Thursday, 27 February 2014

Oliver Ulysses

This little man arrived very early this morning- 12:35 AM on 27 February, weighing in at 6 lb, 9 oz. He was brought along a week early for medical reasons but he still took a L O N G G G  time making his appearance. However, he is beautiful and perfect . His Mum is very well- VERY tired, of course, but aglow with pride and love. They are a VERY happy little family. We are so grateful- thankful to God for such goodness!
I am DEFINITELY in love with a younger man!

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Ready for all eventualities!:The Last Post....

....before we become Grandparents officially! How VERY exciting! Next Wednesday has been designated the Birth Day. DD is still in the High Risk category so she is being given some help to get this babe here safely. Fingers are all crossed, as are toes. Prayers are being said! In preparation for Baby Boy's arrival, the Little Mum made these! Are they not to die for??? BB's Daddy has a pair of purple, hightop Converse runners so it stands to reason that BB should have a pair of "Converse" runners too :-)
In preparation for going away but still having to be ready for the show, I have worked VERY hard and now have my work all in a pile,ready to pack into the car and to hang at the gallery!
The pile!


The pile from the top - on DD's bed! Luckily for her, she has another bed now and does not need this one.
For the antique enthusiasts among you, the bed is well over 100 years old, made of very wide pine boards and painted with wood graining on parts of it. It was made by Polish immigrants and is in the Wilno style. It came from a barn near Wilno ON, MANY moons ago. I think we got it when I was about ten years old, and that was NOT yesterday! It is a very pretty piece and was a child's bed so it is short and had to be lengthened to fit my enormously tall daughter ( 5'0" on a good day!)

And, lastly and in the category ( sort of) of Where's Waldo, here is what happened at our front door yesterday afternoon.The pic was shot through a VERY dirty front window so it is not stellar. The big blurs though, are NOT dirt! They are robins flying away when they saw me !!! The holly bush was full of fruit yesterday morning . Not so much this afternoon! It was picked clean by these poor starving robins. Can you see them? it is a dark, fuzzy pic but there are still several there! Someone needs to remind the robins that we still have tons of snow everywhere  although at +3c this afternoon, there ARE puddles and runnels and running water sounds:-)


And so, I am off to get ready to depart for the southland when we are summoned. Wish us luck please. have a wonderful , creative week and enjoy the end? of winter 2014.

I am going to post this to needleandthreadnetwork.blogspot.com. Hope you will all have a look there and see what everyone is doing!

Friday, 7 February 2014

Nearing the FINISH LINE!! ( in more ways than one!)

I am almost done! I have the majority of the quilting finished on Wire Fence I. I am almost finished myself! My neck and back are VERY tired and sore from the intense quilting I WILL choose to do! This is the last piece I will make for the show AND_______________________________________
DD has passed the 36 week mark and we are on the countdown to THAT finish line! ( and that Little Boy wants his FREEDOM!)


Here is the finished composition, except for a bit of Lily Gilding .
And one sample of the quilting .

And a second sample.
The finished piece is about  24"x 30" for those who like these details. I still have some nitty gritty stuff to do and then the facing and hanger. Then DH will photograph it for me and I will make a nice label and...........TA DA........... ready for the show! YAY!!!

Then , I am in pure Granny mode :-) Can't wait !

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Frustrating and disappointing :-(

I am afraid I have to be honest! I do not like dissing products publicly  but I MUST say my piece about Easy Steam. I have Wire Fence I ready to quilt and have begun to do that.  ALL over the quilt, places that WERE fused with Easy Steam are now lifting  up and interfering with my quilting foot! I have a little mini bottle of Aleenes Tacky Glue beside the machine and I keep having to glue corners down. It is VERY frustrating!!! I have had similar problems from time to time with old, dried out  Wonder Under but this is just sad. It has been kept wrapped up so it does not dry out but it seems to make no difference. It just keeps separating from the background fabric :-(
Here I am , all ready to quilt- in fact I have begun .....
...and here is what I keep encountering!

and here...

and here!!!!
There are a LOT more places too but I am so sad about it , I could not bear photographing them. The pieces started lifting as I was placing them on the background so the edges are now woolly and frayed in spots. After all of my hard work, I certainly HOPE this piece works for me and isn't a mess when it is finished.

