Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Progress on the Crazy Quilt Blocks

I've been working on the Crazy Quilt blocks.  I finished the first 8 blocks, with the lace added.
stitching down the lace

finished block, with lace

The next blocks were just neutrals, no lace.  I'll be appliqueing things onto these blocks.   Here are the blocks, so far.
setting, so far

I didn't like the top, neutral block, so, I added a different neutral, with texture to the bottom part of that block (no picture).  Here is an idea of what I'll be adding to the neutral blocks.
Victorian ladies

The center Victorian lady will have to be hand embroidered onto the quilt top after the blocks are stitched together, since she overlaps the blocks next to her.  The top Victorian lady has another Victorian lady on the other end of that piece.  These are all vintage pieces that I've found over the years. 

I started on the setting triangle blocks last night.  I'm making 4 over-sized crazy blocks, then I'll cut them in half, to make the setting triangles. 

All the fabrics are 'slippery' and don't want to 'stay in place', especially on the corners.  I think I need to baste the edges before I trim them down to size.  It will be much easier to sew them together that way. 

This is for 2 different 'challenges' that I'm participating in. The first one is due June 4th.  We'll see if it is finished by then, or just a quilt top.  I also have 5 different blocks to make, also due that night, for the quilts that we are making for the boys/girls homes.  My kits for blocks are also due that night, and I haven't even started cutting any of the fabric.  Busy, busy!  "Too much time, and not enough to do!  Stop, reverse that....."  (from Willy Wonka). 

How is YOUR week going????

Friday, May 18, 2018

Sewing and a bit of cleaning

I've been sewing this week, but, it's been slow.  Here is one of my finished blocks (haven't taken pictures of the others, yet).
Crazy Quilt block
Instead of doing all of the embroidery work on a regular crazy quilt block, I'm adding decorative laces instead.  It is MUCH quicker.  It still takes a long time to make each block.  I made this one first, to see if I liked this method or not.  I did, so, the next 7 blocks are almost finished. 

These blocks are foundation pieced, kinda like paper piecing, so, I have to trim, iron, then I can add the next piece.  I have to add the lace before I can add more fabric.  I'm stitching the lace down by machine.
Stitching the lace down
stitching down both sides of the lace
These blocks are for 2 projects in one, a Crazy quilt challenge, and also a 'Book' challenge with my little quilt guild.  Hey, if I can kill two birds with one stone....

I couldn't work on the new sewing machine this week, since I needed a third hand to get the wiring removed, so that I could get the machine removed from the cabinet. Hubby has had meetings every night this week, so, I finally snagged him this evening.  The machine is out of the cabinet.
Singer 15-91
I've learned a lot since I last posted about this machine.  It's sub model is 15-91.  It has to do with how the motor is mounted.  I also found out that it CAN be turned into a hand crank.  Woohoo!  If I remove this piece (where the screwdriver is), then it exposes the motor mount.
place where the wiring was held in place, motor mount is under this piece
I'd  have to change out the solid hand wheel for a spoked hand wheel, but, that is easy to do.  I've done that several times on other machines.  There is a drawback, though.  If I take the motor off the machine, then I also lose the bobbin winder, since it is connected to the motor.
see how the bobbin winder is connected to the motor?
That really isn't a problem for me, since I usually use a sidewinder bobbin winder to wind all my bobbins. 

I'm still thinking of getting this machine rewired, so that it can be electric.  When I clean the machine (and remove the motor), I'll see how hard it would be to switch back and forth, from electric to hand crank.  I might be able to have the best of both worlds.  We'll see.

The machine and cabinet were stored in a barn for quite some time.  Lots of dust, etc.  It didn't help the woodwork any.  The veneer is coming off on the back and one of the sides.
veneer coming off the back of the cabinet
Hubby is going to try to glue this back on.  It will take some time and patience.  We need to find a long syringe, to pump the glue thru. 

The dirt is in every crevice of this cabinet.  This bracket is where the wiring went down into the cabinet.  See how much dirt has collected?
I did a good wipe down of the entire cabinet with Murphey's Wood Soap.  It really helped, but, it still needs lots of cleaning.
before cleaning

after first cleaning

The bobbin and thread holder on the other door is rusty and pitted. 
before cleaning

I soaked it in Evaporust, then dried it and used the rust eraser on half of it.  Can you see which side I worked on?
half rusty, half cleaned

I used the rust eraser on the dirty side, and then put it back in the Evaporust.  With all the pitting on the metal, I'm hoping this helps.  I'll use the rust eraser again, and get this shinier.  It won't ever look really nice, since it is so pitted, but, it will look so much better than it was. 

