Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Sale Dilema...

Lincraft is having a 30% off sale for the next few days, meaning it's only going to be $16.10 for a pre-cut cot size bamboo cotton quilt batt. The thing is, do I go mental and buy up big, or do I think, maybe, or even probably, I will get bored with the whole quilting thing before I get around to using them, leaving them languishing in a tub for a few years, till the next cat to show up has a baby on them?

That sort of thing does tend to happen with me, because I think of myself as a "soft engineer" and I enjoy much more the process of figuring out the best way to make something, rather than the actual making. Once a design is worked out, sorted, easy to do, it becomes boring. Maybe that's why I wanted to do this blog, because I spend (waste) countless hours working out the best/easiest/quickest ways of making various things, then, once that is done, I make one or two to show people and move on. Usually leaving behind the dozen or so lots that I cut out to make, now that I had it sorted, as well as all the stuff I bought specially for them.

That said, I currently have 4 in progress projects that are about the right size...


The baby quilt (quilt#3) is now into its nine star-patterned blocks and will be made into one big bit tomorrow, and hopefully, basted and quilted immediately after.


Mama Jan's quilt (quilt#4) will be made that size, because my sister was quite blas
รจ with regards to directions, and that is my biggest hate as a crafter, so she will be punished with a 120by150 quilt no matter what size she was expecting.


The retro quilt (quilt#5) is officially sized at 120x160cm, but I can shave a bit off of that without much hassle.


The PinkGreenBrown quilt has no number, because I'm still a bit nervous about it and its triangles... its official size according to the paint document I've been using to try and get my math sorted out is 136cm square, so I'll be holding off on that one.

The rainbow pastels quilt also has no number, but it might get bumped up and end up being a decimal placed number, because its one that's all squares, and totally for me. It's pretty much going to be a pastel coloured copy of quilt#1, which looks like this...


And which is way bigger than it looks in this picture - its actually big enough across for my queen sized bed, even if it is a little short on the up-down way, by about 3 rows. Each of those squares is a bit over 8cm, if you want some idea of scale. That one however was done completely randomly, and there are some fabrics only in there once, or only in there on the far right side (because it was originally going to be square, and made in 4 days for a competition - when I found out is was not that thursday but the next thursday, giving me an extra 7 days to do it in, it was increased.)

The pastel rainbow quilt though has been specially bought for, and as a result I have, for the most part, about 20 squares of each colour, so I could do it a bit more uniformly, although I cant help but think that that would kind of ruin it. So I'm gunna wait on that one for now. Also, since I already have about 350 squares for it, and the maximum number of squares for a cot sized precut is 270, I'd probably be doing it on off-the-bolt wadding.

Nonetheless, that's still 3 precuts that are pretty much definite, well, 2 that are definite and one that is highly likely, and since maddy's quilt (quilt#2) was done on a precut, and I really like that size for a casual couch blankie, I'm thinking I'll probably be aiming my sizing math at that it in the future too. But does that justify buying 9 or 10 or them? Should I just get 5 or 6 and maybe buy some meterage as well? It's the same price for a metre of the 2.2 wide stuff as it is for the precut, but for just one big bit, say, possible pastel quilt sized (1.8x2.2) its $30, and that seems so much more expensive, even though, by square metre, its about the same.

I've allowed myself $160 to stock up, which is either 10 precuts or 6 precuts and 1.8 meters off the bolt... I guess I'll decide when I get there.

Been feevin...

In spite of all the big plans, my list of achievements for today doesn't quite match expectations...

Prewashing didn't get done.

Baby quilt got some progress made, but not quite enough, cause I had to go...

FEEVIN!

I was expecting it would be terrible, stuck in a car with a drunken dad and the bad sister, but the good sister had been drinking in town, so we went and picked her up before we went out, and we stopped at the pub on the way, and I drank a cruiser.

Now, for the most part I don't drink. I can, and occasionally do, and have been known to consume up to 17 drinks in a single night, but that's just the thing. As soon as I stop, I'm pretty much done. I get a headache after the second one, and if I stop then, I immediately get sleepy. What I need to do, if I'm drinking, is consume at least 4 in the first hour or so, then at least 1 an hour after that. For me, there's no such thing as just a couple, or a casual drink. Go hard or go home, that's pretty much the family motto, and most of the time, I'd rather go home. I've usually got prewashing to not-do.

