Lucy – Sewing Machine Meme

I'll get a better pic this weekend

In the box

 

They are doing a sweet thing over at Sew, Mama, Sew, so I thought I would participate!! A little FAQ on my sewing machine, enjoy….Sorry I don’t have a better picture

What brand and model do you have? Bernina Activa 230PE

How long have you had it? Since September of 2008

How much does that machine cost (approximately)? $1100, I honestly can’t remember if that’s accurate at all. My husband swears it was more.

What types of things do you sew (i.e. quilting, clothing, handbags, home dec projects, etc.)? I quilt, make clothes, napkins, home décor projects like drapes. I hope to start making purses and clutches! All in good time though.

How much do you sew? How much wear and tear does the machine get? I try to sew every week, a little here, a little there. So far, this baby hasn’t had a ton of use, but I know she’ll take it.

Do you like/love/hate your machine? Are you ambivalent? Passionate? Does she have a name? I love my machine, Lucy. I never knew that sewing could be so much better with a quality machine. She’s amazing.

What features does your machine have that work well for you?

  • The memorized buttonholes are amazing. I love them!
  • Memorized stitch settings is key too.
  • There are thread cutters everywhere, too, very handy, indeed.
  • I was ver apprehensive about the needle threader at first, but have come to LOVE it.
  • Needle up/down button has saved my life on more than one occassion.
  • The “Barbie Case” that holds all the accessories
  • I love that the feet are one cohesive piece.

Is there anything that drives you nuts about your machine? If I had to shop all over again, I’d probably buy a machine with more room in the arm, for bunching things, etch. Though, that would probably have knocked the price range up again.

Do you have a great story to share about your machine (i.e., Found it under the Christmas tree? Dropped it on the kitchen floor? Sewed your fingernail to your zipper?, Got it from your Great Grandma?, etc.!)? We want to hear it! The day I figured out that my machine was truly tough, and high quality was the day I sewed right through the fat head of a quilting safety pin. The needle didn’t even break, what luck!

Would you recommend the machine to others? Why? Of course! I’ve recommended it to anyone and everyone who will listen. I looked a long time, and ultimately, I chose Lucy because I felt the quality of machine was amazing, and people at the local sew and vac, that sold Husqavara/Brother/Viking/Pfaff, was very unhelpful. I like to buy my things from people that care about me, and what I want out of the purchase.

What factors do you think are important to consider when looking for a new machine? Consider what you’ll use the machine for. How easy is it to move, or will you have a designated space. How straight does it sew a line? Like I’ve already said, the people you buy from are key, because I can call the ladies at Bernina Northwest anytime they are open and they’ll gladly answer any silly question I have. No need to call an automated answering service, and these ladies truly know their machines!

Do you have a dream machine? YES, who doesn’t? Well, I suppose some people already own their dream machine, but it’s still a dream machine. I don’t want anything too elaborate, or not elaborate enough. I’d love to have a Bernina Aurora 440QE. That stitch regulator just sends me over the moon. How fantastic would it be to just push and things happen? It would be amazing.

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Tea, Stamps, Dad, Bowls, etc…

I shook a Magic 8 Ball the other day and asked; Will my future in Vintage Kitchenware sales be great? Most definitely was the answer. Frickin Sweet.

8ball

Can you tell this is a random post, like all my posts? Problem is, I wait so long between postings,  that I have to jumble it all together. I think I’ve been quite successful in not posting very much in 2009, so far. Let’s get this ball rolling though, shall we?

Tea

I’ve been on a tea kick , lately. Two days or so to be more exact. So, I’ve been tasting, buying random teas. I tried 3 different teas on Thursday, and they were all disgusting. My usual problem is  that the tea is  fruity, or not sweet enough. One of the said disgusting, I added too much sugar to, hence, making it unbearably disgusting. Friday, I bought a couple tea bags from Mighty Leaf to try out. The Organic Breakfast was pretty good. The funny thing about these Mighty Leaf teas is that they are whole leaves, in a biodegradable pouch. You open it and the amount of tea looks tiny. Let it steep for a few minutes, and that sucker swells up. I like the look of it all swelled up.  I’ll try to update you on teas I really like/hate. Trader Joe’s: Cranberry Orange something or other, disgusting. (Unless you like fruity teas). Mighty Leaf: Organic Breakfast – pretty darn good.
mightyleafmightyleaf2
Stamps

I went through an epiphany last month. That I don’t want to and don’t have the time to do Stampin’ Up! I have so many crafts slash hobbies that I need to pick and focus on the ones I want. So, I picked sewing and scrapbooking. Now, I won’t officially be dropped from Stampin’ Up! until April, because of their new guidelines, and suspending the dropping of demonstrators. Part of me says: Just drop me already!! and part of me says: Yay, I still get the discount. But, who am I fooling? I can’t afford to buy stamps right now, and I just want to sell all my shit. That’s the bottom line. Adam helped me pull down all my sets that were no longer current, so that I could begin listing them on eBay. That is 41 sets in all. I estimate that I could potentially gain around $380 from selling these off. I seem to be fairly accurate so far. I’ve listed 22 items, so far, and 7 have sold, putting me $7.61 above target. A bunch more sets are due to end tomorrow, and I hope that brings good news as well. I think I might need offer up all my cardstock to my fellow demonstrators, and sell it off in one big lot. That would be super awesome, cause otherwise, it would just sit there.  I’ll look into that more, around dropping time though.
stamps
Dad

