Thursday, April 21, 2022

A thief amongst us

I love when I have a deadline but it's not knocking on my door. I was able to get a lot done yesterday and worked towards the two projects with imminent deadlines, but I was relaxed, and it was a great day! 

Almost all the embellishments for the Cherrywood Challenge are done. I still have some work on the two final pieces, and both will be a bit fiddly, but I'm putting that on the back burner because I have something else that needs to be done first. I also made significant progress on that, and the first part is complete. There are three bits left to finish on that project. 

To finish the bits, I'm learning more about technology! Now that my Scan and Cut is sitting out, I'm determined to make that thing work! I have a goal, and I accomplished part of that goal this morning. A lot more experimenting to do.  

I started out in EQ8 to design a block. I'm using the applique tools, and WOW -- that's so much fun. I was "afraid" of that tool in the past. Seriously??? What is wrong with me? So I played around with the tool. Wouldn't it be great fun if the Scan and Cut could cut my shapes? Well, it can. 

I printed the templates and played with various options to make the shape BOLD, and then I loaded that paper into the scan and cut and SCANNED the images. In mere seconds, I had SVG files of my project. YES!!!  I mean -- it's not rocket science, and it's just a matter of knowing your way around the super simple cutter functions. That two-hour class I took a couple of weeks ago was AMAZING. 

Scanning my EQ8 templates

I used my handy dandy scraper I bought last week to ensure that the paper was well secured before scanning. 

My scrapper for digital cutting

Then I took a piece of fabric and put Heat n Bond on the back. I loaded that onto the cutting mat, and it went into the Scan and Cut. 

The fabric is loaded onto the cutting mat

So, while the fabric didn't cut as clean as I would like it -- I used the auto settings, and I may have missed something, it did cut. What's most important is that the fabric didn't budge! It was solid, and I had to peel it off. There's a learning curve ahead to make this work perfectly, but I'm confident that it WILL work. It's like our sewing machines; just because it says AUTO doesn't mean that we don't have to tweak things! 

And my fusible didn't seem to be well stuck in some places. But here's the thing --- let's say that I'm OK with manually cutting that shape. How much time will I save by having the Scan and Cut TRACE the image onto the fabric? OH YES --- I can see where I will be using this. I want it to cut, so I'll be experimenting this morning as I finish my projects. I'll try cutting and tracing -- just because I can, and I KNOW how to make it happen. 

I may increase the cutting pressure by 1 and see what happens!!

WOW --- that just opened up a TON of options! This will work for English Paper Piecing if you have a lot to do with the same fabric. You could, at minimum, trace all the shapes onto the fabric and cut them by hand. Or if you were really good -- you could cut using the cutter. I wonder if I missed a setting where I was using a bonded fabric?? Oh -- that was a command for a different brand. I think I need to change the pressure or the blade depth slightly. 

I would NOT use it for cutting shapes where I could use my rotary cutter -- NO cutting device will ever be as fast as the rotary cutter!

I do have one problem with the cutter. My power bar in that area is not large enough, and I have to unplug something to plug it in. 

An octopus of power cords!

OK -- we need to start our SVG club NOW. I want to get feedback from the other group members. I have things to share!!!!

So I was sitting at the computer in the morning, and I heard Murphy moving around, and then I heard something that wasn't quite right. I ignored it for a few seconds and then thought I'd better check. Having Murphy in the house is like having a naughty toddler. 

Murphy! Bad doggy!!!

Murphy! What are you eating?

What does she have in her paws? 

Mom -- I was trying to help by getting the label off!

That would be a ball of yarn that I recently purchased and hadn't put in the box where it belongs. There were two balls, and I guess she liked the orange one best. Oh, Murphy!!!!  She didn't cut the yarn, which is good -- not like when she stole a spool of thread and, with one bite, cut the spool into lengths of about 12 inches! But she was trying to take the label off! 

She stole the yarn from here!

Both skeins of yarn are safely put away!

Murphy, this is what you are supposed to be playing with. And she is so persistent with that ball. She will sit and whine if it goes under the furniture. A note for future furniture buying --- the pieces will go RIGHT to the floor or be very high off the floor, so no balls can get stuck. Guess who has to get on their hands and knees to rescue the ball? 

MOM -- this is my favorite toy!

