Just in case you didn’t know, this is the incorrect way to thread a bobbin.

Bernina 830 Bobbin

I will post more about the Bernina 830 later, but this is an example of what I learned to do and not to do during the dealer training I went to this week in Oklahoma City.

I suppose I need to find a better time to blog than on Fridays because that doesn’t appear to be working out very well. I guess I will try posting periodically through the week, but sometimes I just don’t have anything to blog about.  Luckily for you, that is not today. There is plenty to catch up on.

First I will show you a bad picture of my pretty dishes, that I talked about in my last post.

Daisy chain dishes

I know that they are avacado green and old, but they are really pretty. I love that they are Corelle – light weight, thin, but awesome quality of glass.

In other news, I’ve basically completely given up on my sewing machine. It is old and pieces seem to fall off everytime I try to use it, and fixing the mistakes seems to be more effort than just sewing by hand. So that is what I’ve been doing instead -hand sewing everything. Starting with these hexagons.

Plume Hexagons

I’ve made twice as many as this, and I have a complete stack of fabric pieces ready to be sewn. At first I was going to make a pillow, but now I think I’m going to size it up to a wall hanging. I really love the light shade of teal and think that it would be beautiful to paint the sewing/living room a shade of that color, which would make the wall hanging really “pop”! (Just add painting the living room to my to do list. Ha!)

With some of the fabric scraps, since I’m using a layer cake of the “Plume” line by Tula Pink I decided to make a mini quilt block. It measures by about 5″, so 4 1/2″ finished.  I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it, especially since I don’t really have enough scraps to make more like it, but it sure is cute.

Baby Log Cabin

Other than that, the only other thing I’ve sewn in the last 2 weeks is a lunch bag made with some of the blue ornamental oil cloth I bought at the SewFlakes sale in February. When I finish it, I will post a picture.

I usually take time out on the weekends to update my blog since I have Fridays and Sundays off, but last weekend I was so sick I just couldn’t sit at the computer. But now my system is back to normal and I’m ready to post again! Today’s post is going to be about my extremely lucky day!

I try to spend a day with my Grandma every other month or so, of course I see her more often than that, but on this one day we actually go on a treasure hunting adventure. We visit the usual thrift store, any garage sales on the way, have lunch, and maybe run a few errands in there. Either way, it is always great fun and awesome quality time. (I’m such a Grandma’s-girl, being the oldest and all.)

Today we did everything that we normally do, but I hit the jackpot of treasure finding! At the thrift store I found a set of dishes from the 70’s. Some of the piece were marked 50% off while others ere not so I asked the cashier about them, and she gave them all to me at half price! You are probably thinking, “Woohoo, big deal, they are just dishes.” But they aren’t just any dishes! They are the Daisy Chain design from Pyrex and Correll. I have been collecting pieces one or two at a time since I found my first piece 2 years ago and fell in love with the little green daisy borders! So now I have most of the plates for the complete set. (6 plates, 5 bread plates, and 1 saucer for about $7!) This counts as the first “treasure find” of the day.

Then we went to the mall to eat lunch because its the only place that has Gyros, and I’m so on a Gyro kick lately. I really don’t like going to the mall, so we had lunch and left. We then visited The Cotton Patch where I found an aqua fabric I need for the Quilt Block Swappers group and that was it and of course a few other pieces ended up in the bag as well. (Fabric has a mind of its own, I can’t help it if it insists on coming home with me.)

The next treasure find isn’t really a big deal, but I found $10 on the ground at the gas station. I gave it to the clerk and he said since I found it I could keep it, so it paid for the gas. Awesome!

We ran a few other errands, but on the last stop of the day I hit the Jackpot of treasure hunting. We stopped at a new thrift store, not sure if we were going to find anything because it is small and a hole in the wall. However, that quickly changed when I spotted a sewing cabinet with a White sewing machine in it, marked at $3. The sewing machine is shot and not worth the cost or effort of repairing, but the table is steady. It just needs to be sanded and refinished or painted, though Erik might use it for a wood working stand instead – to mount his vice on.

So when you think about it, I either got a free bucks in gas or a set of dishes and a sewing table. Pretty awesome day no matter how you look at it.

I will try and post pictures on Sunday. Hopefully I will have my reversible smock top done by then as well.

Every Monday the host of the Flickr Quilting Bee that I’m in asks a question or two for us to answer – it is known as “Getting to Know you Mondays?” This Monday the questions deal with how we learned to sew.

“How are you learning to quilt? Did you take a class? Learn from a friend? Book? Blog?”

