Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Craftsy Taping 101

craftsy-logo Wow what a day yesterday was!  I planned to blog last night but a 5 hour “nap” got in the way!  But this is fine.  I will putter a bit after posting this then it’s back to bed for a few more hours of sleep before the fun begins again.

Yesterday started with my 7:45am pick up by Danica, Craftsy’s awesome hair and makeup girl!

And then the rollercoaster began.  Due to an accident (not involving us) of Denver’s Light Rail well we got stuck in the hotel parking garage for 20 mins.  :(   But Danica’s awesome reverse driving skills got us out of the jam and on our way.

Breezed thru hair, makeup, wardrobe.   Just a note future Craftsy students I curtailed the 8 wardrobe changes to just 4.  I’m not a big “clothes” person and convinced my wonderful producer that 4 outfit changes for 8 lessons will suffice.  At least for my class. 

Then onto the set.  And unfortunately my crew, Rachel, Andrew, Shawn & Drew (yes two Andrews!) were having some prop and then technical difficulties that set us back….a few hours.

See the window….I hope you like it.  it was a pain to get to look like daylight streaming thru.  I wanted to tell my crew it was ok if it was “night” out since I am a nocturnal quilter.  But I didn’t …too early in my relationship with them to poke a little fun.  But will definitely mention it today. :)

After the window, well we had a camera issue, a sewing machine issue, a power issue,  and then a dead microphone issue.  And it wasn’t until a little after 11am that we started to shoot.   I could see the strain on their faces as we were so behind schedule. 

I nailed the first segment in record time with little retakes and voila it was smiles all around.

This is a pic of what is just beyond the actual set.  Andrew sits behind the computers makings sure everything syncs up and looks good.

Jason is looking over to check the lighting balance.   Rachel is kneeling down to check notes.

Once we got going there was no stopping us.

We got thru filming 5 segments.  We filmed 4 of the 8 lessons and then went back and reshot an entire lesson with a new camera angle that we all decided we liked better.  Nailed that reshoot in one take.  The entire lesson.  whew





Finally we have daylight streaming thru the window.

But now this quilter needs to get back to bed for tomorrow is another day “on set”.   Oh yeah I am hip to all the filming lingo now…. sweeping out.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Pondering on the Plane

airplane This always happens on plane rides.

I think.  I ponder.  Sometimes too much. I roll stuff around in my brain and try to look at things from every possible point of view.  I ramble on to myself.

…or in the jeep on the way to the airport at 5:45am much to Paul’s delight.  Yep nothing like a caffeinated wife to get your day started.  

I’m back to blog writing. It is an exercise that I strayed from partially because of not feeling well  but mostly out of fear.

When I write I am an open book.  If I am feeling it I am typing it.  And that can lead to hurt.  But it can also lead to much joy.

I have been active on Facebook.   I like the format.  Small slices of daily life. “Good Mornin’s” and virtual coffee’s with banter, High Fives over successes and words of support and prayers when things take a wrong turn.  Even thru times of great stress in our country, when unfortunately some forget that harsh words don’t disappear always with a flick of the delete key I still like Facebook. I like the connection. 

Friends….some new…some old, drift in and out of timelines much like real life.   Yes I like Facebook it is a wonderful way for me to keep in touch with far flung friends.  But I like to write.   Full paragraphs.   Complex thoughts.  I’ve journaled privately.  But I like the feedback, the sharing.  Blogs are just Facebook on steriods.  Although some might look at it as Facebook are petite blogs.  Whatever.  I plan to do both.  I’m chatty sometimes.   :)

My blog will cover creative endeavors along with slices of daily life as before.  Your gonna get it all and sometimes it isn’t all pretty.  I am human. 

That brings me to today’s thoughts as I fly above the earth on my way to Denver.

graduation I can’t believe Paul and Emily are seniors in college.  I know every parent has this moment and it is nothing new and earth shattering.   Seniors in college.   I am so very proud.  And I know right now they are full of trepidation and anxiety over what course their lives will take in the next few months.   And my job is to assure them that things will work out and no matter what there is always room for them at home, although neither truly wants to have to take us up on that offer. And we as parents celebrate that.  We raised them to be independent. 

I think it is dawning on Paul too.  We are done.  Not done as parents.  That never ends.   But  sense of it’s time for just us again.  Yes we have had “empty nest” for now almost 4 years, but now it feels different. 

And this is exciting.   Some plans are forming.   Nothing major as of yet.  But we are vowing to tackle some of those “someday” ideas and “wish we could” plans.

And some of you have asked gently, and no my parents and sisters still do not communicate with us.  This still makes me cry occasionally…like now on the plane. just one tear. Six years later I realize I cannot make them like me.  My sadness is not for me but for Paul Jr. & Emily. They were removed from their lives simply because they are my children.  So unfair.  But yet that speaks volumes.   I write this knowing my parents will read this, along with my sisters, they will be mad.   But I am sad.  Sad they kept me from writing for so long.  Sad they will not see Paul & Emily in cap & gown.   Sad they have missed their blooming into wonderful, fun, and caring young adults.   No longer mad….but sad.  

So thanks to all of you that apparently still are willing to wander over to the blog for a look when a new post shows up in your feed.   I know I have said several times before I promise to get back to blogging and then fell short on it.  Fear and trepidation kept me from it.  

mom & kids So my lesson here is for Paul & Emily, (yes Paul I know you are eye rolling right now as I am too long winded for you)  sometimes fear and trepidation happens and we can’t always control the factors that bring it upon us.  What we can control is our fortitude and just simply carry on.  Things will fall into place.  I believe this.  I know you do too.  It’s in your genes.

love, mom.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

New Project-itis!

