I posted this on the Quiltville Friend Page on facebook, and a reader sent me this HILARIOUS cartoon to go with the story. You probably need to click it to biggie-size it. It was too good not to do a re-cap here for those who are not on facebook!
Yesterday morning as I went through security on my first flight from Harlingen to Houston, I was one of the lucky ones to go through the xray machine....
"Ma'am, place your feet on the diagram feet...palms above your head, palms open and face forward please!"
((this felt like some weird version of twister with no way to twist!))
Then I had to step to the next station and get the "Pat Down" routine...evidently my underwires required further inspection!
The female officer was friendly and I had no problem with it as I really....really...had nothing better to do! I was plenty early to the airport, so hey, I'm always up for an adventure!
When the process was completed she double-checked my boarding pass and said "Wow! You really ARE Bonnie Hunter!"
I laughed and turned beet red. Turns out she is a quilter too! We chatted for a few minutes and I told her what I was doing in Harlingen....too funny!
It's nice to know that even TSA agents quilt! Still, it catches me off guard a bit!
Oh, she also said...."Wow! from your pictures, I thought you were a lot shorter..." Heheheh!
It was just all very cute, and it kept a smile on my face all the way home.
I crashed early last night...slept all the way til 7:30 this morning. It's a catch up day! I've got the next two parts of Roll Roll Cotton Boll to write and post-date. I'm going to be out of town the next two Fridays, so they've gotta be ready to release for you!
I've also had questions on various things like
* Why do you use phone book paper, can't you just sew strips and trim?
Well, yes, you can, but the paper adds a bit of stabilizer as I sew. Not all my strips have straight edges, and this helps me keep things flat so I don't get hills and valleys in my piecing.
The paper also gives me a BOUNDARY to shoot for. I can start with longer strips down the center diagonal, but I can use the shorter strips and even triangles in the corners. This makes everything usable. Remember, I'm not working from strictly FQ length strips, or yardage long strips.....The shape of that paper is my guide on the sizes of strips I can use AND where they will best fit.
*Someone wrote about their stitches coming undone as they pulled paper:
My stitching starts at least 1/4" before the paper....and my stitches are VERY SMALL. 1.5 on my bernina, 1.4 on my janome. if your stitches are pulling, your stitch is too long. Any loose stitches should be trimmed off by the time you square up the block.
*Someone wrote about having to crumple the block to remove the paper??
I have NEVER heard of this. I start in one corner, and rock the piece I'm removing. I'm right handed, so it rocks from left to right, just as if I were removing binder paper from a notebook. Remove the corner piece, tug on the corner a bit to loosen the top edge of the next strip, grasp it and rock it from left to right...loosen the top of the next strip of paper, and remove that one just like from a binder as well. No crumpling, no problem. Again...if you are having problems, you are not starting at an edge, and/or your stitches are STILL TOO BIG.
*Someone wrote about removing the paper first and then squaring...
To which I reply...do whatever works for you! There are really no rules, and if that works for you, fine. I just do what I do because I like to do it that way, it is not a "rule" that you have to do it this way.....find what works for you, try other ways...what matters is that you end up with the units you need in the right size they need to be. There is more than one way to skin a cat as they say!
*Someone asked why I use phone book paper, and not the kabnet wax paper.
I discovered phone books for string piecing after I had finished using up my kabet wax paper and was in a hurry and didn't want to go make a long drive to go buy more. I grabbed whatever was at hand. And you know, I really like the phone book paper better! I think it tears off easier than the kabnet wax paper. But you can use any kind of paper you want. I do a lot of paper piecing on just regular re-purposed printer paper. It's more about the recycling, and giving things a second opportunity to be used before they hit the landfill instead of having to go BUY SOMETHING that I'm going to just tear up and throw away.
My favorite comment so far? The gal that said she realized her phone book pages could get a 3rd life, by going from string piecing....and into her worm beds! Now that is frugal quilting at its best! :cD
*Someone asked about piecing a panel into a tube and then using a ruler to slice them that way.
Well..if it works for you, go for it. Again, I am using junk strips. These were many different lengths, widths, grain lines, and not all straight strips. Some tapered wide to narrow, some had even a gently curved edge. That would not work with a tube method. A tube method would also give you identical blocks. I'm not a fan of identical blocks. My goal in this step was to empty out a lot of stuff I had been saving for years. I was not working from new yardage. But if it works for you, go for it.
I think this is one of those steps that either people love it, or they hate it. I personally LOVE it...each and every scrap that gets used....
My printer is working over time this morning, printing out the pdf pages of Scraps & Shirttails II! Oh!! You guys!! It looks SO GOOD! As soon as I get a cover to show you I will. As soon as I get the go ahead, I'd like to do a weekly "preview" and show you one quilt a week or something like that so you know what is in the book. I just haven't been told that I can sneak-peek anything yet. If we go OVER on the page count we'll have to maybe pull a pattern and let it go in the NEXT book...so...we are working on it to get everything to fit!
December is crazy, so I'll be starting the pre-orders on January 1st and I'll keep you updated on that, however, I hope to hear this week when I'll get Tonya's Word Play Quilts book in stock, and you will know as soon as I do!