Sunday, September 8, 2013

crafting freedom

There are times I have found myself bemoaning the fact that I lead a double life, that I can't make my crafty/creative interests part of my work life. My PhD is in Folklore, and material culture was one of my areas of study back when I was in grad it could be otherwise...could have been otherwise...but I have found my academic home in an English department, where other parts of my training are relevant, and my own research keeps me focused on print and performance, rather than fabric, thread, and yarn.

There's one exception, a project I worked up with an old friend, an Art Ed prof-turned-senior school department head at a prestigious girls' school.  

During a series of classroom visits with her grade 9 art students last Winter and Spring, I taught the girls to do English paper piecing, culminating in three themed quilts which I squared off, basted, quilted, and bound. 

There's so much to say about this experience; it will have to wait for another day, another post (or posts), or (most likely) an article.  This was the one period of time I have been able to blend my realities, to be both teacher-researcher and (in this case) a quilter.  It was deeply satisfying...but it also left me with little drive to quilt in my own spare least temporarily.

Two of the quilts were hung in the school last week. I'm looking forward to reports about the girls' reactions. I tried to warn them about the major perspective shift that happens when a quilt comes's that magic quilt alchemy, and they will be experiencing it for the first time. The thought makes me happy!


So no bemoaning today!  I feel lucky: lucky to have and to love my job.  And I'm lucky to have rich, rewarding, stimulating hobbies...that word sounds so trite, but maybe it's worth embracing. I loooooooove my hobbies!

And when I put the last stitch on the binding of the 3rd quilt a week ago, I suddenly!  Quilting time is now my own again. It is beautiful because it is not work, not evaluated, not required. 

With joy and a feeling of abandon, I whipped up a baby quilt for a woman I have never met, one of my husband's coworkers.


And a few days later I found myself raiding the stash again -- just like the good ol' days -- cutting up some treasured fabrics (Bloomsbury Gardens from Liberty Lifestyle), just as the inspiration hit and with no set goal in mind. (More on that project soon. I'm very excited about it!)

Pulling, combining, squinting, refining, slicing and was lovely and reminded me of what I find so wonderful about this craft.  If only I could distill that feeling and make it into a happy pill...

...but wait: if you're reading this, you probably have the ingredients at hand!  Go take your happy medicine, for goodness sake!



Saturday, September 7, 2013

back in the saddle

It's been a while, and I was starting to think that I might just let this blog gather dust...but armed with a nifty little toy (an iPad mini), I'm thinking I may be able to do some short and (hopefully) sweet posts in the months to come.

Last night I made a first pass at a sleeve for the was a bit of a bust since I just made it up as I went and it turned out too small.  All of my brain energy is going elsewhere right now, so I really need patterns.

A little fabric love for my work life: made a clutch/sleeve for my new iPad mini, pattern by schoolhouse patterns on etsy.

Second try was a success! I used the iPad mini clutch pattern from schoolhouse patterns' etsy was just the ticket, and includes a little front pocket perfect for my VGA adapter, or any accessory you want to keep close at hand. Highly recommended! As you can see, some of my current teaching -- Victorian women's ghost stories -- is impacting my fabric choices.

Finally, I'm taking the plunge and "claiming" my blog on bloglovin' action that still seems bizarre to me, but here it goes...

Wontchna please

Follow my blog with Bloglovin


Monday, June 24, 2013

Project Cardigan, chapter 2...and a whole lotta knitting, in general

I love sewing but my first crafty love -- knitting -- has been consuming me lately, being so perfectly suited to my life, my over-full mind, my desire to get away from anything with a plug (and away from the dining room table, which doubles as office and sewing space).

Knitting has been perfect and this summer it's a fair bet that whenever my hands are freed from the keyboard or pen/cil, they are holding knitting needles.

I realized last night that in all the years I've been knitting I have never made myself the kind of sweater I wanted to wear all the time...until this summer.  I don't know what's going on, but my knitting stars seem to be aligned this year.  My 3rd FO in Project Cardigan is my Favourite Sweater Ever (or at least to-date!).

This is my Blackberry cardigan, made from Elspeth Lavold Silky Wool and using Baby Cocktails pattern "Bailey's Irish Cream."


Blackberry v of "baileys Irish cream" cardi blocking! Yay!
progress shot -- blocking
I visited my dear friend Freda recently -- please do follow the link to her blog...she's one of the most interesting, smart, and complex women you could hope to meet! -- and my blackberry cardigan was perfect for the cool Chicago spring weather.

