Thursday, June 20, 2019

And on we go...............

This basement renovation has good news and bad news. The good news is that everything is going according to plan. The packing crew wasn't going to touch the bookcases so they had a carpenter team come in for that. They were here and the bookcases are gone. The painter was here yesterday to see the lay of the land.

The only problem is that these guys arrive with no details. It's like the restoration company said: "show up at this address and ask the lady".  Well, I have no idea what the total plan is and what is covered or not. Like when the painter says - what needs to be painted? The WHOLE thing as far as I'm concerned!!! I should say that!!! But I'm trying to wheel and deal a bit since we're not doing the inside of the storage room where the leak occurred. Anyway - lots of fun and games. Hopefully, the rest of the work will continue as planned.

The POD is filled to capacity. I didn't get a picture before they closed it up and locked it. It's staying in the driveway. They did take boxes from the house to fill it up. I hate to say that with the stuff that is still squirreled downstairs and what's also upstairs, that we could probably fill TWO more PODs with my "hobby".  That's not good!

In case you want to check out the status, here's a link to a video.  Yes - a TOTAL blank slate in that main room. How fun is that?  The condition of the concrete floor looks a wee bit disturbing. And they put down a disinfectant that is horrible! The concrete was quite wet - OK - it was damp when the floor came up. And it's still damp this morning. I'm guessing that by next week when the floor comes that it'll be dry.

I guess this is why we have a vapor barrier between the concrete and the floor - otherwise, that moisture would just seep up into the floor. And what an ugly damp smell. Still - makes you think!

So I had a pretty good day sewing although I was working with a pattern from hell. I'm not going to give more information than that. I don't want to scare anyone by saying what pattern it is. I might later. I even got the designer involved, but I'm not totally happy with the information she provided. I'm going to do a bit more testing this morning.

I'm happy as a clam in Studio U. It's cozy and everything is CLOSE.

I have my serger set up on the second table and I had some stuff to serge. Oh crap - I'm going to need another spool of serger thread. I knew that and I meant to get one before they packed everything up. Now, where is that cabinet of thread?

Going to need a new spool of thread

Cause when you run out? The stitching isn't great.

Oops - ran out of serger thread

I was lucky! Very lucky! I located the cabinet in the living room and while the drawers were facing away from me, I managed to wiggle my way through the stuff and pulled out a spool of thread. I got all my stuff serged. I'll share that with you another day.

But look at my cozy little space. I have my great white cabinet with the sewing machine flat which I love, although it took me a bit to get used to the lower chair height! Behind me is the ironing board and beneath the ironing board is the cabinet with all my needles, bobbins and other accessories/tools for daily sewing.

Cozy workspace
I love having access to all the stuff in the drawer of that cabinet as well. There are the tools to clean the machine - and they are handy!!!

Inside the drawer of the sewing cabinet

I also have this other small cabinet which has a few things in it. Supply stuff. And you notice that orange basket on top. Now what I need to do is go through that basket because there are things in there that need to be put away. That's part of the problem. If you don't put things away or make a home for them, they just pile up. That's a task for later today which shouldn't take long. But being organized - you gotta be organized!!!  Thanks to M for letting me "have" her little cabinet. It works like a charm. Hmm - I wonder if she would notice when her books get packed away so I can put a few necessary books on the shelf for me??  Hmm - when we empty one of the boxes when I unpack, guess what?? Yep!

Little cabinet
While I was sewing, I was a little dismayed. This machine is sure making a lot of clunking and punching. Could the needle be that bad? When the bobbin ran out, I gave the machine a good cleaning, wound five new bobbins and changed the needle. OH GOD - I remember now - I was using a LEATHER needle before I left last week and of course, it's going to punch through my fabric!!! 

Ready for more hours of sewing

The sewing machine was much happier once it had the right needle in it. DUH!!!  I should have checked the setting on the machine because it told me that it was set for leather/vinyl.

If I have Spotify, can I use my Echo to play the radio? Not sure, but no time to figure that out. I have a real radio in the room and it sits on that extra shelf on the sewing cabinet. Actually, I'm loving the extra space. I just need to get that light set up.

I had lots of fiddly stuff that I was sewing yesterday and therefore the need for enders and leaders. Guess what? I got SEVEN of those red/white blocks completed.

