Sunday, November 18, 2018

Sifting Again

Jeff and I finally decided we needed to get serious about making progress on downsizing so we have started sifting our possessions again with renewed energy. I've been working in my sewing room, Jeff started opening moved but never unpacked boxes in my closet. I was excited to find a couple quilts I made that I haven't seen since they were packed up in 2006. (Yes, you read that right. 12 years ago.)

I have a full-size set of rose, burgundy and dark green bedding from our guest room in Forest Grove I have no idea what to do with. We don't have a full-size bed anymore. I made the quilt, shams, pillowcases, matching throw pillows and curtains. There is also a bed skirt and coordinated sheets. It's really too bad handmade items have so little value in the resale market. Sigh.
I think this is the move when most of the rest of our SCA belongings depart. We'll probably just keep enough gear for day trips. And we're still trying to decide how much of the too-small clothing we're going to get rid of.

I spent several hours scanning and posting SCA period style costume sewing patterns to Amazon. I hadn't even known you could buy out-of-print patterns on there. With any luck, some of them will sell. Otherwise, I'm not really sure how to get rid of unused patterns.

Monday, November 5, 2018

Quilt Progress

I spent a couple of hours cutting out right-angle triangles for my quilt project before realizing they were coming out way too unevenly. It was really difficult to get them all identical when I was relying on the 45-degree line on a rectangular ruler. I pride myself on my uniformity.
This is the finished design of the blocks I'm making

I ordered a right angle ruler off Amazon and it took nearly two weeks to arrive. I should have just gone to the fabric store and found one, but somehow it just seemed easier to order it. I didn't expect it to take so long. (Amazon sucks now if you don't pay their monthly tribute.)

Anyway, I'm glad I bought the ruler. It makes a huge difference in how uniform the pieces are. I finally restarted the project again this week.

If I were smart though, I would have tossed the old, uneven pieces, but I don't like wasting fabric. So instead I'm wasting a lot of time fussing with getting these old pieces to work.
After I sew the 4 triangles together, I have to add another strip to the bottom edge.
I need 144 of these triangle units. I've finished about 8.
I obviously won't be finishing this project before the election. LOL

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Started New Quilt

After spending about three days goofing off designing quilts, I've finally started working on one. In the end, I chose a scrappy quilt. Most of my fabrics are only about a yard or two, and a lot of the designs I made need five-yard pieces. So, ultimately, I decided to choose a design that would look good made with lots of different fabrics.

It's called Queen's Jewels and I found it in the book Quick Quilts from Your Scrap Bag by Patricia Wilens. I need more than a thousand triangle units, so it will probably take me at least a couple of weeks. I'm rather hoping to get this quilt top finished by the election because Jeff and I are planning to participate in NaNoWriMo in November again.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Distracted Again

It's finally occurred to me I'm going to lose my sewing room so I felt a surge of inspiration to do some quilting. I originally planned to make a T-shirt quilt but changed my mind when I realized I was missing some old high school shirts; I must have another box kicking around somewhere.

So I pulled out my go-to quilt book and cast about for another project. I could, of course, make this quilt project that I planned in April, but I actually designed that specifically to match the master bedroom in this house. Now that we're moving, that project makes a lot less sense.

I pulled my go-to quilt book off the shelf and noticed a drawing for a quilt I had wanted to make way back in about 2002. The book gave directions to make a lap quilt with tiny 3" blocks and I wanted to convert it to a queen size quilt with 6" blocks so I thought maybe I'd go play with Electric Quilt. It's always nice to be able to check for the proper amount of fabric before you start a project.

Then I thought it would be ever so much better if I had the actual fabric images in the program, so I hauled the fabric down to the scanner and made scans. It worked great. Finally prepared, I struggled to put the design into Electric Quilt because the quilt design is a combination of blocks and strips. The program is pretty much designed to plan either strip quilts or block quilts, not a combo. So then I started looking for another design that would work with the fabric.

When I woke up sick Monday morning, I knew my plans for countertop slab shopping would be delayed. I don't share colds if I don't have to. So I continued to scan fabric and play with the program.

By Monday evening, Jeff relocated the scanner to my sewing room and I spent several hours pulling down piles of fabric and scanning them. At this point, I've scanned about half my cotton quilting fabric. Despite my impatience, I had to take a pause when my shoulder informed me it had had enough of that repetitive activity and it was time to do something different. So, armed with images of half my fabric, I went and played in Electric Quilt.

I don't actually know if I'll make any of these quilts. I hope so. But it is fun to play. I'm not going to show them all, I've made at least a dozen designs. But, if any of my followers are quilters, I'd be happy to share the quilt instructions, if you'd like. Oh, and most of the quilts have silly names as placeholders because it was better than the boring descriptive names I was originally using, like "purple rust quilt."

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Train Quilt Finished

I finally finished scanning all our photos. For the most part, I quite enjoyed the project. I was getting pretty tired of it near the end though. I have three boxes packed up and ready to move out and one box packed to go into our storage area. And one heaped pile to get destroyed.

