Monday, today

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My design wall is the same as last week, that little quilt top has been marinating up there all week.  Truthfully it has been shedding blocks like a tree sheds leaves, but I pinned them all on and it now looks like a wilted tree.  I’m looking forward to the Craft fair sale, as the prep for it has been using up all my time.  I’ve got lots of quilty ideas in my head waiting to break out.  Plus I really would like to finish my Galaxy and Fancy Forest quilts.

Today is inventory day for me.  My good friend is coming over to help me get my sale quilts and items priced and ready for the Craft/Art Fair, December 4th.  I’ve been working diligently on increasing it, I quilted two small tops yesterday, and got 3 more bound and ready a few days ago.  Plus got all the pillows stuffed and done.  Pricing things is tough though.  My DH tells me not to cheat myself, I’m well aware of the costs involved with creating a quilt, he doesn’t really know the half of it.  Which is good, as my stash is extensive.  We all know that if we charged by the hour, people would look once and walk away, too expensive.  Even if I charged the current minimum wage, 10.00/hour in CA, a small baby quilt would be close to 400.00, add in fabric, thread, batting, wear and tear on machines, close to 500.00.  Around here, professional/artisans get upwards of 25.00/hour, so that price point is not going to fly either.  I’m thinking of taking the Long-armers approach to pricing, by the square inch.  I’ve looked on Easy and Ebay and prices are all over the place for non-art quilts.  Small basic 4 patch quilts can be under a hundred and up to two hundred and fifty.   Now to figure out how to display them in a 10′ x 10′ area.

Linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times for Design Wall Monday.

 

 

B&B

Backings and bindings were on my to-do list this past week.  I got most of them done, I had to order more 108″ backing fabric for one top, but things are getting done.  I experimented with extra wide binding too.  I cut the binding at 5 inches wide, folded it in half and sewed it to the backside of the quilt at ½” in.  Then flipped it to the front and sewed it down with a generous 1″ showing.  This is a large quilt and the grey frames it nicely.  Got the Red and White SAS bound as well as the Christmas pinwheel, just used 2 ½” binding for them.

I got started on the Jaybird Quilt pattern called Sprinkles.  I cut the pieces and got the sub-pieces together, and yesterday I put the hex shapes up on the wall to make sure all the colors looked randomly placed.  This is an easy quilt top to piece and is made from 2 ½” strips and one 4 ½” background color strip for the side setting triangles. I added one row because my top didn’t have enough yellow.  Adding the row allowed me to add 15 pieces of yellow.    I’d like to try a larger version, maybe use 3 ½ or 4 ½ inch strips for the diamond pieces.

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It doesn’t look like much, but I feel like I accomplished a bit this week.

Linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times for Design Wall Monday today.

Blog-o-versary

Today is the fourth anniversary of this blog.  I started it as a way to keep track of my quilt work.  That first year, there were only 17 posts, most had no pictures or links.  Some were only a few sentences, or thoughts, I did spell check though!  Through these past few years, I went public, added a few weekly links and a few badges.  I like to keep it simple, I hope the ads don’t get too distracting.  I can’t say that I have perfected my posting, its gotten better, but I will continue to try to journal my quilting journey.

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On my design wall this week is a bench pillow top, a pre-cut kit from Shabby Fabrics.  It was on sale last Monday, I liked the colors and thought it was cute.  It was very easy to put together, as all the pieces are laser cut with Heat and Bond on them.  Just follow the numbers on the diagram to place the parts and iron them on.  I hope I can remember to use it next year, I think I will store it with my Halloween quilts.  This week I’m planning on getting a bunch of binding done and I need a few more backings put together.  I have been resisting making another top, but I just got a cute pattern from JayBird quilts called “Sprinkles”.  It’s a baby quilt, and I think it would be so cute done in 30’s prints.  I happen to have a few (ahem) left over pieces from the Farmers Wife Quilt blocks.

This past week I have been using my long arm system to quilt up a bunch of things that have been in the TBQ (to be quilted) pile.  Now there are 8 quilts in the TBB (to be bound) pile.  Thankfully the learning curve isn’t that steep and I can easily stop and redo the operator errors.  With less than a month until the craft fair, I need to finish things up and get ready to sell them.  Interestingly, the amount of time the computer driven system takes to quilt, is about the same as my speed.  The difference is the precise-ness.  The pantograph I am using now has horseshoes and stars scattered around.  I am sure that the horseshoes would not be as nice if I were hand guiding the machine.  Perhaps with simpler designs, meanders and such, the speed of the automation will increase.  I managed to clean up the sewing area this weekend while watching the machine do its thing.  I am planning on learning the digitizing software soon.  I am using Art and Stitch, it seems pretty straight forward.  Plus they host on line web casts, which I would like to participate in.

Thanks for reading today, I’m linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times for Design Wall Monday.