Changing Up The House

I really love the white cabinet I was given this year. It looks so nice in the living room and makes that one area not look so empty compared to the rest. Then I decided the living needed a bit more of a color boost. You know I like color. Well, I decided it was time for the black and tan rugs to be replaced. Also looking, I realized the new sofa wasn’t the best fabric for dogs as their nails were leaving snags in the fabric. Since the sofa was less than 6 months old, a new one wasn’t in the mix. You know what that means, sofa cover.

I ended up going with a gray sofa cover since the sofa was gray and added in a new chair cover for baby dog’s chair so they matched. Then I needed something to brighten the room. Hence my new rugs. My daughter says they’re hideous but I have to say, I love them.

Of course I was just finishing a multi-colored quilt that has the same colors so I think I will hang it on the wall.

She Waited A Long Time

My bosses daughter asked me late last year about making some quilts leftover from fabric her mom had. I told her in advance it would be well after April and it was lol. Apparently her mom used to hand quilt. Mom had a few blocks half made that were hand stitched but they were falling apart to the point I didn’t want to try and use them, and there wasn’t a lot left to choose from. She basically had a box of scraps. Some pieces were a half yard and some were 5 or 6 inches.

Looking at the prints there were likely from the 30’s or 40’s (her mom died 20+ years ago) so I wanted something simple to match what would have been a popular quilt when she was sewing. I used whatever fabrics I could get a 3 in square from and made simple 9 patch blocks. They still needed something so I hit the store and found 2 tone on tone creams that had a very vintage look and made hour glass blocks to go between the 9 patch blocks. Came out very vintage looking.

It wasn’t an easy tasks for me for a couple of reasons. One is I don’t care too much for scrappy looking quilts so using so many colors was outside my comfort zone. My friend Sue loves scrappy and said just use whatever you pick up next rather than trying to coordinate. That saved my sanity. The second was the odor. OMG that fabric had sat in a garage 20+ years in a cardboard box. It reeked of what I call old smell. You know that smell when you open a door and a house is full of old furniture, old clothes, etc. I didn’t dare wash it till I had it pieced and quilted so for weeks every time I opened my front door, you could smell it. Thankfully a little Gain laundry soap and some bounce dryer sheets and they smelled like new once they were washed.

She wanted it gift the 2 quilts to her daughters as something of their grandmothers so I made them almost alike. They have the same fabrics and one is quilted with swirls and one is quilted with hearts. She really liked them and I hope the girls love them as a reminder of their grandmother. I suggested she take the handmade squares her mom had in the box and carefully frame one for each daughter to display with their quilts.

A Few More Finished in 2020

Here are a few more I have finished and finally gifted. The hexagon one with the gold accent fabrics was my attempt at again trying to enjoy making hexagons or one block wonder quilts. I’ve accepted the fact that while I enjoy making the octagon blocks, I don’t care much for the 6 piece hexagons. I still think it came out quite pretty. I wanted to gift to a friend Brenda who has been dealing with a lot of medical issues and surgeries. She’s having to use a wheel chair till it’s all resolved and it turned out the perfect size to use for her doctor visits.

This batik one is called Magic Tiles. Still one of my favorite patterns when I want something easy, yet striking. It works out pretty in almost every color combo. This one was made using tropical batiks by Lunn Studio. I sent it to a co-worker of my son in law who wanted it for a new baby. Made the perfect size to carry it around so you have some place clean to lay the baby. I think the burnt red accent lines really worked nicely with the blues and greens.

The 3rd one has no pattern name. I just mixed octagon and 4 patch posey blocks and sashed with a lavender. I love how the lavender makes the small amount of purple in the tiger lily print stand out. It needed a color boost with all the drab orange and whites in the print. I gifted to my friend Sue who had to finally give up her home and move to an assisted living apartment. She needed a pick me up and loved it.

Wow I’ve Been Absent Again

I usually forget to come back and update my blog but then again, my life isn’t overly exciting and there isn’t usually a lot going on. So what’s happened or what have I gotten done since last here, hmmmm?

