Hat of many colors
It's been a little cooler here in Florida. Crisp mornings, warm afternoons, and cooler evenings. Absolutely perfect. Perfect for hats and gloves.
I'm going to be in the Dunedin Craft festival on November 19th and 20th and though i am making a quilt for that day, I woke up this morning (my birthday morning0 and though a hat would be exactly right for this weather.
So how was I going to proceed? I had finished watching the "The School of Good and Evil" and loved the costumes and those little fairies blew my mind away. Si Woke up remembering those images and wanted to do something a little puckish. I was feeling very cheeky.
I wanted something to reflect that playful mood. The Feather and Fan stitch would be what I needed. Next, what color, and what yarn.
I dislike self-stripping yarn but over the years have landed up with some. However, with the feather and fan stitch variegated self-stripping wool is perfect. It helps accentuate the pattern.
The wool I am using is bright jewel toned. Exactly right for my mood.
After the wool and the design how was I going to cast on. Since i started knitting over sixty years ago there have been many changes to knitting.
I decided to use the figure eight (a variation of the Turkish cast on). This way I can complete the bottom of the hat several ways. To be determined when the body is done.
I'll let you know when I get there.
Hope to see you at the show and you can see this cute little hat. Maybe, you'll want to take home that playfulness.
I mulled, I looked at different stitches, and mulled some more. Finally, I decided to use 2 different cables on the ends and a variation on the Horseshoe stitch in the middle. It created a wonderful flow to the scarf. I love it. Let me know your thoughts.
With Charles Gregory now taking clear and vibrant photos of my work, I am revitalized.
Today I am sharing cell phone covers I made a few months ago.
They fit a Samsung S7 with external dimensions of the pouch being 4 inches wide and about 6.5 inches high.
I would never have a problem selling at a fair while online you can't touch or see the depths of my craft. Being a tactile creature I find it difficult to see something and know how it feels. This is why I have a full refund on the returned product should you not love it as I do.
Further individualize the cover with several variations such as removing the daisies, the back pouch, or the clasp at the top.
I cannot guarantee how the sky will as that depends on the material used making each one totally unique.
A great gift for a friend or loved one.
Using cotton batting during embroidery protects your phone while the back pouch can house your earbuds or identification. This is a great option if you don't want to go out with a purse or satchel. The front uses a variety of cotton material while the back uses denim to provide strength, character, and stability.
Want to have one more personalized? Call 727-692-1225 and speak to Allie. She'll help you with options or email me at ADizzyDesign@outlook.com. Yes, I am Dizzy.
I'll let you know more about that nickname another day.
Let me know your thoughts. I'll post the cell phone covers in the catalog in the next day or so for $15.00. If you want one before I post-call, or email we love to hear from you.
They say the luck of the Irish
I'm not Irish, I'm Scottish and a Celt. Does that count? It's not St. Patrick's day and St. Andrews isn't until November. So, why do I feel so lucky?
I found a photographer or did he find me? Or was it synchronicity?
However, it happened and things are looking up.
Please check out the work of Charles Gregory It is amazing. And, he has decided to help me out while he expands his portfolio.
I'll share more as we work together to bring you some amazing pictures of my work.
So how did we connect? My daughter was trying to reach out to photography schools to see if students wanted a little extra money. Nothing happened. Nobody returned our calls. I was getting despondent.
When people saw my items in person they loved them. Covid has stopped me going to fairs and my pictures on the other hand sucked.
Then being Scottish I got a tad angry. (I would normally say a wee ticky but I'm not in Scotland I'm in Florida.) Craig's list was my vent.
I know Weebly offers photography, which is great. I produce one-off items and was not prepared to trust mailing all that work out to a stranger.
Would you? Not me.
I got quite a response though few local and I wanted local. I learned from a photographer in Lutz that my $20.00 per article was under budget for a professional photographer. She said at least two to three times as much. Ouch!
I live on a fixed income and producing only one-off items from $10.00 to $75.00 that price made the photography untenable. Not only would I have no profit, but I also wouldn't pay for the resources.
Despondency hit me again.
This is when Charles crossed my path. Maybe all those rejections were synchronicity at work. Do you believe in synchronicity? I have learned to over the years.
And yes Charles said he would work with me. So, answer this, could there be the luck of the Scottish and the Irish are hogging all the glory?
What do you think? Let me know and don't forget to check out his work. He has a wonderful eye for color.
Project Table Runner
Since I was waiting for the material for the throw I decided to do a table runner thinking it would be quick.
It is sorta quick. I made the 12 quilt blocks in one day. On Sunday I laid them out and stitched them up. Added 6the borders and was ready to quilt.
One week later and I am still quilting. I've accomplished about 50% of the actual quilting.
I've chosen to quilt the strips on the blocks first using clear upper thread and lower bone thread.