My father is notorious for not giving any form of notice before he flies in. He lives in the Philippines, and ALWAYS stays with me when he’s in town. Super Bowl Sunday, I get a text in the afternoon that informs me he lands in the morning. Thanks for the 12 hour notice ombre. So, he’s here now, and his plans to stay could be one week, or up to 3 months. He has some legal things to tie up before he goes back. It’s not that I don’t like having my dad around, it’s that I don’t like having no plan. I’m not very good at flying by the seat of my pants. It’s why I make lists, why I freak out when things aren’t going my way, and why I HATE to waist a Saturday. It’s just frustrating. However, I am glad my daddy is here.
photo-19
Bowling

My team: That’s What She Said, is back in action. We have a strong start too. We’ve got at least 4 points on every other team we have in the league. There is one person, that will probably end in the finals with us. Sofa King Great, we only beat them by 19 pins last week. Too close for comfort if you ask me.
thatswhatshesaid
Sacks

I’ve started 3 sacks. One bag for donations to Goodwill, one bag for garbage, and one bag of stuff for my Dad to take back to the Philippines. I hope to make real progress this weekend, with those three categories. My list of things to do this Saturday is a little ridiculous.

garbage-bag

Work

I like my job. It keeps me busy, it teaches me new things, and the people are nice. However, I’ve lately come to realize that my work is run by internet Nazi’s. Yes, you read right, internet Nazi’s. My director fully acknowledges that our times are slow, and people might have extra time on their hands. There are not enough projects to go around in this world and some people are bound to have nothing to do. But, we must all delete all im’ing programs from our machines, and only use the internet during our lunch/break times. During said times, we should have our signs that clear indicate we are on break or lunch visible. So, you can understand my internet Nazi reference. I don’t think it should matter how much I’m on the internet, as long as my job gets done. End of story.

Random me, and the introduction of task lists.

Things and products that I adore:

 

1.      Coffee I don’t make myself

2.      Libraries

3.      Art supply stores

4.      Artistic graffiti

5.      Crayons

6.      Yard sales

7.      Plane tickets

8.      Farmers markets

9.      Quaint little towns

10.  Hotel rooms

11.  Old cars

12.  Mac computers

13.  The smell of a real Christmas tree

14.  Old photos of family long gone

15.  Ferry rides on sunny days

16.  Beach cruiser bicycles

17.  Fancy pens

18.  Crazy quilts

19.  Morning Glory sparklers

20.  Seashells

21.  Soaking tubs

22.  Aprons

23.  Bridges

24.  Bernina sewing machines

25.  Fingernail polish

26.  Notepads and journals

27.  Photo booths

28.  Adidas Superstars

29.  Country French kitchens

30.  Bubbles

31.  Moonlight

32.  Staying home cuddled up on a rainy day with a good movie

33.  Famous people with the name Hugh – (Grant, Laurie, Jackman)

34.  Sonicare toothbrushes

35.  Lush Dream Cream – and lotion in general

36.  The strong smell of tropical jasmine

37.  Lists

38.  Spider webs covered in morning dew

39.  Calendars

40.  New cell phones

41.  Scrapbooks

42.  Soft yarn

43.  Kitchen Aid mixers

44.  Elephant ears (the food)

45.  Fresh cut flowers

46.  Fluffy cats

47.  Random IMs with funny comments

48.   Nexcare waterproof bandages

49.  Vacuuming

50.  MAC make-up

 

Maybe you’ll get a list of things I don’t like sometime. A list of things I don’t like could be more useful in not making me angry.

 

 

From my list last night:

 

1.      put away Stamp Camp supplies didn’t happen, so it’s on the list for tonight

2.      vacuum living room and guest room – to my surprise, Adam has already accomplished this when I got home.

3.      work on the manger scene – it’s freaking sweet dude, it makes me happy to look at it.

4.      Clean the kitchen – well, ya know (I did very little, so it adds to tonight)

5.      Adam’s “tidy up the bedroom” – I didn’t add it to his list, cause I was so impressed that he vacuumed and cleaned the bath tub without me asking.

 

New list for tonight:

 

1.      Put away Stamp Camp items

2.      Clean kitchen

3.      Clean off bed

4.      Manger scene 

 

I’ve got to slowly make progress on my huge list of things until my mom gets here in 15 days.

Isn’t She a Beaut?

In the box

In the box

I picked up this fine lady at Bernina Northwest this past weekend. She wasn’t in stock, so they gave me a loaner to play with until she got her. How nice? The people at Bernina Northwest are all VERY nice, which was a big part of why I didn’t buy a Pfaff. I like nice people

She’s not a cheap date, by any means, and she’ll require a lot of time with just the two of us, but I don’t mind, waiting on a woman.(Which reminds me, have you heard that song, Waiting on a Woman by Brad Paisley? I REALLY like it, even though I’m not totally in love with country music) It’s only appropriate that a sewing machine should be female, right? Well, I was thinking, I should name her. I like the name Lucy. 1) I don’t know anyone named Lucy. 2) I want it to be a retro name, of someone that does her hair, and can be a classy lady.