And all she wants is to play ball. Throw it for me! Mom -- throw it for me!! Throw it NOW!!!

I had to make some bias tape the other day, and I discovered something. There are two kinds of tape makers -- the one with fusible tape on the back and one without. 

¼The front of the bias strips

The back of the bias strips

While they were both made with the ¼" tape maker, I find that the one without the tape is slightly narrower. 

One version is slightly narrower than the other

And why is that important? I once made yards and yards (about 50 yards) of bias tape using the tape, and it was slightly too wide to go around the tight bends of my project. I should dig that project out again and see if I can enlarge the pattern to make it. It was gorgeous!!!

Use the bias tape maker with NO fusible tape to get a narrow bias

I got to one of the sewing machines late in the afternoon, and YES -- there was the update. 

The Designer EPIC 2 downloading the update

I love how the Husqvarna Viking Designer EPIC 2 keeps track of how many hours of sewing and embroidery it's done. It doesn't seem like much, but this is the amount of time the needle has been in motion. And we do a ton of other stuff when the needle isn't moving. Plus, I work on MANY sewing and embroidery machines, so this one doesn't get used all the time. 

My time spent with the Designer EPIC 2

Once the update was downloaded, I got the message to install or wait.

Install now or wait

I decided to install it at that moment. It took about 15 minutes to do the update, which was great. And I didn't have to leave the house. 

Updating the embroidery machine

This update now allows me to use the new metal hoop, and I downloaded the new designs for the metal hoop as well. I didn't have time to look for that info, but I'll try later today. 

The pond is now open, and the sound of the water falling is glorious. 

The pond is open

There are three waterfalls in it. You can bet that Murphy will be in there like a dirty shirt -- playing on the rocks and in the water. OH, MOM --- this is fun!! I can hear her now!

One of the waterfalls

 I have to try and get a few more leaves out of the pond. They did a fast job of opening -- basically just connected the pump. I don't want all those leaves accumulating over the summer, so out they come! And I need to do it before the lily pads start to grow. 

I'm progressing on the Pacific Crest Trail, and I am at 75% of the way and currently in Oregon. As a quilter, do you all know what's in Oregon???  Well, look where I am. 

Close to Sisters, Oregon

Yes --- I'm as close to Sisters, Oregan as I could get on the PCT. I might have to go to their outdoor quilt show and then spend a day or two hiking the trail. One more trip for the bucket list. I'm going to have to quit my day jobs!!!

Speaking of going forward, I think this tire is toast. Thankfully, it's NOT my tire. I spotted this on my walk yesterday morning. Hmm -- you think they came home on that tire? It sure looks like it, and the back tire on the same side was flat. It wasn't shredded, but it was flat. 

The tire is tired

The car was one that a somewhat experienced person had tried to fix up. A bad paint job in places and no logos on it. You get the picture, but good grief --- could they not change the tire? I wonder how far they went on that shredded tire? 

Well, that's it for today. I'm off to finish off that project -- it's simple, but it's cute. It's for a magazine and well, if you make something too complicated, people don't want to make it. This is a quick project that you could do over a weekend. That's my kind of project -- at least right now!

So if you have a digital cutter -- get it OUT!!! You just need to play with it to make it work. I have lots of plans for my cutter, and I'm going to try marking the design for the next shape rather than having the cutter cut it. Just because I can. It's all about learning. 

And then, if I really wanted to, I could take that SAME file from EQ8 and bring that into mySewnet machine embroidery software and create the embroidery file to do the stitching! That is my ULTIMATE goal, but not for this project. I will do it for the embroidery club (I hope I have enough time). WOW --- endless possibilities!!!!

So much to learn, so little time. But I love being able to take all my tools and software and marry them!! WOW  --- my brain is about to go into overload! 

Have a super day!!!!



  1. SISTERS! Oh that outdoor quilt show is awesome! I've driven over there twice for it (6h drive). Too bad your walk route doesn't divert you down to Crater Lake. It truly is one of the wonders of the Northwest USA.

    Here is a link to all the videos from the 2021 show:

    Happy Thursday to you!

    1. Elle---I have already walked past Crater Lake. I had read about it from other people walking the PCT. I zoomed in on Google maps and it is STUNNING!!! Something I must do in person -- one day! ONe more thing for the bucket list. I'm going to check out that video. Thanks!!!