Saturday, January 03, 2009

Up to No Good

Our guild back in Boston is having a fund raiser with a challenge project to take place at the show in May.  The only real constraint is to keep all sides under 20", not a problem.  After they are exhibited they will be auctioned and the funds divided between the New England Quilt Museum and the Arsenal Arts Center where we meet.  Worthy causes, both, so I want to participate.  Oh, there is also a theme but it can be interpreted any way we want:  Leaves.
A perfect opportunity to re-learn my machine down here-  I bought one way out of my league** a couple of years ago, and have to re-learn how to even turn the bloody thing on every time I try to use it.  So, here I tried some more of the machine drawing on the back side.  But the front was boring so I then colored 'within the lines' with my very old oil pastels.  Still not enough, so I tried out one of the fancy-pants stitches to make berry clusters and now I am going to leave it alone.  Sometimes things go together quickly-  I have to just accept that.

Next I have been fighting these damn birds- somehow the flash made the colors more vibrant that in real life, but the branches are giving me problems.  Since the picture I have added another smaller layer of a linen stripe that that toned it down some.  Next I will try matting it all down with wads of stitches.  The original gorgeous background print is the piece Beverly Fine gave me last season because I am so cute (or something)-  whatever the reason I didn't deserve it, especially not to mess it up!  So, give me a few more days worrying at it and we'll see what happens.  If all else fails I will make a bag for humanely catching wild parrots.

And finally, here is my latest etsy purchase!  Isn't this the coolest?  It is made by baloo, and is a knitted and felted dog paw made from Samoyed fur.  It is exactly the color and size of Molly's paws, except she has hair between her toes, a hard detail to knit, so we will have her feet shaved next week to match the dog paw.  She has great interest in this, it must still smell Samoyed-ish to her, but not to me.  I bought it as a good luck talisman to carry with me next time I hit the hospital because I miss her when I am not at home--- and she doesn't talk well on the phone.

**way out of my league:  I HATE machines that aren't intuitive-  things where you have to keep the manual open next to you to run it correctly.  This goes for dishwashers, electronics, cars, and automatic light timers, or the aforementioned sewing machine.  I am a Mac devotee, and love how simple it all is-  why can't all companies work within this same *simple* principle?  My first Bernina was a perfect machine-  it went forward, it went backward, it zigzagged.  It was workhorse and completely reliable.  If something wasn't right, adjustments were easy to do myself.  I didn't have it serviced professionally for 20 years.  Then, I bought a new machine because I was getting successful and needed, I thought, an upgrade.  I was wrong and never fell in love with the 1992  model.  Sure, it works fine, but not like the old mechanical one.  So for some reason I decided to upgrade again and got the QE440 which people rave about.  I took a class at the local quilt shop to learn it and everyone in the class got it humming.  Not me.  Last year I took another class and again it was a great success for everyone else, not me.  It's like a date where you know that he is perfect for you ON PAPER, but there just isn't a spark.  Cut bait.  I had given my good ole machine to a relative who doesn't sew, I think I will ask for it back.

Maybe I can also get my little 2 door 1978 Blazer back too, my favorite car ever.


baloo said...

Sorry to hear about your sewing machine. I know exactly how you feel intuitive-wise. I've got a very simple Husqvarna that does the trick for me. Nothing fancy, but then I never have to crack the manual either.

Hope you can eventually wrangle yours into submission.

Terry said...

I think my sister would probably love my old Bernina, and she can't afford even a good used machine, but she's not getting it because I keep it for the day this newfangled computerized, 10 million fancy stitches deal gives up the ghost. I'm a bad sister.

Dee Mallon said...

Hi Sandy,
I think your parrots look stunning!

I am an old Bernina fan, too (I use the 1030 and a 1001). In fact, do you know anyone interesting in purchasing a PFAFF? I pfucking hate that machine! (Can I say that here?) Not only do you have to open the bobbin area to flip the dog feeds up or down, you need to unscrew and screw a screw (that says it all) to change feet. WOW! I didn't realize I had so much bile stored up about that machine!

See you in Watertown, in the spring?

meggie said...

Haha, thanks for the laughs about the machine, - & the pfaff lady!
I have a Janome which is really old hat now, but I love it to bits, almost. I have a nice simple Brother for a backup machine. I got it for $25 at a garage sale, after haggling! It sews like a dream too.