Thursday, May 27, 2010

Why so quiet?

I haven’t posted anything in quite awhile, as I’ve had my head down and just plowing away.  I get focused like that, just want to get to a good stopping place, and then, if I’m not careful, I start another row, another block, another stitch, another…something.

So, what have I been working on?  The Boise Basin Quilters quilt show is coming up and I have submitted 2 entry sheets for quilts.  The actual quilts are due to be turned in on June 5th.  I’m putting the binding on one of them now, and the other is the Happy Quilt, which still needs to be quilted!  At least I’ve picked out the thread, batting, backing and quilt pattern for that one, but I need to find time to get it done!

I’ve also been working on quilting a customer’s Lone Star quilt.  It’s not your typical “home-y” colors that most people think of, it’s purple, dark grey and light grey, and it’s gorgeous!  I’m taking my time on it, as I’m using 2 colors of thread on top, and a different color of thread on the bottom, which means I have to do a thread change and I am very particular about the back thread not showing through.  The top threads are a bit different in weight, so each time I change the threads, I have to re-calibrate the tension, which means I want to minimize how often I change threads!

lapquilts-smI’ve also been working on a way to make several lap / baby quilts at once.  I have a customer who is interested in buying them, so this needs to be an efficient enterprise.  I’ve learned a lot in the process (I should probably write those lessons babyquilt-back-smdown, huh?) and have been quite thrilled with the results.  I’ve used the Valentine pantograph from Willow Leaf on the first two, and will be considering other designs as well.  I think this will definitely work for some Bronco quilts, too!

A batting sampler quilt is in the works, too!  I purchased 20” squares of Pellon’s Legacy batting at Innovations last year and have been meaning to put this together since then, but never got around to it.  I finally decided how I wanted to do this and was able to find some really nice fabric on sale, now it’s almost all cut and ready to sew together.

I’ve recently setup a wholesale account with Sulky thread as well as received some thread samples from Fil-Tec in the mail.  I got to see some of the Sulky Blendables for the longarm machines at my last networking meeting and I really liked how it felt, and it was gorgeous!

Fil-tec makes Glide thread, and I’ve heard that Glide is wonderful!  I’ll be testing it out on these samples, too, and will report how I like it.  I haven’t gotten any of the Sulky thread yet, but I will probably be able to get some before the project is ready to quilt, so I’ll be able to show off quite a few of my threads.  They are as fun to collect as fabric!  I’ll post photos of the sampler when that is finished, but for now I’d better get back to finishing my quilt show projects.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Upcoming plans

I wish I were home today, as it is raining and gray outside, the perfect sewing weather!  I need to make up some time, as I did not quilt this weekend, as planned.  Instead, I updated both my husband’s and my websites, and

I am excited that I conquered the challenge of a new piece of software, as well as how the new FAQs now display in an accordion style!  There is still a lot of work left to do for my site, specifically getting the store back up and running and configuring it to use PayPal, but that is the nature of the beast!

I am also looking at submitting an application for one of the local farmer's markets to sell my quilts.  The table fee is quite reasonable, and I don't have to commit for the full season up front, which is a concern since I don’t have a large inventory of quilts to sell yet.

One reason I haven’t posted much lately is that  I have been working on testing a particular pattern to see if I can make some quilts in a production style method, while still maintaining quality, and I have been very pleased so far.  I think I can have several lap/baby sized quilts completed in 2-3 weeks, which will make having a table at the market feasible, as well as showing some larger quilts for customers to order in their own colors.

So, I have lots of quilting plans, not to mention normal “life” plans.  I feel very blessed to have so much to look forward to.  I hope to also achieve balance in my approach, enjoying the entire journey and appreciating the experiences with the busy-ness that can be so all-consuming.

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