Moving Things Around

Bird Brain, Murrieta Stars – Flannel, sewing room

Well I wasn’t satisfied with the sewing machine on the smaller table – the problem was moving from one spot to another to cut, press and sew.  My legs kept hitting the table legs – I wasn’t moving smoothly if you know what I mean from one spot to the next.

This is the set up I thought I wanted on Saturday.  You see where the legs of the table are and the little storage box shelves underneath – you can’t move smoothly to the bigger work space.


So Saturday night I started to move things –  I’m going to try it this way for a little bit and see what works.  I think this will work out much better.  The small laptop doesn’t take up much space for a desk area so it really makes sense for it to be on the smaller table and the sewing machine and cutting station on the larger one.  If I need more room for one reason or another and do not need the sewing machine – like getting the accuquilt out for cutting I can move the sewing machine to the small table – raise up the height on the big table and cut away.


And yes my table top does get messy – I managed to get one bird done only!  I decided that this free style keeps getting me confused and I’m going to try this pattern as a paper piece instead and made myself a copy by measuring pieces and make a pattern – we will see how that goes.


It will be done in sections – I’ll let you know how it goes.


When I was searching for all my sewing equipment to go back into the sewing room I found a tiny iron that I had put aside for some reason – well I remember now why it was set aside – I don’t like it – it doesn’t glide or slide across fabric – it has to be picked up and moved constantly – I don’t like that I like an iron to slide across fabric.  I’m making myself a ironing pad to put over this little shelf/boxes and I will bring my second iron in here to use and the little iron – well it either gets tossed or put back in the closet .  It is called “Steam Fast Travel Iron”  I will only be pressing small bits in here for paper piecing or little seams – the major part of my  pressing will continue to be done in the kitchen making me get up and move and not just sit for hours.


So Bird Brain had all of one more block added to the wall yesterday – maybe I will have better luck with my next sewing machine session – I will make several more pattern blocks as I want one facing the opposite direction and one bird on the wall there I didn’t cut a piece out of it lower breast and it is squared off – I thought I better make some more like that so it won’t be all by itself.


For Slow Sunday Stitching to be restful and relaxing I got more hand quilting done on Murrieta Stars.  This much now done – I need to mark the final section on the right hand side of the next photo and quilt that and it will be ready to roll down for the second time.



Yesterday was pretty nice outside – the last of our warm days again before a cold front that came through the state last night – it got up to 78 degrees.  I got a couple of the raised garden beds dug up and the soil turned over, the trellis the morning glories were on got taken down as I do not plan on planting them next year and they can crawl around on the ground if they come back from seeding themselves.  One more garden bed to take care of.  Some Peony’s were planted and some bulbs in one of the beds.  I meant it when I said I give up on veggies in this small space – next year flowers, herbs and tomatoes.  Too much work to get such little reward – it takes a much bigger space then I have in these beds for green beans, peas and whatever else.  The amount I have been getting is not worth the space taken.  Especially when the deer keep attacking!!

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38 comments… add one
  • Teri Dingler Nov 6, 2017

    Let me know how the bird paper piecing goes-I have only made one as I gave up on them and moved on to quilting!Ha! I do love them, though.

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      they don’t have to be paper pieced but I thought seeing as the free style wasn’t working really well for me I would give it a try.

  • Jean Etheridge Nov 6, 2017

    I noticed your picture stand with the mini design board and block. What a great idea! I might have to try this. I often want to have one complete block to look at while I work on the rest. Thank you for sharing your room pictures.

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      that is what I use it for – it helps me to keep glancing at a finished block so I place things right in the block I am sewing – in this case it didn’t help much and I kept messing up – that is why I will try the paper next time!

  • Mary Nov 6, 2017

    I think our sewing spaces are always a work in process. I hope your new arrangement works out better for you!
    Mary recently posted…A Little AppliqueMy Profile

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      I hope so too – I’m still not moving smoothly on the area rug but with no rug my chair goes flying all around the room on this laminate flooring

  • Diann Bottrell Nov 6, 2017

    Glad you found a new way to arrange things that you like better! I love those bird blocks – I’ve been wanting to try them, too. I never thought about paper piecing working for them, but it looks like you came up with a pattern that could work.

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      I’m going to give it a try today and see how it will work – I kept not placing things right on the block on Sunday and had to rip apart a couple times

  • DonnaleeQ Nov 6, 2017

    Love you birds. Do you have a pattern for them.
    DonnaleeQ recently posted…EEEEKKKKK NOT SO HAPPY ABOUT THISMy Profile

  • Andree G Faubert Nov 6, 2017

    Hi Karen, those are really cute birds. I think using paper piecing will probably work out great. It’s great when our work space lets us work well. Good luck!
    Andree G Faubert recently posted…More learning and updatesMy Profile

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      thanks for dropping by Andree – I haven’t done a lot of paper piecing but enough to know how to do it 🙂

  • gayle Nov 6, 2017

    I love that design-board-on-an-easel idea, too! I’ll have to try something like that. (The closest I can get at the moment is wonder-clipping a block to a slat in the miniblind behind my sewing desk!)
    Good luck with the birds!

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      I think I found the little easel at Hobby Lobby in the picture frame area maybe? somewhere in that area – I use a 12.5 inch sandpaper board that I got with a piece of flannel and a 12.5 inch ruler years ago as a set – I’ve had to replace the flannel over the years – if you put the ruler over everything it keeps things from flying if you are near a fan or window

  • Roseanne Nov 6, 2017

    Hi Karen,
    Thank for giving the details about the iron! I am having iron fits myself right now, and I do not care for one that doesn’t glide across fabrics. I have a $200 that doesn’t do that well, thank you very much. I have my ironing board set up at the foot of my bed for the same reason – getting up and stretching to iron is a good thing. I moved it there in the summer – too hot in my sewing room – but now it is just going to stay there. ~smile~ Roseanne
    Roseanne recently posted…Weekly To-Do #30 ListingMy Profile

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      yes I hate that little iron and I’m starting a search on line for a new small iron to keep in the sewing room and to bring in the motorhome when we travel. I’ll let you all know if I find something good.

