I’m Having So Much Fun

I’m loving my Innova.  I took the day off yesterday to let my back rest a bit more and I think it helped.  I was able to work some with Valentina today.  Rhoda came over and I showed her some things with it.  Then we took a break and went to lunch…..you know…you have to keep your priorities in order!

After she dropped me off, I worked/played some more.  I figured out how to make a panto row using one design and how to make multiple nesting rows with PantoVision.  This program is so cool.  I’ve already found out that I need to start with the very basic designs and practice those before I move up to the more complex ones.

One of the very first designs I tried with PV was by Sherry Rogers-Harrison called “Open Feather” (I think).  Can we all say “pitiful” at the same time????  Lol.  I’m determined to get that one right so I’ll periodically give it a try until I do get it right but there will be a lot of learning and practice between now & then.

I’ve had a request for detailed pictures of PV designs stitched out.  I’m not ready to put them on a real quilt but I’ve got some pictures of my stitching today.  Here are a few.  The first picture is a single leaf stitched on a muslin sandwich with Warm & Natural batting.  I used Omni thread on top and So Fine on the bottom.  The design I used is by Patricia Ritter of Urban Elementz and is one of the patterns included in the PantoVision library.

Single leaf stitched from PantoVision

This next picture shows a close-up of 2 leaves stitched out.

Two leaves stitched out.

This next picture is a wider shot that shows several leaves.  I stitched 2 rows of the panto.

Panto stitching

I realize this isn’t perfect stitching, but I don’t think it’s half bad.  I haven’t even had my system for a week yet.  Using PV is somewhat different from using a laser with a paper panto but I’m adapting.  It has a different feel to it.  To me, it feels kind of like one of those old video games that you sit in and “drive” a car down a track with moving objects.  Lol.  I’m not having any issues visually and it’s no different for me to move along the front of frame than it was to move down the back of the frame.  I find a resting point, stop my machine and move into a new postion and then resume stitching.

I know there are a lot of questions about PV and I’m going to try to answer some of them as I learn the program.  Today, I want to show you a little about how the screen looks.

Individual pattern unit I used to make this panto

That funny grid you see on the pattern is actually the way the screen of my tablet looks per the camera.  I used a Canon Digital Rebel Xsi to take these pictures.  The tablet I’m using is a Win7 tablet:  Acer Iconia W500.

This next picture shows a close-up of 2 nesting panto rows.

2 rows of panto

In this next picture, I put the screen at  “full size” which allows me to see the entire quilt layout on the screen.  For stitching, I zoomed in to make the pattern large enough to make it easy for me to follow.  With the zoom on, I can only see a part of the pattern as I’m stitching but the rest of the pattern never goes away…it just sits there waiting for me to move into that area.  Does that make any sense?

PV quilt layout in "full size" view

So, that’s my little report about PantoVision for today.  I’ll show you more soon.  I’m planning to put a small quilt on the frame later this week and try it out.


This Puny, Little Spot on the Ground

Is where I fell….not once, but twice within about a week.  Ouch!

Puny, Little Spot

This little spot is slick when it’s damp.  It’s a few feet in front of the front porch of the chicken coop.  I’ve never slipped on it walking to the coop but coming from the coop, I’ve done the old banana peel trick on it twice.  You’d think I would remember it’s there, wouldn’t you?  Evidently not!

We’ve got landscape cloth and gravel to put down for a walkway up to the porch and around it.  That should help.

I might be able to stay away from the coop if it weren’t for enjoying this so much.

Remember these cute little babies?

They grew up to look like this

And they lay light brown eggs....almost a cream color. The eggs roll down the floor to the facing board. All I have to do is pick them up.

And then there’s these lovelies to look at in the same area as the coop.  Those round things you see on the ground are old grinding wheels that do a great job of holding down landscape cloth that keeps weeds from growing up around the citrus.

Here’s a close-up of the flower stalks.

These are so pretty.