My one modification of any significance was the addition of horizontal (short row) bust darts -- my first, and they were really successful.


in case the giant pink arrow blocked your view, here it is again

It might seem odd to add short rows (I threw in about 5 pairs of short rows) to a lace pattern, but they really did blend in.  All that was eliminated in the patterning at the side seam was one cable crossover...I don't think I'd ever notice this if I wasn't looking for it, but the fronts of the cardigan hang SO much better than usual for me.

The next cardigan off the needles wasn't quite as fact, I haven't brought myself to do those last little bits of neatening and button sewing because I am ambivalent.

IMG_2219This short-sleeved cardi is made from a bamboo yarn and -- don't let it be said I wasn't forewarned (the nice guy at the cash register at Romni Wools tried to tell me!) -- it "grew," unpredictably.  In fact, this fits more like my sweaters of yore, too wide aound the shoulders and underarms. Ick.

But it might be okay....  It definitely looks best layered over a long-sleeved dress like the one I happened to be wearing when I was knitting the neckband.

The jury's still out, and I have put this aside for the time being.

Finally, there have been some little things flying off the needles, since I find that it's healthiest for me to have a couple of things going at once.

There have been two lacey things made from HandMaiden Sea Silk (one of my all-time favourite yarns), drawing on patterns in my beloved Japanese stitch dictionary.






I could rattle on, but I think that's PLENTY on knitting discussed in a single post!

By the way, you can find my work on instagram (I'm "enchantedbobbin") and ravelry (my account was set up years ago and then long's all pre-enchanted bobbin: there I'm "mother bunch"). So if you're interested in the little progress shots that fill out the time between posts, please look for me there!

Wishing you many happy stitches,


Friday, May 17, 2013

Loulouthi hexies for Bloggers Quilt Festival S'13

It's been a couple of cycles since I entered a quilt in Amy's Bloggers' Quilt Festival 
and I'm delighted to be getting out of the quilt closet once again.


I can hardly wait to browse through all the lovelies in the various categories and really hope that you enjoy the little quilt I have to share with you, which I'm entering in Amy's new "throw quilt" category.

Loulouthi Hexies

This is one of those projects that took a loooooooong time from start to finish, which makes it especially meaningful.

Lououthi hexies, English paper piecing
47" x 54"
hand pieced (English paper piecing)
free motion quilted on my domestic sewing machine

I began this project as part of the Summer 2011 "hexalong" organized by Lynne of Lily's Quilts.  I began by experimenting with a variety of hexagon shapes and a small set of Anna Maria Horner's then-new Loulouthi line of fabrics, which I was combining with solids from my stash. One of the delights and challenges of Loulouthi is that it is far, far, far from a "matchy-matchy" kind of line.  The line has its own internal scrappiness, with a very wide range of colours and print scale. 

my very first giant hexie for the HAL

My collection of hexies started to grow....

first set of hexies for the HAL

big hexies in progress for the HAL    ....and grow and grow...

until the walls hung with vines...

Oops...until it started to feel a little out of control.

HAL "constellation"


I reined it in, establishing Kona lagoon and aqua as the only two solids to be used throughout, and also establishing a configuration of 60 degree stars and tumbling blocks as the basic "building block" of my layout.

Once I had this basic unit figured out, it became much easier to move forward and to do some heaxagon experimentation within the basic pattern (as you can see in some of the pieced hexagons that run along the edges of the finished quilt!).

EPP is slow, no doubt about it, but I'd say that most of the time it took to make this quilt top was spent thinking...trying to figure out how to balance the wildness of Loulouthi (and the scrappiness I was really enjoying) with my need for harmony in the layout.

Finally, more than a year later, I had a throw size top I felt happy with!Loulouthi hexies, started summer 2011, now almost done

And now, with the help of my sweet daughter Chloe who was willing to hold the quilt for a few minutes before school today, I have photos of the finished quilt, 
which is backed with AMH's "Summer Totem" 
and free-motion quilted on my domestic machine in a very relaxed loopy pattern.

Loulouthi hexies, back

Loulouthi hexies, loopy fmq

Thanks so much for stopping by!  Enjoy the quilt festival!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

camp memories

Hellooooooo! Happy spring (she writes, optimistically, as we in Toronto exit from a spell of chilly weather).