Seven mini-blocks completed!!!

So I added them to the ones that were already done. There were 7 in the bag. So that makes a total of 14 blocks. Now, what the heck can you do with 14 blocks?? 

Fourteen blocks in total
However, when I pulled the bag with the blocks out, guess what I found? Yep - a bag of the quarter blocks that I missed. YEAH!!!!!  I didn't count them to see how many were there, but I'm hoping that I can make four more blocks. That would be ideal!!! 

Quarter blocks ready to be sewn into blocks

That was after I had already pulled another project for enders/leaders. Again, it's a miniature quilt. It's was technically a block of the month with Thangles. I found FOUR blocks completed. Here's one of them. This little block is about 3"????  It's tiny.

One of the four completed blocks

The fifth block was ready to sew together so now it's almost together.

Working on the fifth block

Once I get the rest of the red/white blocks completed, I'll move onto this one in full force. Yeah!!!  I'm so excited that I'm getting stuff put together. But why did these projects get abandoned? Because something more interesting came up. Gosh - I have a serious problem with finishing things.

And I'd better get my butt in gear and get some quilting done as well. Oh - by the way, if you have a quilt at my house that you're waiting on to be quilted? They are safely stored in the living room. Away from everything!

After everyone left, I took a quick walk to the library where I returned some books and transferred some more files from DVD/CD to USB. Let's just say that embroidery files are easy to transfer. Video files take a wee bit longer. I must take a book next time to read. How silly is that! Taking a book to the library to read!

So that's the scoop for today. I'm going to try and get videos of that stash room up in the next couple of days. Imagine if that entire room had to be moved? But part of it will have to be moved to repair the floor. I must check the schedule to find out when that is happening.

How the heck am I going to organize myself to get things back in the basement and ready for a sit n sew in July??  I know what I want to go back downstairs and I know what I want to deal with and get rid of. I'll figure something out. Perhaps, I need to clear the office and that excess stuff can sit here instead of going back down and I have to bring it back up???  Got to think about that. I have one week!

On that note, I"m out of here.

Have a super day!!!!


Wednesday, June 19, 2019

And then this happened...............

So you know that I'm getting a new floor in the basement. The water leak occurred on February 15th. It took me a long time to wrap my head around scheduling the restoration work and then of course once I was ready, it took time to choose the floor and get everything organized. A few weeks of travel also slowed down the process. The restoration company has a pretty aggressive schedule. There's none of this moving stuff to one side and working around - OH NO - we're going the whole hog on this install.

As a result, four guys showed up at my door with boxes. Lots and lots of boxes. A PODS container was also supposed to be at the door.

I did take a whole pile of pictures before and after and I won't bore you with the whole mess this morning, but I do have pictures to share. What a nightmare!

I guess I didn't transfer any before pictures this morning, but here's what the basement looks like currently. The crew is back today to finish off what they didn't get done yesterday.

Pretty empty basement compared to normal
 ACK!!!!  Where are all the books?

Different angle

I did get the guys to move my white sewing table upstairs. I have it more or less installed in Studio U. It's one foot longer than the table I was working on so that has made the sewing space a wee bit smaller, but once everything gets up off the floor, it should be OK. And I do need to buy a new insert that actually fits with the sewing machine that I'm using. Fortunately, the two main ones that I use have the same body so I can swap them out. OR - I could put the sewing machine that actually has an insert into the cabinet. Hmm - I'll think about that today.

Sewing table in Studio U

Despite good planning, things can still go awry. The POD was supposed to be here early. However, it hadn't arrived at 10 AM. The guys were madly packing books and running out of room to put them. Then they ran out of boxes!!!  No kidding! They had another whole whack of boxes delivered. I have no idea the count on the boxes, but it's huge!

So they started to bring stuff up and put it in the house. This is what my house currently looks like. Well, technically no as this picture was taken before they finished. The living room is almost full now.

Living room

They still needed more room so off to the family room. Notice that DH can still watch TV.

More boxes in the family room

And where did all those boxes of books go? In the hallway of course!! It's like a wall. Hmm - perhaps I could offer that suggestion to a certain politician. Everyone would benefit and I'm sure there are lots of used books around that could be made into a wall.