A member of Treadle On has the hinges I need for the cabinet lid.
missing a hinge
I found out that the front and back hinges are different.  The back hinge has a spring, that controls the support arm on the cabinet.  Without that spring and hinge, the support arm won't stay inside the cabinet.  I want the support to stay in the cabinet when the lid is closed.  Kay had all the parts, and she's already mailed them.  This project is getting started!  It will take time, with all the woodwork that needs to be done, plus cleaning the machine before I can get it rewired.  I even know who can rewire it for me.  I had him work on another machine for me, a few years ago (I don't mess with zig zag gears). 

Have a fun weekend!  I am so far.

Monday, May 14, 2018

New Machine and Rulers

Today was a fun day!  I was offered a machine, back at the end of January, around the same time Mrs. Betty died.  Mrs. Betty was born in 1934, and so was this machine.  I had to get the machine.

I finally got the chance to go pick this machine up.  It had been stored in a barn for a long time, but, had been brought to my friends home, as her parents were trying to empty the barn.

Singer 15 #AD6934960
The cabinet isn't in great shape, but, it's still pretty.  It is 84 years old, and has lived in a barn for some time.  The inside of the cabinet has some drawers that pull out on the left side, and a rack to hold spools of thread on the right side.
nice drawers and thread holder

The lid to the cabinet is not attached.  One of the hinges is missing.  I'm hoping that I can find another Singer hinge to replace the missing hinge. 
lid to the cabinet

top hinge is missing, bottom hinge is still there

The hinge does have a parts number, so, maybe I can find one to match. 

I'm hoping that hubby can help me get the cabinet in better shape.

The machine is dirty, and the wiring is shot.
shows the old wiring
I can't turn this machine into a hand crank.  It doesn't have the proper motor mount to do this.  The motor doesn't come off this machine, like most of the other motors do.
this motor doesn't come off
The metal plate (above) by the end of the machine, makes it hard to take the machine out of the cabinet.  There is still a wire connected, thru the hole in the back, that I can't get off.  I'm not fond of this type of motor, since it makes it so hard to get the machine out of the cabinet.  It will take me some work, disconnecting several things inside the cabinet, to get the machine free.  I might have to just cut the wires.  Not fun. 

While I'm showing pictures, here is the face plate.  It will be prettier when I've cleaned the machine up.
decorative face plate
There is some rust, and pitting on the chrome parts, but, the hand wheel turns nicely, and the needle bar moves.  With the wiring problems (I've never rewired a machine myself before) and the cabinet work, it will be a while before this machine is up and running. 

Well, my friends house is around the corner from a Goodwill store.  I'd not been to this Goodwill before, so, of course I had to check it out.  I did find some quilting rulers there (nothing else sewing related). 
rulers from the thrift store
Flying Geese x 4 'No Math' ruler, Log Cabin ruler, Creative Grids Quick Trim and Circle Ruler, Dear Jane Triangle ruler and Hexagon ruler.  I've never used any of these rulers before.  I'm supposed to be teaching different ways to make Flying Geese at guild, so, maybe this ruler will be helpful. 

Nice start to the week!  I hope that your week is going well. 

If I haven't commented on your blogs lately, sorry.  I'm way behind on blog reading again.  I'll try to get caught up over the next few days. 

Saturday, May 12, 2018

A Little Stitching and Mother's Day

Monday was my little quilt guild's meeting.  My little guild is making 14+ quilts for a boys home and for a girls home.  Each month, at least one person gives out kits to make blocks and we bring the completed blocks back the next month.  These are the blocks I turned in.
2 blocks for a girls quilt

2 sports themed blocks for a boy

Since we are a very small guild, most months different members teach different techniques or projects.  Monday, Janel taught English Paper Piecing.  She gave everyone a kit to make a hexie flower, and instructions on how she does EPP, along with links to several different ways to do EPP.  We didn't finish our hexies at the meeting (not enough time) so, I finished mine later in the week, while watching TV. 
my hexie

I think I'll turn mine into a pin cushion.  I've made hexies before, but, it was fun getting to pick a kit, and make it with the group.  Some of the ladies haven't done this before.

