Friday, March 21, 2014

The good, the bad and the ugly!

The good, I made progress getting a few more items made for the studio. With the Innova set up on the other side of the room, the sun comes thru the window and shines directly on the machine and any quilt that is loaded on the frame. Fix: New sheers! I made this panel yesterday...
Working on a second pair for the other window once I pick out a rod that will fit. Eventually there will be a quilted roman shade/valance to top this window.

Another item finished is a "pocket" I made for the longarm. Also to protect quilts while they are loaded on the frame. I do a "full float" which means I don't attach the top to a leader. The top ends up hanging off the frame with the batting and is held in place with magnets. With this new pocket (that's what we call it in the drapery workroom world) both the batting and the quilt top will be safely off the floor, protected from feet and anything that might be on the floor (lots of thread :0) I vacuum each time I load a new quilt but it doesn't take long before there is new thread on the floor.
In the picture above you can see how much sun was just starting to come thru the window with the  cafe panel that used to cover half the window.

The pocket is attached by Velcro to the leader I don't use (intended for the quilt top). I used the Velcro so I have the option of taking off the pocked and use the leader when I need to. Once in awhile it is helpful, especially for a quilt top that doesn't want to play nice ;0) 
Velcro is sewn onto the leader and the top of the pocket where it attaches. I added a few small pieces of Velcro to hold the pocket in place when working on smaller quilts. 

The bad is that I made little progress with completed quilts. The hand guided sample I worked on turned out great! I am very happy with the Innova for that (forgot to take pix) This donation purple batik quilt is next on my frame to practice setting up a custom program. The learning curve for the software is pretty high which makes this time consuming. The good news is the features are wonderful and the design possibilities endless! I will be taking classes with my Innova dealer, tentatively the end of April. Wish it was sooner but I'm getting there! 
The entire design was planned out and up on the screen. With the quilt basted I was getting ready to stitch it out. I needed one more measurement (measure twice ~ sew once) and as I pulled the quilt top out of the pocket I felt a seam pull apart! 

This is the ugly part... all three of the borders and some of the blocks started pulling apart in one area of the quilt top and then a second area did the same.
I turned it over to see what was going on and saw scorch marks along the seams. Not sure what type of thread was used, it was a group project and I don't know who actually pieced and/or pressed this top. I suspect it was polyester because it looks to be melted.
Or not, it's possible that no thread could have survived this :0(  Thankfully I had only basted the sides and it was easy to take off the frame. Now to unload the backing. Wishing I still had zippered leaders like I had on my last longarm! Oh well, one more item to add to a very long to do list.  Calling this week done. Happy that it's Spring! Yea!!!

Enjoy your weekend
Spend some time in a garden and/or get in a few stitches!
I am planning to head up to the mountains :0)

Friday, March 14, 2014

Robert's 4H Quilts

A very nice young man, Robert loves quilting! Participating in a 4H program he finished two quilts. Last year's was a sampler he made out of denim. It's really good! This is Robert with his denim quilt made last year. Quilted by B&B, Robert brought this with him when he brought in this year's quilt ready to be quilted. I love how he fussy cut the pocket in the top center block of the denim quilt. Had to share this because I think it's wonderful!
Below is Robert's new quilt for this year. He paper pieced the half square triangles. Very graphic with neon green and purple colors set in black. Black backing. He requested a geometric pattern be quilted on this year's quilt and he picked out a dark purple thread. He decided on this geometric panto design... it's a very good choice. Well done Robert!
(I'll take some close up pix this morning once the sun gets up and up date this post later today)
Update: Here are new pix with a better shot of the whole quilt
and some close ups

 The quilting design ~ Geometric panto 1
Another update: When Robert picked up his quilt this afternoon, he told me he already has ideas for next year's quilt with applique! Nice!

Now that I have one method of doing pantos figured out on Auto Pilot, there are four different ways to do them!, I am looking forward to doing some custom. Last night I loaded a pre print and started playing with the new ruler, changed the foot to a special foot designed to use with rulers and started quilting hand guided. It's like budda!

I never intended to get into computerized quilting, it just happened when I purchased my first longarm used and the Statler came with. Now, five years later, that's where I'm at, learning new software! With Auto Pilot I have way more options and lots more to explore (learn :0) The biggest reason I made the change to Innova is how beautifully it handles hand guided and it does! Now I have a machine that can do both, computerized and hand guided quilting. 

The sun is just coming up and it's time to get my day going. I have several custom quilts lined up for some very patient customers, again, thank you! I have the best customers and keep meeting new ones! Yesterday Tina, new to quilting brought a very well made log cabin pieced with batiks to my studio. We came up with a design, thread choice and a plan right off. It's a wonderful feeling. Wish I could start on it right away but there are more beautiful quilts to do first :0)

Thank you for stopping by, I appreciate the company! Enjoy your day, stitching away!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

QOV for Janis

Second quilt finished on the Innova is a QOV quilt made by Janis. Binding is cut, prepped and attached today. Quilted with Stars and Stripes with a slight off white thread...
finished with binding

some close ups...

Thank you Janis:0) This quilt is well made and I love the star in a star blocks
Perfect pattern for Quilts of Valor

Enjoy your day

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Panto Progress and the First Quilt

Following lots of practice on pre prints the first 'real' quilt rolled off the frame of my new Innova longarm! A scrappy quilt made by Phoebe...
She was fine with my using it for panto practice on the new machine. It turned out just fine.Yea!

Below is my first practice panto on one of the pre prints with a cute new design of teddy bears on a black flannel back...
 and a flannel Penguin print front
 This one turned out fine too so I will add binding and gift it to my nephews first baby :0)

Design wall is up, it's 8 x 8 feet square with a hole cut out for an outlet :0) Yea!
Thank you Michael for all your help xoxoxoxo

For the most part a very good week despite some health issues.
Esther of Threads on the Floor came by Friday morning and is the first person to see my studio finished! We had a wonderful visit. I love that we are good friends and longarm quilters.
New longarm tools ordered arrived. Looking forward to playing with this ruler...
Renae's Steady Edge from Quilts on the Corner. Comes in 3 sizes. 
One of them went home with Esther to play with

Next up a QOV made by Janis in Oroville who dropped off this beauty at Cathy's Honey Run Quilters. It's loaded and ready to go! 

Janie came by in the afternoon to lay out blocks for her quilt.
Visit my blog Ramblin' Rows to see the progress on our NYD mystery quilts
Thank you for visiting Moonbear Designs' new studio
You are welcome to come and play!
Enjoy your weekend :0)
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