The hallway with its wall of boxes

Literally, that wall of boxes goes right to the front door. I'm ashamed! I heard DH muttering under his breath as he asked me, "these are all your books?"  Well, technically the boxes are only HALF FULL. Hey - that's important to note. However, he certainly wasn't thinking as he saw them create that wall. Guess what? His keys and wallet were in a table drawer that's behind the wall!!!  HAHA!!! I moved two stacks of boxes and squeezed in to get the necessary items!

There are boxes in the kitchen and there are boxes in his office. There are NO boxes in my office but that's because there isn't really any room. Seriously - we look like we live in a hoarders house. You are NOT allowed to judge me. I already know that I have an issue and I'm dealing with it. I hope M realizes that I'm saving her a lot of grief by attacking this issue now. The trick is going to be putting it back, but only what I want/need and getting rid of what I don't need or want. It's going to be a massive task.

I have no idea how the crew could even begin to unpack all this stuff. There's no way and I'd never find anything. So once the new floor is down, they are putting all the furniture back and taking all the boxes to the basement where they'll be stacked and it's going to be my job to go through them one by one and toss, sell, keep or giveaway.

Oh, I should mention that the stash room is currently off limits so nothing in there was packed up. Some of it will have to be packed as the floor has to be repaired. I think that's for another day. We have no room anyway! Yes - it's a very sad state of affairs at my house. OK -- it's so totally my fault! But I blame DH as well for giving me a budget - a big budget. DAMN him!

I was down there helping the guys for a while. I took the quilts off the wall and some of the other stuff. That went upstairs onto the spare bed. But I found this bungee cord thing near the long arm. I picked it up and part of it was sticky. ICK! Not sure what the sticky is from, but I don't use this so I'm keeping it because?  It's in the garbage. I'm hoping there are a lot more things like this!

Bungee cord

Guess what else I found?? A BRAND NEW - never out of the box OTT Lite. A floor model no less. Hey - this would be perfect for Studio U as the lighting is terrible up there. The box is outside the door and waiting to be unboxed.

A brand new OTT LIGHT

I seem to remember buying that in the US at one point, but it's been in that corner for a long, long time.

The packing crew left in the early afternoon as they had literally packed everything they could, but had run out of room to move more stuff upstairs.

At 3:30, I heard the POD being delivered. What a neat process. I didn't see it arrive, but it comes on a flatbed truck. Then this spider-like thing delivers the POD to the driveway. All remote controlled by the driver.

POD being delivered

Then he backed the truck under the spider thing and then with the remote control, it basically collapsed until it fit on the truck. It was amazing to watch. Here's a video of how it gets delivered. You have to watch it - it's amazing. This video is only 3 minutes long and you don't see it collapse, but essentially, it's the reverse of when it arrives. Awesome system.

POD truck getting ready to leave

I was so tired yesterday, I just wanted a nap, but there was no time and I would have felt guilty to nap while the guys were packing. I wanted to be handy in case there were questions.

Then I got an e-mail saying that some paperwork was due yesterday and I needed to get it done. So that took a couple of hours to assemble all that, but it's all done!! Yeah!!!!

Then and only then and it was getting late by this point, did I manage to get to the gazebo for a half hour nap and it felt great.

There's going to be lots more activity in the house today as they move the rest of the stuff up. The long arm is the only thing staying put. The bookcases need to be disassembled. Oh - fun and games.

On that note, I'm out of here. I've also got a lot of work to do and the thought of emptying all those boxes? Frightening! I want to sort all those books and magazines to make them super easy to find on the shelves. That's going to be huge! And I want them logged into a database. I do have one for my books that I've read, but I want to see if I can use it for the quilting books and then I need to see how to rig my phone to scan the ISBN. I'd better make that a priority as those books will need to be unpacked ASAP as they are taking up a lot of space. Yes - going to look for duplicates and I'm not sure if I'm ready to part with any of them at the moment. My priority is to go through the magazines and get rid of those before I do anything with the books.

Have a super day!!!!!


Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Quilts of Valour

I'm in a wee bit of a panic this morning. I'm trying to anticipate my fabric needs over the next two weeks as I'm not sure how much access I'm going to have to everything. ACK - I can't find the basket of Oh Canada fabric and I can't seem to find the right colors to finish off a block. OK - calm down!!!

