Sunday, January 31, 2021

Vintage St. Nicholas Panel & Silly Me

 I’m typing my post as snow is falling here in Ohio.  One to three inches is expected.  My Great Room Fireplace is on and my white lights Winter Tree is still up.  Today is my busy day doing laundry, making the bed, vacuuming the floors and cleaning my stove top.  Now I can rest and enjoy watching the snow fall.  I’m happy I don’t have to shovel it.  My niece’s boyfriend will do that for me.

Now to apologize to all who have commented on my blog since 2019.  I guess this is another senior moment for me.  I went in blogger to do this post and just for the heck of it, I clicked on “comments” and was so surprised there were 83 comments waiting for moderation.  I did’t even realize I had “moderation” set on my comments.  Luckily, many were spam but quite a few weren’t.  Now I know to check that more often.  I asked on my last post if anyone was still reading my blog not realizing there were comments left. So thank you all.

Getting older is no fun.  The body aches and one has to take many more breaks.  Speaking of getting older.. I did something today that I thought was so funny.  I got two Echo 5 thingies (they were on sale on Amazon) one for my Great Room and one for my bedroom.  My niece also got two for the Media Room and her bedroom downstairs.  When I realized I could control my lamps from the Echo 5 through Alexa I purchased several “smart plugs”.  I have the majority of my lamps controlled by Alexa now and really like it.  That is until I had WiFi outages and had to reset the “smart plugs” over and over.  I ended up replacing my Orbi router with a new beef up Orbi 6 Mesh WiFi router and satellite to cover 5,000 square feet and over 60 devices.  I’m hoping that is the last time I have to reset all the “smart plugs” until this router dies.  Now what did I do that was so funny.  I told the Echo to turn on my Great Room lamp.  She wasn’t responding and I couldn’t figure out why.  Then I realized I was telling “Amazon” to turn on the lamp and not “Alexa”.  LOL

I want to show you this beautiful vintage St. Nicholas fabric panel I made into a wall hanging for my niece, MJ.  I bought it at a quilt shop but don’t remember where.  I think it was when my quilting cousin and I were driving from Ohio to Florida a few years ago. As I was working on it I was texting and calling my quilting cousin for help.  I free motion quilted it too.  That’s Lucky, our new rescue pup watching me.  He’s the sweetest the puppy!  Tomorrow I hope to take down the “Winter Tree” but if not I’ll enjoy it a few more days.  Thanks for visiting dear friends!

Friday, January 29, 2021

This and iPhone Cases & My Sewing Room

 Sewing Room

Since I have been working on my sewing panel projects my sewing area in our Hobby Room really got messy!  Finally, this week I cut up left over pieces of fabric and batting to put in my doggie bag.  It’s a great way to utilize these scraps and some day will be a bed for a rescue doggie.  The cutting table is happy.

I bought some fabric eye glass cases at a Quilt Show last year and I have used them to hold my iPhone.  I pin the case to my pants waistband.  I don’t know why women’s pockets are made so shallow.  I like deep pockets to hold my iPhone and realized it was too much work to enlarge all my slacks pockets.  Much easier to make a few iPhone cases.  My first one was too small, the second one I used the eye glass case as a pattern but wasn’t happy because the seams showed inside.  I googled an excellent video of sewing a small tote bag with no seams showing and I was off.  I could make 2 in 30 minutes once I had my pattern and measurement down.  

IPhone Cases

Follow my steps to make an iPhone case.

1.  I cut my fabric pieces 4.5 by 14 inches.  (Some I cut a little larger depending on how thick the phone case is to 4.75 inches).  I used Pellon 926 Extra Firm Stabilizer.

2.  I quilted the right side (outside) fabric to the stabilizer.  And sewed up the side seams and added box corners.

3.  I turned the right side fabric to the outside but the inside fabric (lining) is left inside out.  So when they are sewn together the right sides are facing each other.  The right side and lining  are both done with boxed corners.

4.  Stitching the lining and outside fabric together.

5.  A small opening is left in the lining on one side so the right side (outside) fabric can be pulled through and then that opening is stitched closed.

6.  Then the edge is stitched around.

7.  All done.

My niece and her Mom asked me to make them some too.  So I whipped up five more.

I forgot to take photos of all of them.

Do you want to see my sewing area?  When we were planning our new retirement home, we decided to have a super large hobby room.  One half would be for my hubby’s model trains and the other half would be for my sewing.  We were thrilled to think of having all that room. 

