Monday, March 20, 2017

On the Needles and On the Sewing Table

I have blogged in the past about the Amazing Goodwill stores in my area.  You never know what you're going to find there.

I was on the hunt for an ironing board for our church guild, and I literally stumbled over this little sewing machine... it's a Brother 14 stitch basic machine with a weight of about 12-14 pounds, the perfect machine for carrying around to retreats and guild meetings.

As you can see, it's missing a few things... like a cord and foot assembly, and the front plastic insert.  It's also missing a bobbin case, but look at the price!!

A bobbin case is around $5 and I paid $19.99 for a chord and foot.  I have presser feet from an embroidery machine I never use as a sewing machine, and once I pick up a carrying case, we're good to go!

On the needles:

Remember the Agnes sweater?  The last picture I took was sans sleeves.  Well, after knitting a bunch more in the evenings and one weekend day, ta da!  It's DONE!  Except for the blocking and the weaving in of the ends, that is.  And I finished it on the last day of winter.

This may be the first adult sized sweater I
actually finished in the same year in which
it was started...

It's a nice dark green called Boreal.
My camera is taking crappy pics.

This green lace patterned sweater has now made it to the current work bag.  I think I should be able to finish two sleeves before summer, right?  Fingers crossed!

The calendar may say it's spring, but this is what my patio looked like a week ago:

And this is what is on my sewing table, a sports car medallion for the center of a quilt.  I have to make the road go all the way around, and add a band of grass.  Then some black and white for a checkered flag goes around the border.

My apologies for the long post... that's what happens when I don't get to the computer more than once a week.

Sew on!

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Nancy's Notions Sewing Weekend 2017

As of today, Sewing Weekend is exactly 8 weeks and one day away!

My favorites!!  The Midwest Ya-Ya Sisters will be there Thursday evening.  New patterns!  New ideas!  New jokes?  Maybe, maybe not... but they're always fun to watch.

You can ride the yellow buses.  I wonder if Sparky will be back as bus monitor.
Hey, I'm just sayin'... 
Sew on!

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

My Yarn Addiction...

In February I completely lost my mind and signed up for a Knit Along (KAL) at a local yarn store.  I got off to a good start at the cast on party, and continued for several days.  The weekend after the party I had made good enough progress that I was at the point of separating the body from the sleeves:
The KAL Agnes sweater a week after
the knit along started.  I love the color.

Putting the sleeve
stitches on waste yarn.

I've now gotten one sleeve completely done.  Yes, I did knit the entire body of the sweater, down to the bottom ribbing!!  I apologize for not having a more recent photo.  The light is not good at 10 p.m. in my living room.  That's the time I usually fall asleep with the knitting in my lap.

At least I'm beyond the point where I faltered on the last sweater I started for myself.  That one has NO sleeves even started.

I seem to be able to finish a baby sweater, or a kids sweater just fine.  I think my problem has to do with my yarn addiction.  I can't help thinking about the NEXT project any more than I can help thinking about the next quilt when I'm kitting or sewing. :-(

How can you not when things like this are just waiting for you to get your hands on them??

I got a new delivery last week, some luscious pale pink bulky yarn, 100% wool, and I'm looking forward to getting the green sweater done so I can begin a pink one.

Or maybe it will be a vest.  <sigh>  I'm still thinking.

Knit on...

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Spring, Or Not

February in Wisconsin is typically cold, and despite only have 28 days three out of four years, can seem very long.  The holidays are over, it's cold, there is usually snow on the ground, and have I mentioned that it's cold? 

Here's what it says at the web site


The month of February is characterized by rising daily high temperatures, with daily highs increasing from 29°F to 37°F over the course of the month, exceeding 49°F or dropping below 15°F only one day in ten.

