Friday, 14 January 2005

quilt stuff

I am almost finished the dragon/fish quilt. I really don't know what I'll do if I actually get it done after three years. Of course The thing I have to do is bind it, and I have been known to actually use quilts for months before binding. You know how some people farm tops out to be quilted? I'd like to farm whole quilts out to be bound. Tedious and annoying. I always get frustrated with binding.

I was reading a disscussion about machine quilting from the 'front' of the machine, which at first made no sense to me, as I thought 'well you have to quilt from the front anyway.' Then this 'front' quilting was likened to longarm quilting and someone mentioned that it would take getting used to to quilt sideways, and I realized what they were refering to as the front of the machine, I would consider the side.

So anyway, I tried it with this quilt's border (this has just become an experimental quilt). The fact that I had a hard time seeing what I was doing would be the main complaint, rather than getting used to going in a sideways motion. I actually tucked and sewed over the backing-an amateur mistake I haven't made in years-though there were advantages to doing it this way. It was easier to control the bulk of the quilting being chief among them. I'll have to try it a few more times to decide whether it is truly helpful or not.

Also, I found this site and I think it might work much better with the machine recessed like that. I do need a new table, that old one spent many years outside, and seems to like to grab pins while a piece is going by. One of my great nemeses, that table.

Speaking of Nemeses, I found another site, which I found quite useful in helping me get one up on another object of eternal frustration-the bobbin case. I had to try it straight away. It worked. This made me way more happy than it should have.
Like my uncle said, I'll never need a man as long as I have the arts. And bannock.

fractal thingy

Ooo. A thingy I made. I have no idea how I did it. Looks cool though.

Sunday, 2 January 2005


I actually managed to finish a piece of naalbinding! (yay!) I decided to make a wristicuff as they are simple and easy.
I read of naalbinding ( also nalebinding, nalbinding and a whole slew of other spellings) about five years ago and have been driving myself insane trying to learn it ever since. It is one of the oldest textile processes known, I had to figure it out. Now normally I have always had an aptitude for needle arts, and while it may take a couple of tries, I will get the hang of it. I have always had to teach myself from books and diagrams. But I could find no good diagrams for naalbinding, only pictures of the textile form and instructions to 'get someone who knows this to teach you' (how helpful is that?) Apparently all the experts insist it is very hard to teach yourself (well yeah when no one puts good diagrams or pics together) but getting a teacher is not an option in the middle of nowhere. I don't know why someone doesn't make a video instruction manual; if one needs to be 'shown', that will certainly do it.

Anyway, about six months ago, I found this site. Pictures! Finally! It was an epiphany moment! I could figure it out, after all that time of trying and trying again. The epiphany moment I think is why I do needle art in the first place.
I had to learn to do it right handed as the pictures, which makes me forget the stitches all the time, heheh. I think I will have to figure it out left handed. I do that for most needle arts. I get a tenuous hold on the concept right handed and then switch over to left and become quite competent.
I do have my first successful piece, just a small example, in my 'first try' box, which will eventually be put together in perhaps a crazy quilt.

I was busy doing nothing for the better part of the year, but decided the other day to make a wristband using the stitch on the site from the merino I spun last spring. So here it is on my very cold blotchy arm: