Saturday, August 29, 2015

Lighthouse Keeper's Door is Embroidered

Tonight I had to interrupt the embroidery momentarily when my sister called to tell me there was a 'Sturgeon Moon' (sometimes called 'Supermoon') coming up.  I rushed out and got a shot or two.  It's not very good... a little blurry.  I should've set the camera on 'Timer', so that my finger didn't cause vibration when I pressed the shutter button.  By the time I downloaded my pictures to my computer, the moon was quite a bit higher in the sky, so I didn't bother trying again.  But the moon will be extra close to the earth a couple more times this fall, so maybe I'll get another chance.

The embroidery on the fence is done, and I've started on the lighthouse keeper's house.  Only the door is done so far, and it looks much better, less of a mishmash and more of a door.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Embroidery on Lighthouse is Complete

Tonight I finished the embroidery on the lighthouse, and part of the fence is done, too. 

That doesn’t seem like much, considering long I’ve been working on it; but if you take into account that this area measures 70” long x 20” wide, then perhaps youll better understand why I think I’ve really accomplished something.

And with that, I now have 665.5 hours in the Mosaic Lighthouse quilt.  Now for the rest of the fence and the lightkeepers house, and then I will apply the Hotfix Crystals.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Embroidery on Mosaic Lighthouse Quilt

The embroidery on the lighthouse is close to half done, and part of the fence is done.  I now have 640 hours in the quilt.

See the entire quilt and close-ups of the binding here.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Loren with His Quilt

Friends have requested a picture of my brother with the quilt I made for him.  So... here you are:

He seemed pleased that I asked for a picture... (though he thought he needed to clean his room, which is generally already nice and clean)...

And he showed me how he made sure the label wound up at the right corner, so he can easily show it to visitors.  He's really happy about this quilt... and I'm every bit as happy, I do believe.  :-)

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

August Bouquet Matching Pillow

This afternoon I finished the matching pillow for my brother, made with the 24th cross-stitched block Janice had given me.

The tucks in the borders are pressed one direction on one side, the opposite direction on the other.

The narrow green border is a flange.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

August Bouquet Quilt for My Brother

Thursday evening, I finished the quilting on the Cross-Stitched-Block quilt.  My brother came for supper that night; fortunately, he didn’t ask to see the quilt I’ve been working on.  He does that sometimes.

By 11:30 p.m., I had sewn the binding together and was attaching it to the front of the quilt.  It’s a loooong way around this quilt! -- it measures 105" x 131".

I finished the binding Friday evening, after working on it since early afternoon, folding it around to the back, pinning (vewy, vewy ca’fully), and then stitching in the ditch from the front.

Then the quilt went into the washing machine with OxyClean.  That was a bit hair-raising.  Would Janice’s cross-stitched blocks still be in one piece when it came out?  I set the washer on the Hand-Wash Gentle cycle on cold in an attempt to get the old blood spots out. 

In the meanwhile, I began machine-embroidering a label for the quilt.  Too bad I don’t know when Janice made the blocks, or how long it took her.  I decided to call the quilt August Bouquet.

At 1:00 a.m. I put the quilt back into the washing machine – for the fourth go-around.  The old blood spots came out better than expected – most were entirely gone.  The FriXion pen did not come out well, but the purple Crayola marker came out fine.  I rubbed the pen marks thoroughly with OxyClean gel, and gave it another try on the Warm/Warm setting.  The last setting had been Hot/Cold – maybe the cold temp brought the marks back? 

I used the FriXion pens on a scrap of fabric, ironed it, and presto, the marks all vanished.  So I would touch up the marks with an iron, if they were still there when the quilt dried.

The original small blue marks for quilting lines on the cross-stitched blocks had not come out.  They didn’t look too terrible, and weren’t too noticeable.  I decided to treat them like I do garden spiders:  live and let live.

It was 3:30 a.m. when I spread the wet quilt out on my frame to dry.  And my final newscast of the night was as follows:

After the fourth washing, the little blue marks put on the cross-stitched blocks by the manufacturer are gone.  The bloodspots are gone.  The FriXion pen marks, however, were still there.  Fainter, but there. 

I would try heat next, when the quilt was dry. 

The Crayola markers that made such dark lines they made my hair stand up on end washed out perfectly.  I will use them instead of the FriXion pens, along with the purple vanishing pen.

Janice’s embroidery came through the washings looking vibrant and lovely, and not a single stitch came loose.

And now it is Saturday afternoon, and I have the following news:  all the marks except the largest and darkest bloodspot (which is now so light as to be nearly unseen) are out, including the blue marks originally stamped on the cross-stitched blocks.

I simply ironed the marks from the FriXion pens, and they did indeed vanish as advertised.  They will, however, reappear when cold.  They can leave ‘ghost marks’ on some fabrics.  The chemicals that make up the ink, according to many articles I’ve read, also need to be washed out, so as not to leave residual amounts in the fabric, and to better preclude them from showing up again, though they might anyway.  Here are a few of the many articles I read – interesting, and well worth reading:

Actually, I didn’t really iron the quilt, I steamed it.  I didn’t want to press, because the wool batting has given the quilt a lovely loft, and I didn’t want to squish it.  The marks are gone; the quilt looks pristine and new.  No, that’s not correct.  It looks heirloom crinkly.  And it smells terrific, and is soooo soft and cuddly...  mmmmm.  I love crisp and flat and new quilts... and I love soft and crinkly and cuddly quilts. 

Quilt back

I know that if the quilt gets down to, oh, say, freezing, those FriXion marks might very well show up again.  Another steaming will get rid of them – to a point.  After either numerous reheating and/or a number of years, the marks seem to become permanent. 

The pens are fairly new, so no one can say what will happen in 10-20-30 years. 

Fact:  There are many and good uses for these pens, but I will not be using them again on a quilt, unless it will be in an area that will never see the light of day again.  This seems to be the general consensus of a good many people who have experience with the pens.

I suddenly noticed – it wasn’t raining, it was bright enough for pictures, and the sun was periodically behind cloud cover:  perfect for quilt photos.  So I took the quilt out on the back deck and conducted a photo session.

Loren came to pick up some supper at 5:30 p.m., and I gave him the quilt.  He oohed and ahhed over it... read the label a couple of times... and thanked me many times.

He’ll be 77 tomorrow – he’s a little more than 22 years older than me.  He’s always been a special big brother to me.

Now to make the matching pillow!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Turning Cross-Stitched-Block Quilt on the Frame

I've gotten the main part of the quilt done, and now have trimmed it, removed it from the frame, turned it sideways, and reloaded it in order to quilt the ten half-square blocks along the sides.  Those finicky sashings that took so very, very loooooooong are all done!  The rest will go quickly.

Time to go to church... maybe I'll have enough oomph to finish it when we get home.  Maybe.

Here it is, midway through reloading: