all the pretty fabric!

julieQ said...

I love that you are taking care of that wild kittie...she needs you!!

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