Sunday, September 23, 2012

Morris Garden Quilted and Scallope Border Bound

I have completed the initial quilting of the Morris Garden and decided to use a scalloped border that mirrors the curved lined in the outer border fabric.I don't think that a scalloped border fits all quilts but it looks appropriate on this one.

I plan to do more background quilting to make the applique pop up better.  For now it can go in the front entry over Steve's beautiful side table.

That darn Nathan

A couple of weeks ago at Glad Creations, Nathan showed his progress on DaVinci, a Jinny Beyer pattern with an optical illusion sort of feel.  I hadn't thought about it in years, but I had started the same quilt in 2004 when I went to a Jinny Beyer conference.  Maybe I could find it and pull the pieces together to take on the trip.

To my surprise I went right to the quilt in all of it's pieces in a bag, in a drawer.  All of the pieces were present, all of the cutting was complete (although in 2004 I wasn't quite so particular about my cutting) and some of the piecing was well under way.  I pressed all the pieces and organized the whole thing to go along on the trip.

Well, I have to say that my expectations of cutting and piecing have certainly changed in the last 8 years.  It took me longer to piece the blocks than what I anticipated, but before I had to box up my little quilting station at the Woodworking school I had my version of DeVinci fully assembled.

I am not sure how I will be quilting this one but I am thinking I might have Page Johnson give me some suggestions.

What I did while on the road

While Steve was in his bowl turning class, I setup a sewing station a quietly quilted in the corner for 5 days.  I had a space in the back of a large equipment room so I got to visit with some folks but mostly just do my I got a lot done.  You can see that I set up my cutting board on one of the big planers and put my sewing machine next to a huge drill press.  The barrel of wood shavings worked well to hold my pressing mat.  It was a very workable area in an otherwise large room of big equipment.

I finally got around to sewing the Glad Creations Scrap Tames' Mystery quilt for 2011-2012 that I had cut back in May or June.  I think it came out nicely considering that I only bought 1 fabric that was the focus and all others came from my stash. Now I just need to get it backed and quilted

What we did for summer vacation

On Labor Day we took the camper and headed out for the Upper Peninsula and western Michigan. This was our first long trip with the camper and new truck.  Oh my, what a difference the right sized truck makes.  We were very lucky on the weather and drive times.  We still need to work on how much road time to plan for in a day since we ended up with a number of late arrivals and setups but pretty much kept the road time to about 4 hours a day.

The Sleeping Bear Dunes on Lake Michigan was a bit of a surprise.  Somehow I thought that much sand belongs on the sea coast but there it was deep deep sand dunes.

The visit to Shipshewana in Indiana was interesting.  For this little town to be so prosperous in such a low tech community compared to other Indiana small towns was quite a commentary.  We were surprised by the number of Amish buggies tied up outside the Walmart in Goshen.  If you go to the area be sure to visit the Amish-Mennonite museum and stay for the 1 hour tour through the history of the Amish in the area.  It was really very well done.

The second week of the vacation Steve was in a bowl turning class at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking.  He really enjoyed his class and made a number of bowls and platters during the week.  They made a huge pile of wood shavings that filled several barrels each day. They also made some really nice little bowls.  I am thinking Christmas gifts.

 These are bowls that the instructor made.  She is really talented and likes to add the engraving details that set her work apart.  Steve is working on his technique and getting "the touch" of working the lathe.

I have never been sure how the days of the calendar flips so quickly by.  I keep thinking that I will add to the blog and then I realize another week has passed me by.  I can promise to be more timely in the future but I have learned that tigers don't change their stripes so don't plan your schedule around a weekly entry by me....

At any rate I have been busy since my last posting.  Migration by Night is complete with an added border of flying geese to make it a better fit for a queen size bed.  I have taken it to The Quilting Page to have it quilted on the long-arm. I will post a photo when I get it back.

I had taken my big feathered star to Page for show level quilting and got talked into giving her some time putting zippers on quilts, trimming quilts and the like in exchange for her time to quilt this large quilt.  One thing has led to another and now I am helping with getting quilts loaded on the machines and learning how to setup the computer patterns for the machines.

Page can see in her mind's eye what will enhance a quilt top and works with the customers to select a complementing design.  It is fascinating to watch her take a computerize design and reconfigure it so that it is the right scale for the quilt, or edit the design to better nest together and reduce the ridges that often happen when the designs do not fit together quite right.  I have been amazed at how much hands on work there is with the computer guided quilting.  The notion of set-it-up and let it run seriously under estimates the time needed to get even a lap size quilt done.

As a spin off to my many questions about the computer side of the machine (I am a geek after all) have led to my working with Page to digitize the designs she has doodled on a gazillion pieces of paper.  I have been learning to use the Art and Stitch program to convert from doodles to stitching lines for the Statler Stitcher and other computer long-arm programs.  It is fairly simple but very putsy work to get the lines to flow well in the program and then stitch smoothly on the machine.  It is going to take time to get this process down to where I don't have to think about each step.

This is a Page turner that Page designed and we have been editing to see how it can be applied to a multitude of different uses from sashing to all over design where the curved curls actually intertwine.  It is all a learning process.