Friday, September 14, 2012

Clearing My Mind And The Scrap Basket

I know I have a scrappy mind, but that truly was not what I was eluding to in the title of the post.....I think Roger would disagree but I meant quilting is my way of working through emotions.  The loss of another precious God serving man in my life is another what do I do to help?  I retreat to my quilting studio.

In the solitude of this room I can sing my favorite hymns, I can cry if I want too......and you know I have that soft heart so yes I cry in here too.  I can be mad and stomp my feet, cut up stuff, what ever it takes to work through the thoughts in my mind.  God gives each of us this ability and I am so blessed to have this beautiful.....yet messy today, quilting studio to help me through good days and bad days.  And as you emerge from this room you often look back at the room, design wall etc., and see something of true beauty that has been created from all of the sorrow you may have been working through.  Thank you Lord for allowing me the ability to make beauty out of pain.  I am truly blessed.

I decided to spend this time learning and understanding how to use my new Accuquilt Studio fabric cutter.  As a quilter who started with scissors and gracefully embraced the rotary cutter as the "end all" most awesome invention ever made, I was a little hesitant about getting the Accuquilt.  I could not understand why I might need this tool.  Then the finger cutting incident, arthritis setting up in my joints, mom's arthritis and my needing to do her cutting for get the when I got into that mood where I would actually turn loose of that kind of money........I hit purchase!  Don't you just love computers....hehe.

I've set the machine up on my counter and it is a great place for it.  The shelf above can hold the dies and there is room on both sides for the tray to come through.  Below is the 3 1/2 x 6 1/2 inch rectangle die.  I can cut 40 rectangles at one time......amazing.  I have marked the blade lines with a silver sharpie marker as the company recommends.  This helps you line the fabric up on the cutting die easier and have less waste of fabric, just like when you square up fabric with your rotary cutter you will have little slivers on the edges.  It also helps you know where the blades are and where not to put your hands when picking up the dies.  (don't need another finger injury..hehe).

 Below are just a few of the squares that I cut from the fabric that was in my scrap basket when I started, and I thought that I had cleaned out that basket a week or so ago???? 

The first picture is of 3 1/2  squares.  This die can cut 60 squares with one turn through the machine.  I sure had some cute fabrics in that scrap basket.

 This basket below is of triangles that will finish as 1 1/2 inch squares.......bring on the next Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt.  These were all cut in just a few minutes with the machine.  This picture doesn't do the basket justice as each of those triangles you see in the picture is the top of a stack of 10 triangles.  Pretty cool and sooooooooo easy.  And all of these were cut from scraps already in my basket.  Just love using all of those pieces. 

The next pile, sorry for being piled on the batting scissors and TV control, but I'm playing not cleaning today.  These are 1/2 square triangles which will finish as 3 1/2 in squares. 

Tonight my bee girls and I are going to be doing some power sewing to make a rag "I spy" quilt for the silent auction at our quilt show.  We've all been cutting 5-inch squares of fabric to be used in the quilt.  I went through the basket and found as many "Kid" fabrics that had motifs that would be good for the "I spy" blocks.  The 5-inch square die can cut 80 squares in one pass.  This below is the two stacks of squares I was able to get from the scraps.  I've already cut some 4 1/2 inch squares of scrap batting to be used in the quilt.  When we finish the quilt will be sewn and quilted.  We do assembly line sewing when we are working on these kind of projects.  Some cut, some stack the pieces in the order to be sewn, some sew, come press, some relayer for the get the picture.  It's always lots of fun and lots of laughter........Lord know we sure need some laughter tonight!

Below are the 3 1/2 x 6 1/2 inch rectangles that I was able to cut from the scraps also.  What an amazing pile of ready to make pieces.  I love Bonnie Hunter's scrap users system.  You always have precut pieces ready for you to sort into what ever quilt pieces you need.  I've used this size pieces many times for borders on a quilt.  All I had to do was dig through and sort out what ever color family I needed for the quilt I was working on.

Even with using the Accuquilt cutter I still take each piece and ask "what is the biggest piece that can be cut from this fabric?"  This way I don't just cut up small triangles or blocks.  It gives me different size pieces out of every piece of scrap fabric.

Another piece of brightness grand daughter Haley sent me a new picture of little Anthony.  He is now 14 days old....boy how time flies.

Today I'm back in my studio this morning to put some more dents into the scrap basket.......I may make it to the bottom of the basket today..hehe.  Sorry for such a long wordy post.

Happy Quilting,


julieQ said...

Relax your heart and mind sweet lady...we are so blessed to have this gift to work through things. Many hugs!

Debbie said...

So sorry to hear of the loss of your uncle. Your family has had so much to deal with this year.
Love all your cutting are sure having fun with the cutter.