April 21, 2014

The Lazy Bums Global Retreat II

By now you must be bored stiff by my tales from the Lazy Bums, but it is such a fun group that I must tell you all the news! If you are a frequent reader of this blog you might remember I told you some months ago about our first Global Retreat. We had a mad 24 hours of sewing, all in different places, but chatting online. It was a great success and we did get a lot done that day.

Actually it was so much fun, that we wanted to have another one. This time we extended the time limit, well at least I did and I know some other ladies followed suit. 29th of March was D day. The theme of the retreat was quilting. All passionate UFO collectors have a heap of projects just screaming for those last finishing touches, so it seemed the right theme for this group. Imagine getting the dust and the cobwebs off and finishing those projects! Too good to be true!

I could not resist beginning already on Friday evening; I wanted to prepare another quilt for the retreat. I already had two prepared for the big day, but just in case I got in a mad frenzy...


I made the sashing for my Bears Paw quilt, laying out all the blocks on the floor near the sewing machine, so I would not get the design mixed up. Of course it did not work out like planned and the top looks a bit different now, but I am happy with the outcome. At one o’clock AM the top was finished and ready for basting. At the moment (two weeks later) I am fixing the basting (it had some flaws), so I cannot show any flashy pictures, but we will return to this quilt later on. At least I hope it will be finished one of these days...

What I actually did work on was another Scrappy Floating Stars for my DD2. She loved the first one I made for friends in July and wanted bright colors for the one designated for her own bed. Luckily I had two big packs of rainbow charms, only waiting for the right project. White backing should not be a problem, but actually turned out to be a major one. I realized while I was making the last blocks I would run out of Bella bleached solids, so I ordered some more. You know, the whitest, bleached kind. It arrived three weeks later, but it was yellowish, so I ordered some more thinking I had somehow mixed up my order. But no; also the next fabrics were yellowish and did not really look good besides the original fabrics. DD2 told me she would not mind, but still I am not happy with the outcome. But rather than leaving the quilt unfinished I used the new "white" fabrics. This quilt is going to be old one day and yellowish one day anyway...

Saturday morning (29th of March) I was all heated up and could wait to start with my quilting, so I fell out of the bed at six o’clock in the morning (after 4 hours sleep), went downstairs to the dining room with my sewing machine and everything else I might need. And then it all began! You’d think quilting straight lines would not be that difficult, but it was. First of all I had paper pieced a chameleon on the backside and I did not want white threads all over the poor animal. So I outlined the chameleon from the backside so I would know where it was while quilting the rest on the front. Actually it was not a bad idea. You do not really see that some parts are left out on the front and the back looks good, at least to me.

This quilt is big, 240 cm * 190 cm, so it was heavy to handle. I made the mistake to begin with the diagonal quilting. It was the heaviest part to make and I did my fair share of whining during that day. 
As you can see on the picture I had my laptop next to the sewing machine, so I could see what the other ladies were up to all the time. It was a long day; I did actually quilt for 14 ½ hours and only finished the diagonals. Frustrating! All my plans to quilt one project a day flew straight out the window! But do not give up that easily, so Sunday morning saw me again in front of the sewing machine and now the quilting was easier and I finished the horizontal quilting after some 8 hours. 

On Monday I had a last go and finally finished it! Yes, I had taken a day off from work only for this. This is how crazy you can get. But I was not the only one working like a slave and it helped a lot to chat with the other ladies and having fun. Best part was that the ladies come from all over the world (Australia, North America, Europe) so someone was always online, cheering the others on.

My little quilting helper! And no; I would never mess up anything!

Quite cosy this quilt!
Sunday evening the family came back home, including one little industrious helper! It was good to have them home again, but quite frankly; sewing is better when they are busy elsewhere, even with the risk of sounding heartless.After finishing the quilting on Monday I needed four days to make the binding. Well yes, it is a big quilt and a lot to sew in the evenings in front of the tv. And with a little helper everywhere she is not supposed to be...

Scrappy floating stars, front

Back with paper pieced chameleon


Just in case you did not get the first picture, different sky though...

So what else is going on? I made some costumes for our yearly carneval session. I was not too hot on this years theme, but we do look like ready to have some fun, don't we?

Dwarves on their way to have some serious fun! We do look stupid!
On a trip to Maastricht, Netherlands I found this roll of sari fabrics ready for use. Clearly I had to take it home with me and since then I am trying to figure out what to make? Any ideas?

What will I be when I grow up?