Saturday, February 28, 2015

February is busting out all over!

Distractability Factor was really up this month.  I'm not sure if it was the vitamins and green spring tonic or my arch enemy, Procrastination, but...

I got totally involved in a Spiffing Project that consumed me for about a week.  The results are very gratifying!

Straightening fabric stacks led to a full dismantle and major decisions on what fabric groupings were lukewarm and old what were hot and still pertinent.    Because I work with the seasons this should add some order to my UFO's.

I also learned that I need a written plan for all that needs to happen in the monthly time span.  I totally forgot the camera challenge and then I thought I had lots of time for the UFO's.  Not so!  :{

So right under the 'puter keyboard is my monthly calender page and I have the due dates recorded.  I also have used the scheduling aspect of blog posts to motivate me to get something in there before they self publish!   :0 

Unfortunately I have nothing actually finished.  :[  I had bought a new iron but it has been easier to keep on using the old one than learn how the new one works.  I spent the morning looking for the cd that came with it and finally did a you tube search because the boiler needs to be primed the first time its used. Its now ready and I do like it!  It is actually designed to sit flat so hopefully it won't be falling on the floor like the last iron was wont to do! 

It has an internal boiler and pressing all those seams was a snap!   I noticed the top was a bit wavy as it hung on the design wall.  

The iron has great steam and can be used like a steamer so I tried it and now the top looks great!  Next I need to decide what to do with it.  I doubt I'll add borders and then there is the quilting!  ???  I have no more of the multi print so it'll be a solid coloured binding.

This will be a baby quilt so I want it to be soft.  The binding went on and that new iron made pressing it a breeze.  I doubt it will even see pins! 

The newly spruced up playroom should have me strongly marching through ufo's in the next month!

My score remains the same because I haven't started anything new although fingering all those fabric stacks surely was tempting! 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Thursday Thoughts

I don't think I can ignore my mixed media mania much longer.  mmmm  But I haven't the time to devote to giving it much time on the blog.  I have heard of Wordless Wednesdays and Silent Sundays so I am considering Thursday Thoughts.  I dug out my old journal which has various and sundry pages with mixed results but is basically pretty empty.  The first page didn't seem finished to me so I thought I'd redo it. And that led to all kinds of re's!  I never took a  photo before I began but it will convey my thoughts and I've decided to work on a spread each week and post the conclusions on Thursdays.

 Ha!  I see in the old labels I have 2 Try Thursday.  They kinda go together, don't they?  Any thoughts?

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Easy as riding a bike!

Yesterday I experienced blowing snow, a freezing cold draft, hard slugging and lots of sweat equity in my cleaning.  :(

Today the sun is shining, a window is open, ease as the last bits move into place and lots of glowing!  :)

I'm not sure this book case will stay but I've never worked from the end of the table, the light isn't being blocked, and it will stop me from piling things on those two lower cupboards.  The ceramic houses are for my series project so they are handy and again, I won't stash stuff up there.  ;^)

When I was shuffling fabric around it really irritated me that I hadn't moved the extension cord from between the middle and the last unit.  I had it in the middle for access but I don't need it there anymore.  So while I was tweaking the shelves I moved that cord behind the last unit and closer to the ironing station.  I hate cords all over the place.  Then I saw the nice wicker basket on the top shelf holding garment patterns. eek!  Since I had already removed the fashion fabrics and the how to fit and how to sew books, I clenched my teeth and refused to be enticed by the flashy, flirty models! okay, so I saved a couple  :}   Often when I clean things up, I cheat with a few short cuts.  This is feeling so very nice.  :]

I imagine this storage area will evolve with the using but I am terribly pleased with how well it looks!

Disclosure:  While I feel I have been very diligent in getting right down to corners and floor washing;  I didn't do drawers.  And the craft shelving unit is not as congested but I didn't do every shelf.  I also have two trays of paper stuff to go through. BUT,  I am feeling so good!   Perhaps I could now try unicycling!!!!