But tonight, I had a cruiser, and enjoyed our pointless little trip, and now I'm going to break what I think is the main rule of the bitchy stitcher, which is don't drink and quilt.

I got it all lined up before we left, so really I'm just going to be running it through the machine, and I think it should be okay... Certainly wont get finished, but my 20cm squares will be back together, then its just turning them into 40cm squares, then joining them into a quilt top.

I made the pillow top as a practice first, and it looks quite nice, though I ironed the seams to one side, which I don't normally do, just to see how it would go... I wont be doing it again. I split my seams. It's just better.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The post office has no more fabric to give me...

My last pouch of fabric is here, and I've gotten it all wadded up ready to wash... tomorrow.

I'm very much looking forward to my day off and plan on washing/ironing this bundle in the morning, going into town for the middle bit then coming home to make some serious inroads on my next quilt.

I've decided to go with the star design, but a bit more casual with the colour positioning - scattering the designs within the two shades because the math wouldn't give me an economical way of making the repeating pattern smaller - I would still be needing the 16 fat quarters, but 75% of eight of them wouldn't be getting used. 10 fat quarters split between the two colour schemes makes a 120cm blanket and a 40cm cushion cover, so I'll be doing that, in blue and brown, to maybe give to the baby of one of the girls at work.

I hadn't planned on making it for her, and noone suggested it, and I haven't told anyone I'm doing it, so if it fails miserably, or I get distracted and it takes forever, then I'm not letting anyone's expectations down.

She had the baby a couple of months ago now, but he was a bit early so she had to stay in Adelaide with him for a while. They're all back home now, but she hasn't bought him into work for a meet and greet yet, and if I can get it done nicely in the next week or so, I'll probably give it to them. If not, the 7 year old likes blue, or the kitchen is blue, or my aunt is pregnant again, and so are two of my cousins, so its not like I haven't got anyone to give it to. If its terrible, that cat has a new blanket.

I've cut the 22cm squares for it and they're all nicely ziplocked with the shape piece for cutting the corners off, and I'll be doing what I can of that tomorrow afternoon. Hopefully.

Best laid plans and all of that.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Most of... No, wait, SOME OF my prewashing is done...

So I just set myself up a googlesites, because the internet told me it was the best way to host some files for free. It's only 100meg, but hopefully, until I work out something better, it will be enough.

I have prewashed, ironed, and folded neatly all the fabric I have so far. Actually, that's not entirely true, its actually more like 95ish% of the stuff that I am planning on prewashing. Which doesnt include the stuff I'm not prewashing. Anything bigger that 2 yards wont be prewashed, and nor will anything definitely set for toys. So, maybe, if you're going by yardage* anyway, cause remember that the big bits aren't getting washed, some 45% of my fabric has been prewashed. But as for fabric I intend to prewash, but havent yet... not very much at all.

There's a piece I got from the Salvos which is very vivid and apparently, according to the selvage, made in Brazil, and my grubby little quilting soul, the one I keep in a jar in the bottom drawer of my sewing cabinet, says that it will run, and not to put it in with the rest.
There's the stuff I got for the PinkGreenBrown quilt I designed one night, but am too scared to do because it contains proper triangles. Ones that line up and everything. Washing that fabric would put me a bit too close to actually starting it, and I am not quite ready.
There's the stuff I'm still waiting on, of course, because its hard to wash something before its even made it to the post office on its way to you.
And, there is the stuff I have lost, in the upheaval caused by the birth of babycat in the epicenter of my stash. But I have bought some big rolly tubs, and many new sizes of ziplock bag, and one day, I will make a start on tidying this place up.

Not tonight though, because my sister has fallen asleep on my bed, and is taking up most of it, snoring loudly. Seriously, she is the only one I know of who can out-snore Honeycat.

Gah. I need... I was gunna say to move out, but that's not right. I need some of them to move out.


*which we wont be because we are Australian, so its metreage, which looks especially stupid when you do the r before the e, which is of course, the correct Australian spelling. So maybe we will stick with yardage.

Friday, June 25, 2010

New project... Maybe...

