Monday, December 9, 2013

Quilting DOs and DON'Ts

Yesterday was an EXHAUSTING day. If my normal blog makes you tired - then I wouldn't read any further!!!!

I went to spin class. This was one of the toughest classes I have ever done!  The instructor (Linda) was subbing for the guy that normally does Sunday morning. Linda doesn't have the best reputation among the clientele, but she is getting MUCH BETTER. I am glad I chatted with her that one day. I realize that it is NOT just my feedback that has made her change. Anyway - we were doing hills and I swear we did the Cabot Trail THREE TIMES!!!!!!    I was working so hard, at one point I thought I was going to be sick!!!!   Thanks Linda for the great workout. Now I have to find the supervisor's e-mail so I can provide some feedback!!!!

Back home to work on STUFF.  According to my Fitbit, I walked just over 18,000 steps (8.25 miles) and 41 flights of stairs. No wonder my body just shut down at 9 PM.

And what was I doing when I did all those steps????   I had a quilt to quilt..............

Customer quilt

Detail of quilting

Not a HUGE one, but still takes time and I had to piece the backing for the customer. Again - not a big deal, but just one more thing to do.

However (and I am NOT picking on this customer - she is a wonderful lady), I wanted to use this quilt as an example of why we (as quilters) should do certain things.

The biggest issue here is NOT measuring the border when putting them on. If I can provide some feedback to my customers so their next quilt will be even better than the current one - then I try to do that.
As I was giving this top a quick press before loading, I noticed this.............

Do you see - how that black is a bit wonky in the corner???

And now look at it - oh yes - there is going to be fullness in this quilt!!!!

And another issue with the border

Ah - there is that FULLNESS

However after it was quilted - it wasn't that bad
 So if you are putting a border on a quilt - PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE - measure through the vertical center of the quilt. Take that measurement and cut TWO border pieces the same length as that measurement. Sew them on and PRESS WELL (that is another issue I see very often - seams are not well pressed). Then measure through the horizontal center of the quilt and cut two pieces that length and sew them on. When you sew them on - match the centers and the ends and EASE either the border or the top in. You may have to ease the border on one side and the top on the other. Measuring the borders like that helps to make the quilt sit square and no fullness to deal with.

Now here is something that I LIKE - a BUSY back. Can you see the quilting here?????  Didn't think so!!!!!!    It is the same colour as the top (doesn't have to be the same fabric - in this case it was) so I was able to use the same colour of thread top and bottom - makes my life a whole lot easier!!!!!    The worst is when I get MUSLIN for a backing of a quilt that is dark on top. 

And while I was working on that quilt - I did something BAD - really BAD and almost made myself sick AGAIN!!!!!

I decided it was time to tackle the mess in the studio. Of course that meant tackling the "extra extra" storage areas - the closets upstairs!!!!!    And OH MY GOD - LOOK WHAT I FOUND..............

Hmmmmm - a small bag of scraps (OK - that can be dealt with and went into the big laundry basket of scraps). Now what could be in that blue tin??????   I thought I knew what was in it and I almost just put it back on the shelf WITHOUT looking inside (YES - we need a major labeling session!!!!)   But look...............

MY CRAYONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    Oh boy - I now have a LOT of crayons!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I also found a big bag of Kansas Troubles fabric that was slated to make a quilt - well I had TWO different colour ways set aside. I decided to put this fabric back on the shelf and do the quilt in batiks!!!!!

So what exactly was I faced with yesterday???????????????

Remember - I took everything OFF the shelf, I emptied MOST of the stuff that was on the floor in the storage room and of course I had the stuff that was on the tables.

Here is all the CRAP!!!!!!!!!!!!1
And here is the space

In case you didn't get that - here is the CRAP

And here is the space

Oh yes - there seems to be a BIG problem!!!!!!!

I was busy quilting, but wanted to get some tubs to deal with the problem. Loaded my kid's debit card and gave her a list and off she went.

I sorted through the stuff on the tables and the floor and picked the items that are currently being worked on or will be needed for 2014 or things that are almost complete. They went on the shelf.

Then I packed up three tubs of stuff. 

I cleared some space in the closets upstairs I'll show you when I am completely done.

Stuff to carry upstairs   (made me ill to move it out of the basement, but I don't have a choice)

This was the state of the space before I went to bed last night

Cutting table and ironing board still need some work. (They are a bit clearer this morning). That ironing board is my staging area, but NOTHING stays on it!!!!

And here is my 2014 shelf!!!!!    These are my CURRENT projects, things to do for other people (gifts), quilts that are almost done.  YES - I know it seems like a lot, but this is the stuff that I SHUFFLE every time someone comes to my house to sew. The original idea of this shelf was that what I was working on would go on the shelf to avoid stuff being on the table. SO - now that is what is on the shelf and I have to make the stuff on the tables disappear. I am working on it and hope to be done tonight?????   No quilt on the forecast for today!!!!!

So yes - MAJOR progress is happening here. And the BIG thing is going to be - NOTHING should reside on the tables UNLESS it can go on that shelf when I need to tidy up. Oh boy - this is going to be tough, but unless I start to enforce that - this mess is just going to get worse.

And yes before I went to bed last night, I felt ILL at the enormity of the situation. I MUST MUST MUST get a handle on it. By organizing it and seeing the true picture - that will make a big help. I will try NOT to add to the shelf as the year goes on and space is freed up. Well I may add a couple of things, but they had better be from the storage areas, NOT something that I have purchased!!!!!!    I may even give up teaching all year unless it is something that does not require a sample or the sample is already made!!!!!!!!!!!

I trimmed three customer quilts and then I trimmed TWO more of mine and charity quilts and now I have FOUR bindings to put on when I get home from Monday Motivators. Labels to make and more stuff to carry upstairs. But I am on a mission - I WANT this space to be clear - NOT TIDY, but clear. My biggest problem now is going to be able to find stuff!!!!!!   Well I shouldn't be looking for that stuff anyway - I have loads to do on the shelf!!!!!

How is everyone else doing with their organizing?????    Seriously - you should put what you have NO TIME to work on IN STORAGE. Keep out ONLY WHAT you can accomplish or want to accomplish in 2014. The rest is just clutter that not only takes up physical space, but mental space as well. I am hoping that once it is out of sight, that it will be easier to focus on what NEEDS to be done.

On that note - I am out of here.

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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