Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Another New Chapter.

Finally back to blogging!

Let me introduce 'Pfeebe' the Pfaff.  I am so excited - I researched sewing machines and found this at Jessamine Quilt Store in Lexington SC.  I needed a machine that I could use to piece my quilt designs and then also do the stitch in the ditch and then use decorative stitches to do the quilting.   And it does it all.....

Pfeebe has a built in 'walking foot' that is so easy to engage and really helps to do all the things I want to do on my machine.

WATCH this space for some really exciting techniques and patterns.  I am working on English Paper Piecing Hexagons by machine as well as quilting using decorative stitching - but I still do longarm quilting as well.

And that means I am working on a number of show quilts that will be entered into some high level quilt shows.  I have been so busy with custom quilting for customers that I have neglected my own quilting.  I went to the Gammill 'Quilting with Confidence' two day class and came away with confidence!!

There will be many more tales of adventures with Pfeebe so watch this space and enjoy the journey!

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Learned an Important Lesson.

Happily at home for a few weeks and busy with lots of projects.  I even have been able to work on quilting my own quilts for the booth and for, hopefully, competition.

Yesterday I continued work on the super secret quilt and I was trying to work out how to get perfect points.  I had been pinning well but it still seemed that the points would shift and I was having to unpick and adjust all the time.

So I decided to take the extra time to baste the seams.  I used a pin to line up the points exactly then I basted through that pin hole.  Then when I sewed the seam I sewed a thread distance from the basting thread.  Yeah - perfect points.  I have pictures but I have to work out how to get them on here!

The lesson learned from all of this is slow down, take your time, enjoy the process and get those points absolutely perfect.

Ok - off to learn some more lessons today and discover something new.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Threads and Traditions

Threads and Traditions - the long arm side of my life - is alive and well but a little fractured. 

In the glory days I would have anywhere from 40-50 quilts in line waiting to be to be put on the machines.  I could work 10 - 12 hours a day and never catch up.  Then the slow down, for which I am quite grateful, when I was out on the road and not able to keep an eye on things.  I still have my loyal customers and thankfully just enough quilts so that I can keep up with everything even when I am gone so much.  The move to Rock Hill also removed me from the Lexington area, so my plan for the summer is to work on business in Rock Hill and Charlotte. 

One of my customers, with a landscape that I quilted, won Best of Show in Aiken - yeah! 

Threads and Traditions has always been my core way to earn a living, so the slow down has been somewhat dramatic.  But I know that I do the very best work and take the greatest of care with my customers' quilts and always will.  That being said, at least now I will have more time to work on show quilts. 

And I have some stunning show quilts on the go.  I have one with me here in Salt Lake City which will get worked on every day!  I have one in the planning stage with half of one very big block made, then I have another that will be a deep secret until I can get it done - it is very complicated and intricate and very colorful.  My plan is to get a group of about 5 show quilts doing the rounds out there! 

My plan going forward is to find more business in Rock Hill and Charlotte, keep giving my best services to my regular customers and make those show quilts!  Thank you to all my customers in Lexington who have supported me over the years - I am still here and still quilting.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Salt Lake City, Utah

I am a long way from home with almost two weeks between the last show here and Quilt Market to work on projects and plans for the future.  I am excited!!

Since my last post life got a little bit hectic.  There were changes and setbacks at the kennel, but I think it is now back on track.

I have been out on the road, vending at quilt shows, and I have been all over the country.  Just me and my little trailer.  I have teamed up with Harm De Jonge from Becolourful Quilting Supplies to present a really beautiful triple booth between the two of us. 

J.P. is the backbone of the crystal business and keeps me as well stocked up as finances will allow and keeps things going back at the ranch.

And I got married last June.  The most important thing that has happened really!! 

My plan is to get this blog back up and running on a regular basis - there is a lot to tell.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Even more 'Oh Bother'

So my aunt died surrounded by her family and the end of an era has arrived.

I went to Florida to attend her memorial service and her son (my cousin) gave a warm and wonderful account of his memories of his mother, good times mostly and a few more difficult times.  I was so glad that he was able to remember her with love and affection.  She was a remarkable woman who led an amazing life and filled every moment with adventure and travel - and love.