Daily High and Low Temperature in February

The daily average low (blue) and high (red) temperature with percentile bands (inner band from 25th to 75th percentile, outer band from 10th to 90th percentile).
The shortest day is Feb 1 with only 9:56 hours of daylight, but by the end of the month we're having 11:12 hours of daylight.  Of course some of that daylight is cloudy, overcast, and snowy.
People in other parts of the country are talking spring.  Buds are coming up in the state of Washington, where my youngest brother lives.  <sigh>  My boss in Charlotte NC told us last Friday that it was 80 degrees and sunny.  <I hate him!> <not really>
So what's up with this year??  The actual temperature has been in the forties and ffties, and one day it was 71!  Gasp!!
Then this happens:
Sat 2/25
Actual Temp
28° /20°
Hist. Avg.
and yesterday there was a snowstorm that started at 10:00 a.m. and went through dinnertime. 
"Take that," says Mother Nature!  "See what happens to you when you forget where you're living???  Did you think this was, oh, say, Tennessee or Georgia? Ha ha!  I'll show you!!"
Mar 2
                  High 36° / Low 16°F                    
Mainly cloudy, a snow shower
One local weather forecaster quipped that since it had been warm so recently, it was going to feel just that much colder to be at the normal temperature.
Spring or not spring, that is the question.  Honestly, no matter what the groundhog says, in Wisconsin there is always six more weeks of winter!
Sew on...

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

List of Things To DO!

My To-Do list keeps getting longer, and I don't seem to have as much sewing time as I wish I had.

I know, preaching to the choir, right?

I'm reading blogs where people are working on the Splendid Sampler or some other stitch-along and I see new fabrics and fun patterns and I'm so envious...

My list of things to do, in no particular order:

  • Finish the car quilt for our re-retiring pastor... I have the center medallion done but I need to do some embroidery and fill-in blocks.  Others are doing the border.
  • Start (and eventually finish) a donation top for the church guild.  It's mostly cut out.
  • Clean up my sewing room - again.  haha!
  • Help Miss A finish up her quilt back to replace Blankie.  She is piecing both sides and the top is done.
  • Start an exercise program.  Ugh.
  • Put borders on two donation quilts.
  • Bind a quilt that's currently out for quilting (Thanks, Suzi!)
  • Finish my knit-along Agnes sweater (five inches or so, and sleeves)

  • Finish my green Lady's Sweater from last year (just sleeves now...)
  • Knit the second sock for Miss E.
  • Finish wall hanging for church nursery.
  • Complete my tax returns.  Double ugh.
  • Organize my desk.
  • Take my Viking machine in for service.
  • Embroider baptismal napkins.
  • Embroider crosses on some altar napkin.

I'd better stop there, I'm making myself depressed...

Last week I stopped at the Goodwill and scored several great bargains.  I picked up an ironing board, in super shape with a clean cover and pad on it too, for $9.99.  We can use it with our new Big Board.

Then I also spied a Brother sewing machine for $9.99.  It doesn't have a cord or a foot pedal, but I have a Brother embroidery machine that converts to a sewing machine that has the same cords.  I never use the foot pedal because I never switch over to the sewing machine, since I have other options, so I'll find that and us it on the new machine.  I may have to buy a power cord but that's all.  The feet and accessories are all interchangeable so score on that one!

Last thing was a wooden folding TV table for $3.  I've seen a small ironing station made with a wooden folding table that this will work for.  My cousins and my aunt have made them, and I'm planning on making one too.  Here's a picture from Pinterest.

I hope your day is going well...  It's starting to feel like spring, which I know is wrong since it's still Wisconsin and it's only February.  I may try to take a walk in the neighborhood this evening.

Sew on...

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Resource Center Scores Again!

This week, like the last several, is flying past me in a blur!  Tuesday after work I stopped at a funeral visitation.  Then I rushed off to my local quilt guild meeting where I am the raffle chairperson.

The main program was our past president was showing her embellished quilts and telling stories about how they came about.  She does love her bling!  She talked about collecting things with an eye toward adding them to her quilts, and what inspires her to add things to her projects.