Monday, February 23, 2015

What is it about me and spring???

I tackle gigantic projects, make major messes,  buy impulsively, and things still seem to come together.   Heck, Spring inspires me! :)  Not that it is here exactly but I'm feeling the sighs as winter takes its last gasps.

I was half way through the spiff up when I went into the scrap book store here in our wee town.  Shelving for sale!  Wire cubicles.  Good price.   Sealed the deal.  Then I kicked myself all the way home.  Where would I put them???  I'm 'supposed' to be saving money as DD#1 wants me to come visit!  We can spend her money decorating her apartment.  lol  But after a good nights sleep I had an idea!  What else is new!!!!  I have a tall but small utility cupboard and a bookcase in the playroom closet.  Actually I have a lot of stuff stashed in that closet and none is real handy.  :O

The Rooster insisted on working on a carpet and with good light, not something the wee closet has.  I wanted him to add a bit more but he was right (as usual) and they barely made the journey up the stairs and around the corners.  He was able to add one to the very top as the closet has a sloped ceiling.

Then bless his heart, he added my wall files.   I have to find a place to store the door as it opens the wrong way for getting all the good stuff out for current projects.  But this is way handier than the jumble I had before.

I'm still tweaking.  He tells me the wire may not hold all my books that were under the slope and hard to find so I am diddling a bit with options because now they are like long lost friends and I want to see and use them! 

So in spite of freezing cold minus 33 Celsius (not including windchill) and  that wicked wind finding every crack and gap in this old farm house, I have 'another' project underway in the Coop and Saucer Playroom. 

Now it isn't quite spring and as I sort quilt books and regroup fabric projects I have time to think.

1)  If I sent away the garment fabrics why am I hesitating over the garment sewing books.  :(

2)  If the spring decor projects which are simple and more modern,  come together so easily;  then maybe I am over complicating summer, fall and winter.  :0

3)  If this is all the square footage there is, then maybe what doesn't fit does NOT need to stay.  :[

So that said I gave myself only today to reduce the whole house plan to one section per season.  The weather is getting rather yukky so I doubt the light will hold for the last season, winter, to be shelved for a final photo.  I actually have breathing room and a typical accessory to remind me to stay on track.  I have several groupings that much as I like just don't go with the flow and that I kinda hate to break up.  So I'll stash them for possible future gifts.   

Looks like spring will be a while arriving but I'm surely cheering it on and I'll be ready to leap into any project! 

Saturday, February 21, 2015


I'm gonna quit clicking buttons!   I wondered what a spiff up was!   Now I am knee deep in spiffing!  Bonnie  from Institches with Bonnie has been doing some things in her studio.  No problem, I caught right up.  My batting was in good order except for a jumble of odds and ends in a bag.  My fabric stays pretty good in my shelves although there is some serious leaning to some stacks.  Then this week it was the ironing station. vbsigh  Mine was buried under piles.  I know that flat surfaces are my nemesis! 

Okay.  I give up!   If I admit I won't be making any more garments I can clear an whole shelf way up high and put the batting up there as well as the odds and ends.  Some of my shoe boxes have fabric groupings that are now passe.   I need one whole shelf for low volume.  Browns are out and greys are in.  The greys can share space on the low volume shelf and all the earthy fabrics can go up high as I have embraced clean and bright.  :)  The top of the craft unit holds backings and all that landscape fabric that may or may not make the next cut.  :)

A start on Thursday evening had me committed to restoring order.  I'm a good sleeper but I was awake at 4:00 am with all kinds of ideas.  :(  I gave up at 5:30;  shook my feathers at the Rooster, barely acknowledging his leaving and sorted, shuffled and stacked.  The shoe boxes hold planned projects for home decorating- quilts, table runners, place mats, wall hangings, pillows and fibre art.  As those decrease I can switch that wider section out for my narrower coloured section.  I anticipate my solids and hand dyes will be increasing. 