Now you know why I can’t stay away from that place, but let’s all hope I learned a lesson and will avoid that spot!

Oh My Goodness!

This is “not” a rant…just a rambling of thoughts.

This is a new one for me.  I’ve been called a lot of things….many times a 5 letter word that starts with a “B”, but I can’t recall ever being called “small minded” before.  🙂

I don’t think my last post could be called lashing out at anyone.  I was just stating facts….facts that have been clearly stated on the Garden Party page from day one.

Today, I have taken down most of the information on that page except for a few pertinent lines and the currently available pattern links.  The page will be removed when the appropriate time period is over.

I am so glad that many of you have enjoyed collecting the patterns and truly impressed by the number who are actually in the process of making the quilt!  Way to go!  I really do want to see pictures of your work—Dana—I want to see your quilt in person!

Most BOM’s only give 1 month to download the patterns.  I have given Garden Party players 2 months to get the patterns.  I’m sorry, but I don’t see anything “restrictive” about that.

There are countless number of quilting blogs we can read and many, many of them offer free patterns in one form or another.   That’s the beauty of it….if you don’t like what one blog writer says….visit another blog.  It’s as simple as that.  No hard feelings.

Each blogger/designer chooses how to release their patterns.  Some run them more than once.  Some offer them for sale after the free period is over.  Some allow unrestricted use of their patterns.  Some state certain limitations.  No size fits all but each blogger decides what is right for her/him and that’s what they go with.

Each blog reader has a choice as to the blogs they read & like & as to whether or not they participate in a particular BOM or project.  I realize I can’t please everyone.  It would be nice if I could, but I know that will never happen.  If you like my blog, please read my posts…sparse as they are.  Lol.   If you don’t like my blog or the terms of anything I offer here,  I know you will find a different blog that better suits you.  It doesn’t upset me.  There are blogs I don’t read because I don’t enjoy them.

I’m not going to drag this out.  I’ve got other things that need to be tended to.  I haven’t even visited Valentina today!

Have a wonderful week everyone and when I get my back somewhat less sore, I’ll try to take more pictures of Valentina and especially the PantoVision system.


Sometimes I get a little testy

I really do try hard to play nice but I have a pending comment asking that people send her the files that she has missed for Garden Party because she joined late.

This isn’t nice and it just plain ticked me off this morning.

To the person who made the comment, no I will not name you because I don’t want you to suffer the backlash of everyone who respects copyright.  But, I will ask….would you go into a store and  steal a candy bar?  I hope not.

It does not matter that Garden Party is a “gift” from me to my readers rather than a “paid for” item.  No one has the right to make copies other than myself.  Even if I don’t place the little “c” on each page, the pattern has been placed on fixed media, therefore, it is copyrighted.  The copyright belongs to me.

The terms of Garden Party are that the patterns are available free for 2 months.  2 months!  After that, they are NOT available.  I have no plans at the present time to release them in the future.

For those who are so supportive and appreciative of my work on this pattern, I truly am thankful for your kind comments and I may decide to merchandise them in the future.

End of discussion.

Valentina !!!!

She’s here!  And she’s beautiful!  And she makes such beautiful stitches!

We had a bad weather day yesterday here in south Louisiana but it’s been such a dry year that I wasn’t going to complain about the rain.  I wasn’t sure the techs were really going to brave that storm but they did.

The ABM techs arriving in the rain.....pouring, drenching rain.

I didn’t take a ton of pictures because I didn’t want to get in the way.  This is Chuck setting up the frame.

The frame is well made. It's one of the things DH really liked about this system.

Here’s Valentina after set-up has been completed.  Joe and Chuck were great to have around and were good representatives of ABM.

I think they're happy to be finished.

That’s the PantoVision tablet you see on the front.  Valentina is a 22″ ABM Innova and has Lightning Stitch, electric channel locks, Cross-hatch ruler bar system, and PantoVision.  I didn’t get the fabric advance or electric lift because Don says he’ll build those for me.