I have been meaning to post something about the absolutely wonderful, exhausting, memorable time I had at Brenda's Camp Stitchalot...but somehow the days and now the week/s have slipped by, and others -- like Rossie, Katy (here AND here), and April -- have done a great job capturing its spirit.

The fact that I have next to no photo documentation of the weekend has been one hindrance to blogging about the experience.  But the fact that I neglected my e-mail, instagram, flickr, and camera are actually really good signs: I was there, I was having fun, and for at least a little while I wasn't at all concerned about the world beyond. And fortunately for me, my fellow campers (and most especially my dear friend Melinda) did document and now there's a great pool of flickr photos to serve as our collective scrapbook.

The opportunity to focus on sewing, and I mean really focus (as in sew-every-waking-moment-focus) was amazing in itself. For a few days weekend-before-last, I forgot about my research, my writing, my deadlines, my admin responsibilities. I wasn't thinking about what to make for dinner. It was a great treat!

Most memorably, I had the chance to spend time with a group of women doing the same thing, and doing it with humour and enthusiasm. The talent and generosity of both our "counsellors" -- Brenda, Rossie, Katy, Rae, Melody, and Rashida -- and fellow "campers" is really stunning. It was just what I needed and I wish we could do it all over again, monthly!

I admit that my camp spirit waned on Sunday morning as my thoughts turned to the drive home and the very serious work in front on me...I think I even uttered the sacrilege, "It's ONLY fabric!" during a spontaneous scrap swap...what was I thinking?

I repent.

And I hope to go back to camp next spring!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Project Cardigan

Things are going pretty well around these parts: writing & thinking work is getting done, plans for more  such work are in place (which is greatly reassuring)...and a little crafting is underway too, knitting mostly.

Knitting and writing have a longstanding relationship in my life; this is good.  Very good.

And in addition to my writing goals for the summer, I now have some very lofty knitting goals too: since (when not on research leave) I live in cardigans and skirts in the fall-winter-spring (and even some of the's basically my work uniform), I would love to devote myself to some selfish knitting.  Cardigan knitting. Let's say, 5 new cardigans for wintertime.  Wouldn't that be nice?

PROJECT CARDIGAN! We're off to a good start, I'd say.

(1) The year began with an adaptation of Andi Sutherland's Agatha cardigan, made from a very delicious, earthy, mustardy colour of Cascade 220.  It is like a deep ochre with flecks of red in it.  I love it and have already worn this cardigan much more than any other sweater I have made for myself in 3 decades of knitting!

Agatha cardigan, adapted & complete

(2) And today I finished my version of Jane Richmond's Grace cardigan, made from Tough Love sock yarn by Sweet Georgia, in a yummy shade of pumpkin. I an indebted to another ravelry user for the yarn and colour choice...I really don't feel I can take credit for that at all!

grace cardigan, done!!

As I detail in my ravelry notes (follow the links above), I chose to make this sweater with some positive rather than negative ease and I lengthened the body and sleeves a wee bit.  I like the way the lightweight fabric drapes.  More comfy than having it be tight all around, I think.

Buttons for both are from my nice stash of vintage buttons, most of which were bought as a lot from ebay a few years ago. Apparently they had been in storage after a shop had closed down, and all were still on their cards with their (now) outrageously low prices printed on. The buttons I sewed on my grace cardi today are an odd bunch, in 2 shades of tangerine and 1 of pale yellow.  If the quirkiness of the buttons gets on my nerves, I'll switch them out at a later date.

There has been other knitting happening too, not all of it selfish, and also some charity sewing, but I'll hold all of that for another post, another time. For now, I'm going to rustle through my yarn stash and plan my 2013 cardigan #3. 

Happy stitches to you all!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Agatha cardigan, take 2

I have been a knitter for most of my life and while I have knit many well-loved sweaters for family members, my track record in sweaters made for myself is less-than-stellar.  All have been well-knit (if I do say so myself!), but there were always fitting issues....

I'm finally conquering this and I'm thrilled!

In my last post I showed the sad state of Agatha cardigan from this pattern by Andi Sutherland.  The design of that sweater is super-cropped and I had somehow deluded myself into thinking that extending the waistline (after the decreases) and including a nice wide band of ribbing would make it right for me. Wrong!

I ripped back to the waist shaping with the plan of shifting straight into hip shaping and a more average hip length. In short: I am really changing the shape and style of this cardigan.

Keeping in mind that I don't yet have a buttonband and I still have a little AGGRESSIVE BLOCKING to do (after 30 years I am finally going to be in the possession of blocking pins and a good mat!!! I have ordered these and these!), the fit is....GOOD!

Excuse the midnight photos.

Most exciting: I know how to make my next sweater a BETTER fit!

I am so grateful to Nic and Liz for introducing me to Amy Herzog, sweater fitting goddess.  I linked from her blog to her Craftsy class, which I watched in its entirety this weekend. I have already learned soooo much from Amy and am finally starting to understand what I can do with my sweater knitting to make some very wearable, flattering items for myself.  Yaaaayyyyy!

While I wait for my new blocking supplies I am going to start my "test sweater" for Amy's class.  I'm using a cardigan pattern called "Tempest" from Knitty Spring 2008, probably with some subtle colour blocking rather than stripes.  I have some gorgeous emerald solid and variegated Koigu KPPPM on hand for this project and, most importantly, I have several modifications planned: I'm going to move the back waist shaping from the seams to the 1/3 and 2/3 points in the back piece, I'm going to knit a size based on my upper chest measurement and add 1" worth of vertical bust darts, and I may eliminate the front waist shaping altogether (still mulling that one over).  I'm excited to get started....

Finally, I have one other sweater-fitting resource  in the queue and that is Ysolda Teague's Little Red in the City, which I mentioned in my last post. My overloaded brain and overloaded calendar can only handle so much at once right now, so I'm going to work through "Tempest" with Amy...and then I'll start to explore Ysolda's lovely, detailed book.

For now, it's on to my green cardigan and some more adventures in pattern modification.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

so many balls

Hello Blogland!  It's been a while.  I'm happy to report that my mind is on my work, where it really needs to be during this precious research leave (which is almost at an end, sniff sniff)...and there is still a little stitching going on, but nothing like the fury of thread, fabric, and yarn that characterized deep winter.

This little blog serves me very well as a kind of diary of creative efforts and I don't want to abandon it even as I get deeper in my two current book projects.  So while my posts may be brief, I'm hoping to keep them going!

I have a few quilt sampler-related things I'd like to write about...soon....My Farmer's Wife quilt top (finished nearly a year ago, egads) is next to be basted and Pony Club sampler and Nancy Cabot 1933 sampler both seem like perfect summer projects for me, given the fact that I have soooooo many balls in the air right now.

I love that sampler blocks offer themselves up as small, do-able tasks, objects of challenge and beauty in their own right, each offering a sense of accomplishment on a small scale. Mmmmmm.  Sooooooooon.

Meanwhile, I can report a quilt finish -- my second Scrappy Trips Around the World quilt, based on Bonnie Hunter's excellent tutorial.  This one is the product of the over-loaded red-pink-orange corner of my fabric stash and is a gift for my good friend Miriam, co-conspirator in the mass conversion of 14-year-old private school girls to the Cult of the Quilt (more on that soon, too). I hope to get some good photos of the finished quilt soon but for now here is some evidence of its existence: Saturday night basting party.

This time around I used 3.5" strips to make my blocks, and this larger size has some REAL advantages.  First, everything goes more quickly: each block finishes at 18", so 25 blocks and you have a queen-sized quilt.  Yay!  The larger squares also show off larger prints; this is great too.  

Fabrics: scrappy with a big dose of Denyse Schmidt. The "stems" of each block (for lack of a better term -- these are the lines that criss-cross this quilt) are two of the black and cherry prints from Denyse Schmidt's Greenfield Hill and the backing is yards and yards of  "Preservation Peony" from that same line.  It looks lush and vaguely decadent.  I bound the whole thing in a red and pink polka dot print from Denyse's first line for Joann's (can't recall the name).

On the knitting front, I finished the main part of my Agatha cardigan...but after blocking (and obviosuly before making the buttonband) I remembered why it is that I should avoid cropped styles: my shoulder-to-waistline distance is really small.  And then my waistline to hip length is relatively long.  So with Agatha's waist shaping (which, in the original pattern, never gets reversed), the bottom of the cardigan just straaaiiiiiins around my tum.  Not comfortable and not flattering. 

You would think I would know better by now...but no.  I just knit along merrily, despite the nagging voice that said, This will not work for you!

Anyway, live and learn.

I have unravelled the body up to the bottom of the waist shaping (see the giant ball and the smile of a woman no longer restricted by a too-small-cardigan?).

I'll pick up the knitting at this point and start hip increases right away.  I think a longer cardigan will be nice too...I just have to go back to Romni wools, where I prematurely returned 2 skeins of this yarn, thinking myself to be a buttonband away from a finish.  Sigh.

