Sewing Room Tool: Sharps Disposal

One of the things that everyone needs in their sewing room is a quick and easy disposal of broken needles, bent pins, and dull blades. Over the years I have used many containers, but the one I have found to be best is an empty Coffeemate powder container. It has a small round flip opening for needles and pins and a wide mouth that can be opened to dispose of blades. I always make sure that I remove the label and mark it with a red Sharpie that says “Sharps Disposal”.

Another container that works well is a Benefiber container. I am sure there are others that meet the criteria. Just last week, I bought Coffeemate instead of the store brand just because of the shape of the container. 
 

Thursday’s Tool – Scotch Removable Tape

A great tool that I use when quilting pantographs is Scotch Removable tape. Some quilters use a clear gridded mat over their pantograph. Because I use my table as a cutting table and also a place to lay out and cut borders, I would have to remove the mat every time. I traced a grid on my table with a Sharpie for placement. I lay out my pantographs and stick them down with Scotch Removable tape. The tape holds the paper securely in place and is easily removable when I’m finished. This tape has a blue label and is easily found at the office supply store and at most other stores such as the drugstore, discount stores, and department stores.

Here’s a photo showing how I use it. I am attaching a pantograph that I purchased and downloaded from intelligentquilting.com. The pantograph is Mimosa by Patricia Ritter.

Scotch removable tape
Scotch Removable tape for attaching pantograph to table
 
 

New pantograph design – Triangle Transit

I quilted this donation quilt yesterday with one of my new designs. I really love it – it’s geometric and masculine, great for a man’s quilt. Here’s what it looks like done up in fabric and thread.  It’s available in digital or paper formats from intelligentquilting.com.

TT Front close-up
Triangle Transit Pantograph close-up
TT Front of quilt
Triangle Transit Pantograph quilt front

TT Back of quilt
Triangle Transit Pantograph quilt back
 
 

Design Wall: Four patch strips

Here’s what I have on the design wall today. These are four patches that Mother pieced into strips. With only one functional arm and poor vision, her seams are variable so I squared the edges from the center seam and trimmed all strips to the same length. The sashing strips are 2-1/2 inches. Because everything is accurately cut, I am using glue on each end of the strips and in the center and then easing the side fullness in with glue and steam to fit. Hopefully, I’ll end up with a perfect rectangle.

Only two strips are pieced at this point, but they went together well. Here’s the design wall:

Strips made from four patch blocks pieced by Mother
Strips made from four patch blocks pieced by Mother
 
 

Wednesday – on the frame (12/2/2009)

Here’s a photo of the quilt I finished yesterday. It’s a t-shirt quilt for Emily for Christmas. These are her sports shirts (tennis and softball) from high school. It is quilted with a freehand overall swirl pattern. Now it’s ready to be bound, washed and dried, wrapped and put under the tree.

 
 

Goodbye and Hello!

A reception was held yesterday for my retirement from the Clinical Research Center at UNC. It was a wonderful party, and I am sad to be leaving but excited about the opportunities that it will create. I felt humbled by the kind and generous comments about my work and grateful to everyone who worked so hard to make the event a success. Who would have expected a cake with one of my own quilting designs on it? And what a surprise to see all of the former Program Directors and to have them speak about what we accomplished together over the years. The very funny farewell video was so professional and funny.  Here are some images from the party, and I’ll have more after another dinner tonight.

 
 

Another Friday

Fridays come so fast, so much to be done in a week and so quickly they pass whether I get it all done or not. Fridays bring a new excitement for my “short week” of Saturday and Sunday. I can completely change gears, doing and thinking about new things. And lately I haven’t been making plans for the short week, so maybe haven’t created a lot of new things. Sometimes I just need time to let things simmer. Lately, I’ve been thinking about my dragon. I think she needs to be redrawn. And instead of applique, I may use paint. And she’s sort of prissy, she needs to have a little more flair.  

Spring is coming and warmth is needed to do painting. I think this year it will be nice to have Ezri to help me do some fabric marbling and fabric painting. She has been so delightful lately. The seizures have not been apparent for the last 2-3 weeks. Hopefully the bad colds will stay at bay for awhile. Today is only the second day I’ve felt human in the last week, so I know I’m on the mend.

Off to finish the long week and get ready for the short one. 
 

Weekend Baby Quilt Finished

Here’s a quilt I finished this weekend. Mother pieced it, and I quilted it. This quilt is for the twins–one quilt for the two of them. I used my Quilt EZ template system for the spirals. The stylus isn’t working very well anymore–have written Quilt EZ, but no response yet. I got the idea for quilting the corners from Janet’s example of the Bullseye quilt on LAC. I made the “corner” square where she made it circular. I think I like the way she did it better.

The piecing design is great for Mother as her piecing is not as accurate now that she only has the use of one arm. This is a square with sashing on two sides in an L-shape. I can square this pieced unit up perfectly and it goes together like a dream. It makes a beautiful quilt that can be made from scraps or a coordinated fabric medley.