  • Dottie bishaw Nov 6, 2017

    I have that little iron like yours, and I only used it once. I didn’t like it either and went back to my Olio iron. I also have a 15 inch square ruler that I covered with flannel and use to display my block on when I’m at my sewing machine. It really keeps the pieces in place without flying all over, doesn’t it? I like the way you arranged your sewing room, it looks so efficient. Your bird blocks are just too cute! There’s always so much to do in the fall before the cold gets here. My bulbs are chilling for 6 weeks in my fridge until I plant them in December, otherwise they might not boom too good because we don’t get cold enough during winter.

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      my tulip bulbs are chilling in the refrigerator too before I plant them in December – so far that is the only one I plant that I have to chill first – we in zone 7 so too warm not to chill them. I hate the little iron, I’m surprised I kept it and didn’t throw it away – everyone is saying they don’t like it either!

  • Elana goldberg Nov 6, 2017

    I have loved making those birds and putting them everywhere. There’s a free paper piece pattern online, maybe craftsy, I can’t remember. I love making a plain scrappy small quilt and throwing in a bird or two for fun. Your birds look so adorable and I am sure your quilt will be fabulous!

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      I hadn’t seen the free pattern but there are so many bird patterns out there right now I’m not surprised to hear that. I hope my “pattern” works

  • Kate Nov 6, 2017

    There are a couple of free bird patterns, one is on bloc lotto which is pieced and the other is McCalls Quilting which is paper piecing, both very similar. I liked the easel too and it reminded me of the book stand in the kitchen for when I’m cooking that I rarely use, it looks like it will get a new home.

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      yes the easel comes in handy – I don’t know that I would use it much in the kitchen but I have used it on and off in the sewing room for years now. I want to make sure all these blocks are close to the same size so I won’t look for the freebies right now but good to know for any future projects.

  • Doreen Johnson Nov 6, 2017

    Your Bird Brain blocks are fabulous, so cheerful and fun.
    I hope the Paper piecing works out for you.
    I really love seeing your hand quilting progress. You quilt beautifully!

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      thanks Doreen – I do like these bird blocks but they take a bit of time!

  • Kathi Nov 6, 2017

    I love how you rearranged your room.. I have a similar setup with my machine.. I used a piece of thick plywood and covered with a towel then some pretty fabric so my vintage iron glides across it but has something under to give a bit of cushion for better seams.. works well for me anyway and this would work on top ofyour drawers I think… anyway you may like the smaller iron and cutting board you have there in the pic.
    I love the birds and your progress on your quilting too! Thanks for sharing and I love how you are getting settled into your space 🙂 Kathi
    Kathi recently posted…Happy Surprises!My Profile

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      I want to find a smaller iron and toss this one tiny one – it just doesn’t glide – I don’t want a full size though as the space on top of that little cabinet is only about 13 inches.

  • Bonnie in Va Nov 6, 2017

    It’s sometimes hard to get your sewing space exactly how you want it. But keep trying if this setup doesn’t work well for you. BTW – I like your fat little bird. I think you should keep him in the flock.
    Bonnie in Va recently posted…Monday Meanderings 11 – 6 – 2017My Profile

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      yes I think I will keep him in the flock – all birds are not created equal right!

  • Elana Goldberg Nov 6, 2017

    I was correct that there is a bird paper pieced pattern on It’s the
    free bird 6 inch template on However, the free one that I’ve used before is from McCalls and, in my opinion, is much easier to use. For that one check out this link.
    Elana Goldberg recently posted…Scrap Busting & Rainbow BangsMy Profile

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      I just checked out the link to McCalls and except for the embroidery eye it is exactly the same as the one someone is selling on etsy – I wonder who had the pattern first! there are so many just about exactly the same. I will print out a copy of this one and see how close it is to the size I am using. – thanks – now if I could remember how to paper piece better LOL – been a long time – I already tossed out several failures at starting!! I need to look in one of my many books or google and not waste more time

  • Elana Goldberg Nov 6, 2017

    Karen, I think Paper piecing is like riding a bike and you will pick it up quickly. I have made the McCalls bird and it’s really easy. I agree that they all start to look the same. Best of luck and whichever bird you choose, have fun!

    • Karen Nov 6, 2017

      Yes I really need to refresh my memory on paper piecing and plan on looking this evening for a refresher – I know I have books on it and will look it up

  • Ana Mo Shoshin Nov 7, 2017

    Your hand work is gorgeous!

    • Karen Nov 7, 2017

      thanks Ana Mo – I’m going to check out your blog, I have not seen it before – I am getting a lot of new people stop by lately

  • Emily Nov 8, 2017

    Hope you find a workable solution for your sewing area. It looks nice and I love the birds. Funny that you would turn to paper piecing. I’m the opposite. I turn paper piecing into improv. Different strokes for different folks.
    Emily recently posted…Going on a Treasure HuntMy Profile

    • Karen Nov 8, 2017

      I did – showed on a couple post later – yes we all have different ways of handling the sewing !

  • Kate Nov 9, 2017

    Love your birdies! Getting the sewing room set up right is definitely a challenge. Hope the new set up works for you.

    • Karen Nov 9, 2017

      yes Kate I got the tables set up how I want them now – I still haven’t decided on what I want on the wall though – more shelves or leave it open and maybe add a wall hanging or two at some point

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