Okay, so in and around work, being sick and becoming a grandma, I may have snuck into Stitch and Knit yesterday... mainly to look at the fabric I had just bought on the internet in all its real world glory, and feel smug at the fact that I had got it for half the price, but also because, well, I was down the main street and, frankly, I am weak.

While in there, I had a look at the top being machined and felt good that even though I may have thus far only done squares, it least they all line up. Then, while shamelessly perving on all the gorgeous machine-quilted-and-perfectly-cornered-and-comprised-of-very-expensive-fabric-that-I-really-couldn't-afford-to-buy-from-there quilts, I got inspired.

There was one of those "supposed to be wonky within the perfectly aligned block" ones there, in brown and blue, and, I will admit, maybe a little bit of drool came out. Or maybe it was snot. I do have a cold at the moment, but I'm not sure which would be more embarrassing.

Here's a rough sketch, without colour.


And, today while sitting in my nice warm car before I had to get out and be miserable and fluey and at work, I did a little sketch that was the precursor to this, which I did once I had a nice handy touchscreen laptop to work with, instead of the back of a receipt.



A quick bit of Quilt Math (which definitely deserves the capitals because its sooo much harder than real math) tells me that it can be does as a 160cm quilt, with squares of a finished 20cm and star blocks of a finished 40cm, with 8 half yards of fabric, 4 each of 2 tones.

That's 16 fat quarters.

Most of the ones at spotlight are $2.10 this week.

That's $33.60 for the top.

Or, I could go back to Stitch and Knit, where the fat quarters are $3, even though they've got a pretty limited range, and do it for $48.

I have tomorrow off, if the slightly psycho honeymummycat will let me leave the house...

In other news, I used up all my energy putting my fabric into the washing machine and pushing the 33 million buttons you need to press to get it to work. Hopefully tomorrow it will get dried and ironed. Hopefully.

To sew, or what to sew... that is the question...

It's a weird conundrum, isn't it... I don't want to use my good fabric on a new or experimental design, because if it doesn't work then it's nice fabric wasted, but I dont wanna use crappy fabric, because if it works, then its time and effort wasted, and now I have something I've worked really hard on, but don't like.

What I need is more mid-range fabrics... or nice fabrics that I have a lot of, or didn't pay too much for... actually, I do have quite a few fabrics like that, because I buy a lot of cheap ends of bots at clearance time, but none of them coordinate.

In other news, Honeycat appears to only be having the one kitten, who we have given the honorific "he" and are thus far calling "Babycat." He is grey.

In other other news, my pre-washing remains undone.

The ramifications of grandma-dom...

Honeycat had a kitten.

Quite unexpected isn't it?

We were thinking, "well, maybe she's pregnant... dad used to let her out at night even when we knew the boy cat was around... or maybe she's just fat cause she eats so much"

Then I come home this afternoon, with my big bundle of shiny new fabrics from the post office, and she keeps trying to get me to come to the bedroom... doesn't even eat the food I put in her bowl...

But I leave her to whatever it is she's doing, because I have new fabric. I pull all the stickers off, take out the little bits of cardboard and shake them all out ready to put in the wash.

Then I go check the cat. She's made herself a spot between some boxes of inherited fabric on top of some old 2mm foam and some wadding offcuts, under my bed. It's easiest to see from the far side, but there's not even a 2 foot gap on that side, so I just lay on the bed and stick my head over the side.

Visibility isn't great, but I can hear a small noise as well as Honeycat's purring. It might be my belly, I have a bit of a bug at the moment, so I go get a torch.

There's a little black tail in there too.

Nawwww...

In other news... my fabric remains unwashed :(

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Blergh...

I was up until 4am making monsters for someone at work and she wasn't even there tonight.

Oh well.

I've decided to take the night off from sewing, actually, from all crafting, mainly because just before I started work, some 8+ hours ago, I ate a punnet of strawberries, and they're still doing nasty things to my insides. I've been feeling queasy and hickurping (hiccups that are more like burps) for the last 3 hours now, and I really think there are few things in life that make you more miserable than an extended bout of the hickurps.

So, no projects tonight, and I'm not sure about tomorrow night either, but I have Thursday off and I'm slightly desperate to start a new quilt... god knows I've bought enough fabric lately. But, I'm still waiting for my 4 pouches of ebay fabric to arrive from America and hoping that something will pop out from there... I've technically got all the fabric for 2 quilts already, but the 12 rainbow fat quarters I'm not sure how I want to do, and the pink, green and brown quilt is all thought out, but contains many triangles, and I am scared.