Jeff and I have a box of old sentimental T-shirts packed away in our closet and I've decided to make a T-shirt quilt out of them. But, of course, my last couple of projects are still kicking around in the way, so I really need to finish them first.

Today, with real life being so stressful, I decided it was an excellent day to go hide in my sewing room. I finally finished the train lap quilt for my father.
I had this quilted months ago. I really don't know why I took so long to finish it.

Now that we'll be moving into a house with no spare bedrooms, I'll be losing my dedicated sewing room. I guess it would be a good idea to finish all the projects I've got spread all over the place.

I'll probably also be selling my sewing room furniture, which will make me very sad. It's such beautiful furniture. The set is solid cherry and we had it custom made for me about 15 years ago.
We're still working out the furniture plan in Prineville, so this furniture may make the move. But right now I'm inclined to sell it, if I can get a good price, and get something smaller.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

October Update

Time has been flying by. Last weekend we rented a trailer and took our first load of stuff to Prineville. At this point, we're not moving in, we are simply bringing over items to put in the large storage area above the shop that we do want to keep but we don't expect to need before we move.

On Saturday, we planned to run around and do a bunch of shopping for remodeling materials, but it turns out, most places are closed on weekends. I've gotten spoiled by living in Portland. EleMar Oregon was the only place open in Redmond or Prineville on my list of vendors I wanted to visit.

I went into this process planning to buy soapstone counters again, but I did find one granite slab I liked. Unfortunately, I didn't write down the name of it, I think it may be the Colonial Gold.
Once upon a time, we had dark green marble counters in our house in Forest Grove. I loved the polished counters when they were clean and freshly shined, but it was a bit of a nightmare maintaining that beautiful showroom look. And I was a much better housekeeper back then. I'd be more likely to get the granite if I didn't expect it to be a replay of that old scenario; I may look into whether we can get it honed.

They also had some soapstone slabs. They were all very dark, approaching black. Any of them would be fine if we decide we want to go with black soapstone.

On Monday morning we met with Mike Montgomery from Montgomery Remodeling and Restoration in Bend, Oregon. We really like him. He didn't seem pushy and seemed to really listen to what we wanted. He spent about an hour with us walking through the house, taking measurements and writing stuff down. At the moment, we're waiting for some kind of proposal from him.

He recommended we visit Baptista Tile in Bend, Oregon so we decided to do that before we left town. We spent about an hour there and I realized I mostly don't like this year's trendy tile. The main thing I got out of the trip was perhaps finding a reasonably good green soapstone.
And they also directed me to some good vendors to visit in Portland. Yay!!

With the "big rocks" out of the way, I turned my attention back to backsplash tile shopping. As usual, I start with online stuff because it's just easier to shop from the comfort of my own living room. :)

I ordered a number of samples and am awaiting them. The current front-runners:
Emprador Dark Marble Polished Florida Flower Border with Crema Marfil Dots if we go with the granite
Jade Green Marble Liner if we go with the green soapstone
I'll probably also drop by United Tile and Pental on Monday to look at what they have in stock. It's not really a feature to have too many choices; it just makes the decision more difficult. Once we've got all the samples in hand, I'll probably head back to the EleMar location in Tualatin to compare them to their wider selection of slabs and see if I like any of the combos.

Saturday, September 8, 2018

September Already?

Our Prineville remodel is at a standstill right now because Danny Dark, the contractor we were planning to hire, told us he might have to decline the job because his crew supervisor may be leaving. We're waiting for an update from him before anything moves forward. I will probably wait for another week or two and then hire someone else if I don't hear back from him.

I have received some tile and Marmoleum samples but we still haven't finalized any colors so I don't know which we'll be using. I'll post photos once we figure out more details.

We have plenty of projects on our Portland house to work on, but Jeff has been so busy with election volunteering that we haven't worked on any of them. I predict little will happen in Portland until December. So, I've focused on downsizing projects I can do myself.

I finished shredding several boxes of old financial records, then Jeff dropped off the final two boxes and we paid to have them shredded. I've also been working on scanning old family photos. I had five boxes total of photos to scan, and I think I've mostly finished four of them. The last one is really difficult because it is tons of miscellaneous small photos in no particular order and all different sizes. It's really time-consuming when everything is a different size.

We've been trying to organize belongings to start moving over to Prineville when we visit. Having overlap between the houses is a bit problematic because we don't want to move our furniture to the new house until after we've sold the big house in Portland. We really need the nice furniture for staging. But we do need at least some furniture in Prineville so we can stay there for visits during the remodel.

So, I am currently cruising around on craigslist trying to find some good chairs to keep permanently and perhaps a cheap dining room set and some bedroom furniture we can use temporarily and resell once we move over. I đź’ścraigslist. I've never found better deals on good furniture any other way.

This morning we found a couple of Stressless Recliners that don't feel used at all for about a third the price of new ones. Now that I've sat in them and realized how comfortable they are, I don't want to move them over yet. LOL