Words


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I’ve tried over the years to put my thoughts on paper in a way that would get me noticed

To some how find my own little piece of fame.

The words at times come slowly and at others flow so quickly I can barely record them.

Admitting that my day of fame most likely will never come…..

I continue to be inspired.

 

Cindy Anderson of In A Stitch Quilting

Smash My Stash: January Recap


Smash My Stash

When I set out on January 1, 2016 to begin to Smash My Stash I thought I would have made at least a teeny tiny dent by now.

Having to admit that not one piece of fabric flew out of my studio is a bit sad, if not embarrassing.

The only progress on my goal was to sort out my projects and make a detailed list of my findings.

Here are the links to my January posts:

What can I say? Better luck next time! Let’s hope February is more productive.

Cindy Anderson of In A Stitch Quilting

Friday Favorites: Yet More Chocolate


Friday Favorites

Lately I seem to be focusing on chocolate. Who knows why? It could just be simply because I like it!

We follow a modified Paleo diet. Snack bars that fit this food profile are few and far between. Most bars contain grains, peanuts or lots of sugar. All of these are not included in the Paleo lifestyle.

Trying to find even one that comes close to fitting takes a lot of research. I’ve read many, many labels hoping to find just one that comes close. So often one of the first two ingredients automatically eliminates it.

Not to long ago I found one that I think is too close to pass up. The bar is made by Larabar and its called

Uber Dark Chocloate Pecan with Sea Salt Flavor

It’s positive attributes are:

  • It has dark chocolate in it
  • There are only nine ingredients
  • It is Non-GMO
  • It is Gluten Free

I highly recommend adding this bar to your shopping list. Try it! I know you will like the yummy combination of sweet and salty, chocolate and crunch.

Cindy Anderson of In A Stitch Quilting

 

Disclaimer:

I do not in any way receive compensation from Larabar. I simply share my experience because I like the product.

 

Applique on a Long Arm Quilt Machine


What is Applique

Applique is the term used to identify the process of affixing or adding pieces of fabric to the surface of a quilt, wall hanging, pillow, etc. The fabric pieces can be stitched by hand or with a sewing machine. I prefer to use my machine.

The process of appliqueing or attaching fabric designs is a laborious task no matter which method you choose. Machine applique yields a more uniform appearance. Typically a blanket or zig-zag stitch is used when stitching around the outside edges of the applique fabric.

IMG_1619Blanket Stitch

Long Arm Applique

While recently browsing the website for the dealer of my long arm quilt machine I noticed they were offering a class in long arm applique. It never dawned on me that I could use my long arm quilt machine to applique. My machine doesn’t have the programmed stitches used to produce a uniformly stitched edge. Being very curious about the possibility of using my long arm machine I registered for the class.

Begin Here

The instructor presented a brief discussion with samples of the items she had made. Through her illustrations I learned that she utilizes a variety of thread types to free-motion stitch around the raw edges of her fabric. The possible combinations for thread and stitches were limited only by your imagination. After finishing her brief introduction we were set loose to begin our exploration.

The Supplies

Provided for our creative adventure were fabric scraps, iron-on adhesive, a die-cutting machine to cut out uniformly shaped pattern pieces and oodles and oodles of thread cones. Here’s a photo of the die-cutting machine.

IMG_1622How Large Should I Make It?

I decided to limit the size of my project. I figured I would much rather practice on something small and have the opportunity to try out the fancy threads and stitching techniques than spend my time designing and adhering an elaborate design. This is the template I chose.

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My decision paid-off quickly. In no time I was progressing through the preparation steps and moving on to sewing. Reaching this point as quickly as I did proved to be a blessing. Many of my class participants barely had time to pin their projects to the machine, let alone practice the stitches.

What Thread Should I Use?

For thread I chose a few variegated colors along with a gold metallic. All of the colors were selected to coordinate with my fabrics. I wanted to work with this thread first because it was the one I had the least amount of experience with.

Let’s Adjust the Tension

Before adding even one stitch to my actual project the instructor helped me adjust the machine’s thread tension. Metallic thread behaves differently than a typical cotton thread. We did several test runs before we were satisfied with the stitch appearance. Once we were pleased with the test stitches I, without hesitation, set my machine in motion.

Ready, Set, Go!

I directed the machine’s needle around the outer edges of my pattern in a squiggly circular pattern. Also used were an eyelash stitch, a bubble pattern and, for the very first time, a filler stitch. I had the most fun experimenting with the filler stitch.

IMG_1620Filler or Satin Stitch

Time To Quit

I reached a stopping point thirty minutes before the end of class. Satisfied that I would be able to finish the project at home, on my own, I removed my fabric from the quilt machine and packed up my belongings. I used some of the leftover time to purchase a few decorative threads.

Take A Look

This is how my item looked at the end of class.

Long Arm Applique

Once I am finished I will share an update on my blog.

Thanks for visiting.

Cindy Anderson of In A Stitch Quilting

Just Saying


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Keeping my blog running, at times, seems like an enormous task. There are ideas to gather, stories to write, photos to be taken, research to be done.

I put a great deal of effort into each and everyone of those things because I care deeply about the content presented on my pages. Well and also because I am a perfectionist.

I wouldn’t continue doing or presenting my material if I didn’t enjoy it.

However, there are times when I long for the good old days when sewing and quilting were my main focus.

At least with them I have something to show for my work. It’s impossible to wrap a blog around you when you relax in your comfy place.

Just saying……

Smash My Stash # 4: Setting Priorities


Smash My StashPicking up where we left off here, here, and here

Making A List

When I first decided 2016 was going to be my year to begin reducing my inventory (Smash My Stash), I felt it was necessary to make a list of everything I had, categorize it, establish a plan of attack and then return each of the items to storage. My next plan was to share the list with YOU. By the time I had my enormous list of UFPs (unfinished projects) written down I realized it was slightly too large and way to boring to share with anyone but myself. Nobody wants to read a list that extends beyond one hundred items.

One Hundred Weeks or More

With that volume of projects, if I successfully completed one each week, I would have enough to keep me going through all of 2016 and the better part of 2017. For some of the projects a week would be more than enough time to finish. For others a seven-day goal would be way too ambitious.

Prioritizing

Even though it didn’t seem so at the time, making the list was much easier than the thought process I went through to prioritize it. Much contemplation went into separating out the things that must get done from the ones that could stand to be moved to the bottom of the list.

At the top and glaringly obvious were:

IMG_3290_NewOne of the blocks in the Heart & Home Quilt

Once those are complete I think I will work on a few of my smaller projects.

If I add up all of the above items the total count comes to fifteen. Fifteen is not a small number.  To start the ball rolling I have chosen to finish Mr. J’s cathedral quilt. See photos below.

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IMG_8776Mr. J’s Quilt Top

So glad you decided to come back for round four. Be watching for the next edition in my series Smash My Stash!

Cindy Anderson of In A Stitch Quilting