I started learning during my Home ec. class while being home schooled. I would go over to my step-grandma’s and make all sorts of things. Some of my favorite memories come from her sewing room. I love the smell of freshly ironed fabric, it always makes me think about those times. She use to have boxes, trunks, wardrobes, and drawers of fabrics, to many and to beautiful to recall. It was like entering a magical land of creativity. One of my favorite projects she taught us was a crazy quilt. I don’t think we actually ever finished the quilt, but I remember her pulling out this big (clean) trash can she kept next to her work area full of all sorts of scraps. She taught us how to match everything up, sew and trim the pieces, and then she would let us be for a while so we could just flow with it. These were the first times I started sewing.

Now I learn mostly from blogs. It started with Sonnet of the Moon. When I came across her blog last year, about this time, I thought it was wonderful. I spent the evening and part of the next day reading it from the very beginning, all the way through. Through her blog I came to know about some of my other, now favorite blogs, including:

Film in the Fridge
SewMamaSew
Handmade by Alissa
Craft Apple
Homemade by Jill
Pink Penguin
Sew Much Ado

There are more blogs that I read, but those are just a few for now.

I also learn a lot from working at SewFlakes. My boss, Chris, has been so helpful, and so have the other ladies. At SewFlakes the only classes I’ve taken have been a couple of “Ways and Means” technique classes. They are an awesome way to learn to do some of the basic stuff without spending the money to take a complete quilt class. So far I’ve taken binding, mitered corners, and cording. I’m really hoping that we can keep the classes going because I really need to learn to put in a zipper….properly.

I just opened up my Etsy shop. There is one part of the goal for this year done, now just to sell something, which, of course, will take time.

I only have three things listed so it looks really boring! Besides, the smock top isn’t really something I can sell, per se. If someone actually orders it I will make another one just like it really quickly. (It will still be done well quality-wise, mind you.)

I’m hoping that after this Spring Break Sewing Camp (S.B. Camp) is over I will magically have some time! I definitely will try to refrain from volunteering anything else. I would really like to concentrate on getting some more items made for the shop through the end of March.

My problem right now, is not knowing what to make. There are so many cute things on Etsy. How do I compete with that! What can I make that people will actually want to buy – that they can’t already make themselves or buy some where else?

Its weird. I’m so excited about the possibilities, and yet so discouraged at the same time. Did any of you feel like this when you started your Etsy shop (or selling via another venue)? Do you still feel like this? Can you offer any words of advice for a beginner?

Thanks for reading,

Trina

Let’s see. What all do I have going on now?

SewFlakes Quilt Block Swappers Group

Twiddletails -Pin Wheel Party

The Pattern Challenge

Spring Break Camp (I’m teaching)

Preparing for trip to Market

I think that about covers it. Oh no, wait, I joined another group!

Quilting newBees

It is a quilting bee for beginners (or really for any skill)! It is going to be so much fun! Each month, except for November, I will have a package of fabrics sent to me. I will make the designated quilt blocks out of the fabric and mail it back to the sender. Then in November it is my turn to send out fabric and receive back finished blocks in return! My head is atizy (is that a word) with all the possibilities!

My grandma says I get to many irons in the fire, but the stove hasn’t blown up yet so I presume I can probably handle a couple more and be fine!

Wouldn’t that be a cute name for a quilt blog – Irons in the Fire. I’m sure someone has already thought of it. (If it hasn’t been used someone hurry up, claim it, and put it to good use!) I was thinking about that earlier; how everyone on my Google Reader has such a cute name for their blog. Then I thought, “Trina, your name is cute enough, and you were able to make it make sense with your hobby so just leave well enough alone!” And you know what, I think I thought right! *smiles*

Trina

I suppose this doesn’t really count for the pattern challenge, but since I haven’t picked out a pattern for my birthday dress yet, this will have to due.

The Best of Sew Simple Magazine

The Best of Sew Simple Magazine

I’m suppose to be using this book to teach a Spring Break Sewing Camp at SewFlakes later in March. Unfortunately the two projects I’ve done out of the book so far have proven that the instructions are faulty, not making this the best book for beginners.

Following the instructions for the Smock Top I had to rip out seams twice, though the second one was mostly my fault. When it came time to attach the band to the bodice piece of the top I totally disregarded the book. I wouldn’t suggest that anyone get this book who didn’t already have some knowledge of how things are suppose to go together properly. Thankfully, Chris, my boss, was close by the whole time I was working on the top and she was able to show me how to make it all work out.

This is the finished product.

Smock Top

The main fabric is an Alexander Henry.

After going through the complete process I’m confident that the next time I make this top it will come together a lot quicker and easier. (Touch wood.) In the mean time I’m glad to have this done. Now I just need to get a new seam ripper since mine is dull!