Plus I look at everything that's not in a box and OH MY GOD - this packing up business is going to be "fun". Thank god - someone else is doing it. I'm not sure I have the energy to pack much this morning. At last, I had a good sleep except for the time when I woke up because I was going to be arrested for murder. Now - how the heck did that come about? Too many murder mysteries before bed!

Matter of fact, my sleep was so deep that when I woke up, my back was a tad stiff and painful because I hadn't moved around. After I got up, I was fine! Yes - I have a silly cold, but nothing that a few good nights of sleep and lots of water won't cure. I must be sick as I've been craving ice cream for my throat and yesterday I got some. That's the first time, we've had ice cream in the house in years!

Yesterday was a pretty productive day. What I'm about to show you isn't big, but it is huge in terms of what it represents.

At last, I finished ONE MORE block in the Gingerbread quilt that was designed by Sue Garman. I was thrilled, to say the least. That was a lot of applique shapes and the block is DONE!!!

The appliqued block is done

And if that wasn't enough, I got another block completed. This one was totally appliqued, but the yellow for those flowers didn't have a lot of contrast against the background. So I did a small stem stitch in brown embroidery floss to help pop the flowers off the background. Except for tying in one thread end with a crochet hook which I'll do this morning, this block is also finished.

One more block - DONE

That leaves one block left. One applique block that is. I've traced all the shapes onto the freezer paper, but haven't got the fabrics cut yet. That's my job for next Monday. Then the task of stitching that block and then ALL the blocks will be done for this quilt. That means I can start putting it together. It's one of my UFOs for this year. It's taking me forever to get through it, but that's OK. That's the purpose of having lists and setting aside times to work on these huge projects. I'm not sure what's on the list after that last block is completed. I've got a lot more quilts with applique prep work to do and I'll pick one of those for the Monday sew day.

If you want a laugh - check out this blog post from 2014!!!  Lynn and I started to work on our Gingerbread quilts on Monday sew day. You can see Lynn's completed quilt in that post. So FIVE years later, I'm getting mine finished.

I would be lying if I didn't say that I brought home some fabric from Quilt Canada. I stopped by the Trendtex booth and I got a small sample of yellow fabric squares. I believe there are FOUR - 5" squares in this little package. So yes - I did bring home some fabric, but nothing that the stash couldn't handle.

A small bundle of squares from Trendtex

We were chatting about fabric stashes yesterday on Monday sew day. It's amazing how many of us who've been sewing for a while deeply regret the wild buying sprees that we went on in the past. Why did we deem it so important to own so much fabric? Or books or patterns? I've no idea what was in my head when I was buying it. I was going through a basket of fabric this morning and so many of them I've had for years and each time, I go through the basket, I keep bypassing those fabrics as they are just not what I need.

So if you are a NEW quilter - do NOT go crazy and buy lots. You will never use most of it and why not spend your money on a quilt class or something that you'll enjoy.

I have plans for that excess fabric and I'll slowly be working my way through it all.

As I surveyed Studio B this morning, I'm trying to rearrange everything in the "new" space. It's going to be even better than it was before because I've essentially acquired an ENTIRE room to put the excess. I know - there was a hidden storage room in the basement that's about 9 feet square? More or less. I'm getting rid of most of the stuff that was in that room and I'm going to line the walls with shelving and that will ensure that ALL the stuff will be easily accessible. I can't wait.

I think I"m going to tell the moving crew to just pack up all the stuff. And when they are done, I'm going to have them move it back in, but NONE of it will be unpacked. I'm going to go through everything box by box and deal with it instead of putting it back. Where would we put it?? I do NOT want that mess ever again in my studio. I don't mind if the studios get messy from working, but not from clutter.

And it's stuff like this that causes clutter. I collected all my gift bags and paper shopping bags and put them into two bags. I donated them to a quilt shop that was looking for bags. These were two very heavy and very full bags. But that cleared up some space in the house. I was happy and Suzanne was happy.