Which all means that my intentions for the blog have gone haywire in the last few weeks.  I have been trying hard to catch up with the quilting side of things since I got back from the trip.  I am getting there but the custom quilting has suffered a little.  I am hoping to load the most pressing custom by Wednesday and get it started.

And then I head out to the Lancaster show on Monday next week.  Since I am now an official retailer of 'Swarovski" crystals, I need to sort out packaging and display before I leave.  I am also working on the NFL quilt kits - I was doing so well tonight but math finally drove me into the house - why, oh why, do I insist on designing on point quilts with set in triangles that need so many calculations?  Just because........

I also got engaged!  To be married!  Oh boy...

At fifty six years old, after being a widow for almost five years, it is a special thing to find someone that you want to spend the rest of your life with, loving and living.  We have been dating for just over two years and it will take us a while to work out how to combine two households.  The wedding is planned for June next year.  It means so much to me and will change my life in so many ways.  But in the meantime, I just have to catch up with all the quilting that needs to be done.

Please, therefore, forgive me if the blog is delayed a little as I deal with Lancaster and the return trip.  I am looking forward to getting home and telling you all about my trip and how things go - here's hoping that the weather is kind to me.

The mystery quilt will finally arrive - really - but it looks like being a Spring/Summer project.

The plan for two quilts in each AQS show hit a small roadblock when only one quilt was accepted into Paducah - but hey! it's still a quilt in Paducah, and it is the quilt that got a third place ribbon in Charleston.  Yeah!!!  It's called 'Barion Cut Sapphires' and has thousands of crystals that are difficult to see in the photo.

Life has been a roller coaster and is so going to be very exciting going forward.  Which is usually how life is.....

Monday, February 10, 2014

Oh bother!......

I knew I was meant to post the Mystery Quilt on Friday but family life and other stuff got in the way.  I truly meant to do it and came in the house, sat in front of the computer and Skyped a friend and got distracted.  Then when I realized that I had done that and needed to sort it out, life kind of got in the way.  So I know I need to get to it and I will, but bear with me please....

My lovely aunt, who has been a mother to me for a very long time, has been put in Hospice today.  My hope for her now is that it does not last long - when the time comes to go, go quickly and without pain and confusion - my hopeful and final wish.  It will be a difficult time.

So, please forgive me if the blog suffers a little - I will try to get to the Mystery Quilt next week because I am still very excited about it - it will be fun!!

And life should be fun, exciting and about friends, family and living life.  Think on it, have a plan, execute that plan and live life to the full.  Hard to do but work at it.....

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Schedule has been written.....

now whether I can keep to it is the burning question. 

I have always preferred to work to a planned schedule and unfortunately that had gone by the board the last few months.  There was just too much to do and too much pressure.  Anyway, I have been working on straightening it all out and I think I have settled on a plan.

Now I have set times for studio work, pattern designing and classes, show quilting, website maintenance, kennel procedures and supervision, running, finishing the house renovations and (yeah!) blogging.  And I have built in some down time as well to watch 'Downton Abbey' and catch up on some reading.

I have also decided to get the mystery quilt started, even if I am the only one making it!  I seem to remember that it was called 'The Road to Morocco Via Wales'.  Thinking about it, it seems a very long title, so I am just going to call it 'The Moroccan Trip' and I will design a new one to be 'The Trip to Wales' later.

Sadly, my little troop is diminished.  J.P. and J.P (my Joan) had to go as there was not enough work for all of us - I cannot remember there ever being a lead up to Christmas that was so quiet in the quilting world.  I really hope that things pick up soon and that they can come back - I miss them so much. 

The plan now for this coming 2014 is to vend at five AQS shows and to get two quilts juried into all seven shows.  So far so good - I have been accepted to vend at all five shows and I have two quilts in AQS Phoenix, two in AQS Lancaster and I am waiting to hear from AQS Paducah.  I also have two entered into the Charleston Show.  This year the idea is just to get out there at these national shows - now next year I want to place!!

And there is more, but enough for today.  The first installment of 'The Moroccan Trip' will be this coming Friday - I am excited.