I did finish a few quilts I can share. These 2 were for the doctors at the veterinary clinic my daughter works for. Dr. Ertel is a Vietnam vet so I made him a Bento box quilt using red, white and blue fabrics with a red/white swirled backing. I think it came out really nice.

The second one posted is for Dr. Brainard. He loves bright, colors. In fact he and my daughter have an on-going sock contest to see who has the most colorful or weirdest socks. The pattern I made him is called Under the Stars and has a ton of different colored batiks with a purple backing. He loved it. In fact he sent me a very nice thank you card. Luckily I wash all the quilts before they are delivered because as you can see once again Argus photo bombed me.

I Feel Whole Again

Ever have that one item you use so much and think you can’t do without.  Mine was always my Nu Wave oven.  Crazy as it sounds I have had one for about 15+ years and use it 3 or more times a week.  A few months back I bought the Nu Wave Bravo which is a nice replacement for my air fryer and using my large oven.  So, when my NuWave cracked I tossed it out and figured why order another as I have the Bravo.

That lasted about 2 months now and it just isn’t the same.  Maybe if I figured out all the functions and all the features but I still miss my original NuWave Pro.   There is nothing like coming home and frozen or no, you can pop it your dinner and it cooks.  I can’t think of anything you really can’t cook in a Pro.  Needless to say, I decided to replace it.  Checking out Ebay was an excellent idea as they go for about half the regular price for brand new ones.

Not only did I get a new unopened box but I got it about less than the regular website and it’s the sexy red one.  That’s my sister’s word, sexy but it describes it so well.  She fits right in with the rest of the kitchen.  She even included silicone cup cake cups and a nice 8 inch silicone baking pan.

I pulled out some chicken, marinated it and fired it up.  I feel whole again.  Doesn’t take a lot to make me happy.

Finally Finished My Silk Throw

This is some of the first quilt shop fabric I ever purchased.  Back 15+ years ago it was extremely expensive, at least to me.  It came in a little metal can and was $99 for 15 fat quarters.  I was so excited by the colors.  However that weekend I took it to a quilt guild meeting and was heartbroken.

Every women there told me oh that’s silk you will hate it, you have to fuse interfacing to the back of it and it still stretches, it ravels, etc.  I was so disappointed and knew I’d never do all that for something that would look terrible.  I ended up packing the box away.  That little metal container has moved with me twice and I always pack it in a closet.

Well this month I moved something and there it was.  I decided it was time to sew it or toss it.  Nowadays it’s pretty standard to spend $100 on the fabric for a quilt but back then it was a lot of money so I decided to sew it.  Oh I will not lie, it was a pain to work with and the raveling was on everything I owned, but I got the top put together.  Next up was researching how much dupoin silk shrinks compared to cotton.  Not much info so I decided to order a silk backing as well.  I then ended up ordering silk thread and a silk/bamboo blend batting.  I even soaked the top careful in cold water to see if it shrank.  It didn’t but Lord the wrinkles.  I must have pressed it 10 times to get it normal again.

So here she is, 15+ years later.  I wish it was a better picture.  My camera seems to weird out on the silk with the flash.  A friend took a better picture of the ladies basting it for me so I will include that also.  The ladies are my friends Marilyn and Pam.

I am so glad I didn’t toss it.  I did use a cotton border so I hope that works out but I’ll stick to washing by hand so hopefully it won’t be an issue.  The colors are such vibrant oranges, browns and fushia and the back is a really pretty chocolate silk.  I really do love it.   The picture with the ladies shows the colors much better.

 

White 659 Sewing Machine

Writers Note Added:     After some research from Juki I found the machine was likely made in the mid to late 50’s not the early 1960’s as I stated.  It was made bu Juki for White.   Her threading system was invented by Juki in 1954 and is termed a rotary needle thread take-up system. 

After some searching I had to write a little more about the White sewing machine I was gifted.   I have to admit it was the first machine that had me stumped.  I can’t remember how many times I have said to people “they all pretty much thread the same”.  Damn was I wrong.