I played a while and Beth came over and she played a while.  Then Vanessa, Mother, and Faith came over.  Vanessa and Faith both played a while.  It’s wonderful!  I’ll post pictures of the stitching and PantoVision later.  I’m so excited about the PV and can’t wait to learn all about using it.


Recent Work in the Barn

For anyone who’s a late comer to my blog, we’ve been working on converting a block barn on our property to a quilt studio for me.  It’s been a long year but we’re reaching the end of the road with it.

Don finally got pretty much everything finished that he’s working on so a few weeks ago, we had the concrete floor done by Roy Bankston….that grown up man who used to be the kid who fished in our pond (with permission).

Roy on the left and Austin on the right. Come on guys! You look so "happy" !!!

They decided on a design first and marked it off with a chalk line.  Roy’s “right hand”, Austin scored the concrete following those lines and did most of the actual work.  There’s a border around the room and in quilting talk, large “cross-hatching” in the center.

The concrete has been scored.

After the scoring is done, the concrete has to be scrubbed and a chemical applied which dries overnight before staining begins.  Here’s a picture showing the beginning of the staining process.  The outer border was stained first and then the center.

Outside border in longarm room is stained.

Staining started in the kitchen

Here’s what the kitchen floor looks like after it’s been stained.

Kitchen floor staining completed

Working in the center of the longarm room.

Almost finished!

I think Austin was getting tired of my camera by now.  After the stain dried overnight, he applied a sealer which took a couple days to dry.  I didn’t take pictures of the bedroom, but he also color sealed the floor in there.  It looks so nice.  I’ll take a picture of the whole room after I finish decorating it.

Here’s what the longarm room looks like after it’s been sealed.  This corner is where “Valentina” will reside.

"Valentina's" corner

I originally thought I wanted the bible verse put in front of the kitchen sink, but Roy pointed out that I would probably want to put a rug there….and he was right.  So, we decided to put it in the doorway between the longarm room and the kitchen.  I love it!

My constant reminder that I'm not in charge.

I love the way the floor turned out.  The concrete has some cracks in it and they just enhance the random nature of the acid staining.  The guys who poured the floor put a broom finish on it so there’s lots of texture in it.  It looks great!

Clarification for March Garden Party

I made an error in the number of files that should be downloaded.  There are 6 files instead of 8.  They include everything you need.  Thanks go  to everyone who helped point me in the right direction.

A tip for printing:  When you open each overlay file—look at the pages and don’t print the ones that have almost no pattern on them.  I don’t think you will need those.  If you decide you want to print them, you can always do that but you will have the opportunity to save paper & ink if you don’t have to.

For anyone who had trouble with the files, you should try again.  I tested each file download and they all opened just fine.

Thanks also for all the good wishes regarding my fall.  I’m moving better today but not up to par yet.  🙂

March Patterns Uploaded

The patterns for March have all been uploaded and are on the Garden Party page.

There are 8 files in all.  Some of the files are for more than 1 section.  Each pdf file name says which sections it is for.  Even though some of the files look identical, there are slight difference in sizes.  Please hand label each section as you print it.

I wish I had time to do nicer editing but it just wasn’t possible this time.

Next month will be the final installment of Garden Party and I would love to see pictures of your projects.  After that, I’ll concentrate on writing up my blocks and making samples for “Christmas in July”.

March Garden Party

As you know, I’m running behind with the installment for March.  I’ve been overwhelmed with getting the barn ready for the arrival of Valentina (more about that later) and a couple of pretty bad falls within a week have slowed me down.  I’m still sporting a nasty bruise and scrapes on my right knee from a fall last week and this morning I fell again….in the same exact spot.  My back is most unhappy.

I’m going to try to get the files uploaded tonight.  They’re not as polished as I would like but it’s the best I can manage right now.

I’ll post a message to let you know when they’re ready for download.

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