Well, the New Year is off to a roaring start! I spent most of yesterday in the studio working on a new quilt. This one employs Dr Seuss fabrics, because what person between the ages of six months and 60 years doesn’t love Dr Seuss? I originally intended this quilt to be for me, but once I started working on it, decided that I really don’t want to keep it – it’s mostly centered around The Cat in The Hat, and my favorite Dr Seuss book was Green Eggs and Ham. So this one will be sold, and I will make a Green Eggs and Ham quilt for myself at some point in the future. I think I already have a buyer for The Cat in The Hat, but if I don’t, I will likely list it on Etsy.
I’ve been contemplating a new sewing machine lately, one that has an embroidery function and that can act as a back up machine to Ricco when he’s in the shop. I’ve looked at everything, and even considered selling Ricco to buy an all in one machine with a wide throat, but in the end, I really think I’m going to stick with what I know and keep Ricco and add this Brother machine to the mix.
You’re looking at the Brother Isodore Innov-Is 5000 from the Laura Ashley series. What I like about this machine is that it is a combination sewing/quilting/embroidery machine with a reasonable size embroidery hoop (7″ x 12″) and a large color screen. The only thing I’m really not crazy about is the smaller throat space (less than 8″) and the fact that it doesn’t come with a piecing foot. Since this is touted as a quilting machine first and foremost, you’d think it would come with a piecing foot – after all, how much could it cost Brother to include that in the box? But it does come with the circular stitching attachment – which I don’t know what I’ll use it to do, but use it I will. Also, this machine sews in multiple directions – Ricco stitches forward and backward, but not at angles. That may not sound like a big deal, and I’ve had machines in the past that had multi-directional sewing that I never used, but this last year that function would have come in handy while quilting several times.
What I’m mostly interested in, and excited about, is the embroidery function. I sold a Brother 2500D back in 2012, and I’ve been kicking myself ever since. And now that I’m going to have a baby to sew for, I think it’s very important to have the embroidery function. One of my first projects with the new machine will be a diaper bag with some embroidery. And then maybe I’ll do some onesies, and a baby quilt, and … well, the list could be endless! I’m thinking of some soft blocks for a Christmas gift in 2014 for the butterbean, too, which could be embroidered with all sorts of cute things. But I digress.
I won’t be able to buy the new machine until March, when I get my bonus, but I will likely be designing projects long before then. And honestly, for small projects I want to start/do right now, I can use the Viking #1+ I borrowed from my Mom. I need to get that machine out and use it anyway. I really like the way it sews, so Mom may not be seeing it back for a while. :-D
I know that “agonizing” over such a decision as which embroidery machine to buy is totally a first world problem, but that’s the only type of problems I have in my life, and I’m grateful for that. Every time I get bogged down in something as mundane as which sewing machine to buy or whether I should buy that bit of fabric, I remind myself how fortunate I am to have such tame problems. I never have to worry about going hungry or whether or not my children will have clothes to wear. And I’m very, very fortunate that both of my children reached adulthood without contracting childhood leukemia like my friend Heather‘s youngest daughter. But I do recognize that not everyone is as fortunate as I have been in my life, and knowing how much it meant to Gabby to have a wish granted by the Make a Wish Foundation (and keeping with the spirit of my 2014, Challenge), I have decided to take part in the Wishes Quilt Along sponsored by Kimberly Jolly at the Fat Quarter Shop. Every month, she’s asking for folks who download the patterns to donate money which will go directly to the Make a Wish Foundation. My plan is to donate a monthly amount for the quilt patterns and then make a larger donation when the quilt is finished at the end of the year. Even if you aren’t a quilter, this is a great charity, and I encourage everyone to make a contribution, no matter how small, to make these kids’ wishes come true.