Monday, January 09, 2006

A Very Productive Day!

I had a very productive day yesterday. The first thing I did was stuff these clear Christmas ornaments with trimmings from batiks I squared up at work on Saturday. Now, I know Christmas is over, but I found this box of ornaments when I cleaned up my sewing room. I bought them with the intent of filling them with pretty fabric. Since we haven't had a traditional tree at home for 2 years now (due to climbing cats), I think they will look great on the tree at the store next season. Wow! I'm ahead on next Christmas! Who'da thunk?

Once this task was done, I began cutting out projects for retreat next weekend. One is a store sample, and the other was 16 FQs of Amy Butler fabrics from my stash for a Scrappy Trip Around the World. After completing the cutting process, I decided that I really should stitch around a few more signature blocks. Three more finished, 4 to go.

After dinner, I still had time to sew. Began sewing a little bit on the projects I had just cut out. But wait! It's only Sunday. What if I make so much progress on these quilts at home that I run out of stuff to sew this weekend? (Wouldn't happen, but better to be safe than sorry....) So then I started digging in the UFO pile under the longarm. You know, all those nice, neat stacks of plastic containers....

Pulled out the fabrics leftover from a log cabin/courthouse steps top that still needs a border. The initial plan was to make a piano key border from leftover strips (cut 1-1/4" x 4-1/4"). Calculated that I would need almost 400 of these puppies. Made an executive decision that this top would have a scrappy pieced border, just not pieces that small. Shoved the tub back in place.

Pulled out another bin. This project was started about 5 years ago right after I opened the shop. It's a streak of lightning quilt from 101 Fabulous Rotary-Cut Quilts by Judy Hopkins and Nancy Martin. Everything is cut out, I think. I now remember why I ditched this project (and no, not because it was ugly, which it is...). When sewing the triangles together, you have to offset the triangle tips just right for the pieces to be straight when pressed open. Ugh! The yellow strip was finished and the blue one was still in two halves- one half was longer than the other. I figured out how to fix that and corrected it.

Then I dug around in the box some more and found this little tool that I had purchased to help me sew these triangles together. This is Judy Martin's Ultimate Point Trimmer - a little gadget made just for the triangle-point challenged people like me. It's a little confusing to look at, but there are directions included in the package.

First, you have to figure our which angle your triangle points are. Just keep moving the little gizmo over your points until they line up between two lines. Lay the point trimmer on the fabric and cut those offending points off!

The trimmed triangle now looks like this. Believe it or not, now when I piece the triangles together at that funky angle, everything is even and it works! I pieced the complete orange triangle row in about 30 minutes. Trimming the points after the initial cutting is kind of a pain, but if I do a few at a time (like a whole row's worth), I don't think it will be too bad. Maybe this project will actually get finished!

We'll just see how far I get.....

Have a great day,


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