Monday, July 26, 2010

Cabin Gardens, Quilts and other comforts.

Cabin Gardens in it's new home

I finished my Log Cabin Runner, pieced, quilted and BOUND!!! and it has its new home. I love it, although there are some changes I will make in my pattern... I think I put too many flowers around it,but I was imagining my home surrounded by flowers and I wish I had way more than I do. Those flowers on the runner are, in fact, the only flowers I can't' kill, all though I was having some trouble with my machine while I was stitching them and there were some moments that I would have like to. At any rate I am totally satisfied with the final project and will have the pattern ready this week.

I also worked on my new Dresden plate using the Clover templates and I am really pleased with the way it is looking. All my 240 wedges are sewn turned and pressed, now I just need to get them sewn together into plates and the lions share of that quilt will be done. I enjoy making the wedges. It's pleasant easy mindless work and the turning gets done in front of the TV... Jays and a double header = lots of turning time. I finished one block so I am posting some "eye candy" for you.

I worked on my long arm for the first time in a long time and all though it was hard and I ended up with a bit of a headache, it's a start. I want to get back to quilting as I found I really like the time I spend on my machine... just disappointing that it still makes me dizzy and I still get headaches from it... but I am going to continue plugging away. I used my Invisafil in the bobbin and it worked sooooo well and Tutti on the top. It's a variegated 50 wt cotton and I didn't have one problem quilting that runner.

This week I am going to get caught up on some challenges that I am behind in... That's my goal... I have 3 blocks I need to do, Aimee's little summer challenge, and the Nifty Circle challenge, and that plan has jumped out of my head and into EQ7, so I am not far from cutting my first piece.

This weekend I went to Walmart and found all kinds of fun stuff that I had been looking for. It's all in the school supply area, and of course it would be available at this time of year. These are just a few of the things I bought, but they are all goodies that I love so i bought a year's supply so I won't run out until next year when the school supplies come out.

I bought... Elmer's clear glue, clear glue double ended glue sticks, a new Elmer's glue stick that looks like the Fons and Porter Glue sticks... I LOVE ELMER'S GLUE!!! then I got a few Staedtler white latex free erasers and some Staedtler pencils which erase really easy so they are great for marking your quilts.  And I bought some Crayola Twisters for some crayoning I want to do this year and today I am going back to look at their binders and covers and some more GLUE!!!

What a great weekend this was! Now I am off to drink coffee on my porch and read a new quilt magazine I bought yesterday that I haven't even had time to look at ... Talk to you soon!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Quilting is all about Friendships

Our retreat design wall.

I was browsing through some pictures this morning, trying to see if there was a picture of a quilt that I hadn't shown you yet, and I came across this picture of the projects my friend Aimee and I did at retreat last year. We had so much fun working on those table toppers. On Sunday morning, the final day of our retreat, we challenged each other to take a pattern out of a magazine, increase the size of the blocks and make it before we left retreat that day. There were some tense moments as we waited for irons (no one got hurt!) but all of a sudden we had completed the project and it was time to go home. I am not sure who won, that didn't seem to matter, but the fun of it was definitely the challenge.

And that reminds me... at the last meeting of Nifty's in June, Aimee handed me a little package and said.... "have a nice summer". I better look more closely at that. Pretty sure it's not a Gift!!! LOL

This little cat wall hanging was a gift from Cathy, another Nifty quilting buddy. I had sent her a piece of fabric as a little something one mother's day as she has been a great friend to me and a supper big help with Nifty's.  A while later I received this at a Nifty's meeting and thought it came from my secret sister. It wasn't until the secret sisters had been revealed that I found out that this cute little wall hanging had come from Cathy and that it was made from the fabric I had sent her... I totally missed that... LOL.  This hung in my back hall for a couple of years and I don't think anyone ever saw it, so  I moved it into my sewing room where I can look at it every day.
This cute little mini was made by a guild member, Brynhild, for our Little Quilts Auction in 2009. It is so adorable and in my colours, I had to buy it! She told us she had made one for the auction and liked it so much she had to keep it. I was very disappointed when I heard that, until she pulled out a second one and gave it to the auction. I bid high enough I didn't think anyone else would bid on it, and I won! Ii put two little magnets in the hanging sleeve and hung it up on my fridge so I could enjoy it everyday. I have a little Amish theme going on in my kitchen and it fits in quite nicely.