Paper bags and gift bags that were donated

Now I have a task for you. I was very emotionally moved by the Quilts of Valour booth at Quilt Canada. I have a couple of quilts that I need to get quilted for them and a pattern to write. But I want to throw a challenge to you all. I know that some of you may have participated in their call for log cabin blocks, but I'm going to make a plea that we should all make blocks. If you haven't made blocks, then make some. If you have, then perhaps you could make some more.

Here's a link to their pattern.  It's super easy to make.

I'm going to challenge my Monday sewing group to make blocks and I hope to get at least one quilt top done while we're on our sewing retreat. I'll quilt them, but not going to make the entire quilts by myself. If you want to make blocks, then make blocks and either send them to me or send them to the addresses on that link. I would so much prefer that we pass along finished quilts rather than tops or blocks. Both the unfinished items require that someone put those quilts together.

Here's the tally of items collected at Quilt Canada.

Quilts of Valour tally from Quilt Canada

That's incredible.  Each quilt takes 48 blocks so if we divide the number of blocks (3,056) by 48 - that equals almost 64 quilts. They are still thousands of quilts short of their goal!!!  So if you're a quilter and you have no need for more quilts at your house, but you still want to sew - why not start using your stash and your time to make quilts for a charity. Could be Quilts of Valour or your local hospital.

It's a win-win-win for you, your stash and your local organization. PLEASE be sure to read or ask what kind and sizes of quilts that they are looking for.

That's why I'm trying to find my basket of Oh Canada (by Northcott) fabric, so we can use it up at the retreat. Where or where is that basket?????  I've pulled some yellow for the log cabin center, I've got some neutrals for the light side, but where is the darn Oh Canada for the dark??? 

The next display of quilts (Quilts of Valour) will be at Quilts at the Creek at the end of July. Be sure to put that on your calendar and come out and see the quilts. I'll be there at some point over that weekend. I hope to be donating some quilts to Quilts of Valour. Could I dare say 10 quilts??  I have one already finished. Two to quilt - that just leaves 7 to make? Anyone willing to help out????

On that note, I'm back to the basement to try and find some fabric. I have ONE HOUR before the packers come! Help!

Have a super day!!!!


Monday, June 17, 2019

Travel Day - Ottawa to Toronto

I like to play chicken with my thread and it appears that I like to play chicken with my gas.

I probably should have filled up before I left Ottawa, but what's the fun in that? My plan was to fill up at the first OnRoute on the highway, but I realized partway down to the 401 that probably wasn't going to happen. I spotted a sign for a gas station in Spencerville and stopped, but it wasn't open. Seriously???  I think it opened at 7 AM on Sunday morning and I was there at 6:50. Back in the car and I got to Prescott and filled up there.

I do love that car for the gas economy. I will write you a blog post about that car and all its little quirks one day. I plugged in an audiobook before I left and I listened to that all the way home.

I also picked up something to eat at that gas station and it was smooth sailing all the way home. The traffic was light even going through Toronto - no idea what that was all about and I was home by 10:30. Got the car unpacked and put some of the stuff away.

Of course, the girls were very excited to see me and they had to try and outperform each other in their exuberance. I grabbed a book and popped out to the gazebo to try and have a wee nap. So what's the deal here? It's almost the middle of June - in the middle of the day and I needed a quilt to keep me warm. I didn't sleep a lot  - I as saving that for night time.

And yes - it would appear that I acquired a cold from someone. Damn them!! It's not bad, but I had a hard time sleeping last night. I got up rather late this morning and I still feel like a train hit me. Well, not that bad!

I puttered in Studio U for part of the afternoon. I was going to just sew something for me, but I didn't have the energy to fire up a sewing machine so I just puttered and put away some of the stuff that had accumulated before I left.

Sorry that the post is short and sweet today, but I got up late and it's Monday sewing and the girls are demanding that I walk them this morning and my brain is fuzzy so I'd better go.

It's going to be a totally crazy week this week. And I promised that I'll be back to posting pictures tomorrow.

Have a great day!!!!


Sunday, June 16, 2019

Quilt Canada - Day Four

I couldn't leave you in the lurch and not provide a post today. I was going to drive home right after we finished tear down yesterday, but then I decided that that was the most stupid idea ever. I was going to be tired and hungry and it would be a lot of driving in the dark, so I stayed one more night. I'm glad I did as I think I'm getting a cold and my throat is a bit sore. Now that could be entirely from all the chatting over the last couple of days.