Then I did a semi circular pattern with spokes radiating out like a fan.
After that I did diamonds. For the panels radiating upwards I created a diamond block at a 45 degree angle. The blocks with horizontal panels I used a 60 degree angle.
The overall dimensions should be around 25 inches by 74 inches. A nice size in blue, greens, reds and browns.
I am so enjoying the quilting on my little Brother Runaway. Yes if I had a longarm quilting machine I could quilt a lot faster. Just don't have the money to purchase one. Maybe another day.
Here is the a picture of the back.
As I was quilting it dawned on me I could be running my embroidery machine at the same time. It usually requires some set up and not a great deal of attention.
It did when I first started embroidery. I often lost needles and had multiple issues. Part of that was the PE800. Now it is working I just need to listen to its rhythm, set up materials or change thread. It doesn't take much attention away from the table runner. The savior of my issue was the Embroidex Adjustable Single Thread Spool Holder.
I chose to make coffee coasters with brown felt since it is for coffee The felt is backed with cotton batting over a water soluble stabilizer. That way it would wash away and I wouldn't need to cut too close to the final edging (not stitched in the photo below.)
I'll have more on the table runner and the coasters next week.
I'm still looking for a photographer to take more professional pictures of my final product. Since I make only one off products I am reticent to mail it off to a photographer. I tried some local photographers unsuccessfully. Probably too small for busy professional photographers. I'll try the local college.
If you have any more ideas let me know.
Project Forest Cabin Throw
So...... Early in December I took an online Quilting course. It was excellent. Check out Ashley Hough at National quilters Circle. She gives many tips for both seasoned quilters and newbies alike.
At the moment I am awaiting my materials to arrive from Fabric.com and then I can really start on this throw. I did a test piece as you can see below and started practicing some free form quilting. I discovered I have a long long way to go to perfect this technique. My curves sucked as I obviously went too fast and on the straight I tended to go to slow.
Doing some research I discovered others who had the same issue resorted to using an embroidery machine to do the work. Well I have 2 so I thought - great I can do the quilt block by block.
Not so easy. this is excellent if I am doing total area embroidery. Trying to quilt in one area while avoiding another proved to be as daunting as free motion quilting.
I did manage to do a stipple area but it looked more like a jigsaw puzzle than quilting and I realized it didn't look so good with such a geometric pattern.
Christina Camelli in Step-by-step Texture Quilting came to my rescue. I found my answer and some future designs in her Geometric Textures. I hadn't planned on doing diamonds and other patterns, I really like feathers and celtic designs, however I found them very appealing in the Forest Cabin design. Take a peak.
On the left you can see the stipple design that reminded me of a jigsaw puzzle. I tried different threads including a clear invisible thread which does not work well in an embroidery machine. So don't bother trying it. It pulled the design a lot.
To the lower right and stem pattern I found from OESD. It was a lot more difficult to get it positioned and I wasn't happy with its result.
At the top between the two bear claws are the diamonds one side in white and the other in cream. I like the cream.
So for this center design I'll use different diamond sizes for the background and the pale blue.
I can't wait for my fabric to arrive. In the meantime I am onto a table center. I'll let you know more on that later.
What are your thoughts.
Earlier this year I had surgery to remove my colon. I wish to give thanks not only to my friends family and coworkers, also to those in the Tampa Advent hospital who helped me through a very difficult time. The physicians, nurses, tech, house keeping, kitchen staff. Everyone. A heartfelt thank you to you all.
I read an article yesterday where people believing in divisive politicians and the rhetoric they give where spitting and giving verbal abuse to our health care workers. It tore at my heart. How could you hurt these givers of care?
Everyday our health care workers struggle to save lives, give care and help others no matter the circumstance. Whether in a battle field, a hospital or an ambulance you are our heroes. You are, unfortunately, our front line and like all warriors it can be difficult and trying. I ask you to find the inner strength to help others no matter their level of spiritual or emotional development. No matter their political stance.
All I can do, at this time, is say thank you. You are heroes facing the most trying of times.
My thoughts, thanks, and love go to all human beings that we may find peace, kindness and well being.
Please let us look past our politics and see the world through our spiritual eyes. Let us love our neighbors. Be kind to those different from us.
We are coming into a season renowned for peace, love and joy. Let these fill our heart, mind and spirit so we can love all. So that it wipes out the fear in hearts and minds.
For those on our front lines, no matter where that is, remember who you are and why you do what you do. Let that find a way to strengthen you and into the hearts of others.
PE 800 and more continued.....