Last but not least is this little mini made by Sheila that I bought at the same auction. Every Wednesday, 4 of us get together and hand sew and we had gotten into doing Grandmother's Flower Gardens. We each have a couple of them now and we are all getting a little sick of them but this project was one that Sheila worked on while she was at my house. I knew from the minute she started it I would have to have it. It hangs proudly in my sun room where we work every Wednesday and I love it. Sheila framed it in an old wooden frame and it is indeed a work of Art!

I love the mini's and I have more, but no pictures so I can't share any other's that I have purchased. But what I can say is that even though I quilt and people have loved my little gifts to them, I am more proud of the quilts that hang in my home made by other people than I am of my own stuff.  Quilting is all about family,  friendships and comfort and I am glad I am a quilter!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Thursday.... It's a sunny Day

I know I have posted this before, but I am trying to duplicate it using the new Clover Templates... it was one of my favorites.

I love days that start out sunny and bright... I don't care that the forecast is calling for rain. It's a sunny day!

I spent all day yesterday, working out some kinks in my armour and sewing on my Log Cabin Table Runner. It will be done today so hopefully I will have time to get the notes ready and get it off for testing and the pattern should be ready in the next few weeks. I have also started my Dresden plate quilt so hopefully the plates will be done by Monday or Tuesday. I have decided to re-focus a little and sew like a crazy person for the next week.

Susan sees her doctor on Tuesday and we will find out what is going to happen about this little breach gem she is carrying around in all this heat. She is pretty sure he hasn't moved an inch. I will be glad when we see the doctor and we all know what the future has in store for her and little Ethan. I often heard that once you have kids your worries only multiply... how true is that!

I set up my design wall yesterday and I love it... I just set up the small one for now, its 36" x 36", big enough for table runners and stuff, but the big one is awesome. I had it set up, took me about 5 minutes and about 2 min. to take it apart and pack it back in its little house. This will be a great little tool for me when I go off to retreat or out to teach classes. LOVE IT!

I also really like the new Clover Trace n' Create Quilt Templates for Dresden Plate and Fan Quilts. This is one of those tools that although some might think it is a step backward, it actually has been a long time coming. These templates help you cut accurate wedges for your Dresden Plates and when you cut accurately your plates come out nice and flat. I haven't got to the circle part yet so I can't tell you too much about that, but it will be interesting to see how well it works. And if you take a moment and go to the Clover web site you will be able to see a video Nancy Zieman  has made abut  working with these templates. Worth the few minutes you spend watching it. So check it out!

Well I am off to sew my 120 wedges together and finish my table runner so have a great day and I hope you have sunshine to enjoy!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Sew day - Yahoo!

I am going to sew today, again. I need to be at my machine.

I have had two very stressful days and although I believe it is all part of being in business, I just get so frustrated when people get nasty before they even have a clue what's going on. Sometimes I think it would be easier just to lock the doors and hide away but I think I will just spend the day sewing instead.

Sometimes I feel the need to preach and today is one of those days. If you don't want to hear it, stop reading now!!!!!

As Canadians,  I think that supporting your local quilt stores should be every one's highest priority. Second to that is shopping in Canada. If we all stop supporting our quilt stores we won't have any. And it's not just our local store down the street. I believe that variety is the spice of life and me shopping in 20 different Quilt stores in 20 different communities, helps keep QUILTING alive. When I travel in Canada, I like to book classes in stores I have never been to. Every new teacher adds a small slice of knowledge to your quilting experience. And having a new quilting business, open in a community close to you can only bring more people to your shop, because what you can't get in one place you may be able to get in another. Working together promotes quilting, pulling apart destroys the image of quilting... which has always been women ( and men) supporting each other and working together to a greater end. And when the people in retail quilting start bickering... customers leave (and especially in Quilting communities so close to the American border)..our quilting dollars are put into American Quilt Stores. I have started a quilting business to add to our quilting community, and I intend to help support other LQS's in my area, not to hurt them. So I am not positive of what they are afraid of, but I for one will continue to support the local stores in my area and I hope you will too.