Another new project has been born.

This one started with the delivery of a bag of lovely batik scraps from my friend Sondra of Mojo Quilt Designs.  She offered them up as she knows I am working on the samples for the next Pieced Hexies Book and in need of many different fabrics in small amounts.

But when I opened the bag and began sorting out the scraps in size…well my mind was whirling and a new Pieced Hexie Quilt was born.



I needed a fabric to tie everything together and I immediately pulled this lovely dark gray with black polka dots out.   It is the perfect scale of print to calm down the craziness of what I am planning to do with the scraps.



Then I began to divide into HOT and COOL piles.





I knew I wanted to spotlight the COGS design from Pieced Hexies.   I have been keeping track of which designs are booked when I teach Pieced Hexies Buffet and poor Cogs is bringing up the rear.  So it needed some special attention.




The quilt design will have a large 9 patch format, 5 cool “whatevers” (not totally revealing my plan yet) and 4 hot “whatevers”.

Cut all the 2” squares of the polka dot and then from the scraps.







Spent the evening sewing.

My plan was to sew all them together and kit them up for basting and sewing together on the road.







I sewed 3 sets entirely together…then I had to take at least one HOT and one COOL kits to the basting and sewing together step.  I couldn’t wait.


So here is where I am.

Scrappy HOT and COOL Cogs Pieced Hexies!

Well actually I am back in the studio sewing up the other 6 sets so I will be good to go for my travels tomorrow.

Craftsy here I come…hopefully…now the weather might be an issue.  :/

Thursday, January 24, 2013

What to wear?

imagesCAI35N0NNext week I will be in Denver taping my Craftsy workshop…err…class….err…lesson.  Oh heck it’s a workshop.  Quilter’s call it a workshop it’s a workshop.   Anyway I will be taping it.

In front of a camera.

Which will record it. 




nope…I’m ok…no worries…             


My biggest worry…what to wear. 


Nope I am not stressed about teaching two new Pieced Hexie Designs in front of the camera.

I am stressed about what to wear.

Multiple times.

It seems they wish me to bring several wardrobe changes.


omg. omg. omg. omg.

I am really not into clothes shopping.

“Bring along something you are comfortable in” Craftsy advised.


retroBHawksDo you think I can wear my Blackhawks jersey? 

Strips vs Strings

Recieved an email asking why I used the word "strips" vs "strings" in my post.

Well basically because I was told once that it is only strings if the finished width of a piece of fabric is no more than 1". And since my bin most definately has some chubbier pieces in it I went with the word strip.

Whatever the name given...it's a nice way to use those strips/strings scraps. ")

More on this project later.

Published with Blogger-droid v2.0.10

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Early Mornin’ Strip Piecing

As usual I am up at the crack of dawn.  No exception today.   And I brushed my teeth and hurried down to the studio for a few hours of strip piecing before Paul got up.

We usually run all our “together errands” on Wednesday’s so I had until 7:30am to play.

I started strip piecing some 6.5” squares yesterday after making the pillowcases.

I had looked over at the strip bin and it’s overflowing state and decided that I would tackle it a bit.   This would cover the need to start another something new (the pillowcases alone did not quench the thirst of new project syndrome) and clean up a getting to be unruly part of the studio.

I got a few squares done but the fire was lit inside me and I wanted to tackle some more.

I was sewing away and gabbing with friends on Facebook.  Such a nice way to start the day.


The strips were dumped on the floor behind my chair for easy access to pick and choose. 


I brought over my BIG Rowenta iron right after taking this picture.  All the better to press those strips into place.









Sew – Sew – Sew  


Finally it was time to do some trimming.  I heard Molly come down the stairs.  Her tags jingling as she walked behind me.  I thought she was headed to her doghouse area in the studio.


Imagine my surprise when I returned to my machine and the strip pile was snoring.



While out and about today I dreamed up the quilt for my 6.5” squares.  And sketched out the plan.


I am going to be doing some more sewing.   A lot more.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Deep Freeze Projects

We are in a deep freeze here in Chicagoland but I am in my studio happily sewing away.

I feel like starting something new but really didn't want to.

So what is a quick instant gratification project?


When I was at my LQS this Saturday she got in this lovely spring-like fabric .... some of it followed me home. I'm also thinking some heart pillowcases for Valentines Day and I found the blue floral in my stash and I am thinking that will make nice pillowcases too.

Do you sew your pillow cases with French seams?
Published with Blogger-droid v2.0.10

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Why so quiet in December?

Wondering why I have been so quiet thru the month of December?

Well this is why.

Early in December I did this to my ankle.


I heard the snap and I face planted in my own front yard.  Thank goodness Paul was with me as we were on our way out to walk Molly.


I made it back into the house and immediately started the RICE method.  It hurt.  A LOT.

A week later I finally conceded and had it x-rayed.  Yep there was some damage.

I was ordered to…..


but I had a hard time listening to Dr.’s orders.  And I snuck into the studio a few times. 

And I paid for it.

So for the last three weeks I have been a good patient and have basically sat, and read, and did some hexing, but mostly just sat and enjoyed Paul & Emily’s visit home.

I did cast on a sweater…for Molly.  I will blog some pics later this week.

So now I am starting to walk more, and actually took Molly out for her daily walk twice in the last week.  Molly btw would like to make sure you know what she will be watching starting Jan 15th. 

Blackhawk Molly

I am getting back into the swing of things and tomorrow I will be a guest on Creative Mojo with Mark Lipinski.   I hope you can tune in or catch it as a podcast! 


Ok…been at computer for a few hours…time for my foot up routine.  Carry on!