Wednesday, January 8, 2020

A walk in the wild

My head is just spinning! There's so much inspiration here - from my colleagues, from the new stuff we got to see and hear about yesterday and what we did. I'm just beyond excited. I'd love to sequester myself in my studio for two weeks with no other commitments and see what I can do. I don't have that time so I'm going to have to prioritize.

Unfortunately, I can't share a thing about what we learned in the morning. That's top-secret until it happens.

We did spend the afternoon working on the machines again. While I know how to serge, it's a machine that I lack a bit of confidence in. Well, not anymore. And again - I cannot thank Margaret enough for how prepared she was. She has years of experience at these kinds of opportunities and if I don't learn something from her - well, I would be very silly to forget what she did.

We knew that we were going to have time to spend on the new sewing/embroidery machine (Husqvarna Viking Designer EPIC 2) as well as the new serger - the Husqvarna Viking Amber Air s400. In addition to the standard foot that comes with the serger, there are two different packs of feet - the Utility foot set which includes things like the gathering foot and the gathering attachment. Then there's the Embellishment feet set which includes beading foot, piping foot in two different sizes. There are other feet - I think there are 9 or 10 in total with various guides and feet. The complete list of feet is listed on that link above. Scroll to the bottom - it's on the bottom right-hand side.

She came prepped with various kinds of fabrics already pre-cut and cords and pipings and a whole lot more bits and pieces. I brought thread. We had printouts of the instructions. We had a serger set up for the two of us to use and we were in business. We could have figured these things out ourselves at home, BUT there were three or four very experienced sergers users in that room. So there was no need for them to play with the sergers - they already knew this stuff. So - we got their assistance on working with all the feet. And working together, it was easier than trying to figure it out ourselves.

Thanks to Margaret and the serger queens in the room, I now have an amazing little bag of serger samples. My goal is to book some time when I get home and spend it with the serger. I want to be able to replicate those samples and become extremely efficient at setting up for each type of application. I have to say that the Amber Air s400 - makes it super easy to change threads so that's not going to be a deterrent in the future. This is a great serger and it can do a ton of stuff.

Now, my thing is going to be - what the heck to make with the serger. I've got to make some samples and try making some clothes. Hmmm - what will I make???  Oh - don't forget my dressmaking classes start next week.

Oh - we also did a bit of sewing machine maintenance in the morning so that was good. Things to watch out for and things to do or not do and so forth. Remember that I say I want to learn something new everyday? Well, even before 8 AM I had learned something. For the life of me, I can't remember what that was!!! That's hilarious! I'm sure that tidbit is now safely stowed in my brain so there's no need to remember what I learned when - just that I learned it!

Our table was a mess as we worked in the afternoon. There was red thread all over the floor. Snips and bits of fabric all over the place and well - it was a disaster. I should have taken a picture of it. But we were soon packed up and ready to leave. It was a super day.

Our carload went to Hobby Lobby after work. We were meeting everyone for dinner so we had some time to kill. I bought two small pieces of cotton for one of our projects. I bought some cargo mesh to use as inside pockets for tote bags or backpacks and I bought a weird garment fabric that is to die for. Emily made me buy it as she bought some as well. It's lined with a Shirling like fleece with sparkly on the outside. I know - me??? And it's slightly pinkish. Not a vibrant pink, but - well you'll see it when I get home.  I didn't take a picture of it - I just packed it away.

So I finished my book the other day. I had brought one more book with me. When I went to read it, I realized that the first couple of pages are missing. It's one that I've had for years. Good grief!!!  So I have nothing to read. OH  - I did listen to part of the audiobook, but that's so hard to just lie in bed and listen. I need to be doing something. I tried to download an e-version of the book, but I don't have my library card with me and it's not stored in the OverDrive app. Oh well - not much time to read anyway.

I do have some pictures for you. From my walk yesterday morning. And thanks to Linda for the suggestions of those non-mesh shoes. While I didn't like them when I first bought them, they are comfy and that's all that counts.

There's one small bit where I have to walk on the side of the road. Not much of a shoulder, but then there's not much traffic so that's good.

No shoulder to walk on

It's a very bizarre little area because you wouldn't believe everything that I passed. Here's the part where I'm still walking on the side of the road. As I mentioned the other day - there are trees on one side and the hotel development on the other.

Trees on one side of the road

On the other side (the hotel side) is this power generation station or whatever they are called.

Power station

I passed by a farm and you can see in the picture that I'm now on a sidewalk. That made walking a whole lot more enjoyable.

A farm on the opposite side of the road

Oh, shoot - I didn't upload the picture on the other side of the road, but it was a small field with COWS. Yep - cows.

Then I turned into the subdivision. I noticed the sign on the entranceway - Blair Farm. Hmmm - that was probably one big farm at one time.

Walking through the subdivision

As I got to the end of the street, there's the start of the clump of hotels.

A hotel in the distance

And when I got to the end of that road, there was the Interstate.

The Interstate on the other side of the trees

The only time I had to walk in the grass and potentially get my new shoes dirty was when I had to cross the main road to get back to our hotel. If you saw the map - you would understand. Anyway  - that is a fairly main road (4 lanes). I think I'll do the reverse today so there'll be less traffic on the way out. I'm not crossing at an intersection so best to do it when traffic is lighter.

Crossing on the grass

I walked up to the hotel from the main road. Our hotel is the second one in the picture.

Walking back o the hotel

I was aiming for 5,000 steps and so I walked around to circle in front of the gated community. This is the most bizarre little pocket of civilization.

The gated community

There are no shops or restaurants per se in the immediate area. Well, that's not true - the Cracker Barrel is across that main road. It's a two-minute walk from the hotel, but you have to cross that busy road with no crosswalk. Not a good idea for the faint of heart.

Anyway, after the day was done and we had arrived at the hotel, I was still short some steps - about 400 so I did one or two tours of the hallway and I was good.

I did much better at not eating so much at lunch, HOWEVER, they have chocolate bars in the training room. The little ones and well - I had a few more than I should have of those. And then we had dinner which I only ate half of, but I shared this monster piece of carrot cake. I also could have done without that. My stomach was gurgling and not as happy as it should be.

NO MORE bad habits while I'm away. Thank goodness, I'm very diligent with my breakfast and my walking. I don't feel quite as bad. I'm drinking lots of water - more than usual so that's helping.

On that note, I'm going to venture a wee bit further this morning. The walk yesterday didn't take that long and I know the territory around here now that I've got myself orientated. I just have to be back at the hotel to catch my ride at 8 AM.

I've got a wee bit of homework to finish for our Christmas Fig Sew Along that will go to the group on Friday. A wee bit of sewing that'll take about 20 minutes at the most. I hope to sneak that in later today. Part of the group leaves today so the room will have a lot more space so that'll make it easier to set up a sewing machine at lunchtime and get the homework completed.

Have a super day!!!!


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