Friday, June 19, 2015

Done Enough!

This is the kitchen table. Do you notice what's on it? NOTHING! I have dealt with all the fabric and stuff that was on it. I must admit a lot of it was just stuffed on the bookshelves, but I'll get to them later.

I have to tell you, this was a long process. I started on the 9th, and 10 days later I'm done with the fabric portion. I still have lots of organizing and deciding to do, but I need to get some sewing done so I feel like I actually accomplished something. I guess it's my reward.

This is what the room looks like now.
The fabric closet. I actually have put a few more things in the lowest cubes, but only a few.
Just to the right of the fabric closet.  The pictures move around the room to the right.
Still unorganized, but I can do that relatively easily (I hope.)

My view when I sit at the sewing machine.
The Bailey's quilter. I butted it up against my cutting table so I have room for the quilt, and room behind to sit.
The design wall, and the small brown table thing is my treadle machine. 
And the fabric closet, with the new curtains closed.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Almost There, and Some Advice

Here is the fabric closet now. I took this last night, then found more fabric (surprise) that needed to be wound into mini-bolts. I have to let you know, I have bought and lost solid black fabric a couple of times, but good news, now it's found!. One piece was about 8 yards (what for you ask, I have no idea!) The last one I found was only about 3 yards. I have plenty of black fabric. Good thing I like to use it.

And now for some advice. The last time I  organized I put things away so that they would be organized. The little set of drawers you see has a sister; both of them filled with delightful items I would keep together to work on any day now. I then put the two of them very safely in the closet in their own little space on the floor in the corner.

Yesterday, they were brought back into the light. I found the wonderful treasures I had stored. I guess I wanted a time capsule, not an easily accessible storage place. So my advice, put things where you can get to them easily and where you can see them, unless of course you are constructing a time capsule.

I must have been because I also unearthed this kit. I looked at it and couldn't figure out where or when I got it.
Then I looked at the tag. I bought this when I went with my sister to the Sister's Quilt show in, wait for it....2008. So the time capsule worked, it has reminded me of events and wonderful times from long ago!

Update: I found this. The closet just outside my sewing room. I knew there was fabric in it, I'm the one who put it there. However I think my mind has been ignoring it.

The large bin toward the top has fleece for backings, so that one goes back. The small one on top is completed quilts, so they get moved. The bottom one has clothing fabric and patterns. You'll be surprised to hear that I have aged it long enough, and it is ready to be shared (with a charity shop), at least most of it.

I think I should stop looking. I'm tired of fabric! I don't want to organize anymore. I want to quilt.

Oh one more! These blocks were in one of the time capsules drawers. I remember that I didn't like them when I finished them. Now they're OK, I guess absence does make the heart grow fonder. I have fleece for the backing, so quick baby quilt. You'll be surprised to know there are babies going to be born in my world.

Onward and upward. Back to work.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Progress: I think

How can there still be this much stuff left to go through? It's mostly fabric but other miscellaneous stuff that was in the top part of the closet was also piled on the table

 I've put this much fabric away! Is it multiplying? I guess I've done a few other things today. I did do the laundry and put it away. I went through my clothes (closet and drawers) and discarded and organized and donated. I donated a chair, donated a cupboard that was in my room, went through all the patterns I had and discarded what I didn't love any more. Shopped for hardware then bolted the bookcases together.

OK, I did more that I realized. I feel a bit better now.

The bookcases have most of the stuff on them that is going to go, at least from the shelves I took down, the cupboard I donated and the stuff that didn't belong in the fabric closet. The problem is, there is no order, not even a little, not yet. I'm trying not to look at it when I walk in the room, because it is feeling a bit overwhelming. I have to decide where everything is going to go, and then put it there.

More of the cutting table is visible as well. I've put some things away, and gotten rid of some things.

There is also more space to walk around in the living room. The chair that got donated had a whole pile of sewing stuff on it that got dealt with before I donated it.

OK, whew. I feel MUCH better. Thanks for listening!

Friday, June 12, 2015


 Because, as my sister said last night, I see a lot of squirrels while doing some long term projects I have to replace this one ugly section of fabric. I have been meaning to do it for a while, but I guess I just didn't need the distraction enough till now. These fabrics are all dragonflies I've collected. I put in the orangey-red one and I just HATE it.
So finally I am going to replace it with the blue you see here. (sorry for the crappy pictures, my husband is using my camera so I'm using my phone.) I don't LOVE this quilt, but it's OK. I might like it better once it is done and quilted. Maybe this will be the first one I quilt with the Bailey's Home Quilter I got.

And I'm done. I replaced the whole zig-zag row. I feel MUCH better now.


Rolling some Fabric

No, even though I live in Colorado I am not smoking the fabric!

My previous method of storing fabric was to fold it around 9 inch plastic board, then stack it in the small cubes I have. They just fit in the space, so it was a pretty good fit. The big problem was that taking pieces out from the bottom of the stack, then trying to get pieces back in to a stack resulted in a mess, and after a while I would just stuff pieces in.

I decided that I needed to tidy that mess up. The cubes I have are about 14 x 14 x 10. Previously they were put together so they were taller rather than wider. I took them apart and put them back together so they are now wider rather than taller and I'm folding my fabric around acid-free comic book boards.

The mini bolts that result are easier to move around. The go in and come out of the cubes much more easily. The only change I'm going to make is to put a pin in each fabric to hold the end in.

