Monday, October 12, 2015

Look, a Pony!

Guess what arrived at my doorstep late last week?

Yep, the Pony has arrived (if I were a guy, this would be the equivalent to getting a motorcycle). I waited a day to unbox it because I needed time to rearrange and clean the sewing room to make way.

And this is the Pony, a HandiQuilter Sweet Sixteen quilting machine, all unboxed and ready to go. I found some My Little Pony decals for it on the internet, but I haven't decided if they will fit. I watched YouTube videos from the manufacturer that showed how to set the machine up and get started. I was able to begin to play on a practice quilt sandwich almost immediately after getting it set up.

This is the current studio layout. It's a tight fit having three machines in a room this size, but I'm making it work. I'm going to have to cut the table in the front shorter so it will fit the space better. And put some real legs on it. I didn't get as much time to play with the Pony as I wanted this past weekend (we had family in town), but I took some time this evening to start working on quilting a vintage top that I got on eBay a few months ago.

And no, the cat wasn't helping.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

New Look for the Blog, & Why I Haven't Been Finishing Any Quilts Lately

The blog has a new look, and a new title. Just because. I hadn't changed things up for a couple of years and I wanted to look at something new. I'd still like to put some quilt blocks in a banner across it, but I'm not sure how to do that, maybe I'll fiddle around a bit more and run a few more google searches to see if I can figure it out. In the meantime, the friendly bookshelf blog wallpaper makes me happy (I love books! Even though this is mostly a blog about quilting). I changed the title from 'Nene Quilts' because no one is sure how to pronounce that (it rhymes with teenie). So I'm ready to quilt with a shiny new blog look.

So this is my temporary studio layout, soon to be changed when the new quilting machine arrives. Although it isn't supremely messy, pretty much every horizontal surface has something on it. I've mostly been sewing on Red Dot (the Bernina with all the red buttons) for the past couple of months. Red Dot is set up on the temporary table in the center of the room (why yes, that IS laminated pine boards set on top of two TV trays). Red Dot is going to have to move for the new machine, but I haven't figured out where yet.

And this is why I haven't been getting any quilts finished lately. These are the 3 projects that I am simultaneously working on. I still haven't run out of either red and yellow squares or scrap fabric strips, so the 1/4-log cabin blocks continue to be stitched. I started stitching 4" tumblers together--these sew up fast, I love one-patch quilts. I have been alternating lights & darks, but I haven't decided if I will offset the rows or not. I've also started stitching on my 'Tree Everlasting' quilt, although I still have a fair bit of cutting left on that one. The 'Tree Everlasting' pattern would actually make a really good leader/ender project. It utilizes all 2 1/2" strips (if you use the Easy Angle ruler to cut the half-square triangles), which is a really common size, and there are really only two pieces to cut--rectangles and half-square triangles. I guess I've been using all 3 projects as leaders/enders, since I am switching back and forth between them. Of course, if I'd just stuck to one project, I'd probably be finished by now.