Wednesday, March 15, 2017

2 Hour Table Runner Finish, a New Iron & a Cutting Mat Bath!

I have gotten way behind in my bindings as I've gotten absorbed in my Perkiomen Daydreams blocks and now I have a huge backlog of quilts needing binding. So, to remedy that situation I have decided to go back to only doing hand work while listening to Daily Audio Bible. I have mostly followed that plan and finally finished sewing down the binding on this two hour table runner last week that has been quilted and half sewn down for months.

This version of the runner is sold out in the shop, but we still have black and red versions, blue and tan and a bright reindeer version available.  You can find them all HERE.

I also made progress on the next binding in the queue and should get this little quilt finished this week.

My cutting mats finally got a bath this past week as well!  It was long overdue.  Too long as it turned out as some of the deepest cuts were just too far gone to heal.  Both of the mats that I washed were 10-15 years old and it was becoming very difficult to cut on them and my rotary blades were becoming dull very quickly.  While the worst parts of both mats didn't really get better, both are reversible and the other sides are in excellent shape, as are the outer parts of the bad sides, so they are still usable.  I will be starting this maintenance on my newer mats now to hopefully keep them in great shape for longer.  There are directions all over the Internet and how and why to do this, but these are the instructions I used today:

Out of the bath and drying:

Finally, it was an exciting week last week in that I got a new iron after at least 10 years of using the old one.  I would have been very happy to continue using the old one as I loved that iron, but it had started to randomly spew rusty water out.  Not good when you are pressing very light fabrics.  And my new ironing board cover has stains now as well :-(.  I am very careful to empty the water after each use and to only use distilled or purified water, but alas, after that much use, this was bound to happen eventually. I paid just over $20 for the iron brand new so I most definitely got my money's worth. And yes, it ...was made in China. Just like the replacement model I purchased. The new iron was still only $28 from Amazon with free shipping so if it lasts half as long as the previous version I will be thrilled, but I am hoping it lasts much longer. I love these Panasonic irons and I really love the retractable cord! They also get nice and hot and they heat up quickly. And they are fairly lightweight which is important to me.

And that sums up all of the exciting events in MY life last week :-).  Oh, and we also found a great like-new sectional for our formal living room, so that was fun too :-).  And of course the remodel work on the rest of the house continues to move along.  Last week involved finishing the painting in the living room.  This week it is back to baseboard cleaning and staining.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Fun with Leftovers!

I am still plugging away on my Perkiomen Daydreams blocks.  I have enough blocks completed for 7 full rows and 2/3 of an 8th row.  Just a couple more rows and I will be at the half way point.  By assembling rows as a go it breaks up the process, which is nice, and it also means that I won't have to lay out 400 blocks all at once.  Here is a pic of the first 6 rows with rows 1 & 2 joined and rows 3 & 4 joined.  I replaced and re-arranged the blocks in row 5 after getting row 7 completed in order to better disperse fabrics and colors.

Making all of these blocks generates a lot of leftovers, some of which are totally usable in my book, while others go in a bag for my quilting friend who makes art quilts.  I have two types of leftovers from these blocks - strings of a certain length and shorter pieced units that come from cutting the block segments.  I am piecing string blocks with the strings and coasters with the other leftovers.  The plan right now is to make the string blocks into potholders rather than put together in a quilt.  My latest idea is to piece the strings diagonally and use those blocks in a quilt.  Otherwise I will end up with about 50 potholders by the time I am done with this quilt :-).

Before I post the leftover pics, here is a pic with a bunch of block components spread out as I select which one to add to each block.  I try not to duplicate an individual fabric within a block, but it's happened a few times in spite of my efforts.

And here are the leftovers and what I am doing with them.