We'll see what happens.

In the meantime, sleep, work, and figuring out how to put photos into this thing.

I'ts probably a good thing noone reads this at the moment, because its still not very pretty.

So... you blog stuff?

So I'm starting a blog in an attempt to give me an alternative website to eBay to hang out on. There, I waste money. Here, I can only waste time. Currently only my time, but, I suppose, if you're reading this, then yours as well.


So, what's this blog about?


Um, actually, probably not much at first. One day, it would be wonderful if it ends up in the big circle of quilting/ crafting blogs that exist in the interspace, but, for now, it's probably gunna be sewing, and cat complimenting, and, occasionally, even though it’s been nearly five months, some bitching about the ex and his gummy new girlfriend. I've mainly moved on, with a little help from the realization that you can’t firebomb them all, a life lesson that will no doubt be the subject of its own post very soon.


So, who am I?


My name is Sara, though I also answer to Skinny, “hey, you,” “um, excuse me?” and “meow.” I’m 22, still live with my parents, work at a supermarket and, 3 months ago, got adopted by a cat. Her name is HoneyMuffinLollipopCupcakeSprinkles (I have a seven year old sister) but we call her Honeycat. Her hobbies include eating 6 full meals a day, disemboweling mice and leaving bits at the back door, chewing through any wool I am trying to knit, tipping over my bottles of perfume in an effort to get me out of bed (so I can feed her), sitting on my keyboard while I'm trying to facebook and enticing feral toms into the backyard. She is getting spayed in 2 weeks though, so hopefully that will stop the last one happening so much.


What do I do?


Sleep, mainly, these days, as my first attempt at quilting, around 8 weeks ago, was just 10 days before the thing was due to be entered into a competition, and, as the only available time to sew in the lounge room was after everyone else was abed, I stayed up till 4am sewing. Now, even though I'm back to mainly doing little projects in my teeny bedroom workspace, I'm still usually doing them between the hours of midnight and 3am. Fortunately, I do afternoons at work on the smokes counter, which means working hours of 3-11pm, and so I don’t have wake till around eleven, or sometimes even lunchtime (not including the 2 ½ minutes I'm awake putting my perfume bottles back on the shelf and feeding the cat, usually around 7.30am)


Craft wise, well, I don’t scrapbook (I facebook) and I can’t crochet, which bums me cause I desperately want a room full of tiny amigurami (that totally baffled spell check) but I can’t seem to figure it out myself, and certainly won’t be trying at the moment, when I have had to switch pretty much exclusively to fabric crafts, which the cat doesn’t find as tempting. Lately I am mainly quilting and toymaking, though my current handbag is getting a bit feral looking, so it’ll be time for a bit more of that shortly. I also do clothes, when my stash looks ready to devour small children and needs to be culled quickly.


Why One Sock Productions?


Well, um… honestly, I'm not entirely sure. For the most part, I go with Kooky Couture as my pseudo-label, but it came to me last night, and I like the ring of it. There’s two versions to the story, one is that I live in a cold climate and my sewing machine has a metal pedal, so you need a sock on that foot but the room is a bit of a mess and sometimes you can only find one… the other is that last night I stepped on a pin, and obviously, once you’ve pulled it out you take off your sock to have a look at the hole, but there’s no point taking the other one off so you spend the next 5 hours wandering around the house with one sock on… mainly, I wanted to keep this separate from my other online endeavors, and it was the most recent thing I came up with.*


So that’s it, you wanted somewhere to post mean stuff that no one you know will read?


No, since I'm using the same email address, my real name, my place of work and I’ll probably tell my crafty aunt about it… I haven’t used my old livejournal since the shit of January2009 went down, and facebook isn’t really suited to proper blogging. I had a blogspot back in high school, and as it seems most of the crafty blogs are here rather than livejournal, here it is.


Why have I switched to being a separate voice, whereas before I was you?


Dunno. You’re the voice, try and understand it…


And now we’ve alienated all the non Australians…


Buggerem. That Jodie lady from RicRac, she’ll get it.



*the most recent thing I came up with that wasn’t an embarrassing reference to a Garth Brooks song, which will no doubt be brought up at a later date.