 I roared off to town at lunch time for shelves and some cool plastic tubs from our Dollar Store.  :)  All my cute FQ's are in the new tubs and available for the grand kiddies to make projects.

 It all fits back wonderfully well and I only have three large bundles of fabric  to make a decision on.  These are not clean and bright. Would they make an eventual gift???

Anyway.  I'm feeling virtuous and I hope Betty doesn't have a craft corner that she wants spiffed! 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Dreaming Big, Bigger, Biggest

I am a dreamer!  No doubt about it.  I am such a dreamer that when I get bored with a dream I just start a new one.  This actually leads to nightmares so I have had to have my Prince Charming aka The Rooster, give me a kiss and an accountability list!  LOL

The biggest dream yet is that all this downsizing has led to a new dream.  We need a smaller farm.  A quarter mile driveway, a 100 foot walk, a ten acre lawn, an old farm house with needs and three floors of stuff and the only bathroom is not on the same floor as the bedrooms, etc....!  Well,  it is all very tiring.  Hardly leaves time for playing!

So the biggest dream is a more efficient home in a smaller rural setting.

The slightly smaller dream, the bigger,  is to have the old farmhouse painted up, styled and ready for sale.  I have been wanting to redo every room for a few years now but the scope of juggling an ambitious colour scheme has been somewhat daunting.  I then get frustrated and just like Maria in The Sound of Music I start all over again at the very beginning and run at it again. But I never really finish anything of lasting consequence.  So I am no longer dreaming in techno colour.  It'll be a neutral backdrop and the COLOUR will be my seasonal accessories, my quilts and my fibre art.  My reward for staying on task will be promissory notes from my dearie to tackle something on MY to-do list.  Believe it or not this is a BIG carrot for me as his priorities aren't the same as mine.  lol

So that bigger dream is to have a freshly painted house, with a colour theme flowing throughout and my very own art on display. 

I have lots of quilts that I want to make but there has always been something special about having a gorgeous embellished quilt.
So the big dream and the one that has started all this 'make your dream a reality' is that winter crazy quilt for the foot of my bed!  

The whole dreaming project started with Vicki asking us to link up our Big Dream project so we could inspire and encourage one another.  Mine is a crazy quilt.

I had two colourways  to chose from.  Tackling my options made me consider that the master bedroom also needed painting.  Sticking to the more neutral wall colors, considering the furniture and the new lighting fixtures should help me to decide which colourway.  Deep and rich or soft and warm.  ???

Then the break through. 

I've been following along with Bonnie's 15 Minute Spiff Up.  This week is to tidy the fabric stash.  Mine is not too bad but some of the stacks are leaning on one another and some stuff has been kinda stuffed in.  While spiffing I found my inspiration!

I tend to group future fabric ideas into plastic shoe boxes.  Some need emptying because I've moved on.  This yard of the Feelings Collection from art gallery quilts is IT!  During the white and cold winter I want colour and richness.   I've also determined the block size.  Four nine inch blocks on the diagonal sit across the width of the bed.  I have a boxed set of 16 fq's of Silk Dupioni.  I can dye cotton velvet and I've some fancy fashion fabrics.  There are lots of coordinating silk ribbons from an old project.  :)  Its a dream of a project.  :)

Vicki had said that the project needn't only be a quilting project.  And it was fine to post anything that helped move the dream along.  That got me thinking. I've learned that multi tasking is not for me.  I am NOT multitasking.  I'm combining!  :)

Here are my dreams and my progress:

A big dream:   I have a plan for my lap sized crazy quilt which consists of a block size, a fabric palette, coordinating thread, and ribbons.  I shall be asking the Rooster to hold me accountable to a stitching schedule.  I'm thinking eight o'clock to nine most nights.  Hmmm, I think I better make some blocks first though!  :O

A Bigger Dream:  My home must reflect me.  I was making it way too complicated and I now know I was mixing clean and dirty.  I'm heading towards clean and hopefully will make better choices.  The Rooster is stirring himself from the winter hibernation and has declared the kitchen is scheduled for March first.  He is NOT a dreamer and is very motivated.  The kitchen will be neutral, clean and simple!  oh!  The Rooster cooks so he is very involved in function.  I shall be trying to maintain a lovely form!  ;^)  I have a few shoe boxes with place mat ideas.  lol

I'm quite busy with the UFO Busting but IF I have the urge to start something new I have a plan for the other three lap quilts for the master bedroom!  :)    Four shoe boxes, a paint plan and fibre art!