Here in Napanee, we have Country Quarter Quilt Shop, in Harrowsmith we have Wilton Creek Fabrics, in Kingston we have Garden Time and Quilt and Stitch,and in Belleville we have Fun with Stitches.  And if you can't find a certain notion in any of these shops, check out my web store. Maybe I will be able to fill the gap.

I am excited to work together with my local quilt store to increase your Quilting pleasure.

Here endeth the lesson...

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I love shopping at the Hobby Horse

The Hobby Horse In Georgetown, Ontario

Yesterday my friend Marg and I went to the Hobby Horse in Georgetown.

Three words... Oh My Goodness!!!

I forgot to rob a bank before I went so I felt slightly deprived when I left with only a small shopping bag of goodies, but I don't think there is anything they don't have. And the Books... no words can describe how great this quilt store is! When we walked in the door, Marg who was a first-timer, stood speechless and overwhelmed, but it didn't take her long to get her grove on and her somewhat larger than my shopping bag  was toted out about 2 1/2 hours later.

We had a great time... and I stopped and shopped at the Notion Nanny candy store and boy do I have some great surprises for you! I managed to grab some portable design walls, some rulers, patterns and other odds and sods that you will see on my website in the next few days... How exciting!

But right now I am off to a sew day with my friend Bev, so I will see you tomorrow!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Woe is me! Well last week anyway...

My log cabin Table runner pattern... stay tuned!

I haven't got time to stay long today, I am heading to Toronto for the day with my friend Marg,  but I can tell you I won't be wanting to see another week like last week in a long long time.

First off it was stinkin hot all week!!!! I tried to do some sewing but it is impossible to do much of anything when even the air conditioner can't keep up to the heat. Then the computer died, a slow death, but none the less a death.

 It all started on Tuesday when I couldn't get into my email, then I couldn't email, then Explorer kept  freezing and then by Wednesday all it did was boot up. Fortunately I had done a complete backup starting Tuesday when the problem started and everything was on my portable hard drive, except for all my business emails that I hadn't worried too much about..and now I will have to start all over again collecting that information.

I did get a chance to try out the log cabin rulers by Marti Michell last week and have almost completed a little table runner with it. Just looking for a pattern tester to try it out. Let me know if you are interested! I am going to order some of the Rulers and give the pattern for this runner as a bonus for buying the rulers... so stay tuned.

I am off to Toronto, hopefully I will see you tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

I think Mondays should be banned!

I was so addicted to Amish patterns, and this was one of my favorites. I used it as a table cloth for a long while but it is flannel backed and became too cozy for the table.

Yesterday was a crazy day for me. I made a list, I had so much to do. Susan needed me to sit with the kids while she went to the doctor in the afternoon and so I wanted to get as much done prior to going to her house as possible... I HAD A LIST!

She called me at 8 am to tell me she had been up all night with flu, could I come and sit with the kids so she could get some sleep. At first I was a little grouchy about it, because I had a list, but I went, put a smile on my face and had a really pleasant day with my granddaughters. AND, I still have my list. So, today will be a very busy day instead.

My daughter gave me this picture yesterday of my granddaughter in the snow... "that's OK honey... we like summer too"... reminded me not to complain about the heat any more!!! tee hee

One bad thing that did happen yesterday, was Susan found out little Ethan, who will join her family some time late August, is breach. I had planned to go to Alberta to my nieces wedding right around the time Susan was due, but if he stays breach, I may have to reconsider. I know, it's her 3rd baby, but still, she is my baby and I think she will be less concerned about everything if she knows I am here. Anyway, we are waiting for her next appointment to see what the little charmer is going to do, then I will make my decision.

I got my copy of the new EQ7 on Friday and finally installed it on Sunday. The first thing I tried was a vast improvement from EQ6 so I am stoked to try some other stuff. Maybe I will make up a little pattern and share it with you, although my free tote on the web site hasn't been running out the door, maybe you will like this little runner I have in mind. Stay tuned!

I also got my mat cleaners, and this new rotary blade that I have been waiting for so they will be going to the web store today, I hope. And I now have all the colours of Invisifil and Tutti Threads available... hopefully they will all be posted in the next few days as well.

and I owe you one more new product...

Day 5... The Sew n' Sharp Needle Sharpening Pad.

