Spring to life with a new Bernina

Spring Break. I have been waiting for this week all winter long. I have been carefully saving my money for my dream sewing machine. Well, last Saturday I did it. I drove to Patchwork Plus in Marcellus, NY (an amazing quilt & yarn shop by the way (a candy shop for my eyes!) Fortunately (or not), it's 40 miles away, just far enough for me to limit my trips so I don't spend every last penny I have there.
Upon much deliberation, I bought the Aurora 440 QE.
 I brought it home and immediately set upon finding out what makes this machine so special. I was intimidated at first. Was it buyer's remorse? Well, the only way to find out was to delve into it and try everything out imaginable. I designed a placemat using scrap fabrics. Something that I could use to try the bells and whistles of the machine. And start sewing I did....
First I was thinking, okay...it feels different from my last machine and then I was hooked. I have been sewing non-stop since last Saturday afternoon. I woke up in the middle of the night wanting to go sew. I stayed up until 2:00 a.m. one night to explore more features on the machine. I was saying things  to myself like, "So that is what a walking foot is supposed to work like". The BSR (Bernina Stitch Regulator) is awesome. There was a little bit of a learning curve, but I am well onto my next quilt to explore the use of this feature. 
The bobbin winder!
The light over the workspace!
The needle threader!
The stitches...it does basic embroidery stitches (letters and numbers)!
I am so pleased. It is a terribly expensive machine. It is worth it knowing that I can have it serviced easily and that technical support is only a 45 minute drive away.

Things I practiced and explored upon using my machine. Started with a small project, easily finished in a short amount of time.
  • patchwork (piecing 1 1/2" fabric strips)
  • embroidery stitch (blanket stitch) around fused fussy cut squares in corner
  • walking foot
  • BSR ~ some stippling and free motion quilting.
Now I have a nice little placemat to go under a plant. Officially my first test project on the Bernina.

Now I am on to the next project. A quilt made from 2 1/2" squares (all scraps that I dutifully cut up from leftover fabric). The squares are done and now the sewing begins. I love how it is starting to look.
It's called "Off Set Spiral". I'll keep you posted.


Midnight Garden Quilt
A Jo Morton Design featured in the the April 2009 Better Homes and Garden publicaton; American Patchwork & Quilting magazine.
Finished April 11, 2010
It is a beautiful wall hanging and will look great on any wall in my house. I just have to decide where...

This was officially my last project on my Kenmore machine. I am going sewing machine shopping. I have a Bernina in mind.

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For the love of being home. Finished projects and biscotti

Now that the endless rehearsals are over it's back to having fun on my UFO's.

A trip to Maine (6 1/2 hour trip) to see our kids is one great way to get those knitting projects done.
I managed to finish my "Basic Sweater Pattern" by Jacqueline Fee (seamless bottom up sweater) made from Noro Silk Garden yarn. It turned out very well. Interestingly enough, the Spring weather turned a balmy 80 yesterday so it may be a while till I wear it on a regular basis.

The car ride allowed me to start and finish the matching sock to one already made.
Love tying all these projects up. Makes me hungry for more, though.
This is a great sock pattern. No fuss and easy to follow. I discovered this nice yarn shop when upon a visit to Brunswick, Maine, where my children and grandchild live.
The shop is called "The Knitting Experience" and the pattern of the sock is called "Comfort Socks"

Well, for the love of being home and being able to schedule my days activities for once, I knew tea time today was going to need something to go with that tea so I tried this recipe for Biscotti sent to me from my daughter.
Don't laugh. It has Weleda Pomegranate Body Oil in it. (I know~everyone has that in their cupboard..yeah right!) The only reason I do is that my daughter gave it to me. It is fabulous after a bath. It's so pure and natural, you can eat it. Nice to know that there are products out there like that! But getting back to the recipe....
Very yummy.
Simply substitute another oil for the body oil. Click on Recipe title to get the link....