Friday, September 30, 2016

Splendid Sampler Progress

Frankly, I've gotten quite behind on the Splendid Sampler.  Remember those first weeks?  We were so excited.  We just couldn't wait for Sunday and Thursday to come.  Ran to the computer or phone, first thing---is it there yet, is it there?  Print it, run to the sewing room, cut & sew!!!  Pat Sloan told us, calm done, it's not a race!  Oh, if we had just listened!

But then other things came along.  Other projects. Taking our time and attention.  Hey, it's just ONE block a day right?  For 100 days?  I can TOTALLY keep on top of that.  Ha.

Anyway, I digress.  Once a squirrel, always a squirrel!  No use fighting it.  Squirrels got BALANCE!  They can handle it!

Played a little catch up.

Ok, top left.  HATED it.  Not, I don't really care for it.  I found it disturbing.  So I re-did that block.  Much better, right?  Well it makes me happier!

While I was playing catch up, I got all the blocks out & put them up on a design wall.  They hadn't all been together on a wall in a long time!

52 blocks done.  Still behind.......sigh..... but not gonna sweat it.

It's about the road.  Not the destination.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Studio Organization takes a HUGE step forward!

Our basement has been getting some finishing done, and our carpenter was going to install some slat wall on a 12' long wall in the laundry room.  2 of his guys came to do it, and I was so jealous of my laundry.  I thought---geez, I've been thinking about that for my studio since wonderful organization expert Mary Dykstra spoke at Great Lakes Heritage Quilters last year.  She has actually organized sewing studios before & knew quite a bit about it.  One of her favorite things is to use either pegboard system or slat wall (her top choice) and get things up on the wall & off the table.  I had debated & then decided slatwall was my first choice.  And some day...some day....Mike and I would get some and hang it.

As they were downstairs working, I thought, hey!  Wait a minute!  I have carpenters doing things for me!  They could get and hang that for me!  No struggling & planning for Mike & I!  Professionals!  Duh.

So I did!  Texted the boss man- Jim, and one of the guys, Chris,  measured before they left.that same day.  Jim Becker , who owns Jobecks Designs, had done our kitchen remodel some years ago.  Just three days later they installed a wall for me that is approximately 5' X 4', big enough to run the length of my cutting wall.  It's all framed in very pretty--I know for sure Mike & I wouldn't/couldn't have done that!

I forgot to take a BEFORE pic when taking everything down in prep, but did find this older pic, which shows at least part of my cutting tables:

 That picture only shows about HALF of the table top.  There was another organizer that held lots more stuff on the far left, not shown.

Took it all down, everything off the top.  All ready!!


Just starting to hang some things up.  Organizing is fun, but messy
Close up, after most of the hanging up was done---there are two of my favorites, the magnetic tool strip & the little compartment bins.  The small plastic buckets are great too

And look---the top is CLEARED for cutting!
I used the wonderful world-wide web to look for products.  Amazon was my chief source.  Home Depot carries some things, but not in the store, and many of those are aimed at garage organizing.  Some of the garage things work, but they tend to be very large hooks, aimed at holding large heavy items, like bikes & hoses, and tools.   

The trick is figuring out what's going to go on the wall, & what's the best way for it to go there.  I did email Mary Dykstra for a few suggestions & she was very helpful.  Things like pencils or marking tools are best in a small container sitting on a shelf.  There are lots of wonderful shelves--I got a set of three 10" long acrylic shelves.  The clear acrylic is wonderful, you can see what's in it (or on it, as they case may be).  I also have a longer shelf, 24" wide, 4" deep, with closed ends, that I put things in near the top, small jars, more decorative things.  A great 6" acrylic square bin holds my perle cottons & embroidery threads.  Stored up top, cuz I don't use them a lot---I can climb once in awhile!

Amazon had as a vendor a place called Retail Resource.  Their quality was very good & they were very fast, so the next time I ordered from them, I ordered directly & saved a little money.

Some of my favorite:  The magnetic tool strip---going to have four of these altogether, remember I am buying for TWO slat walls, the basement & my studio.  It's nice to be able to order more, see how you can use, how well does it suit your purpose.  If I can't use it one place, I can probably use it in the  other.  The magnetic tool strip holds scissors, both for paper & for fabric, drawing compass, & magnetic pincushion.  Plastic bins of different sizes.  Acrylic Magazine rack, although the one I got (not from Retail Resource) had the part that tips into the slat wall come off immediately--dismaying.  I re-glued it & am hoping for the best.  Meanwhile, I am waiting a couple of wire baskets that go in to the slatwall that might be better for patterns or books I want close at hand.  Those little acrylic boxes divided into 4 compartments each--great for small stuff!  The 10" shelves were wonderful.

One of the nice things about slatwall is that you can slide the container over a bit if it's not quite where you want it.  If you want it higher or lower, you do have to take it out & move it.  On pegboard, the item MUST come out all the way and get re-stuck in the proper holes.  That's one of the reasons I liked the slat wall systems better, just tip it in, slide it over.   I worried that it would be hard to GET the things to go in the slat wall, pegboard being maybe more universal.  But it was very easy peasy & there are lots of great products.    Just ask my UPS deliveryman---he's been here a lot lately!!

Best of all, I can move things around as my needs or wants change.  It will be a work in progress.  Wait,  Oh no.  ANOTHER WIP???  But in a good way.