Wednesday, August 24, 2016

The Splendid Sampler™ Wednesday

The Splendid Sampler™ Wednesday
(...skip this part if you're not new here...)

The Splendid Sampler™ is an internet sew-a-long created by Pat Sloan and Jane Davidson. It is an EPIC sew along...
  • 83 fabric designers have created specific blocks that feature different quilting techniques. (paper piecing, fused applique, etc.).
  • The blocks will be released each week, and are FREE to participants until March 2017. (at that time, they'll use the designs to publish a book).
  • You can use whatever fabric you like.
  • There will be pictures on their Facebook page, etc.
The new block designs come out twice a week....on Sunday morning and Thursday morning. I'm doing this with my TMBC...and, therefore, it is my pleasure to BLOG ABOUT IT every Wednesday. *******************
Sandy and LP are still keeping up with EVERY SINGLE BLOCK.  This is my favorite picture of the two of them, and they would be an inspiration to anybody!!  The Splendid Sampler should feature them on their Facebook Page.  (HEY -- WHAT A GREAT IDEA -- I'M GOING TO LINK THIS BLOG!!)
Linda, pictured with all their blocks this week.  Holy Cow!!

Fabric choices make such a difference, eh?
At some point, it was Sandy's birthday -- so we ate some cake!!
Great color selection!!
Love the whimsy here. Sometimes, I don't really see a block until I'm looking at these pictures...days later...
I'm rerunning this picture...because it's the last time I sewed blocks. AND I MISS IT..!!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

FW Hunt: Who needs Two??

Sadly, Deena did NOT get the beautiful Featherweight at the Anamosa auction. But, UNBELIEVABLY -- there is another one being sold at an auction in Cambridge, Illinois the VERY NEXT DAY..!!  And my sister Deena is nothing if not DETERMINED...

On this beautiful Summer Sunday, we headed to my favorite auction house -- Stenzel Brothers. Oh, yeah -- COUNT ME IN...
On this day -- they have FOUR RINGS going at one time. This is the outside auctioneer...
This is NOT the Featherweight -- but -- nice, eh?
This IS the Featherweight...a 1953 in nearly perfect condition...
Hummm...people would actually STEAL the bobbin case??  (bastards!)
Deena is sitting in the fancy room -- the Featherweight is on the front table.  She is not moving...
However -- I WAS FREE TO ROAM.  Cool card table set, eh?
This is the third ring -- a room with household things, furniture, dishes, silverware, etc.
Really.  You NEVER know what you're gonna find at an auction.
The FOURTH auctioneer was in the room with all the jewelry, purses, books, etc.
My friend, Jana -- the only woman auctioneer I know.
I'm glad I don't collect this stuff...
Although, there were many things for me to bid on.
Because a girl can NEVER have too many embroidered pillowcases!
Handkerchiefs, anybody??
They were selling a fifth wheel RV on this day.
Back to the #1 room...Deena is being very patient...she is NOT leaving until they sell that Featherweight...
When I heard Jason say they were selling the Singer Featherweight, I ran to the room, but stood in the back...
SHE WON, SHE WON!!  Deena just bought her SECOND Featherweight...
It had the original can of oil, tube of lube, the box of attachments looks brand new.
Thanks to Jason -- the bobbin case was intact...
YES...it was a VERY good day!!
Deena is the first among us to have a SECOND Featherweight.  If you're keeping track, this is FW #9.  Deena has a daughter and nine grandchildren. If any of them want to learn how to sew -- she'll be on a Featherweight, and the child/student will be on Featherweight #2.

So OF COURSE she needed a second one!!

You might think that's the END of my Featherweight Collecting blogs...

But -- believe it or not -- things are about to move at WARP SPEED...

Monday, August 22, 2016

The Featherweight Hunt Hits a Snag...

Okay -- here's where the Featherweight Hunt takes some twists and turns (I'm thinking of turning this into a screenplay).

The week after Deborah bought Izzy -- my cousin Linda bought one from ebay (#7), and so did TMBC Sandy (#8).

But Linda's machine arrived with no bobbin case -- so it had to be returned.

Sandy's machine had aluminum rot -- and that has turned into a full time job!!

That Friday, our local estate guy had a Featherweight 221 AND A TABLE advertised.

THERE'S A TABLE???

Cousin Linda thought this could be the answer...cuz now she's afraid of ebay....

I set my alarm for 6:00 AM in order to get into town so we could get a good number. We were #14 and 15. We'll be in the FIRST GROUP...Hooray...

However -- the woman who was #3 BEAT US TO IT. She paid $300 for the machine and the table.

Linda was discouraged.

The very next morning, I got up at 6:00 AGAIN so I could meet my sister Deena -- who found a Featherweight at an auction in Anamosa, Iowa. (1 1/2 hour drive)

You might be asking yourself -- why is Deena buying a SECOND FEATHERWEIGHT??  She just bought that sweet little machine in LeClaire, remember?  Although I think she named her Roxanne, I don't think she's had a chance to sew on it yet...
I dunno...but I'm happy to go along for the ride.
And it was a BEAUTIFUL DRIVE, too. The countryside up there looks exactly like Grant Wood painted it...
Anamosa is the home of the Iowa State Penitentiary.
Built in 1875, it is the largest prison in the State of Iowa and still houses almost 1000 prisoners.
But -- hey -- BACK TO THE AUCTION!!
This is the only picture I got of the Anamosa Featherweight. It was perfect.  From the 60's, with everything intact. In beautiful condition..
I had the number $300 in my head.  Deena thought this one was in PRISTINE CONDITION...
Deena was bidding against one guy..and she took it up to $425. But, alas...no cigar AND no Featherweight...

