Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Tabitha's Snow-paw-calypse

The Great Upstate Blizzard of 2017 came and went, and in the end, it turned out to be...

Instead of the 5 inches of snow and ice expected, we got a bare dusting, and it was melted by the afternoon.  Still, it was pretty, so I took several pictures around the yard.

It's always strange seeing snow on palmettos!

And still strange to see it on flowers.

Now this looks a little more natural!

The cats begged to go outside...and then begged to come in.

Anticipating the snow and subsequent cold snap (it did get down to almost single digits at night for a couple of days!), I picked as many flowers as I could.  The nice thing about camellias is that while the currently-blooming flowers are all dead now, they replenish quickly.  Since it's supposed to be almost 70 by Thursday (!!), we should have a nice crop of new flowers by next week.

As usual, we've been seeing our deer and turkeys almost every single day. 

I saw a turkey with a white head this week.  Curious, I looked it up to see if it was a specific breed of wild turkey.  I found out that turkeys can change the colors of their heads, depending on how they're feeling!  Red/pink (aggressive), white, blue (amorous or calm)...so cool!

It's been a super busy week for me, but I scheduled out time to start machine-quilting my quilt.  It's larger than a lap quilt but smaller than a full-size, so I told myself that I should be able to do it.  But seeing all that fabric stuffed into such a small space was pretty intimidating.

You basically ignore the fabric bulk and create a "frame" of fabric that's about 4" x 4" around the needle.  It's definitely easier said than done, especially when quilting diagonally.  Sometimes you have so much fabric on the right that your needle pulls to the right.  It was a real workout wrestling with it...but I got the whole thing done in one Saturday afternoon!  Since my quilt is small, it's "lightly quilted" instead of the more heavily stippling or design that you see on bed or art quilts.  More quilting = stiffer (and less comfy) fabric.  For something smaller like this, stitching every 2 inches is apparently better.  You might have to enlarge this photo to see, but here is my design. 

I free-handed the whole thing by attempting to follow the spaces between fabric pieces (the "stitch in the ditch" method) and just eyeballed the spaces between points.  It's not perfect but I'm really happy that it mainly looks like it's supposed to.

It's quite a process, first choosing your design, then the fabric, then the size and utility, and finally the amount of quilting you want to give it.  At least you can say that the end result is a truly unique creation!  Hopefully I can bind it this weekend and have a completely finished quilt by next week! 

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