Unfortunately, and sadly, my hubby didn’t live to see his side set up.  So, I had this huge room that was mostly empty.  I had Closet Factory put in shelving in my sewing closet and added a wall of cabinets to put my hubby’s model train equipment and photography stuff away.  I bought three more sewing machines.

Then my niece moved in with me and we planned to set up my hubby’s side for a small business for her.  She has it set up nicely but has been too sick to start her business.

I modified a few of my hubby’s model train tables for my nieces’s use and one for me as an ironing station which has worked out beautifully.

I love my cutting table.  I bought it a few years before we moved from Pennsylvania to Ohio.  The TV belongs to my niece’s boyfriend.  He moved in this past year and has been such a help and blessing for us.  He does all the shopping and running around for my niece and myself.  My niece has Lupus and many other illnesses and I’m in my 70s so we are at risk with COVID 19.  I’m so glad I’m not alone during this pandemic.  

As you can see, my fabric really needs some refolding and organization.  That’s on my to-do list.  I purchased the big covered ironing board and it fits the former model train table nicely.  Buried under the mess is a sewing cabinet next to the ironing station.  It was my mother’s, and before my Mom, was my paternal grandmother’s Singer sewing machine from the early 1940s.  It needs to be repaired one of these days but when working it stitches beautifully and even has a reverse stitch.

Well, that’s all for today.   I don’t know if anybody reads my blog anymore.  But if you are visiting I hope you enjoy reading about my life and hobbies.  Have a lovely day!

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Charming Christmas Tree Wall Hanging

Just a few days before Christmas I decided to try my version of the free quilting pattern, “Charming Christmas Tree” by Pat Sloan.  It seemed everyone was making this fun pattern.  I used scrap fabrics I had on hand in some of my favorite Christmas patterns and colors. 

This pattern is made up of 2.5 inch squares and half square triangles.  When I tried sewing the half square triangles in the method where you draw a diagonal line and sew 1/4 inch on each side of the line, my squares ended up much smaller than 2.5 inches.  I tried cutting the squares larger to 3 inches but that sample was still too small.  I ended up stitching on the diagonal line and cutting off the part not needed.  Those were perfect 2.5 inch squares.  

After attaching the inner border of mixed fabric squares, I discovered I had just enough of a lovely green fabric for the outer border.  I liked it better than using white as the pattern instructed.

To embellish the tree I drew a star pattern, cut out the star from a yellow fabric and appliquéd it to the top of the tree.  I used my Jamone 15000 sewing machine’s triple stitch to add the rays coming out from the star.

I had some fabric scraps printed with cardinals so I fussy cut four cardinals and appliquéd them under the tree.  To finish it off, I used red fabric for the binding.

I free motion quilted falling snowflakes and snow drifts.  I tried out my new Marcia Baraldi Quilting Grip gloves I ordered from Amazon and really liked them.  They have excellent grip on the palms and one’s fingers are free.  

I have taken down my Christmas decorations but this adorable wall hanging is still up.  I just love it.  I have removed my Christmas ornaments from my pencil 7.5 foot new tree and switched from colored lights to white.  I now have my Winter Tree which will be up until the tree bag I ordered from Amazon is delivered.  Last year I started storing some Christmas decorations upstairs rather then in the unfinished basement.  This way I don’t have to lug everything up and down the stairs.  I’m thinking about storing the new tree in my guest room closet (if it fits) along with the ornaments.  But first I have to measure and go through the old clothing I have in there. I’m lucky my niece, MJ, and her fellow, Andrew, currently live with me so Andrew carries the heavy stuff for me. 

I really need the cheer during this COVID isolation and all the political crap going on. It continues to be lonely facing each day without my hubby.  At least my hobbies and house responsibilities keep me occupied.  But now holidays and special occasions will never be as happy and joyful as they were with my sweetheart.  

Friends gifted me this huge beautiful Poinsettia plant!  I can’t believe I haven’t “killed” it yet.  I usually “kill” any house plant.  At least I’ve learned.  I’m not over watering this one.  

And here is a photo of my Christmas Tree decorated with ornaments and colored lights.

  I called this my “smart” Christmas tree because it is prelit and I can program either colored or white lights in various modes.  The star topper is similar.  I am so pleased how nice it fits into it’s space in my Great Room.  Excuse the furniture moved out, I was still working on how and where to plug it in.

I hope you all had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.