And of course, I'm wide awake in the middle of the night, but I'm not getting up. That would be just silly. I did find an audiobook for the way home so I'm good to go. Now to get the blog post done!

At last, it was the final day of Quilt Canada. It's kind of a bittersweet day. You want it to be over, you want to go home, but after four days, the show kind of feels like home. You know where everyone's booth is and you just didn't get a chance to chat with everyone that you wanted to.

It was reasonably busy for a final show day. But I do have to admit that it was much slower than the previous days. I was perfectly OK with that. I forgot to mention that I was in the PFAFF booth yesterday and I know some people went to find me in the other booth. Sorry about that. I did know I was switching.

Lunches at the convention center were pretty decent. They had a veggie wrap that they would grill and they threw on a bit of coleslaw. The cost? $8.00. That was a very reasonable price and it was excellent which is not always the case at places like that. I did have lunch at a reasonable time.

I did get out and chat with a couple of vendors, but I didn't buy a single thing. Not even a spool of thread. I think I was so tired and brain dead that I had no desire to buy anything. Well, that's not true - I did go into one booth to buy a pattern and she was pretty much sold out and suggested that I go to her web site where I can download the pattern. I'll do that when I get home and I'll share that website with you because it's AMAZING!!!

I did send myself some notes of things to check out when I get home and I'm looking forward to doing that on paperwork days! Oh yeah!

The show closed at 4 PM. Thank you to the organizers for that. There is NO need to keep that show (or any other show) open past 4 PM on the last day. People are tired, vendors are tired, organizers are tired. Most consumers are gone. We did start a general tidying up of our booths around 3 PM and you could hear a general rustling of other vendors doing the same thing. At 4 PM, the teardown happened in full force. I envy those that are out of there in minutes!!!!  Every booth that I've ever worked at is one of the last ones to pack up!!! The booth that I used to work for was out of there before we were last night but not by much.

Let's face it - we technically have TWO booths to tear down. We're not a large group so that means all hands on deck for that process. I guess it's not that bad, but I'm always thrilled to death when it's finished. As I was leaving, there were still a couple other vendors that were almost finished. It was after 7:30 PM when I left the building. And yep - it was raining!!! My car looks like a disaster - stuff just got crammed in!

I passed by Tim's and got some chili for dinner and back to the house.

I had gotten to the show early to check out the remainder of the quilts. I took lots of pictures and I hope to share some of them with you. I was also keeping my eye on the Trendtex challenge. They had a silent auction and the bidding closed at 1:30. A few others and I were hovering. There was one piece in particular that I really, really wanted and I was willing to pay money for it. I had the highest bid at the start of the day and then some person outbid me. So I later outbid them and they never came back! Yeah!!!! 

I ended up with three pieces in total, but I didn't pay much for the other two. There was one other piece that I really thought was brilliant and I wanted it as well, but two friends were bidding on it and I decided to let them duke it out!

On that note, it's time to get everything packed up and in the car. Then the long trip home. It's actually not that long, but I will have to stop for gas along the way and for a stretch break. That's OK. My goal is to be home by lunchtime. I got an audiobook, I got snacks and I should be good!

Have a super day!!!!


Saturday, June 15, 2019

Quilt Canada - Day Three

Holy smokes!!!!!  It was Day Three of Quilt Canada yesterday and I got to take lunch at 3 PM. YES - that's how busy it was yesterday. Unbelievable. I've no idea where all the people have come from, but it's been amazing. Loads of people popping in to chat about sewing machines or quilting machines.

We had one lady who had spent the previous two days exploring all the options of a sit-down quilting machine. She had collected brochures and made notes. She came back to our booth and asked a few more questions and then bought. She was the BEST prepared customer I've ever seen.

A lot of friends and followers came by the booth and hard to name them all, but it was great to see you all!!!  Two ladies came by from Sudbury. Now I knew I was never going to remember their names, so I made myself a note!!  Hi to Fran and Julie from Sudbury. Thanks for following the blog and thanks so much for stopping by to say HI. Gosh - I should have been taking pictures with people, but there just wasn't time for that.