A few years ago, I was at the Needlework Festival in Toronto and I bought this little gadget that I thought would be a great addition to my sewing room. It was for sharpening pins, hand needles and sewing machine needles. Well it didn't work very well. In one of my blogs I decided to mention it and went looking for a picture. I couldn't find one. But what I did find, was that the company had redesigned it and made it into a pad that you could sew on either by hand or machine. So I ordered one and tried it and then I immediately called him back and ordered 1000 more...( well maybe 25).

This is an amazing addition to your sewing room. It adds life to pins that get a little burred from doing the great "no-no"! sewing over them with your machine needle, and it is so perfect for getting the little burrs and gunk off your sewing machine needle. If you use any fusibles, (other than Mistyfuse of course) you will love this pad.

Here is how it works. Take the thread out of your needle, ( you can leave it in if you prefer) and sew back and forth on this pad till your needle is sharp again! For pins or hand sewing needles, just run them through the pad till the burrs are gone. Now it won't solve every problem, but the majority of the burrs disappear! I have started running my sewing machine needle through it every day before I start my actual sewing, just as a little preventative medicine.

The negatives: I tore the little cardboard end off mine and now I can't hang it anywhere. Next time I will leave that on!

USA sharpeners makes great rotary blade sharpeners as well and I will have them all up on my web site within a week.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


The Advanced second attempt at making this quilt. the outside border still isn't attached, that will be done tonight and hopefully quilted and bound by Wednesday. It will be a gift, so I need to get it done!

Well the heat wave persists, although, it was more comfortable yesterday, but it is looking pretty hot already today. I am not complaining... yet, but it is hard to accomplish anything when you are feeling so totally drained by the heat.

Friday we had rain and Thunderstorms so I did manage to sew. I made this lovely little wall hanging for the second time... only this time I did it right. I still had a few issues with my piecing. It was done by the Square-in-a-Square method and although I am getting to like it more and more all the time, it is still a lot like paper piecing. One time you do this and the next time you do that. Mostly wrong is right and pay attention or you will be doing it again. So, will I make another one? Already in the works. Only this time I am going to make the beginners model, not try and attempt the advanced project again! AND... I am definitely going to join my friend Marg's Square-in-a-Square club. she knows all the tricks and once she showed me one or two of them, this project was a lot easier. the top one is my new one, the one to the right is my first attempt... can you see the difference in the center block?

I don't have any time to talk notions today as I am off to the Picton Quilt Show. I am sure you have no idea how much time it takes me to write these everyday, but it is quite a long process, So you will have to wait till tomorrow for my last piece of the puzzle. I will say however, I got all my Best Press in and I now officially have it in every size, AND, I got the new EQ7. I loaded it on to my lap top and the first thing I tried, was an improvement. So I will have fun playing with it, when i have time.

Anyway, gotta run. My ride will be here soon and I am still in PJ's. So talk to you tomorrow!

Shown below is the Picton Quilt Show Raffle quilt that I am going to win today when i go to the show!!!!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Oh... one more thing...

Yesterday when I was busy doing nothing, I googled my name just for fun and I came across the article from the magazine that had my commissioned Tie Quilt in it...  I was so excited to see it, because I have had the magazine for a few years, but couldn't share it... anyway, I have no idea how to share it here... but if you google Gail Sabramsky it is the PDF  Memories of three generations live here...  the Quilt is on the wall (barely can see it) and the article is very interesting on this beautiful home in the eastern US.

Ok that's it!

Thursday... uh, no It's Friday. Where did Thursday go?

This will be a cushion one day.  Its one of those great projects I had so much fun with, but never put together. The pattern was crayoned and then blanket stitched. It is so pretty... I really should do something with it!

I missed Thursday... the whole day seemed to be a waste. No Energy!!! My granddaughter had a sleep over on Wednesday night and by the time we got through the pile of books she brought to me in the morning to read, the day was half over.

It was one of those funny days because it was so hot the air conditioner couldn't keep up, and when it's hot here in Ontario its muggy. So most of the day I felt like I was standing in a puddle of water. I had to go out first thing to replace my broken EPA pen and the minute I stepped out the door, the heat hit me like a brick wall. I came home and put my feet up and read a book for the rest of the day.

My poor wall hanging got put on the back shelf again yesterday. It's too hot to sew. I don't seem to be to great at these mini challenges... did I say that already?

But the good news is, we are expecting thunder storms today and they are the best medicine for this kind of heat. I am not a great fan of the booming and banging, but I will be happy to see them today so we can all feel some relief.