Last night Miss A came over with a request for a tan skirt for Friday morning for school.  Yeah, not exactly the four dozen cupcakes for my class tomorrow request, but close!

Tan is not a color I ever buy a lot of for garment fabric.  :-(  But we dug around and came up with a few things that might work... for a Paleo Indian costume.

Let me esplain --  as Ricky Ricardo would say! 

Their school does these fair-like presentations where the students prepare a display and often dress up to illustrate what they've learned about a subject.  Last year Miss A did one on Australia, animals you find there, what the cities are named, the desert, etc.  I had been there so she had some Australian money and a stuffed kangaroo.

Now she's doing a unit on Paleo Indians in Wisconsin.  Paleo is a word meaning ancient, according to Miss A.  It's archeologically 10,000 to 1,500 years ago according to Wikipedia.  So somewhere between the Garden of Eden and recorded history I guess!

Paleo Indians photo from the internet.

Hunting the mammoth...

We dug around until I stumbled across a box of clothing I had saved as potential material for doll clothes.  There was a sort of tan, faux suede skirt from when I used to dress up to go to the office, back when women work skirts and dresses regularly.  And heels.  But I digress.

The skirt had an elastic waist, so with the aid of a large safety pin we made it fit her.  In a flash of brilliance I offered to cut off the hem and make some fringe at the bottom.  Score!! 

Her mom had previously donated a couple of tan tee shirts, so we picked the one that matched best, and we may fringe that one tonight if we are so moved.

She also said she needed a piece of gray fabric for a cave roof.  She and her project partner made a cave out of a large cardboard box.  But they ran out of materials before they finished the roof, so we found a piece of dark gray fleece that will work.  We stuffed everything in a large plastic bag for transport to school.

You just never know when that resource center is going to come in handy!

I wish I could have scheduled time off tomorrow afternoon to go see the presentations!  I'll have to rely on Mom's cell phone video viewing later... I'm sure it will be both amusing and amazing.

Sew on...

Friday, February 10, 2017

Where Did The Week GO?

I can't believe I haven't posted this week.  Well, no, actually I can. Life has been pretty crazy lately.

My youngest Grand stayed overnight with me twice this week.  DD has had a busy schedule.  It isn't any trouble, Miss A is very self-directed, but I enjoy the time spent in math homework or reading with the kid, or just chatting!  I'd rather be doing that than laundry or even sewing.  (Gasp!)

Last week I joined a Knit-Along at a local yarn shop, and I've been busy knitting a lovely green sweater while watching pre-recorded programs on TV in the evening.  My stock of Jeopardy recordings is huge, I'm watching the January shows right now.

This is where I separated for the sleeves and body.  I've
knitted another five inches past that now.
At work I was part of a Project Manager training class from Monday through Thursday... I absorbed a lot of technical knowledge and hopefully that will be of benefit to my work life in the future.

We're mid-stream with our Call Process for a new Pastor at our church.  We had good news, our top choice is coming this weekend for a visit with the congregation, bringing in his wife and youngest child.  That involves a dinner on Saturday evening.  I'm on the clean up crew.  :-)

My friend Suzi the Quilter had a birthday this week.  I hope to have a surprise for her this weekend and wish her many happy returns of the day.

Yesterday I had THREE conference calls or meetings nearly back to back.  I barely had time to go to the rest room between meetings...  those days are so difficult that when I get home after work I just veg out after supper.


At this point I'm saying I am so thankful that my DH does so much at home!  His life contributions give me the ability to do what I do.  As my oldest Grand would say, I Literally Cannot imagine what I would do if he wasn't doing what he does!

I am glad to have a weekend to look forward to... there is no family sewing tonight because my dear Aunt is in Florida with some friends, enjoying the sun and the surf.  Tomorrow I'll enjoy a pot luck supper as only the Lutherans can do them, and on Sunday afternoon I will take a nice long nap on the couch, maybe with my knitting in my lap or maybe with a cat there instead.

Have a good one yourself!

Sew on...