Knitter know thyself. Discovering the timer on my camera is a step in this direction.

It's a hard pill to swallow, but after 30 years of knitting I'm still learning about what will and what will not work for me. In fact, when I started knitting in the early 80s, "fitting" was not an issue that knitters discussed.  You followed a pattern, probably one for a sweater with dropped shoulder and boxy pattern pieces.  Maybe it's because I'm such an experienced knitter that it's hard to break with habit and think critically about how to tailor a pattern to me.  I'm going to work on this.

(EDITED TO ADD: even with this amount of "frogging," I can see that the fit of what's left is not ideal.  The bunching on the side under my arm, at the bust, is probably due to the fact that I need an FBA -- more increases at the bust -- while I could probably do with a smaller size for the basic shell.  These are exactly my fitting issues in sewn garments.)

From a little online research, it sounds to me like Ysolda Teague's "reference" section in  Little Red in the City is probably the best guide to fitting shaped knits. And how can I resist that title, sooooo perfect for me?

Do you have any favourite reference books for shaping and customizing your knitting? This old horse is ready to try some new tricks....

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Nancy Cabot, 80 years later

I first heard about early 20th c. quilt block designer "Nancy Cabot" (pen name for Loretta Leitner Rising) about a year ago -- and there is a great flickr group dedicated to exploration of her modern-feeling designs.

But about a week ago I stumbled across a new website -- one that is honouring the 80th anniversary of the debut of Cabot's Chicago Tribune column: Moore About Nancy / the Nancy Cabot sewalong.

Candace is offering daily blocks c. 1933, all of which finish at 6"...  and after lurking for a several days I felt inspired to dive in yesterday.

I have a bit of catching up to do, but I have made 4 blocks so far -- using a tiny stash of Aneela Hooey prints and some white Essex linen as focus fabrics.

"Star and Cross" by Nancy Cabot
"star and cross"

"Wandering foot" by Nancy Cabot
"wandering foot"
-- a block I adore, although I *may* need to redo
because my block is 1/4" small all around, boo!

"Georgetown Circle" by Nancy Cabot
"georgetown circle"

"Beautiful Star" by Nancy Cabot
"beautiful star"

...because I really needed to be working on 2 samplers at once (!). Want to join me?

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Swoon! Or how I got stuck hand-quilting when I wanted to be on the new machines

So I was between machines but wanting to move some of my works-in-progress forward...and I decided to hand quilt my Swoon, that quilt top I started a year ago (January 2012) and finally finished over the holidays.

prepping Swoon blocks 2 - 9

for future Swoon blocks

Swoon 1, 2, and 3
Swoon 4, 5, 6, and 7

Swoon! No way to get a good photo right now (the tall people are still sleeping!)...but it's fully pieced, after 6 months of sitting, partially pieced, in a closet-- and before the end of the year

And now I have outlined 7 of the 9 blocks (in cream and grey perle 8 cotton, using the aqua Etchings blueprint yardage I have been saving for the backing, and Hobbs Heirloom wool for the batting). My plan is to echo the shapes with additional lines of quilting and also to stitch along the sashings strips (which are made of the Etchings blueprint in cream...I ran out of my cream solid background fabric!).

But boy am I aching to get on the Juki and the Bernina, my new-to-me toys!

I really, really want to move on to the quilting of my Farmer's Wife sampler, the making of Pony Club blocks, and some garment sewing experiments for myself...and at the same time, my mind is turning to writing, where it really needs to be during this precious research semester....

What a sweet dilemma, huh? I do realize how fortunate I am.

Swoon, hand quilting this star right now

Anyway, I promised my bloggy friends some progress shots of the hand-quilting...I warn you that my personal standards for hand quilting are fairly low, the effect is just soft and homey, nothing prize-worthy here.

Swoon back, hand quilting in progress

But Ramone and Penelope are big, big fans of all this hand-quilting, so I may have ribboned in the Kitty Cat Quilt Show.

Swoon, hand quilting in progress

an attempt at a photo of centre block from Swoon

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Gone mechanical

I love sewing machines...yes, I do.  I truly do.  This has been one of the discoveries of the past 3 years, as sewing & quilting have become a major part of my life!

This week I made a big change.

I sold my Janome Horizon.

Now I certainly don't want to bad-mouth this machine: it served me really well for 2.5 years, I learned a lot while making 30+ quilts and lots of little girl clothes on it.  It has a million and one features.  It is loved by many.

