Friday, July 1, 2016

McCall's Peace Cottage Quilt Along - And A Fire To Boot! Lesson 4

We are moving right along with the Peace Cottage Quilt Along! How is your's coming?  I made a little change on mine, I decided (due to a shortage of the scraps) that I would change the lower right front window dimensions. I'm happy with the results and moving along on this row of the quilt, ahead of the planned weekly guide.

TIP:  Audition your fabic and make sure it is looking the way you want before you stitch it all together...

First I thought I would like this little stone pattern for the cottage but after assembling the first two sections of the cottage, I decided not so much and started over with a small brick.

Did not like the way the roof looked, unstitched it and started over.

Still not content with this either, I started over...

Finally happy, I settle on this little Cottage.

The next steps were ahead of plan. Stitched up the little stars and the trees.

Well, I got a little excited about putting this row together so I proceeded and stitched up the forest blocks and the silo. 

Now, you may be thinking this all looks very complicated. It's not. This is basically a row quilt, everything is broken down into nice little rows for you to stitch. Just keep that in mind as you go along.

Sunday, I took a little break from the action and headed up to Tahoe Donner to visit my son and see his new home. Imagine my excitement when he showed me his sewing room! Now mind you, I bought him a little Singer sewing machine about three years ago and he fell in love with sewing. He has a very high stress technical consulting career and he says this is his therapy. That apple didn't fall

So let me help you with this photo, because I needed help. The Juki in the front is an industrial coverstitcher. Yes, it's kind of like a serger but no blades and it does really cool stuff, like if you wanted to bind your quilt, it would do that for you...both sides at the same time, perfect.  If you wanted to hem something, it would do a two or three needle hem, perfect...oh the list goes on. AND IT'S FAST, don't get your fingers in the way!

Right beyond the Juki is another Juki serger.  And at the far end of the room is his Bernina 530 sewing machine. It was a fun day, he showed me all the tricks it could do and shared his stash with me, oh yes, he already as a stash. Below is some of the thread stash.

The closet was stacked with bolts of fabric! I love my son. And as he was unpacking things, there was the little Singer in the bottom of the  Then he pulled out a big box and proceeded to unpack another machine. This one is a Janome Coverstitcher he says. I want you to have it because I have the Juki now. So I was gifted with this brand new Janome!

Yup, that is my little Singer Featherweight 221 in the back. It was a sewing day, what can I say, I brought my machine too! So here is my plan, I'm going to finish up the quilt I have on my longarm this weekend, then I'm going to put some fabric on there and quilt it up randomly, take it off and cut out some placemats. Then I can practice using the coverstitcher and perfect my technique before tackling a quilt binding!

This week, started out rather uneventful and then a fire started in the canyon below us. You may have seen it on the TV. It's called the Trailhead Fire. We are located in Todd Valley, right above the north line of the fire. Driving home from work, this is what I saw.

As I got to the turn off for our home, the road was blocked by police and the little firehouse near us had about 20 fire trucks parked out front. So I flipped a U and drove in the back way to our home.  This was the view from our front porch.

Way too close for comfort. My husband is home during the day with our kitties and has been keeping me informed but it has been difficult to go to work this week, especially since I can see the fire from our office which is 17 miles from the house. I'm thankful for the firemen who are on the front lines, the airmen who are flying the huge DC 10's, the helicopters and all the other folks that are manning bulldozers and who knows what else to fight this fire for us. Our community and those across the canyon from us are grateful.

Our little Todd Valley is directly north of the fire which is down in the American River Canyon on the Middle Fork of the American River so we are on pins and needles around here. The fire is down in the canyon and the winds change in the mountains all the time so with that and the difficult teraine, the very dry conditions after several years of drought and 97 years without a major fire, it can be very difficult to fight these fires. 

This is the same view as that which is at the top of my masthead on this blog. Looking east toward the backside of Squaw Valley, you cannot even see the mountains.  This second view is looking down the canyon from Wartons' early this morning before the inversion layer lifted. 

A local photographer, Joe Dondelinger took this photo below from Mosquito Ridge Road June 29th. 

So to keep my mind off the fire, to stay focused and not worry, I am sewing ahead on the Peace Cottage and it is giving me peace.

I hope you are enjoying the sew along, if you haven't started yet, jump in anywhere, it won't matter! It's a row quilt that's fun with lots of easy and fun little blocks to put together. Take your time and find your Peace Cottage!

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