I heard from many vendors that they are madly selling stock and a lot of them were going to run out of their main products by noon yesterday. People were taking kits apart so they would have fabric to sell. That's an amazing thing to happen.

I did get to the show early yesterday so I could pop around and look at some more quilts. I'll be back early again this morning to finish my tour since it's next to impossible to get out of the booth, although I expect that today will be much quieter.

I stopped by the Quilts of Valour booth. I was chatting with one of the reps and I was looking at a replica of a quilt made for the First World War. It was a signature quilt. I don't know what happened to me, but I had a very emotional moment. Huge waves of emotion just poured out - it was very bizarre, to say the least.

They have a call for blocks- they are log cabin blocks. You can make a block, you can make a quilt top or even better - you can make an entire quilt!!!  It's better to make an entire quilt. We're going on a retreat in a couple of weeks - I'm going to challenge my group that we make a Quilts of Valour quilt while we're at the retreat and I'll get it quilted after the retreat. I might even have all the fabrics needed in my stash. I'll check that out when I get home. Maybe we can even have a Quilts of Valour sewing day at my "new" studio B.

Being as busy as we have been has meant that I didn't get a chance to buy a single thing. Not that I need anything, but it would be nice to get out and at least look. There are a couple of vendors that I'd like to chat with about certain products and I hope to get out today for a bit to check it out.

So many people to chat with - so little time. I've been juggling my evening dinners with people. Last night I went out with Leslie and Luana. Luana owns It's an online quilt shop that's been around for 20 years. I love chatting with her as she's got a very good handle on the quilting industry including trends in fabrics and colors and styles. I didn't get to hear her lecture at Quilt Canada, but the dinner conversation helped to compensate for that.

It's all about networking!!! And I LOVE to network!!!

Trying to keep up with the urgent e-mails while I'm away, but I know I'm neglecting some stuff. I got TWO good pieces of news yesterday. First, it appears that the magazine section of FW (which owns the popular quilting magazines - Quiltmaker, McCalls, Fons and Porter) has been purchased. We're not sure what this means yet - how many titles will continue? all or none or some? But at least there will be money in the coffers. I went ahead on a leap of faith that they would continue. I now have three quilts to make this summer.

The second piece of good news is that my floor should be done by the END OF JUNE!!!!!  Yes - I'm so excited, I can hardly wait. That means when I get home, I've got to bring up that stuff that I want to get rid of. I could get the guys to do it, but well - I don't mind doing some of that stuff. I need to make a decision about the work tables. Do I bring my two personal tables up to Studio U?? I'm so tempted because they are very good expensive tables and I really should be getting my money's worth out of them. Since I plan to sew more upstairs - I should bring them up. OK - a decision is made - they're going up!  Then all the tables in the studio will be the same and hopefully, I'll find a new configuration for them.

That means that Sit n Sew days will be back in business in July. If you're on the list - I'll be sending out the dates once I'm home. I also plan to have some days for charity quilts to use up those five tubs of fabric. I'll be putting together more information on that and sending that out. I'm so flipping excited - I can hardly wait!!!!   Thanks to Pat for the great suggestion. If anyone has ideas on how to use up that fabric and make use of that great space - let me know. I'm open!!!

I'm also so inspired and motivated to get back to the sewing machine - I told the others in our booth yesterday that I need to go home - NOW. They asked if I was sick. Nope - just motivated!!   My brain is going to explode.

I'll be heading out very early tomorrow morning so if there isn't a blog tomorrow - don't be alarmed.

The show closes at 4 PM today so that's a good thing and hopefully, it won't take too long to get everything together and on the skids for shipping back to Toronto.

I feel a sore throat coming on. I hope that wasn't from Leslie who has a cold. It's probably from all the talking. I've been trying to drink as much water as I can to prevent dehydration. I'm doing OK, but probably not enough.

I'm going to be bidding on some of the Trendtex challenge pieces today. Some of them are so fun and there's one that a few people I know want. I hate to bid over them - although I've done it before and was totally shameless in my bidding. Sorry, Peggy!!!

On that note, I guess I had better get myself organized for the day.

Have a super day!!!!


Friday, June 14, 2019

Quilt Canada - Day Two

I'm not a basketball fan, but I would be remiss if I didn't say "We ARE the Champions!". I saw the score this morning. Way to go Raptors!!