Let’s get technical. Why this machine you ask? Why did you need to spend $300 more than the lower model? Why wasn’t Clairece good enough anymore? Why? Why? Why? Okay, so I made up Clairece. That isn’t my old machine’s name. I never named her, but if I had, Clairece would have been it. It depicts someone who is okay, but I don’t LOVE. Lucy comes with a Barbie like wardrobe to hold feet, bobbins and what-nots, that clips on to the machine, for storing and traveling purses. That means no feet get tangled in with each other, I can always find bobbins and needles, and it

looks pretty, sitting on the table. What else? She came with a sewing table that slides right on, and fabric glides over it like crazy. She has a memorized buttonhole function, more stitches, TWO alphabets and tastes like chocolate. So I made the last one up, but you get the idea. Did I mention that she has a built in needle threader, you don’t have to pull the string up for the bobbin. Granted, she is fat, meaning heavier than Clairece, but she has metal parts?! Clairece is a crappy plastic machine that you can feel the vibrations in if you get going too fast. Which would sound awesome if I were into chicks and she was a real woman, but she’s a sewing machine, so that sucks. Her bobbin would get tangles, she doesn’t come with a built in needle threader, she doesn’t thread her own bobbin, so I don’t have to pull through, she can’t remember to always stop with the needle up or down, depending on what mood I’m in, you can’t drop her feed dogs and she just doesn’t cut it anymore

I bought a turkey sandwich at a sandwich place called Togo’s. Don’t tell Adam that I bought food, cause we decided last week that we were not allowed to eat out, except on Sundays. Seriously though, I had 15 minutes to get ready for work, and no time to pack a lunch. Anyway, it was good, and I like it. Messy, but good.

Saturday we went to the Puyallup Fair, and my DH won me a prize!! The clown game is his nemesis. Every year he plays, and every year, the last clown fails to fall completely off. Not this year, not at all! He won me a ridiculously huge raccoon, that had dandruff. I couldn’t keep him, cause my condo doesn’t allow raccoons, but he was loved for a day. I secretly love to watch him pitch. Not sure why, I thinks it’s a thrill from when we started dating.

Lots of hanging out with friends on Sunday. It was a very long night, and a bunch of my friends called in sick, or didn’t have to work today, no fair!

In other news! I would strive to do something creative everyday. Last night, I made this fucking amazing shirt. I’m not sure if there is a masculine way to do this, but it works for me! Sewing it was a bitch. I’m wearing it today. It looks pretty hot. Oh, and my cat is very cute. He sits like that every morning while I get ready. He just likes to be around me. He’s current sitting right next to me as well.

Up close, sewing was a bitch.
Finished

Finished

Photo Basics

Canon Rebel XT

Canon Rebel XT

Let’s start it off with a nice little spendy piece I own. The Canon Rebel XT (now they have the XTi or something or other out). This was a wedding present from my DH. LOVE IT! It came with a stock lens, that I didn’t really think was that great. Upon the recommendation of one Karen Russell, I invested $80 in the 50mm lens. It’s a fixed lens, but well worth it. It does great in low light situations, you just have to get used to being the zoom.

Oh, and my amazing friends husband gave me a 300mm zoom lens. Yeah, that’s right, just gave it to me! I took it to a graduation, but the graduation was lame and held in a gym, so the lighting was VERY poor. Which, incase I need to point it out, is not conducive to beautiful photos with a zoom lens. There is a ton of white noise.

Digital vs. Film; i prefer digital because you can manipulate images, see the raw image right away, and save on printing costs. HOWEVER, there is nothing like a film photo done by an amazing photographer. I’m not amazing though, so the quality of film is wasted on me.

Gorilla Pod

Gorilla Pod

i have a tripod, which is great for a stationary picture shoot or something, but let’s face it, nobody wants to lug a tripod around. I’ve already made a huge sacrifice in upgrading to a larger camera in general. This one does not fit in my purse well. Instead, i own a Gorilla Pod which fits nicely into a backpack, and you can wrap the legs around anything.

I work on an iMac, which organized all my photos. I have not yet decided if I like the way it seems to categorize my photos (chronologically and by event). I do need to start burning discs of the years/months to get the ones I don’t currently need off my computer. I run Photoshop CS right now, it’s okay, but I’m not really a Photoshop whiz. I know how to use actions, and that’s about it.

Some things I’m working on right now with my photography: using different angles to take a photo, finding the good lighting and taking more pictures in general.

What training do i have you ask? NADA!! Well, that’s not entirely true. I took a 2 day class through BCC for continueing education. It didn’t do a whole lot of good, but gave me the basics I needed. i then got into a 12 week, free course online over at 2Peas by a Joanna Bolick. Very nicely outline different things, and you can work at an indepent speed (since the class is no longer live). I printed the whole thing out and keep it as a reference. You can find the class links here.