I want to add some info regarding fusibles later on. I regularly and normally use Steam a Seam 2 Lite, Wonder Under and Misty Fuse and will say how I use them and comment on their effectiveness - as soon as I have had my lunch :-) As my DH says, "M'ungry"!
_________________________________________________________________________________

OK, back from lunch and ready to rip! Interestingly, while I was munching, I checked for Steam a Seam online and was on a Joann Fabrics site where there were reviews of SaS and Easy Steam. I feel vindicated! The reviews for Easy Steam were abominable. Anyway, here is my basic modus operandi:

I have my enlarged , printed pattern on the table and trace the whole thing WITH NOTES TO SELF written on , onto freezer paper. Then I cut pattern piece Number 1 out and iron it onto my fabric of choice. That is then trimmed roughly and placed on my fusible of choice ( fusible on the back, of course!) Then, I carefully press the back side of the fusible WITH PAPER STILL IN PLACE  and THEN, the piece is cut out. This then leaves me with a totally fusible pattern piece. In the case of things like my leaves on Wire Fence I, that is my base piece. I then remove the freezer paper and iron it onto the top layer of fabric and make that layer fusible, then carefully cut that out and  fuse that to the top of the first layer. IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT THESE TWO LAYERS STAY STUCK TO EACH OTHER!

Now, that said, I prefer to do my work with Steam a Seam. Why? Because it has paper on both sides of the SaS. The paper can be drawn or written on. The fusion capacity is stellar. Because SaS is tacky to touch, it can be placed on your background, checked to see if you like it, moved if necessary and can stay that way till you fuse it ALL at the end or can be fused right away . Best of all, ONCE FUSED, IT DOES NOT PEEL OFF!!!

I also like working with Misty Fuse. It is not everyone's cuppa. It is NOT sticky to the touch and it has NO paper backing. MF is flittery and a bit hard to control so normally, I make a biggish piece of my chosen fabric fusible first so the fabric has some body and I am not trying to manhandle the spiderweb of the MF.  Once the fabric has MF on the back though, it is easy to cut  a very complex shape from it using a freezer paper pattern ironed onto the right side of the fabric. The best thing about MF is that it is so transparent itself that you can use it to fuse delicate fabrics like chiffon, light silks, organza , tulle etc and it barely shows through. MF comes in black and white. It stays put quite well if fused carefully but it does not respond well to being moved if you have a change of heart.

Lastly, but certainly not least is Wonder Under. I use WU a LOT! It has a paper backing that can be written on . It is NOT tacky to the touch and has to be fused in place before it sticks but it CAN be removed and replaced if you are needing to do that. If it is kept wrapped carefully, it holds its  fusibility well . It is pretty transparent but not s good as Misty Fuse.

I would add that it behooves one to keep ALL of your fusibles tightly wrapped to keep them from drying out.

There you have it , Folkses! MY take on the fusibles I use. I am sorry not to give a better report on Easy Steam but I just can't do it. I neglected to mention the fact that it REALLY sticks to itself badly if it manages to come in contact with itself. Then , you have disaster! SaS WILL do that but it is usually salvageable. Good luck to all with all of these products.

When the time is right, I will post this HUGE missive to the needleandthreadnetwork.blogspot.com
Maybe others will be less verbose than I . Hope so for your sakes :-)

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Time to Layer- I THINK!

I have "finished" the top of Wire Fence I- I believe. I keep changing things . It is a little different from the original but that is a good thing. I tried to add some grassy details in the background but it just didn't do it for me. DH liked it , but I did not. It is a busy picture anyway with all of the bright colours,  the erratic vines and leaves and the bright blue berries. I like it better with only a hint of the turning maple leaves in the background.
Here it is to date. The colour is fairly accurate considering it is dark in here because it is SNOWING outside.
Well, stay tuned and see what happens to this now. This is all for the moment. Time for dinner and our Saturday PM "stories"!