THE BIGGEST DREAM is still a few years off but the Rooster is in charge.   The animals have gone and the machinery mostly sold so that leaves time to finish the yard clean up.  The barns are on his 'hit' list for this year.  But we have a couple of months before the grass greens up to work in the house.  My Prince Charming has his Sleeping Beauty up behind him and we are off to chase the dream!  We are a good combination!!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Getting serious with the series

I blogged my intentions for the series project. While I may indeed have been excited,  I am now scared!  :(

We have been fully engaged in stall mode. Everything is clean, I've started the ufo's and I've thumbed a few pages in the books.  I  thought I'd do the photography challenge first but it is taking  forever for the new camera software to upload.  This just won't do so I will be starting as I type this post.  Ha!  Can't wait to see what I put down!  ;^)

 I'm not sure I want this horizontal orientation and it is a pile of details although I do like the perspective aspect..

Another possibility is that I could split them up.  Do one or another or even one of each.  :O

 These are canisters I got at a thrift shop and I really like them but not for such mundane things as flour and sugar!  lol
The detail is pretty simple and what I'm looking for is sketching options.

The smallest one is challenging with the bow window.   It is kinda cute though!

Hmm, I like the bit of detail on the corner so I may angle it a bit. It is the only one with that feature.   I shall sleep on it and come up with some sketches for part B!

If I'm going to be trying different things I should have some kind of continuity.  This isn't about realism so I'm thinking this fabric will be good for the sky/background.  I've lots if I make some mistakes!  :(

The last art day we had gave me an opportunity to get everybody sketching.  We all picked a  house and had at it with water soluble pencils.  I find them pretty inspiring actually!  :)  

Time to get serious.  Time to commit!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Lining things up

I have a camera challenge due and when I take the lens cap off I do take pictures. And that is one thck manual.  :O  My old computer wouldn't even load the new camera's soft ware so I did it on the lap top which is frustrating me as it is a slow cheapie.  Mouse and keyboard I like so I expect it'll be a another big computer when I line up the hens so that production increases the egg fund and fills the sugar bowl!  ;^)

Then I have the series to pursue and I am editing choices as I may have too many in the line up!  :(

I have been joining HST's to make rows for my UFO Busting so there is lots of forward motion here.  This is a wall hanging, about 36 inches x 40 inches.  I have no idea how I will quilt it but it needs to be free motion as that is a LOT of triangles, small triangles. 

The grand kiddies are packing up to come for a couple of days while their parents are off doing whatever parents do.  ;-)  It is actually snowing but I doubt that neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night, stays these grand kiddies from the swift completion of their appointed plan!   :-)

 And speaking of mailmen, we will be making mail boxes and of course mail.   How is that for laying things on the line!

Friday, February 6, 2015

Good thing they're cute!

 This artist is not setting up residence but is limited to one short guest post!  ;^)

We switched from changing clothes 57 times to the art room!  That'll teach me to buy so many outfits!!!  and shoes!!!

While Jolina worked on her side of the table I contemplated my next move.

It didn't seem like a good idea to trim and bind the bunnies while 'art' was happening.  :(

I did get a couple of rows on the HST top done before we switched to the next project.

It was the youngest's turn for a visit but now I hear I am going to be having all three for a few days next week. :O  It does make getting monthly projects done somewhat of a challenge.  The good news is that the new emphasis on healthy diet and the green spring tonic is starting to kick in!   Good thing this Gram'elle thinks these grand kiddies are pretty cute!