Bummer.  Two Featherweights from ebay were problematic...then, the estate sale AND the auction were swings we took -- but missed...

You might think it's all bad news this week, eh??

But you would be wrong...

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Featherweight #6 and Ritaluck

Here's the thing. You have all heard about my incredible good luck. Twenty years ago, I named it "Ritaluck"...and it never lets me down. Thanks to Ritaluck, I find great parking spaces at Kohl's the week before Christmas, and there is a constant stream of treasure coming into my house that is simply TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE...

But Ritaluck played a very special role in Deborah's new white Featherweight...
She brought it directly to my house -- and there were several issues...
But, since Ronda and I are FRESH out of the Singer Featherweight Workshop -- we showed her how to oil it, and lube it, and we had the new belt it needed...Izzy was looking good in no time...
I SO WANTED to get a picture of the four of us, with our Featherweights!!  THIS MAY NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN...
So, we went to Deena's house -- and hired a professional photographer...
YES, PEOPLE -- THIS is as good as it gets. Deborah, Deena, Ronda and Rita...posing with our Featherweights. WE ARE SO DELIGHTED!!
So -- how is Ritaluck involved? Deborah's little Izzy had several issues I was not certain about. And then, I remembered that April and Carmon Henry were going to be in Tennessee. (Remember -- they are on a three month long nationwide tour -- doing their Featherweight Workshops)...

I went to the Singer-Featherweight.com website -- and discovered that they would actually be in Nashville, Tennessee -- 15 minutes from where Deborah works -- THE VERY NEXT WEEK.

Seriously -- what are the chances??  I sent an email to April -- and Deborah went to the hotel!!   Deb needed to buy some bobbins, a 1/4 inch quilting foot, some lube, oil, etc.  They had a last minute cancellation, and Deb COULD HAVE ATTENDED the workshop -- but, alas, she had to work that day.  But the Henry's looked at Izzy, and gave Deb some great advice. 
THANKS AGAIN, Carmon Henry!!
 Here's the link to the Henry's tour dates -- if they are coming to a city near you -- GET ON THE WAIT LIST.  You will not regret it!!

Friday, August 19, 2016

Featherweight #6

If you're counting -- my sisters/friends and I have FIVE FEATHERWEIGHTS.

So -- who would get Featherweight #6??

THIS GIRL....

Deb found this WHITE Featherweight on Craigslist. All she had to do was drive to St. Louis (she lives in Nashville)...
NO PROBLEM..!!

And if anybody is deserving of a beautiful little Featherweight, it is my sister Deborah. She sews more than anybody I know. She came to the Sister Sewing Weekend with a laundry basket full of projects!!
Deb works at a large apartment complex, and she makes a pillowcase for each new tenant...(many of them are college kids)
She made the apron as a gift for her boss.
This Mondo bag was an amazing pattern, and she demo-ed it for us...
Deb does a lot of machine embroidery. 
But, the truth is -- of the many, many projects she did during our weekend, 80% of them involved straight stitch sewing. So -- YES, MAYBE SHE NEEDS A FEATHERWEIGHT, too, eh??

BOOM...!!
Honestly -- before our Sisters Sewing weekend, I don't think Deb EVER considered a Featherweight. Her last three sewing machines probably cost $5,000 each. WOW. But by the time she was closing the deal on this little beauty, she already had a name for her...embroidered on a special little mat.....it is my pleasure to introduce you to the newest member of our Featherweight family.

Izzy...
Some of you may be thinking that Deborah just HAD TO OUTDO THE REST OF US...by finding a sweet, rare little White Featherweight. But she assures us that's not true...it just happened that way...
Welcome to our Featherweight Flock, Izzy. You have landed in a very good place...

Maybe you're thinking now that ALL MY SISTERS and friends have Featherweights -- this line of blogging must be over.  You would be wrong...

There's more...

Thursday, August 18, 2016

The Featherweight Flock

To review -- here's how the Featherweight Obsession began....

In October 2014, I saw a group of women sewing on Featherweights in Waterloo, Iowa. A month later -- I purchased a 1947 Featherweight for $150 at an estate sale in Davenport.

Shortly after that, I met Carmon and April Henry of Singer-Featherweight.com when I interviewed them for Inspired To Sew magazine.

Then, I found a second Featherweight for $200 at an estate sale.  My sister Ronda had first dibbs on that machine.
Last year, Ronda and I set up our Featherweights for Christmas projects with our girls...
The third Featherweight was purchased by my cousin Jackie in Wilmington, North Carolina.
June 2016 -- Ronda and I went to Hamilton and met the Henrys. Afterwards, we were talking about the Workshop...
We talked WAY TOO MUCH about our love-of-the-Featherweights!!
YOU WON'T BELIEVE WHAT'S HAPPENED SINCE...

When I was AT THE WORKSHOP -- Linda Phillips bought a Featherweight.

Which is as it should be, since Linda was with me on that first day when we saw those little Featherweights in Waterloo, Iowa. She has been keeping up with every single block of the Splendid Sampler (TWO new blocks each week!) -- and her old sewing machine died. When she took it in to be repaired, the guy just happened to have a Singer Featherweight!! PERFECT...
Remember Deena?  She worked on my Featherweight for two days, and then THIS HAPPENED...
She got a ding on her smartphone -- telling her there was a Singer Featherweight on Craigslist.  For $300.  In LECLAIRE, IOWA..(10 miles from her house).
She agreed to buy it ON THE PHONE...and on the following Monday -- I met her at the home of the seller...
And she got this beauty.  Complete, with attachments, book, bobbins...IN PERFECT CONDITION...
This one had the original box of lube, along with the vintage can of oil...for only $300.
Are you counting?? That's five Featherweights!!

Amazing...right??

But, really -- it's just a good start...