But I had the sudden revelation that one machine cannot do it all -- piece, free motion quilt, hem, topstitch -- without being a wee bit...fussy.  I asked a lot of the Janome Horizon, making it switch tasks repeatedly, and all she wanted in return was exactly the right thread, exactly the right needle, a perfectly wound bobbin...or else!

It dawned on me that what I really needed were two machines (try explaining that to your family, squeezed into a small urban house): one for quilting and another for garment sewing.

It also dawned on me that I had had it with computerized machines.  What I really love are sturdy, heavy, metal, mechanical machines (I spend quite enough time on computers), ones that purr when you oil and clean them, and that aren't mystifying.  My 1947 Singer Featherweight taught me that.

And I think it's important that you love your machine(s)!

And now I do, I really do!  

I found a new home for the Horizon (wow, there'a ton of kijiji interest in that machine!), and now I have two machines that together cost a lot less than a new Horizon.  To some this would look like a step down, but for me it feels like a huge step UP! Here are the details.

Garment (general) sewing

Channelling my great aunt Lucy, who was a fabulous seamstress and used a very simple machine, I focused on finding myself a beautifully-made, tuned-up zig-zagger with at least one decorative stitch, manual buttonholes, needle position adjustment, and I chose a middle-aged Bernina as my all-purpose, garment sewing machine.

Meet the Nova 900, built in 1980.

Miss Nova, I love you!!!! 1/4" ties were almost impossible to stitch on my janome (the feed dogs were so wide set), they were do-able on the featherweight, but they're a pleasure on my new baby. Nova has adjustable needle position, like newer machines, th
stitching teeny tiny strips (ties for Frida's dress) was a breeze

My yellow-trim Bernina Nova 900 came with all her original bits and bobs, including a hard-shell case (lined in lime green!) and the manual.

I invested in two more of those fabulous Bernina feet: a 1/4" piecing foot and an invisible zipper foot.

I am a total Bernina convert! (If I were in a position to buy a new Bernina, I would definitely go to Karyn at the workroom: to my mind, the ideal sewing machine dealer is one that is local and who actually loves to sew!)

This is by far the best sewing machine I have ever worked on...and because it's an old machine, it also was far from the most expensive.

I made Frida's birthday dress yesterday and I couldn't be happier with this machine! As an experiment I used the Nova and only the Nova for the whole project -- including seam finishing, which I did with ease with the Overlock foot (470).  The Blindstitch foot (016) worked amazingly well for topstitching (who knew?!).  I may actually make more clothing simply because I enjoy this machine so much.

Getting ready to sew Frida's birthday dress: ModKids Gretchen

Frida's birthday dress with ribbon trim detail#modkids #berninanova900

Quilt making 

(piecing, straight-line quilting, free motion quilting)

For quilting, I went with a straight-stitch, metal, mechanical, semi-industrial workhorse bought from a (recently-discovered) awesome local dealer (Cloverdale Sewing Centre, if you're in the Toronto area!).

Meet the Juki TL-2010Q. 

I'm in love with this machine too!

I tested my Juki thoroughly before quilting with everything from beautiful variegated Aurifil 12 wt to a nasty, twisty, miserable 50 wt thread I bought at Creativ Festival two years ago, and which made my Janome Horizon throw a fit.  I fmq'ed with tight crazy curves, swoops, twists, everything nutty you can imagine...and the stitching was PERFECT!  No eyelashes at all, perfectly balanced stitches.

Yes pleeeeaaase!

My new best quilting friend, juki 2010q!!!!! She's amazing. The Janome Horizon has found a new home and I am thrilled to have replaced it with the lovely 1980 Bernina nova 900 and this juki -- a less $$ combo than the Horizon and they're making me sososo

I finished quilting my version of "Scrappy Trips Around the World" as soon as I got the Juki out of her box (ummm, that would be yesterday!  I got right on it!).

Working meandering loops with Connecting Threads cotton thread in white, the quilting was an absolute pleasure! By this morning I was making and attaching the binding (using the Juki's included walking foot).  Ahhhhhhh!

Finally binding #scrappytripalong. Listening to CBC and getting mentally prepared to do some work-work

#scrappytripalong FINIS!!! Bound with Kona turquoise. Fmq loops in white.

#scrappytripalong is Ramone-approved

I am one happy woman today!

And I'm very happy to talk machines, so please let me know which ones make you a happy stitcher.