Monday, January 30, 2012

airing out my ticker tape...

still needs binding and the 'line' to be stitched down...
clcik on image for a larger view
I have been playing with ticker tape blocks... little bean's teacher is about to have a baby, and I want to do a class project with the children - each child will create a ticker tape block from the mountain of scraps I bring along. They will dab some glue stick and glue em on. I had my boys practice for me so I knew what I was getting into. Glad we practiced.

After making this little sample, I'm still not sure whether to go the route like the sample above (except 21 little ticker blocks, and several lines ) or if I should go with the safe, predictable, fastened route of a checkerboard style quilt. Checkerboard would be more durable and washable, right?

I had a lot of fun machine quilting this yesterday. It was fun, because I wasn't pressured to be perfect. So, I quilted a design I used to doodle in my journal pages. (I used to doodle while chatting on the phone for hours to my peeps in my young and dangerous days.)

Aurifil thread still is my top favourite - I used 3 other brands on this sample, and my machine just loved the Aurifil still the best. Juki just purrs. Or is it the new attitude with her decals?


I tried to get the widget to post here - and it did, but it wouldn't put a permanent generated number on there... oh well. You've got to just trust me is all. :-) One day, I will spend my hours figuring out html code. blech.

Winner is #17 Kit Lang - I've fired off an email to you - please send me your mailing address!

Thanks for playing along everyone!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Machine Makeover Madness - Giveaway!!

Pimp my stitch...
Ink my machine..
Tattoo my Juki...
I may or may not have considered taking my pimped up Juki outdoors for a photo shoot for better lighting. She is just gorgeous.It was too windy, however and my neighbours are already perplexed by my quilt hanging outdoors in odd places. So, sorry for the photos not having professional quality lighting.....

When I saw these decals at Quiltastick I knew I had to get them. I have always thought machines were a little bland looking. I mean, this is coming from ME, the bland neutral decor person. If you go to the website you can see that I had a huge variety of styles and colours to choose from. That was the most difficult for me. There are 24 custom colours available too, check it out!

The decals are very strong, stronger than a normal sticker - they are removable if you change your mind later - and there is an instructions page for that (you need a little goo gone or adhesive remover if there is residue left over) You can use a minimal amount of decals on your machine - or jazz it up with lots, like I did....
The decals are on a 12 x 12" sheet and have assorted designs on them - they are easy to remove from the sheet and easy to reapply if you make a mistake. You can cut around objects or cut the stickers to fit the space you are covering. I did that in several spaces such as where my needle up/down button is. Very easy!
I used one set on my machine. I could have used more, but I thought it may turn into one of those tattoo jobs gone wrong.... you've seen them. You know. Kind of like a car with a bumper sticker problem...

I may or may not have thought about dressing up my washer and dryer with these decals.

Isn't it fun!!??
If you go to the Quiltastick website, there is a gallery where you can see some stickers used on those industrial looking long arms:
Shipping was free and quick (even to Canada), and customer service/communication was excellent!


I contacted Quiltastick if they would send me an additional sheet for a giveaway, and they kindly did.

I am giving away a 12 x 12 sticker sheet in the same pattern I have used - in orange!
Leave a comment below if you would like to win. For an additional entry - just blog about this giveaway, and leave a comment that you did.

What do you think? Is it a makeup job gone wrong? Fun and Funky? Drag queen machine?

I'll leave this giveaway open until Sunday January 29, 7pm MST and draw a name then!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Thanks....And an upcoming giveaway!

Thank you everyone for your kind thoughts about Mandy. It was a really difficult time, but we have gotten over the deep hurt and emptiness that initially set in. Life moves forward...she won't be forgotten, but we are moving on. :-)

Also, thanks for the feedback on my quilt blocks. I have pieced the top together in a random pattern, and am getting it ready for quilting....

I recently purchased something uber cool for my drab looking machine....that's one thing I think could be improved on- the looks of our machines. I mean, we pay a ton of cash for our dream machine. Shouldn't we be able to customize it somewhat? Especially those industrial looking long arms? I found something to inspire me and the look of my machine...make it more cool and funky looking. And guess what? I'll show you in my next post what it looks like! AAAANNNDDD there will be a giveaway too!

Stay tuned.....have a fantastic day!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Which one do your eyes prefer?

When I thought up these simple blocks, I was playing with positive and negative space.

Here are two arrangements, with just some of the block colours showing-

Randomly placed:
Arranged with its colour mate:
Of course, I still need to play with arrangement of colour, but which do you prefer - the positive and negative spaces arranged randomly, or matching side by side with its colour mate? I think I know what I would do, but curious what you think?

Monday evening was the hardest ever. I put on my brave face and went in with Mandy. It was quiet, calm and quick, and I held her and kissed her as she passed. I don't think I've ever felt my heart really ache until that night. Mandy was my amazing dog - she was a protector, a friend, playmate, a teddy bear, and an incredibly smart smart dog. This house is so quiet and empty without her. Rest in peace, my sweet girlie girl....

Friday, January 13, 2012

Colour Therapy

I pulled a bunch of my favourite brights out of my stash and started sewing. I have been tinkering with positive/negative spaces as well as reading a lot about MCEscher and tesselations. My love of graphic simple lines always shines through. The quilt done should be done fairly quickly.

My dog is not doing well, and we've had some really hard decisions to make. There's kidney disease, tumors large and small, enlarged liver, and very low red blood cell count. We've got one last 'thing' to try but the longevity and outcome will be inevitable in our near future. With that news and the decision making, the sewing once again reminds me how tremendously therapeutic it can be. I lose myself in my thoughts while sewing, and it is almost soothing to hear the purr of the machine (or the screech of the tires when I do long races of strip sewing). It is totally a place for me to calm down, reflect, and even heal somewhat. The past few days I have paced, chewed my lips, nails and cuticles to bits, eaten many bad things, watched mindless tv, cried my eyes out....and then I sit down to sew and it all lifts away after awhile.
I don't know how to explain it.

My cat knows something is up. The dog is at the vet hospital for two days, and prior to that, he has been laying very near the the cat is meowing loudly all over the house looking for the dog. sigh.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Colours, texture, pattern

This sand art painting was behind was just stunning. I want to use these colours, pattern and movement as inspiration for a new design. I see curves in my technical future and improvisation in my creative future.

What techniques are you getting ready to try?

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Millions of thoughts...

A wishing our local science centre called Telus Spark. It had hundreds of wishes hung from it. Mine is in there too, somewhere. It looked so beautiful - so grand. The simplicity of the white lights, the light branches, and the red papers hanging from the tree. I took this first picture, and then spent about 20 minutes in the tree, just reading all the wishes.

Some wishes I giggled at....
Some wishes I nodded at....
Some I sighed at....
...and some made me well up in tears....
My wishes for 2012 are for the usual health and happiness. 2011 was quite stormy with ups and downs...and the last 1/2 of 2012 it mellowed out and settled down again. (phew!)

My personal goals wish - become a runner, take better care of myself, spend more time on myself and be kinder to myself.

My wishing tree wish? It was quilt related and more the far fetched type wish - totally attainable, but still, a wish.

Have you ever seen a wishing tree? It really moved me.

What would your Quilting Wishing Tree have on it?