Another lady from this group gave me a bag full of bobbins and attachments earlier this year.  I finally went thru the bag.  I have some high shank feet (no high shank machines), a few low shank feet (those will be used) and several different types of bobbins.  I quickly pulled out the standard class 15 and class 66 bobbins.  I use those all the time with my different Singer machines.  There were more than a dozen bobbins that were strange.  They look like a class 15 bobbin on one side, and a class 66 bobbin on the other side.  I took a picture, with one side up and the other side showing,  (next to each other).  The bobbin on the bottom is also unfamiliar to me.  I've seen them, and have more somewhere, but, I don't know what machine they would be used with.  Do either of these look familiar to you???
top bobbins are the same (flipped to show both sides) bottom bobbin is different

I've been wanting a heavy duty shelf in my basement, to hold some of my machines.  Hubby and I went to Menard's this morning, and picked this one up.
new heavy duty shelf

While hubby assembled the shelving, I started pulling machines out of the garage, and dusting the sawdust off of them (hubby likes to play with wood, like I like to play with old machines).  I've had quite a few machines sitting in the garage for a long time.  Several of them don't work, or have parts missing, etc. 

I was given several 'junkers' at the NETX TOGA 2 years ago.  A lady from my large quilt guild wanted to make a tractor with a junker machine, in exchange for her working treadle head.  The nice people at the TOGA provided me with 4 junker machines. 

I've put all the machines from the garage, and a couple more machines, on the shelf already.  I still have lots of room left, so, some of the machines that are stacked upstairs will come down, and live on the shelf. 
my new sewing machine shelf

See, two and a half shelves are still empty.  No, I don't plan on going out and buying more machines just to fill up the shelves.  Some of my machines upstairs are hard to get to, so, they will fill the extra places.  If I can't get to them, then I can't clean them or sew on them. 

I've been trying to go thru my machines, to make a record of each machine.  I've been recording the serial numbers, models, where I got them, etc.  It takes a long time to do this. I even have info for several machines that I don't have anymore. While documenting machines, I've discovered quite a few that I'd forgotten that I have.  It's been fun 'finding' new machines that I didn't remember having. I still have quite a few machines to document. 

I'm loving my Mother's Day present.  Hopefully I'll get to actually sew some on Mother's Day.  Playing with machines is a good alternative. 

Happy Mother's Day! 

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Spring Basic Block Exchange

Treadle On, my treadle and hand crank online group, has several different block exchanges each year.  I participate in quite a few of them.  One of these days I'll make some quilt tops with all the blocks I've collected over the years.

I volunteered to be the hostess for 2 different exchanges this year.  Being hostess isn't hard.  Everyone sends their blocks to me, along with a postage paid return envelope.  I collect all the blocks, sort them, put them in the correct envelopes, then mail them back.  Fun!  Oh yea, some people even send hostess gifts with their blocks.  Yipee! 

This exchange is the Spring Basic.  We take turns rotating 3 different blocks for the Spring and Fall Basic exchanges (4 patch, Rail Fence, and Half Square Triangle).  With basic, simple blocks, it makes it where anyone can participate if they want, even if they don't have much sewing experience.  The only rules are that the fabrics have to be pre-washed, and the machines used must be either a treadle or a hand crank (people powered machines, not electric).  It's a great chance to use some of the lovely vintage machines that we have collected. 

This exchange was 4 patch blocks.  People could make as many as 4 sets of 8 blocks.  Each set uses different fabrics, and some people use different machines for each set. 

Here are the blocks that were sent in.  We had 7 different people participate in this exchange. 
Charlotte's 4 sets of blocks

Brenda's 4 sets of blocks

Anne's 4 sets of blocks

April's 4 sets of blocks

Jay's 4 sets of blocks

my 4 sets of blocks

Katrene's set of blocks

I stayed late after church, and used the church's tables to do the sorting.  Much easier than trying to sort in my kitchen or dining room.  This is what it looked like when I'd sorted the blocks.
all the blocks sorted into stacks

I'll mail all the packages back to everyone on Monday.  It's always fun to get a squishy full of blocks in your mailbox. 

I mentioned that some people put in something special for the hostess.  Here is what I got.
extra fabrics, extra blocks and a Micron pen

All of these fabrics will be put to good use.  The extra blocks will be added to mine, and put into a quilt soon.  The pen will be used to sign future exchange blocks.

I've already received several sets of blocks for the next exchange.  It is the Chocolate 9 Patch that I've blogged about before.  Not long, since those blocks are supposed to be in the mail by Sat, May 12th. 

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Painting and Stitching

Last post I showed the hole in our wall in our kitchen.  This was where our old tube TV sat on the shelf in the hall closet. 
hole where the old tube TV was

A friend of ours came and patched the drywall for us.  It took several days (2 coats of drywall patching material) since he could only come when he had time.  Hey, I can wait for a free drywall patch. 