I played with this machine when I got home from Ohio and she ran so smooth.  I hadn’t even oiled her yet but she didn’t make so much as a squeak.  I was lucky enough to get the manual with the machine so I pulled it out and checked the thread diagram.  Yeah it was a bit different.  Only one I’ve seen that had 12 steps listed to thread it but I got it done.

I guess it wasn’t that simple as she wouldn’t sew.  No matter what I tried.  I changed the needle, changed the bobbin, wound a new bobbin, changed types of thread 3 times and still just knots.   I posted in the vintage White groups but no one had the same machine and they all suggested things I had already done.  Well as I’ve said in the past, you can learn everything you ever need to know on Google.  Problem was, even the manual doesn’t list what model she is.  So after some research of photos I finally found 2 people that actually posted a picture of the same machine although both were years ago.

She is a White 659x.  One video I found only showed you how she looked sewing so that wasn’t helpful but, I finally stumbled across a blog that had the same threading issue and he had located someone that provided him a photo with red lines added explaining the thread path.  Thankfully he included that picture on his blog.  I couldn’t wait to get home and see if that was her issue.  Never have I seen a machine that the thread runs to the front then doubles back over itself and goes to the back.

WOW.   The minute I walked in I fed the dogs and tried to thread the machine.  Magic happened.  She needed a minor tension adjustment but once that was done and she was threaded correctly, she sews like she did brand new and I haven’t even oiled her yet. I am thrilled.

So this weekend she will get a spa day with a nice layer of oil, a new needle, new bobbins, a quarter inch foot and she will be as good as the day she was born.  1960-1961 from what I can find researching her.   For 57-58 years old she is a dream.  SHe even has a knee lever so I can use her when my feet are acting up.

And although I have posted her prior, here she is – – – – – Ms. Barbara.  (named after the original owner)

Next up.  Get that Brother Festival defrosted and try to find a left homed quarter inch foot.

8

 

Finally Got One Done

Seems like forever since I had a finished quilt to post.  I have about 9 or 10 waiting to be basted and quilted but finally got this one quilted and finished the binding last night.   It’s a you tube pattern called 3 Dudes Quilt.  I love the overall pattern and even bought 2 or 3 more jelly rolls to make one.   Don’t be surprised if you see me posting more done with this pattern.

2

Updates To The House

While I was gone my friend Kenetha was gracious enough to deliver some furniture pieces her friend offered me for my sewing room.   Unfortunately their mom passed away and they wanted to find a good home for her quilt room pieces.  I absolutely love them and my son in law was kind enough to get them ready for me.

I decided to put the shelving unit in the living room and had a wall it fit perfectly on.  Needless to say it is also the perfect place to store my overflow fabric.  That’s fabric that doesn’t fit into the fabric cabinet.  Yes I have one of those lol.

I can’t begin to tell you have much I love the huge cutting table.  The drawers are an added bonus where I can store a lot of odds and ends that normally get left laying around.

I may stencil the one in the living room or paint it eventually as it’s very white next to the antique machine cabinets, but maybe not.  I really like it as it is.  I love how nice the tweed baskets look with my grey sofa even though you can’t see it in the picture.

3

4

 

 

Life Seems to Fly By

I’ve been so busy lately and I don’t think I even know doing what.  I literally work and take care of the house and the dogs.

I did get to add a couple new sewing machines.  Only one was planned on.   Jill, my amazing sister, picked me up a Minnesota A treadle in a parlor cabinet in Ohio right before the Covid 19 quarantine and other a client brought me after his aunt passed away. I’m pretty sure my collection is done unless I find the elusive red machine.  I do have a salmon one you haven’t seen yet as I’m waiting to see if she can be repaired.

This White is simply beautiful and looks like she just came out of the factory.  She had a bit of dust on her and needed a drop or 2 of oil and WOW.  She even has her manual.  I really love that she’s in a smaller cabinet also.

The second pictures are the Minnesota Jill and Mark picked up and stored for me until I came to Ohio. Can’t wait to learn to use a shuttle bobbin.   She is absolutely beautiful.

8

 

5