Another box full of goodies came yesterday and I didn't even open it up... I might do that today, once it cools down. I know there is some great stuff in it... but I am most excited about the purse handles I ordered. I am going to make another one of my favorite totes and this time I want to put wooden handles on it. I hope to have some time to work on it this weekend... I have told everyone I am not doing anything but sewing, (but a lot will depend on the heat,)  EXCEPT for the few hours I am out at the Picton Quilt Show!

Day 4 - Mistyfuse.

Well I know you have all heard me talk about this in the last few months, but have any of you taken me serious? Have you tried it?

This isn't a new product, it has been around for quite a long time, but it is very new to me and I have to say, I am 100% converted. It is so easy to use and there are some great benefits to using it that I didn't even think about till I tried using it.

First... it is very light, lighter than other similar products that say they are lite. After I used the Mistyfuse on my little wall hanging challenge I was convinced that this was the product for me. You hardly know it is on the back of your fabric pieces and once your decorative stitches have been made, there is no weight or stiffness to the area that has been fused. That was one of my biggest complaints before, the way the blocks felt after using the fusible.

Second... It is VERY easy to use. I looked at this lacy, meshy material and wondered how it would ever work out. I followed some really good instructions and it was amazingly easy. I used freezer paper to draw my pattern on. Once they were drawn, I rough cut the pieces and ironed them to the RIGHT sides of my fabric choices. Then I laid the pattern and fabric onto the Mistyfuse and cut around them with my rotary cutter (I used the Fiskers Fingertip Cutter). I took the 3 layers to my ironing board and using a Teflon sheet, top and bottom, I pressed them with a medium hot iron... I used the old 4 second rule for pressing. I waited a few minutes for it to cool.. long enough to get my next piece ready... and took it off the sheet. I fussy cut the shape and removed the pattern. Now one of the things I thought of was, that freezer paper pattern could be used again... so I stuck it on another piece of fabric, cut out the Mistyfuse, ironed it and fussy cut it and I had a second piece with the same pattern. My suspicion is that that Freezer paper pattern will make 9 or 10 pieces before it loses it's stick. so I think that will be a bonus as well.

Last... There was no mess... none on the Teflon sheet,( it all peeled away with the pattern piece), none on the rest of my fabric that I was using, and none of that irritating paper that has so much static cling that you are wearing it on your behind before you know it! Also, your machine needle doesn't get clogged with the fusible and your specialty threads work well with it.

Mistyfuse comes in 2 colours... black and white and a special UV product that is specially formulated with an effective retardant to protect against the tanning effect of UV rays, great for all your heirloom projects.

Negatives... the negative is that when you buy it you don't always get the instructions with it. Iris from Mistyfuse, says she always sends instructions with the product, but some places just don't bother to pass them on. It comes sold on the bolt by the metre so make sure you ask for instructions, or check my website for the instructions. I will be adding more details to it now that I have actually used this great NEW product.

AND... I will be making up for the lost HEAT day... tomorrow. Day 5... see you then!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Wednesday - Hump Day!

My desk coaster... base is made with cotton clothesline.

I am late today! usually I am up at 6 am and writing by 7am. Today I barely made it out of bed by 8am. I don't remember the last time I slept so late! Two cups of coffee later, I am still not really awake. But i have a great reason!

The beginnings of my Snails Trail

Last night, my friend Marg and I went to dinner after she closed her new store and ate wings and sweet potatoe fries and drank diet Pepsi until I thought we would both burst. Marg, who had spent the whole day in her store ( unfortunately her air conditioner has not been hooked up yet and I think it was about 30 degrees yesterday (that's Celsius for all you friends from south of the border), but with the humidity it felt more like 40 or 50 degrees) was VERY thirsty when we got to the restaurant, the waitress refilled our drinks maybe 4 or 5 times,so we were like 2 floating, overloaded ships when we left the restaurant. Tee Hee!

After supper, we came back to my house, we got down to the entertainment; we sewed till 11.54 pm. It was a great night! Marg is a certified Square in a Square instructor and she showed me how to do the Square in a Square properly (hardly any waste, Laila). I made 4 Snail's trail blocks, between talking, sitting, laughing and trips to the bathroom... and she worked on a very cute Grandmothers Flower Garden Nativity Calendar Wall Hanging. I had the best time... Thanks Marg. But I did sleep in this morning!

