Tuesday, February 13, 2024

The GREAT Fabric Swap

Here's a random thought I had when I woke up this morning. 

It's all about learning - what else! When we had small children, what did we do for them? We encouraged them to explore, experiment, and color OUTSIDE the lines. We were willing to spend thousands of dollars for ballet lessons, swim lessons, university, books, and so much more. 

So what happens when we become adults, and our children are gone? We seem to think learning and spending money on education is a BAD thing. I once had a lady who said she could NOT waste some fabric to practice cutting with her digital cutter! How much does a fat Quarter cost? $5 if you buy good quality. How much does a university textbook cost? How much does a coffee cost? 

In a class on improving cutting abilities, one lady struggled. The ruler slipped, and she wasn't getting it. So I made her cut an entire fat quarter into 1/4" strips! Guess what? When she left, she knew how to cut!!! 

The next time you are worried about the cost of a new tool, book, or fabric to practice on - think of it as your LEARNING budget! That doesn't give you license to spend needlessly, but look at what you do in a different light! Do not be afraid to color outside the lines! 

The other area we should focus on is knowing the tools we currently own. I'm guilty of this, as there is still one thing I haven't figured out on the car. But I'm constantly surprised at the number of people who do NOT know how to use the SIMPLE functions on their computerized sewing machine. I'm not talking top-of-the-line here -- just a basic mechanical machine. OK --- even those with a mechanical machine sometimes need to learn how to use it. I once had a student using the stitch width (set to a straight seam) to attempt to change the stitch length!

That's why there are manuals! Sit in front of the machine and TOUCH the buttons. Play with them. Take a page or two in your manual at a time. Or take ONE FUNCTION at a time. If you can make your sewing session that much better and faster - why wouldn't you do that? Don't give me the excuse that you would rather have a class --- read the manual FIRST, play with the machine, and THEN come to a class. You'll be amazed at how much MORE you'll learn!!!

Do NOT be afraid of touching the buttons. I have yet to hear of a single incident where someone pushed a button, and the machine blew up!! Have you heard of that happening? Me neither! 

As for that car? I know exactly how to switch from the radio and Android car play! Oh yes --- it's not intuitive, but thanks to a friend's help, I got it figured out. That's another thing -- if you get help from a friend -- you should ACKNOWLEDGE that fact! Don't take credit if you didn't figure it out! The "last" thing I need to learn about the car is something I've looked at, and the settings seem to be right, but it doesn't appear correctly on the screen. So I must get some help with that one! 

It was a great day, and I'm working through my weekly task list. I didn't accomplish too much on the list yesterday, but I got done yesterday what I was supposed to do today. Now, to play catchup - I have a meeting and a couple of in-person errands, so it will be another busy day! 

This is what happens when you get dressed in the dark. I decided I needed a clean pair of pants, so I reached into the drawer and pulled out what I thought were black jeans. Well, I'm bright -- you can't deny that. I think I'll be finding another pair of pants later. These are not my hanging around-the-house pants! And I will have to settle down and get some sweatshirts washed or fixed; TWO need repair, and two need washing, leaving me to wear a sweater! 

Dressed like an elf today!

Yesterday was Monday sewing, and we had a great time as usual. This was the quote in my Happiness Journal. How fitting. Strong social ties are so important!!! 

So, while we were on the Monday call, someone was cleaning up. They had just finished a major project and had two buckets of scraps they no longer wanted. After much back and forth, it was decided that another person would buy the scraps, so they were bundled up to begin the great Fabric Pony Express. As we continued to talk and shared our show and tell, one of our group members made tote bags from farm fabric that she donated to raise money for their agricultural society. I remembered a project box filled with FARM-themed fabric. I'm DONE with farm-themed quilts, so I dug it out, and it's now going to join the great Fabric Pony Express as well. 

And several other things got on the Fabric Pony Express. This stuff is too heavy to put in the post, but via Pony Express, as long as you don't need it tomorrow, is a great way to get stuff around. None of us live super close, but we have the opportunity to travel, and with future plans, the Pony Express will get everything to its new home. How cool is that? 

Here's the bundle of farm fabric. Some of those are brand-new cuts (still with the price tag). How silly is that? 

Farm fabrics - GOING

I bet most of us have fabric that someone else can use - it just needs to be swapped, traded, or sold. But I REFUSE to give or sell fabric to someone who will just keep it in their stash. If they won't use it, I won't part with it. I know the farm fabric will be used. The excess scraps will come back, and I'll make a quilt top for that same person that they can use as a fundraiser. Or I'll find someone back home who could use the quilt!

I was attempting to clear stuff off the current project table, and look what I found!!!! This embroidery hoop has been missing for eons. Well, it was in the bottom of a basket, which was a bad place to leave it. I had another in the same size, but when I sold my embroidery machine, that hoop went. Now, everything is where it needs to be. One more thing crossed OFF the list of lost items. How many more things are on that imaginary list?

My LOST embroidery hoop

I had also lost the remaining instructions for the Gree TEa quilt, and guess what? I found them in the same place. 

My lost instructions for Green Tea

Oh, that Murphy is pretty persistent!!! Look what she accomplished last night!!

MOM --- I don't know how - but the top came off! 

I'm reading an ebook. I shouldn't be because I have a ton of physical reading material to go through. But I'm reading this one anyway. I'm not sure how it got on my reading list, but good grief, I'm 13% into it. Well, where is this thing going? 

Hopefully, they are nearly done documenting the ENTIRELY dull life of this person, and we can now get to the exciting way she escapes. No wonder she wanted to escape!!!! The book is set in Toronto, but I'm not sure how much that adds to the story. 

OK -- I owe one more follow-up to a class, one small project that needs to be finished this morning, and some photos sent. Then, the rest of the day is "mine" to chip away at that list! 

Have a super day!!!


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