I feel like WE are the champions after surviving yesterday at Quilt Canada. I arrived bright and early so I could check out some of the quilts. Some great concurrent shows with loads of interesting ideas. I can't wait to get back home and have some planning sessions with myself. I have two deadlines when I get home - both July 1st, but both are very doable in that time frame. Unfortunately, one more item got added to that list yesterday. Yep - that deadline list ebbs and flows but stays pretty consistent.

I did take a few pictures and will try to post next week. Holy cow - yesterday had a wee bit of a slow start to it, but then BAM - that place was hopping. I'm not sure how many buses ended up coming, but that place was a beehive of activity until late in the day.

I demoed sewing machines, embroidery machines, quilting machines, embroidery software, and talked about quilting techniques. They are so many myths out there that people think is the "right" way to quilt. Holy cow!!!!  Ladies and gentlemen, we have to start thinking outside the box! The other thing I noticed is that people have taken MANY classes, but are still afraid. People, you have to STOP taking classes. No that's not right. You have to take a class, then go home and practice. Then you take the next class and practice some more. You just can't keep taking classes and hope to get better.

I try to convince them to try at least ONE new thing. Don't forget about my 86 year old father (his father lived to be 100). His motto is - I need to learn something new every day. He volunteers for a museum and spends his days tinkering with gas engines on old tractors. If they can't find a replacement part, my dad MAKES the parts. He learns something every day. I'm very proud of my dad and my mom and it's from them that I learned a good work ethic. I also learned a wee bit about hoarding!

So here's a wee homework assignment for you all. Take something - anything in your house and try to learn something new about it. Could be your phone. Could be a kitchen appliance. Could be your camera. Or get that sewing machine out. Take one of the stitches - what can you do with that one stitch. Gosh - it could even be something as simple as the zigzag. You can do a LOT of different things with the zigzag. Over and over again, I hear people say they have all these stitches, but don't know what to do with them. Well, try new things.

That's one of the reasons why I like to be nosy and see what other people are doing. How are they using things differently? That's also why I like to take classes, but at the same time, I think we use classes as a crutch. We think that if we take something like free motion quilting that we'll learn. Oh yes - we'll learn, but if we don't sit down at the machine and practice those techniques - we'll never learn.

I heard that over and over again yesterday. Oh yes - my other teacher told me to do that. Well?????  Why aren't you doing that? How do you think I learned? Or the other instructors learned? We made mistakes - lots of mistakes.

And the myths - oh - it's sad about the myths. People think they need to do things a certain way. Nope - not at all. It's your quilt and your skills. You do what you think works best for you! There's no halfway!

Perhaps I'll do a myth-busting blog post one day just cause I'm tired of hearing all these things. If you have a myth that you think would make a good topic - e-mail it to me.

Oh my goodness - I saw so many people yesterday. People that I knew from all over the place. People that I used to work for, people that I worked with, people who follow my blog and loads of others. It was super exciting. Two ladies stopped by to say HI. They are blog followers. One was from Sudbury and one from Ottawa. They did tell me their names, but my mind is totally blank at this point. Thanks so much for following the blog and thanks so much for stopping by to say HI!! 

I didn't get out of our booth to any of the vendors. I think today will be a quieter day? Not sure as yesterday was so crazy. I'll try to post some pictures on Facebook - I haven't even had time to do that.

Here are my pictures for today. They are from an English Paper Piecing class that I taught a while back at Oh Look Fabric. I missed getting pictures of one student's work.

We had a blast - as usual.

Loretta's hexies

Cathy's hexies

Heidi's hexies

I LOVE all those color combinations. I should be bringing my hexies with me, but there honestly isn't time to do anything here. I was out last night with Carol and we had a grand chat about stuff. I haven't had a chance to catch up with her in a while so that was awesome.

Wow  - so much excitement happening. Seems like something new everyday!!!  Yeah!   Bring it on!

On that note, I'd better find something to wear today. I was a wee bit skimpy on what I packed for the show, but that's easy to fix with a few scarves and other accessories! Don't forget that if you're in the Ottawa area and coming to Quilt Canada, stop by the Husqvarna Viking booth and say HI!!!!

Have a super day!!!!!!