Sunday, September 29, 2013

Keeping Tabs Reveal

Last Monday I took my quilt top, backing, and a new-to-me cotton batting called Soft and Crafty (hope they didn't mean crappy...) to the folks at Quality Quilting in Ann Arbor.  It happens to be less than 5 minutes from my office -- that's one convenient thing about this job.

I got the call from them on Thursday that it was ready to be picked up.  I jumped in my car and zipped right over there.  I am amazed at their turn-around time.  After work, I stopped by Pink Castle Fabrics because a) I could use their large cutting table to trim up my newly finished quilt, b)They were having a 30% off sale, and c) I had yet to choose a binding fabric.

After trimming up the quilt I scoured the bolts for the right binding fabric and after auditioning many different options I ended up finding none that worked just right.  As luck would have it, I have enough leftover fabric from my backing fabric to do the deed.  I hope to have the binding sewn on by the end of the week.  Phew!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Does your life ever seem to get out of control?  You feel like you can't do anything you WANT to do, only things you HAVE to do?  That's how I've been feeling lately.  Mostly, I suppose, because I don't have any control over what's going on at my new job.  And it's not going well.  When you test software you have to have guidelines, expectations, and consequences.  I'm not feeling that at my place.  Still on the hunt for something better for me that is closer to home.  Every day is at least an 11 hour day including my commute, and some days are closer to 12 hours.  All work and no play makes Suz a sad girl.  And tired too.  Too tired to be crafty when I get home.  Maggie is lucky to get a well-deserved walk when I get home.

It's all temporary, I just know it.  Soon I'll be returning to my crafty self.  I did manage to make a super cute little bear to auction off at the quilt guild's Holiday Bazaar in December:
The pattern comes from a cute book, Sweet & Simple Handmade, by Melissa Wastney.  It's full of great projects, many of them upcycling items around the house.  I used minty green linen/cotton fabric from Pink Castle Fabrics (conveniently around the corner from my office -- thank GOD for something pleasurable!)  for the body, with a bit of cotton from my latest quilt for those cute ears, a little grosgrain ribbon, and #5 embroidery Perle cotton for the face.  I've bought a lot more colors of linen so I better get sewing!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013


I've been busy and the blog's been quiet lately.  I promise I'll be back soon will lots to say and a few pictures, too.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Look Who's 2 !!!!

Denver wasn't feeling too well, but he still is awfully cute!  Love those curly locks!!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Keeping Tabs

I've been working on the Keeping Tabs quilt from Modern Quilts Illustrated #5 for myself for the past couple of weekends.  I can't seem to find the time to sew once I get home from work.  Or maybe it's that I can't seem to find the energy to sew.  I don't know.  I only know that this simple quilt is taking a bit of time to complete.

Today I finished sewing the border on and got started on piecing the backing.  The original quilt pattern made a 53" x 84" quilt but my quilt top is 68" x 100" which makes it a long twin.  I figure it will be long enough to tuck under a pillow.  In the mean time, here's the fabric selections for the top:

The solids are the main part of the quilt, the round-ish design is the border and the square-ish design is the backing.  Only there wasn't quite enough for the backing, hence the piecing.  Here's a rather poor camera phone shot of the top before the border was fully stitched on:

Hopefully the entire thing will be done next weekend and I'll decide whether I can tackle the quilting or not!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Life's a Beach

 Last month my friend Cathy invited me to spend a few days at her lovely cottage on Lake Huron, along with Sue and Kathy from the Chickens.  The Lake Huron shoreline is far less crowded and developed than the Lake Michigan side but every bit as enjoyable.  Mostly I would have to say it's very relaxing there.  We always have to walk the beach, gathering up new treasures that the waves have brought to shore.

I think Sue was particularly in search of green rocks -- who knew!

There were occasional pow-wows between Cathy, Kathy, and Sue over whether a stone was worthy of keeping or needed to be tossed back into the water.

I didn't pick up any rocks but I was practicing my photography skills, capturing waves on the rocks.

And goose-prints:

And driftwood that had washed ashore:

Isn't this the most beautiful place for a swing -- what a view!

It was so nice to get away with the girls:

I even got some sewing done:

I think I've sewn about 10 more rows since that weekend.  A few more to go and it can all be put together.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Work, work, work!

This working stuff is getting in the way of having fun!  Most nights I don't get home from work until 7:00 or 7:30 pm.  I've discovered that getting to work early (8 am is early to this company!) is making the drive to Ann Arbor much easier on me.  Many days I've been working 9+ hours so if you tack on the minimum of 2 hour total commute, we're talking about 11 hour days.

This has significantly cut into my energy level and at the end of a work day I just can't seem to muster anything more than a walk with the dog.  Thank goodness for weekends!  This weekend I finished piecing the quilt top I'm making for myself -- yeah! -- and just have a little bit of stitching to go to complete the border.  Once again this quilt top, like many others I've made, has grown much larger than my original concept and now I'll have to piece the backing as I only bought 5 yards of fabric for it at the AQS show in Grand Rapids.  It's roughly 68" by 100" so I'm thinking it will look great on the twin bed I don't have yet!  I'm planning to downsize my bed from a queen size because it takes up so stinkin' much room in my bedroom.

I'm fairly certain I'll have it machine quilted.  I'd rather have it done than sitting on a shelf waiting for me to get the hours of time needed to do it myself.

This afternoon I got my loppers out and went to town on the weeds in my backyard.  It was looking like a jungle and I had finally had it.  My roommate wasn't tackling it so I did it myself.  Now my hands are aching and so is my back!  Time for some Aleve and a good night's sleep!