some quilting humor, oh yeah, and some quilting progress
the other day, someone told me they just don’t “get” why people quilt. why people would want to cut up fabric, and sew it back together again. well when you put it like that…yeah it does sound a little nuts, but it’s fun and takes creativity, talent, patience etc. i could go around critiquing everyone’s hobbies, but i don’t. to each his (or her) own, right? i embrace my quirkiness, and here are some funny things i saw on pinterest that only fellow quilters would understand
i even saw one somewhere that said, “dear lady at the cutting counter, please stop asking me what i’m making…i’m running out of ways to lie. it’s just for my stash.”
oh my goodness, on christmas eve, i went to joann fabrics, because i had like 8 50% off coupons that i was allowed to use. that’s when i got all of the fabric i needed for my dad’s project. anywho, the lady at the cutting counter has helped me several times, so of course we start talking about christmas and how she was supposed to leave over an hour ago so she could go home and make some pies for dessert. fast forward a few days, 5 to be exact. i don’t remember why, but i was back at joann’s on december 29th. i realized it hadn’t even been a week since i had been there last. as i approached the cutting counter, it was the same lady. i almost decided not to go through with my purchase out of sheer embarrassment. (you know you are at the fabric store too often, when you dread being recognized/judged by the employees, lol) long story short i asked her about her pies and she didn’t give my presence a second thought. she was very appreciative that i remembered and asked. when i was done, she handed me my fabric and said, “see you later. well, not today, but soon.” i cracked up. i guess this story may not be funny to someone else, but it made me smile, lol.
ok, enough about that. here is a picture of my new machine that i love love love! it’s so amazing, i could brag on it forever. i haven’t been able to use it much, because i have mostly been doing prep aka a crap ton of cutting.
the first day it arrived, there was a bunch of snow. so we shoveled and cooked dinner before i could crack it open. i really just got a chance to read the manual and test out a couple of stitches. sorry they are hard to see, but that’s the color thread i needed, and i just grabbed the first scrap that was readily available.
it has over 600 decorative stitches (including letters) that i need to play around with a little more. the top two lines are just me testing out the reverse and tacking options. i’d never heard of tacking, but it is awesome and i’m so glad i have this feature. my machine also automatically adjusts tension, which is nice because most of the problems on my old machine were caused from that. in the middle are two decorative stitches, i don’t think i am able to enlarge these cool stitches though. i need to do a little bit more research, because i really hope i can make them bigger. and finally, do you see that cute star, with the word star next to it? i also have flowers, hearts, dogs, bikes, etc. etc. next to that was supposed to be a block C, a heart, and then a cursive B (C loves B, lol). i really need to find out if i can make these things bigger. it would be super cool to be able to type a personal message on the back of the things i make as gifts, and/or create patterned borders, etc. the possibilities are endless.
remember how i said i am making two saddle blankets for my dad’s horses? here are the bazillion squares i had to cut, along with the pattern i created. can i just take a second to marvel at my half square triangles? they are perfect! i know that may seem like a small feat for all of you seasoned quilters, but it took me awhile to master those, scant quarter inch seams, etc.
here are some more decorative stitches i played around with. on darker fabric this time.
today i started actually putting the saddle blankets together. i wanted to test out a new technique that i saw on pinterest. basically you buy fusible interfacing and draw a grid on it. you can buy some that already has a grid, but it’s more expensive, and also the squares are only 1 inch x 1 inch. my squares are 3 inches in size, so i just made my own. then, you lay out your squares where you want them, and gently iron them in place, so they stick to the interfacing (hence the name “fusible.”) i did two rows at a time. after i was done with the front, i flipped it over and pressed the back too. here it is. the size the interfacing comes in is not very big, so this is only half of the blanket. i also need to add two more rows to the bottom.
after that, i folded over one row and a time, and pressed them nice and straight. then i used those as the edges to sew my seams. here is the back with all of the seams sewn in one direction. i pressed them all down in the same direction.
then, i did the same exact thing, in the other direction, but i altered the direction in which i pressed the seams.
finally, i did a nice even press on the front, and here it is. beautiful! i love this technique. the perfectionist in me really appreciates how the seams all line up as they are supposed to. i also only had to sew 5 seams in one direction, and 11 seams in the other direction, versus who knows how many i would’ve had to do if i had sewn each individual square together, and pressed each individual seam open. i would definitely recommend this to others. interfacing is not that expensive. i think it was $3.99 a yard, but it was 40% off, and i get an additional 15% off for being an educator. i didn’t get enough, because i didn’t realize that it’s not very wide, but that’s ok, i can always go back. the interfacing also adds a nice sturdiness/thickness to the fabric, which i like, because seeing as how this is supposed to add padding between the saddle and the horse, i need all the cushion i can get!
i also started cutting fabric for brian’s colts blanket, but that is definitely on the back burner lol.
i think that’s all the craftiness i can handle for now. i am off work tomorrow as well, due to snow/wind chill, so perhaps i may get a bit more done tomorrow?
oh yeah! i also got this pattern for paper pieced letters, so i’m totally going to put the names of my dad’s horses on the backs of their individual blankets. they are going to be so sweet!
this post has gotten entirely too long. i’m off to try to finish my book