Tuesday, May 29, 2012

May's Free Motion Challenge

Sew Cal Gal's Free Motion Challenge continues, this month with a pair of video lessons from Leah Day.  I have followed Leah's blog and her personal challenge of creating 365 filler designs for free motion quilting.  She is very talented and I was really looking forward to her lesson.  She did not disappoint.  She showed two "foundational" designs, designs which start with a foundation line that becomes the basis of your quilting. 
I got myself organized this month by making lots of 9" blocks of muslin and batting so that I would be ready to practice whenever I had a little time.  That strategy worked well for me and I'm going to do the same thing for the rest of the challenge. 

Here are a few of the practice blocks.

So here is the big reveal.  First up, the stipple-like curvy quilting:


 And the second pattern with angular sewing around the foundation line: (Leah calls this railroad ties)

I liked this exercise because it focused on filling the allotted space evenly.  I was not entirely successful, but I learned a lot from practicing.  I used Superior Threads Rainbow in the top and Superior's Bottom Line in the bobbin.

This was not the only quilty sewing that was done this month.  I made a small patchwork teddy bear and a matching quilt for a friend's baby shower.  (And forgot to take a picture!)  And I am finishing a little quilt for my guild's challenge.  That one is a secret until our June luncheon, so I'll post about that later.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Escape Velocity Achieved (Almost)

  My trip to Florida was short and sweet and busy!   It was thrilling to see Marce and my brother-in-law, Jack so happy and excited to have begun to fulfill their long held dream of sailing around the world.  They have named the boat Escape Velocity and are blogging about their experiences here.

The boat is beautiful and much more comfortable and roomy than I (the landlubber in the family) had expected.  The berths and heads are in the two hulls, and the living space is in the bridge deck that connects the two hulls.

Before my trip, I did a little crafty business and made t-shirts with the boat name and picture for each of us.  I think they were a hit.

When they sold their house, Marce and Jack pared down their possessions to things they thought they would want or need on the boat.  The moving truck arrived on Tuesday.  We sorted through the boxes to decide what could wait in the rented storage locker and what should go right onto the boat.   Things for the boat included pantry and kitchen and bath items, along with the all-important cases of wine.  We packed the rest into the storage locker without an inch of space to spare.  Marce is the all-time champion packer!

Back on board, we had lots of "stuff" to put away into not very much space.

The previous owners left lots of food that they had acquired during their cruising trip of almost 4 years.  We had fun "reading" labels from different countries.

During all this commotion, Izzy, the "Adventure Kitty," always found a spot for watching or napping.

 We did take time out for some fun.  We even took a ride up to Archie's Seabreeze in Ft. Pierce for dinner one night.

 When I left there was still lots of work to do to prepare for sailing away, but I came home knowing that Marce and Jack are beginning a wonderful new chapter of their life together, and that there's a berth with my name on it so that Dave, Emily and I can achieve Escape Velocity, too.