While doing my searching for fabric organization methods I found a free PDF for wraps for remnants. I am using it for larger than scraps, but smaller than mini-bolts. I'm going to put these in a basket or a tote; somehow make them relatively easy to access. If you're interested you can find them here.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


I got the shelves, now I need to purge and figure out how to fit everything where it belongs so I can keep it neat. The first step is take all of the fabric out and look at each piece to decide if I want it, and if I do, how I will store it so I can find it and put it back when I am done.
I didn't get a picture before I took anything out, but here it is with most of the fabric and stuff still in the closet. You can see I have each cubby stuffed full.

Here is all the fabric from the top section on the kitchen table (with my pressing board put into service to hold the extra). I don't know if it looks like much here, but it is a bit embarrassing. Now to go through each piece and decide if it brings me joy and if I want to keep it. I also want to turn the cubbies in the closet sideways so instead of stacking the fabric I stand it on its side like a book so I can access it more easily and put it away more easily.

Now, to start!

This is amazing!

 Not a great picture...but I was able to make a cake at 8,600 feet and do you see it is not collapsed? The amazing thing however is that these were stuck in the pans and I was expecting them to be crumbs. Not a happy thought. So, how did I get them out of the pans you ask. Well, I asked Google of course. Google said I could freeze the cakes for 6 hours or more and they would then come out. I believe that would work. However I didn't want to wait that long. So I asked again, and this time Google said that I should wet a dishcloth and wrap it around the pan. Shake the pan and the cakes would loosen. I was doubtful, but it worked and I am amazed.

Next. My birthday was on Saturday and I decided I would like some shelves for my sewing room so I had room to set up my new quilting machine. I went to Ikea and purchased three Billy bookcases in white. I took out the three shelves I had attached to the walls and removed the storage I had painted last year. Once I go through and get rid of stuff that doesn't bring me joy I'll have plenty of space for everything. See!

Friday, June 5, 2015

Need More Storage...or more room

North Wall
Allie suggested I look for more storage by going up. I guess I'd have to reconfigure lots of stuff because I already have most of my walls full.  I haven't used them to their full extent I don't think. I also have many bins under the cutting table.

The possible solution is to get rid of some stuff. OH NO!

Anyone have any clever and inexpensive suggestions to my storage problems?
East Wall
South Wall

West Wall

under table storage

Sit Down Quilting Machine!

I got the Bailey's Home Quilter two days ago and I've been trying to figure it out since then. It was pretty easy to set up, though the light gave me a little problem. The stitching has been a problem. It kept skipping stitches, not picking up the bobbin. I think I have that figured out. I can't sew as slow as I was. I have to have the same type thread on top and in the bobbin and I had to work on adjusting the tension in both the top thread and the bobbin. I want to play with a lot before I start quilting so I get the idea better.

I don't have a lot of room in my sewing room for it. I may have to reconfigure the whole room. I only have a 11 x 13 room and when you put as much stuff in it as I have it gets very crowded. You can see I have quite a mess here. I moved stuff around so I could get the new machine in and a lot of it got thrown on the sewing/cutting table. I may need to figure out a new table for my regular machine, maybe something smaller. The problem with that is I have all kinds of stuff stored under the table.

What to do? What to do?

I'll post some pictures when I finally get something quilted, even if it's only a square of something.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Finishing up

I got my Bernina back from being serviced. Nice and smooth and quiet. I was able to quilt the last two octagons on this quilt. Now I just need to figure out what to do with the outside border area. I don't want to make it too fancy but it also needs to match the density in the interior of the quilt.

I also want to work on the hexagon maze. I only have these two blocks done, but this is going to be one of those quilts that will be done all at once because of the nature of the pattern. Each hexagon needs rounds of fabric, then they can be sewed together....lots of rounds of fabric. I have the grey done on all 25 except for one piece on each. I got sidetracked yesterday because the Bernina came back and I needed to finish the quilting that got interrupted.

I'm supposed to get my new quilting machine today. Here is a picture from the shop. It is from Bailey's Sewing in New York state and will certainly be easier to use with the large harp space. I'm pretty excited to see how it will work for me.

The finished quilt will be about 70 x 100, so will work for the guest room (I think). I just design and make them I don't plan them :-).

So much going on, but I'm having fun.

I'm linking to Lee at Freshly Pieced Modern today. Check out what others have in progress there.

Monday, June 1, 2015

New--Hexagon Maze

 here are two of the blocks for the new quilt. The pattern is the one shown below. I'm making it up as I go along, which means sometimes I cut pieces that don't fit because I don't measure well...oh well.

I like the pattern. It is going to be a bit complex to piece, but I don't seem to be able to design easy patterns. It took me a bit to figure out how to add that little vertical bit of fabric at the bottom of the block. I decided the easiest way was to top stitch down the sides. I unpicked a bit of the sewing between the grey and blue borders, stuck the bit of blue in and top-stitched. I like it.

The process is slow. I have 25 hexagons and each one has to have at least two rounds of fabric sewed on. I only have These two completed. The other 23 have just 6 of the 6 pieces needed for the first "round" of grey.

I am currently using my Featherweight because my Bernina was making horrible screeching noises. I guess after more than 25 years it needed professional care. I took it in to be tuned up last Tuesday so I should have it back soon.

The Featherweight is doing a great job (after I figured out how to put the bobbin in correctly) but it is a bit slow. It also seems I have to replace the bobbin a lot!

I'm linking up to Judy at Patchwork Times.


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