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Time to Get Busy

 Time to get busy.  I want this tree trunk coffee table in my living room before my company comes for New Year’s!
One side of the slab was 6 3/4 of an inch and the other was 7 1/2 inches so I had some evening up to do.  I went to the good old ReStore and bought some 1/4 inch thick flooring pieces.  Putting the pieces on three of the four corners seemed to level it well enough. 
This is level enough for me. 
 So I gathered my tools and went to work.  First I carpenter glued the flooring pieces to the trunk. 
I used the wheels as weights for the 30 minutes the glue needed to set.  That way I could gawk at what was to come.
(A quickish digression: My husband actually helped a ton with this project.  He cut the wood flooring for me and got the screws and did all the heavy lifting.  It made sense that he should come along to the Woodcraft Store – the guy there had been really helpful before – to help pick out the wheels and just so we could hang out together.  We like hanging out together.
But the guy at Woodcraft only talked to my husband when we were in there trying to figure out which screws to use and what to look out for and whatever other details an experienced woodworker could help with.  I felt practically invisible.  My husband didn’t really notice as this has never happened to us before.  It was exceedingly frustrating and added so much tension to our day.  I have a little sour taste left over still.)  
Back to business.  The evil dude at the wood store recommended these fancy 4 inch screws.  We also had to buy (Not from the wood store, mind you, they don’t sell them there) a special drill bit because we needed more torque to get them into the hard wood.
 First pilot hole drilled!  There’s no going back now!  Every step felt that way a little. 
Then I hit a snag.  The drill couldn’t handle the length of the screws.  It actually started smoking before I gave up.  I had drilled the pilot holes as deep as I could go and the screws were still sticking out at least an inch and a half. 
So we switched to 2 1/2 inch screws and yet another fancy drill bit.  Problem solved.  It added a day to the project but that kind of stuff is bound to come up. And when you procrastinate as well as I do, a little delay is no big deal.
The only thing left do was lug that beast up a flight of stairs!  We used a dolly and didn’t swear at all.
 Now for the gratuitous finished project shots.

This is my living room.  Just to brag a bit:  That’s my jeans couch with a scarf pillow and two stuffed woollies and a linen quilt, all of which I made. To the right you can see a bit of the chair I reupholstered.  And my antenna is perched on an antique toolbox I cleaned up.  A pretty handmade home for my patchwork life. 
I’ve been waiting to do exactly this for months!  My company is due in an hour…Happy New Year!
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Trying to Spread a Little Holiday Shopping Cheer

Hobby Lobby
Old Navy
Blockbuster Video
All affixed with scotch tape, no stores were harmed.
Have a great holiday! 
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Kind of Like Doodling

I’ve been wondering about how I was going to quilt together those squares for my denim/corduroy quilt.
These are the strips hanging over a rail.
 There’s really no way to do it that isn’t a bit weird because some of the squares are embroidered already but the rest of the quilt isn’t.  What will that do to the over all look of the stitching?  I don’t know.
  So I started thinking about it while quilting and embroidering at the same time.  Kind of like doodling using a needle and thread.
This is was an old linen shirt.  It’s really fun to stitch on.  It’s portable and colorful.  I do feel a little odd when people ask me what it is and I don’t have an answer for them.
I sort of think of it as a test square but the other quilt is already at a point where this testing is not useful so that’s not really the right term.
I love the look of running stitch.  I don’t know why.  It’s primitive and versatile.  In this it’s really colorful but look at what this woman does with her’s (She’s really incredible).  Because I’m just bopping along with it, it’s never perfectly straight and I love that.
I’m sure it could be perfectly straight but that’s just not something I’m interested in doing or looking at.  I unconsciously follow the other stitched lines that are already there so it feels very intuitive.  I also love how it makes that cloth ripple like water.  I’m pretty sure that’s something I’m supposed to try to avoid but again, this is more interesting to me.
So, it’s a doodle/test/probable short table runner/thingy.  
Yeah, that’ll work.
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I’m Not Done Monkeying Around

So, Matt flipped this over to the non oiled side for me.  It’s pretty light in color but after one coat of oil:
Oh yeah, it’s darker but so much more wood grain detail shows up.  I measured the thickness and it’s about 7.5 inches on one side and just under 7 inches on the other side.  Matt thinks that it will just be uneven on the top and we don’t have to worry about it being tippy because it’s so heavy.  I really hope he’s right. 

On to sewing stuff.  Here’s the progress I made on my quilt after I climbed down off of the dining room table (Notice, the quilt’s on the floor now).  I sewed the denim squares into the long strips of corduroy.  I really had an image of lots of squares sewn together when the design of this quilt popped into my head though (Not just the place where the fabric is different) so I decided to sew fake seams into the strips.  Here’s how I did it:
That’s right.  It’s another tutorial for a thing I’ve only done once.  What the hell, why not?  OK, here’s the wrong side of the corduroy fabric.
I folded the end over so that the right sides were together.  I only folded over about 5 or 6 inches of it.
Then I just sewed along the edge.
Halfway down*
Here is it on the right side and it totally looks like two squares sewn together.  Hardly worth a tutorial because it’s so simple.  I kept on going at uneven intervals to make it look patchier.  I did make a few real seams to add interest.  Those are the spots where I changed the direction of some of the squares because I like the way the corduroy looks going in different directionsI even cut a denim strip in half to try that interrupted path thing I mentioned in the last post and …meh…not that exciting.  Worth a try.
There it is.  I have more strips to do but ran out of steam. 
Close up.  I’m not done monkeying around with the strips.  I might shorten some and changes some widths and directions.  For me, that’s part of the fun of patchwork.
*This is where I hit a snag. What had I done?  Threaded the needle wrong?  I guess so.  It looks like only half of the thread went through the needle so one half got wound around the other half and made a mess.  Of course this had to happen while I was trying to get some ‘how to’ pictures.  Sheesh