Friday, July 27, 2012

Festival Notes...

 Vermont Quilt Festival 2012 was a resounding success from the point of view of the visitors! We had, as usual a good time, and we all left nice and tired! That's how it should be. Previously I recounted the shopping coups and didn't mention too much about the quilts themselves.  The quilts were, as they always are, quite lovely. So much work goes into each show quilt. More work than I can imagine ever doing. Artisans all, the quilters who compete are all winners to me because of the effort and the care they put into making and showing their creations.  I took a class in free motion purporting to free me from too much tension and letting myself get comfy with the medium. The class was fine. A bit too touchy-feely, but there were people there who really benefitted from a more free approach to free motion. The pictures I am using are from the show - they were my favorites and if I had the names of the creators I would add those. The pictures are small enough to preclude using them as patterns, as I want to at least try to meet expectations when I post the work of others.
Some of the class practice techniques were interesting - such as tracing designs with your finger several times to train the brain in a pattern of your choice. Then there was some emphasis on pencil drawings of the designs you were interested in. Some benefit can surely be gotten from this sort of thing, especially for people who haven't previously done much drawing or had art training.  Books were being promoted both in the class and in the Zentangle class and the booths which were selling the Zentangle products. Zentangle is very attractive, and the fact that I love paper and pencils and art items of all sorts makes the Zentangle sets alluring! I did, however, resist because I wanted to buy Lead Day's book instead of falling for the gimmick and over pricing of Zentangle. BUT, O really did think the books are of help to those who just cannot think easily of designs.

All told we had a good day, and it was made extra special because two friends from Maine, and one from Southern Vermont came up and we were able to network, which is what I like to call lunch at the Peking Duck! No, really - we did a lot of talking about the show, quilting, each others machines and works-in-progress and in general had a really good time! It is so good to see friends and to shop with them as well...and to shop with those who understand our thread and fabric manias!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Quilt Quilted....New Toy for Cat....

Wondering where I have been? I finished some projects that had been laying around, mostly mending, and then I spent time for the last several weeks working on my quilt - and now I can tell you the first free motion quilt I have done, in fact the first quilt I have made at all, is finished except for binding. I will put the project of the binding on hold until after Summer much loved family visits and after a few weeks practice again.  There may be room to sew a skirt and maybe even a shirt in that time period.  In other news, the Vermont Quilt Festival came around again, and the two days were a whirl of fun, class and spending,oh dear, I mean judiciously choosing of necessities. I did purchase the Quilter's tool called the Fabulous Fabric Guide  and instead of buying thread at the Superior Threads booth, I bought the thread cards for Masterpiece and King Tut. Who knows what color thread I will want next project, so this lets me hold actual thread next to fabric - I love the cards.

As you may know I have been looking at sewing machines for some time now because the two things I wanted if I ever spent on another machine were more harp space and faster speed, and a knee lift. The knee lift is just so handy. 

I had been following the dropping price on the Brother 1500S at AMAZON, and it had dropped pretty low when I found a really good price on a Janome MC6300.  I am so glad I bought the MC6300 Professional from Janome. The accessories are plentiful, and the fact that it comes with a large acrylic extension table is frosting on the cake. I have it in a Gidget II Arrow table. I don't need more stitches than the 6300 has, and I don't need the other additions of the other machines in the line. My Viking more than has all the extras I need for any type of garment or utility sewing. The 6300 is going to take some time to totally test out and sewing several projects is for the next several months. After all that I'll review it on PatternReview. Meanwhile, here is an excellent review from another site! Janome MC6300P Review