The drywall was finally done, and dry on Tuesday.  Wednesday I started prepping to paint.  Lots of tape over all the places I didn't want painted.  We were painting more than just the one wall.  We had to paint the closet, which extends into the ceiling, and the hall wall.  With an open floor plan, there just isn't a good place to stop painting. 

On Thursday, I painted all those areas.  Have I mentioned that I really don't like painting?  Especially the prep work.  Up and down the ladder, and up and down off the floor for taping, painting, touch up on the corners, etc, and I'm still sore.  At least it is done now.
wall in kitchen, where the TV used to be

corner of kitchen wall, down the hallway to the end of the stairs

The opening down the hallway leads to the closet, powder room and basement stairs. 
hall closet, where TV used to sit on the shelf

I had to wait on hubby to re-install the shelf in the closet before I could put anything back in there.  Now I'm just waiting on hubby to put the door back on (hubby is off teaching Wilderness First Aid this weekend, so, the door will have to wait until he gets back home).  Now to get the new TV mounted on the wall, and have hubby build me a bookcase for my recipe books.  The old shelf is way too small to hold all the recipe books. 

With all the painting, I haven't had much time to stitch.  I did go to Sewing, Etc. in Yorkville on Tuesday to sew.  Marilyn and I had fun stitching with Kelly, the owner. 

Hubby asked me to make him a tool roll for his chisels.  I started it yesterday, and finished it today.  I haven't had much stitching time on my hand crank lately, so, all of this was done on it, quilting, piecing and binding.  I love stitching on my hand cranks.  Very restful.

4 pockets for 4 chisels, flap folds over to protect and hold them in

chisel roll up

I hope he likes it.  I used an upholstery fabric scrap with animals on it.  I picked the fabric up on the freebie table at guild.  The binding was left over from 2 different projects. 

Now to go stitch some more.  Hope you are having a great weekend, too!

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Stitching and Life

I've been stitching, and I even have a finish.  Woohoo! 

I made a baby quilt for a couple at church. 
front of quilt

orange Minkee on the back
This was a quick quilt to make.  I did wavy line quilting on it.  I won the Henry Glass fabrics in March 2017, but didn't know what I wanted to do with them.  I had a picture of a quilt, with this basic design, and drew it up (I think someone said that it was a free pattern from Moda?).  I used a little more than half of the jelly roll.  I still have lots of fabrics left, from this group that I won.  The Minkee I picked up at a thrift store last month, while traveling to Texas. 

I also got all the circle blocks from last weeks post, stitched together. 
almost a top...

This needs to be a bit bigger, to fit a twin size bed (with enough drop on the sides).  I have a couple more of these blocks to put in the corners, and I bought some brown flannel at Joann's last week, for the borders (I love it when the fabric is 50% off).  Not sure when I'll get the borders cut, since my sewing room is a total mess, and I can't get to all of the cutting table at the moment. 

I've done some stitching on my Be Attitudes quilt blocks, but, I don't have a picture.  I finished the 6th block on the way to Alaska, in Feb, and started the 7th block on the way back home, in March.  I've done more stitching on the 7th block this past week.  I'm slow at blanket stitching.  I'm not rushing these.  I usually work on them once or twice a month. 

I'll be doing other things, besides stitching in the near future.  When we bought our house, over 14 years ago, it came with a TV in the kitchen.  The TV sat on the shelf of the closet, and the previous owner had cut out the drywall and the studs in the wall, and inserted the TV in the hole.  He'd put a 'frame' around the rough drywall, to make it look better. 

Well, the TV was 20 years old, and, if you tried to adjust the volume, it would change the channel half the time, instead.  Our oldest son bought us a flat screen TV for Christmas, to replace this one, but, since we have to repair the wall, we hadn't done anything until this weekend.  Hubby pulled the TV out, and took down the framing.  Here is what the wall in my kitchen looked like when the TV was taken out.
hole into the closet

You can see thru the closet, to the basement door. 

Hubby had to repair the studs before we can do anything else.  We can't mount the new flat screen TV without the studs in place.  Now the hole looks like a prison cell.
with studs repaired

A friend, who knows how to replace drywall is coming over Wednesday to help us fix our hole.  I'll have to paint before we can mount the new TV.  I don't really like painting, but, it has to be done.  I hope I can find a paint that matches.  I don't have the time or energy to paint the whole kitchen.  Ours is a 'walk thru' kitchen, so, I'd have to paint half of the downstairs.  Sometimes an 'open' floor plan is a pain.