Day 3 - The Cutting Mat Cleaner
The first Day Marg's shop was opened, she handed me this package and asked if I had seen it yet. It had a little white "bar" in it and she said it was an awesome little mat cleaner. I took it home and it hung on my peg board for a few days and finally a week or so ago I gave it a try. Well. I was impressed.

This little gadget, takes everything off your mat... threads, batting, lint, dust ( do you know how dirty a mat can get?), it even pulls the little fibres that get stuck in your mat right out. My 4 or 5 year old mat looked brand new the first time I used the mat cleaner. I immediately placed it in my ruler holder and at the end of the day, I clean up my mat so it will be ready for a fresh start the next day.
It looks like it has been made from the soles of hush puppies. It is about 4 or 5 inches long and it cleans up under cold water. A little scrub brush helps, too!

Negatives: One is not enough... I will need a couple more to carry with my travelling mats.

Here is my mat cleaner before I washed it and after I washed it.

This notion will be available at my web store this week! I love Notions..... see you tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Tuesday... still here!

Winter Cabins Quilt. I gave this away as a gift and I was just thinking I may have to make another one for myself.

OK, so day two of the one week resolution is upon us and I am geared up for the challenge. In fact I was awake most of the night thinking about everything I had to do today, planning it out, making sure there were enough hours in my day. And at about 4 am, I decided, I should have made a list last night, gotten it all of my mind, so I could have slept like a baby. Wasn't that last weeks challenge?

If you have read the recent comments, you know my stepmother makes lists. Wicked woman!!!! I remember one time she told me I should make a bunch of lists of daily "CHORES" and put them in a box and everyday I could pick one and do those "CHORES" and in a week I would have all the "CHORES" done!

Well, I looked up the word chore in the dictionary and here is what I found:
1. A routine or minor duty or task.
2. Daily or routine domestic tasks, especially a farmer's routine morning and evening tasks, such as feeding livestock.
3. An unpleasant or burdensome task!!!

Now, why would you want to make a list of unpleasant or burdensome tasks, I ask you? Not me. Never tried it. Never will. BUT, I wonder if I had made that list last night, if I would have slept. Oh well, we will never know!

Day two of my own personal mini wall hanging challenge was successful. I managed to get about an hour of sewing time at it yesterday. It's starting to look a little better all the time. I am just going to show you a little of what I did yesterday... keep it a surprise for when it's finished.

Thanks for the comments yesterday. I am glad to see that 2 people read my blog... LOL.

Last night I took some time and put together a pattern for my amazingly simple tote. You can find it on my website and it's a free download. But don't tell everyone, because it's a secret!

Day Two: The Fiskars' Fingertip Rotary Cutter

Well this little gem was a real surprise to me.  I looked at it on line and thought it was smaller than it actually is. It's approximately 4" long and uses an 18mm blade (which by the way, is not replaceable...hmmmm). I had some problems cutting with it using the "as suggested" method of holding it. The instructions say, "slide your index (pointer) finger through the loop for an easy, natural way to guide the blade exactly where needed". I found my fingers a little short for it and it wasn't at all comfortable. And I was thinking that it was going to be a huge disappointment because I just couldn't get the control I needed to cut intricate patterns accurately with it, which, I thought, was the plus of this rotary cutter.
Well, pick it up wrong and don't follow any of the directions for use, and you have an amazing little tool, that does some great cutting on curved lines and fine patterns.

Believe it or not, I am doing some paper piecing. I am making a little New York Beauty block for our Guilds' Little Quilt Auction in May and cutting out those pesky curves was a breeze with the Fingertip Cutter. In fact I cut through the fabric and the paper pattern easily and made accurate cuts to boot! I placed the cutter into the palm of my hand rather than sticking my finger into it and put my "pointy" finger on the top above the blade and I had so much control going around those curves. Then I cut out my appliques for my little challenge wall hanging I am doing this week and I easily cut through the pattern, fabric and Misty Fuse and the cut outs were nicer than when I used a pair of scissors.