Well...... Here we are a month after I turned my PE 800 in for repair and I still don't have it back. A tad upset with Tops (the brother dealer who farms it out for repair) and Brother for having so few contractors to do a faster turn around. Reason I was disappointed in Tops is because I called them on Thursday and asked when I could expect my machine back. Linda said it would be back the next day, Friday. Didn't happen. If they were more realistic about when it would be returned I would be fine. Instead telling me that it would be back the next day (Tops doesn't do the repair themselves - they ship it out to Sarasota) and that not happening was disappointing. I was getting ready to start working full speed ahead. Oh well such is life. If my machine isn't back this week I'll call Brother and let them know they need to train more repair engineers.
Downside, it has slowed my machine embroidery down considerable. I haven't posted any real time consuming products online because I wouldn't be able to keep up with demand. On the upside it has created a time where I can explore and develop procedure for future products like quilts, table runners, cushions and so much more.
It has also allowed me to do some knitting. I love sewing however knitting is my first love and passion.
I've been creating a shawl/scarf and am now about half way through the hem and it is behaving beautifully. The curl is amazing. No I din't know how it would turn out. I'm not one of those super organized knitters who knows exactly how something will look once it is completed. I admire them but its not my nature. Do I knit by the seat of my pants. Mmm... possibly. I prefer to think of it as allowing creativity to flow in the moment.
For shawls I start with the first 2 main stitches. They are my foundation. After that inspiration takes place. In this case the shawl became a shawl-scarf.
Did I tell you it is made in two strands of cobweb wool. What is cobweb wool you ask? The wool is approximately the same diameter as sewing thread. Extremely fine, soft and luxurious looking.
Mostly I try to do lace stitches with dimension. If someone buying the shawl-scarf doesn't like to block I want it to look good without blocking. And to look sensational if they do.
As the first two foundation patterns unfold, I start to see how the next pattern should look. That in turn reveals the next pattern and then the final foundation rows for the border. The shawl-scarf is truly a work of art that is revealed bit by bit.
So between the starting 2 and the final border I have 3 other stitches creating a lovely textured design while moving into a great 10 stitch base for the border.
Then I designed a border to fit within the ending pattern in the body of the shawl-scarf. While I was knitting I also wanted to create a curl that could either be draped around the neck or curl beautifully if left to hang. This I can tell has happened from the first half of the border.
It'll probably take another couple of weeks to finish. Knitting is a love and though I never get the money for the amount of work, I feel satisfied that someone has something very unique and beautiful. Just knowing beauty and the love of creation is in the world is satisfying for me. It makes me feel that this love is doing a little bit to help heal our world. Especially in this time when hate and fear are so prevalent.
I'll tell you what my next knitting project is later. It's already forming in my mind. Very excited.
Stay safe out there and be kind. It is sorely needed
PE 800 Saga
AAgghh!! I have a current love hate relationship with my PE 800. As you may recall I had it in for service a little while ago because it seized. Now it is back in for repair.
After I got it back the machine was a dream. It did have one intermittent issue where it would stop and tell me the upper thread needed to be fixed while the thread was obviously still good. So I would pull my hoop off reset my bobbin and yeah! it worked.
That was up until Sunday. That's when it would only do about 14 stitches and then stop with the same message. Resetting the bobbin didn't work.
Yep I took it back to the shop to get the sensor fixed.
In the meantime I have my NS 2750D. It is a work horse and I love it. I don't particularly like switching it from embroidery to sewing machine. Changing the foot is a little annoying. On the other hand the stitches it has for a regular sewing machine is very extensive and well worth the time to switch it out.
So back in March with my tax rebate I bought the PE 800 and the XR 9550PRW. The latter has had absolutely no problems. In comparison the NS 2750D has many more stitches.
In conclusion, if you like me think getting the PE 800 and a regular or quilting sewing machine is the best option -don't.
Save and get an Innov-is like the NS 2750D. It is a reliable machine with lots of options and stitches.
More to do....
So I haven't blogged for a while. things have been very busy. I used my PE 800 for the personalized embroidered masks. It developed an issue with tension and no matter what I did it didn't work. 2 weeks after I could no longer return the machine it started making a lot of noise. And then..... It seized. I had an order for a child mask suffering from cancer. Ouch!!.
The PE 800 was still under warranty so I took it in for repair and discovered it would be 4 to 6 weeks before I could get it back. I was feeling pressure. No machine and a child struggling for life wanting maybe something to help cheer him up.
They had an older Janome so I bought it. For me that was a mistake. Trying to get it to read embroidery designs would have turned my hair grey if it wasn't already that color. It is proprietary and it was not working. Every time Windows updated the machine would no longer read the design. After 3 days I was spending 3 quarters of that time trying to fix the machine. And I was still not making the child's Mighty Max mask
With frustration I returned to the dealer and upgraded to the NS2750D.
I love it. Made the Mighty Max mask for the young man and much more.
So to add to the masks I am now making coasters, quilted coasters and napkins. Ooh, I got my PE 800 embroidery back in 2 weeks. now I can produce twice as much
Sew it is happy sewing for me.
Let me know if you need anything special
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.