Saturday, January 8, 2022

My brain is overloaded!

My head is about to explode! And not because I'm sick  -- it's going into learning overdrive! Yesterday was a HUGE challenge - the customer wanted one thing -- I didn't know how to make it happen. After some DESPERATE phone calls and e-mails and THANK GOD people were there for me, I was back at the long arm, and I figured it out! 

One more test run to attempt this morning, and then I'm loading the quilt. I have to say that I was feeling pretty low yesterday as I tried and tried and couldn't make it work. It wasn't just that I couldn't figure it out - I was looking at the solution in one way, yet the answer lay in another totally different direction. Once that idea was in my head, it was simple to make it work. All that to say -- we need to THINK OUTSIDE the box!

Once I looked back at the quilt, I had to redo the quilt pattern, and within a few minutes, I had the revised design ready to go. I'm going to have to do a custom quilt of mine to remember what is possible and how to do it. But this curve was steep and challenging - I don't think I'm going to forget. 

Here's some advice for you -- there are NO training manuals for this software. BUT, I repeatedly tried to get it to work. Trial and error. Why does this happen when I touch this? And after some fruitless moments, but I kept trying, I figured it out. Phew!

I'm also pushing my envelope on the embroidery software. I'm trying to do a project, and while it's acceptable, it's not totally correct. However, an e-mail to someone, and I got the missing clue to what needed to be done. I will get a mini-tutorial next week (no time yesterday), and I'll be good until I hit the next snag!

My Dad will be 89 this year, and that's what he does all day. He's trying to get his CNC software working with the CNC plasma cutter. The apple didn't fall far from the tree at our house! My Dad is BUILDING his plasma cutter set-up, including the XYZ motors that run it. 

I love Helen Anne's comment about the Zoom call and tidying up her sewing studio. She said the Zoom call was a perfect opportunity to tidy, and the chatter kept her mind occupied while she cleaned!! I LOVE it -- perhaps at the next Virtual Retreat, we're going to have to have TIDY UP TIME! The next retreat is on January 29 and 30, and that's a Saturday and Sunday. The Sunday starts a bit later as I have a class at 10 AM. 

I know some people want a garment sew-along! ACK!! I do as well, as quilted clothing is BACK. Right now, there just isn't enough bandwidth in my calendar to make that happen. Perhaps we can start in February when things are under control. OK -- just STOP laughing right now!!!

I'm almost ready for one class and embroidery club tomorrow. Most pictures are taken - they just need to be put into a presentation. And the large distribution lists that needed to be done are created. I need to forward an e-mail to those groups TODAY. Just did it! So if you are in the Timely Techniques sessions and did NOT get an e-mail from this me this morning, let me know. Dare I say that the admin work is going to slow down? I doubt it. The more you do, the more work and follow-up you generate! 

I dare NOT show you a picture of Studio B at the moment. It definitely looks like a tornado went through. One about 20 feet wide! But it's all temporary as I get past this learning curve. But there is space to work on those three surfaces; it's the floor that's in a bit of disarray!

I got three more community project quilts from Diane. 

Three more community project quilts

After all this fiddling with the custom quilt, I'm going to truly appreciate a pantograph!!! And do NOT ask me to do a custom quilt for you. You can't afford my price! But I very much want to do one for myself! Yep -- I now have just enough knowledge to make me dangerous. 

You knew this was going to happen. I was at Indigo the other day, and I decided to check out the cookbooks; and I found one from The Great British Baking Show, but I did NOT buy it. 

 A baking book from my favorite show

Instead, I went to the library and found a Mary Berry baking book, and well, those recipes are darn simple! And she even uses margarine for several of them. Mary? Margarine?? I'm shocked!!!

Mary Berry cookbook

It's sitting on the kitchen table, and at dinner last night, DH wants to know when he's getting his cake. Well, not until these custom quilts are done! 

All I can say is thank goodness we don't have kids at home because I don't think either of us came up for breath yesterday. 

Here's a couple of things that I found while going through Pandora's Closet. This giant purple container -- come on -- surely you have one of them. I have two of them, and they were a popular storage item at Micheal's many years ago. 

I opened it up to find this in the top tray. 

Finished quilt blocks

Hmmm -- some blocks and some paper piecing templates. What is it? 

Paper pieced log cabin blocks

Those are tiny (4" finished) scrappy log cabin blocks, and I think I found twenty blocks already made. And the BEST news, the bottom of that purple container is filled with precut strips ready to make more blocks. 

The scraps ready to make another log cabin quilt

Years ago, I made this quilt. There are 144 blocks in the quilt, and my production method allowed me to make four blocks in one hour. A large quilt will be VERY heavy with all those seams. 

My scrappy log cabin quilt

This is NOT a good picture of the quilt, but it hangs in my hallway, and I LOVE it. I intended to make a bed quilt, but I ran out of time. So now I have that bucket filled with scraps, and I'd like to make a second one. I know-- why?? Because I CAN!!!!

Besides storing your scraps in a bucket like I did, we're going to explore scraps tomorrow. How to store them, what to keep, and a whole lot more. So if you have pictures of how you store them, forward them along. I have some good ones to share with you.

Here's something else I found in the closet. Two bags of different-sized pieces in greens and pink. I LOVE the color combination, but no specific project in mind. So this went into the stash room. There won't be anything left by the time I'm finished putting things away in that closet! I'm good with that. 

Pink and green fabric bundle

And I found this. Two tassels and a meter of fabric. They were in one of the boxes for making tote bags, and the tassels went in my supply box with cords and tassels. The fabric? I don't know what to do with it. 

Animal print napped fabric

It's like a decorator fabric with a short hair nap. It's fun, but what the heck should I do with it?? Does someone want it? Well, I might not give it away if someone has an excellent idea for it. 

Take stock of your "new" sewing spaces? Are they clear -- I know mine isn't, but I'm in a project mode, and it's perfectly OK to make a mess. Just be sure to clean it up! The bottom line is don't let those spaces become storage areas! 

And next time you're on a Zoom call, why not tidy up! I use a wireless set of earbuds, so I don't have to be right at my computer to listen to the chatter. They are awesome. If you don't have wireless earbuds, take the stuff you're tidying to the computer and listen while you sort. It's very relaxing and very therapeutic, and you get a clean room as a bonus!!

On that note, it's time to head outside to walk the girls. Oh, those girls!!! Who wants to walk outside when it's minus 13. But other parts of the country have been way worse -- I need not complain. 

Have a great day!!


1 comment:

  1. Elaine, you need to know, that your post is the one I read every day. You are such an inspiration, to many people, I’m sure. I love the dog antics, all your projects and your positive outlook. I’m from Montana, USA.