Monday, January 19, 2015

Can I keep up the pace?

That's the question that only time will answer!  I feel like I'm going at 150% all the time these days, trying to pace all the work that has to be completed in time for me to take a week off in the middle of February.  When I look at the list of what's left to do, I think it's manageable, but until I see the light at the end of this very dark tunnel, I'm holding my breath!

The job that I'm doing is a bit intense, meaning that I can only work for about 4 or 5 hours at the computer before I have to leave it and do something else. And, that means relaxing down in my sewing room!  The flooring is completed in the basement (and it looks really great!)  and I've been bringing out my sewing things as I need them and getting them settled in their various spots in the room.

Right now, I'm assembling the top for a quilt challenge in the guild.  All year we did a block exchange of the two blocks used in Bonnie Hunter's Chunky Churn Dash. I chose yellow as the color for the hourglass blocks and these go with the churn dash blocks made in a variety of colors.  I've got the strips sewn together so far and here they are laid out on the floor.

When I've finished this post, I'm going to get the rows sewn together.  I said this is a challenge so I'll explain. At our guild meeting in May, we have guest night and we have a great speaker lined up. Part of the "festivities" is that members who participated in the block exchange are to bring their finished quilts which will be judged by the guests attending the meeting.  The challenge will be--for me--to get the thing finished in time!

The more I think about it, the more elaborate I want it to be!  I'll be putting on a tone-on-tone yellow border with churn dash blocks for the corners, I think.  Then I want to applique some vines, flowers, leaves and butterflies on the borders as well. I think this will look great and I want to do all this extra work because I'm competitive and I'd love to win the challenge!  But I'll probably end up donating this piece to a fundraiser and I know it won't draw in as much money as it should.   Or . . . I could keep it for myself, something I seem to rarely do!  Maybe that's the way to go, and make another quilt to be donated. I've got enough orphan blocks lying around here that it won't take long to make up another quilt.

I also thought I'd post a pix of the machine I'm using to put this quilt together.  It's Julia, my 1970's Kenmore!  In all her sea foam green glory!

I don't use this machine too much. It's heavy, I don't like the way I've marked the 1/4 inch seam guide, I don't have a table insert that fits her, and she smells from all the oil the machine guy slathered on her.  (But her skin is nice and soft!) I know the machines should be used every month or so to keep them lubricated and flexible, so I took her out and have been working on her. What I do love about her is that she's so solid!  She just purrs when you press the foot pedal, no whiny, tinny sounds like the new ones make.  And she's so simple! (Sorry, Julia, I don't mean dumb, but easy.  Now maybe that's going to get me in trouble with her too!  Yikes!)  What I mean is that she's not complicated, not a high maintenance machine.  Just press the on/off switch, press down the foot pedal, and sew.  On my new Viking, I have to do a number of things with the computer so the machine knows what kind of stitch I want, how heavy is the fabric I'm sewing on, and so on.  Not Julia--she's easy!  (And I mean that as a compliment, Julia!)

I'm going to go and get working on that quilt center and hope to have it completed by the time I have to make dinner. I'm thinking that dinner might be a little later than usual tonight! 

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