The Negatives: Well it has this little blade cover that I lost several times until I finally found a little bowl to leave on my cutting table to put it in. The blade is not protected at all once the cover is off, and there is a note on the packaging to use caution when removing the blade cover. That pesky blade could be an issue if you have pets or small children around, but every day common sense (if you have any) can prevent an accident!

Yeehaw!!! Day two is under my belt! See you all tomorrow. And don't forget, you can purchase any of these great new notions at my web store... (see the top of this page for the link).

Monday, July 5, 2010

It's Monday .... again

My Prima Ballerina's... (the two on the left)

It's not only Monday but it is the day of new resolutions. Seems to me that every Monday I get up with this new attitude. "This week I am going to do"... Well, last week was the list. It lasted till Tuesday. Heaven only knows what the week before was because it is so long ago I have forgotten. They (who ever the heck they are) say that if you set goals, set them small. I set goals so small I can't see them to shoot at and I still don't seem to organize myself to achieve them. Some of you are saying I am a little scatterbrained... I can hear you!! But at least one or two of you are thinking, "Poor Gail, I know just what she means."

I finally finished the tote I was working on at Laila's two weeks ago.  it's bigger than the others I have made. Each square was six inches rather than five inches. I used five of each square per row. I think four would have been plenty. I will try that next.

So do you stop setting goals or do you move along, start another week and try again. Well, anyone who knows me knows although I am very scatter brained, I like a challenge. Especially when someone else is being challenged at the exact same time. So here is this weeks resolution...

I resolve to write every day this week in this blog about a new product I have found. (Maybe new to me, maybe new to you.) I will tell you about it, show you a picture of my test results and grade it on a scale of 1 to 10. In return, I challenge you to comment on it, and tell me whether or not, based on my information, you think it would be a useful product for you to own. Now, I am not suggesting that you run out and buy it, but it might be fun to hear form you, if you have already seen it, or if you would like more information or you just think it is cool that you heard it first from me!

Are you game? Let's see what happens...

Day 1: Heat Press Batting Together

Well here is a dynamite new product that is only about 4 months on the market and all I can say is WOW! Jeanne Harwood, who is an accomplished seamstress, educator, quilter, and longarm machine quilter, must have been standing over her machine one day and thought, " This is atrocious! I have miscalculated, YET AGAIN, on the length of this batting. I now have to spend the next 30 minutes, sewing these two pieces of batting together to make this work. I need to design a product that will reduce the time it takes to fix this hideous mistake!" Well maybe she didn't say that, but that's what I would have said if I had been a genius like her. At any rate, off she went and the next thing you know, Heat Press Batting Together was no longer a crazy thought in her mind, but a real notion that has sold 13,000 times in the last 4 months! Again, WOW!

And it's not just for long armers. This is a product that will save you money in the long run for all machine and hand quilters. I have yet to see a batting that comes the exact size of any quilt I have ever quilted. There is always just enough left over to NOT fit any other project you have going. Now sewing together a 12 inch square is not a huge deal, but the same principal does not work when you need to add 12 inches to the width of a 96" long quilt. There are always gaps, I don't care how good you are and how careful you are, there are always gaps. This amazing tape is great for attaching two pieces of batting and once it is in the quilt, there are no holes or areas that are too thin or where the black thread you used shows through... opps. Did I do that?... hmmmm.

Its easy to use, just watch your iron temperature when using batting with polyester... keep your iron a little cooler than normal quilting temperature. Lay two pieces of batting next to each other, press tape over join and fuse. When you run your fingers over it, you cannot feel the tape, or a ridge where the join is at all!!! It stretches with the batting, it is light weight and  it is white, so it hides well.  The tape is 1 1/2" wide and each roll contains 10 yards, enough to do 3 large quilts. I have already started to use it and I love it. 

The negatives... I did read somewhere else that, "once you get the outside wrap off, it works awesome". and I do agree. The product is tightly wrapped in plastic wrap and almost impossible to get into.. A little something, coloured tape, a sharpie mark, something at the beginning would be helpful. But I am sure Genius Jeanne will work that out! And the name... I will never remember all that... I'll just call it that great "Batting Tape". from now on... you'll know what I mean!

This notion may be up for the 2010 Notion of the Year award, and I still have 4 more days to go.  See you tomorrow!

Day 1 of my personal wall hanging challenge. I plan to work on this every day this week. I used Misty Fuse as the fusible and it was amazing to work with.