Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Fingers Do The Walking

Seems that my fingers take a bit of a beating as I quilt. I sliced my left index finger tip when the rotary blade jumped the plastic ruler, sliding into the flesh and nail, sending me to ER to stop the bleeding.

When I first started doing the hand quilting, I bought a leather thimble and still use one. Its a bit bulky and as that blue elastic wears, it catches threads. When you take your life in your own hands, there is no one to blaim. You either figure out a better way to do things or you cope with what you've got at hand or, on your hand.

The next thing I learned to use were these sticky things, called 'self-adhesive dots' that I put on the finger that is under the work and pushes the needle up again. The stitches are supposed to roll with the needle going down, up, down and up again if you do two stitches at a time. The quilt I am working on has a flannel backing so I can only get two stitches done on it at a time. With other quilts that have a cotton back, I might be able to do three stitches.

I tried this leather thimble with the reinforcement where the needle gets pushed through, but it slid and bulked and simply didn't work for me. I guess its all a matter of trial and error or trial and success. Its amazing how many thimbles are out there for sale, so people get an idea for what works for them and market it for others.

This last year, my Secret Santa included a couple of smaller, rubber thimbles that are flat on one side and curved on the other. I put one on my wounded index finger more to protect it while it continues to heal and tucked the other one into that first leather one above so the needle didn't go through my finger.

I don't wear any figure protection when I embroider and that might be because its not as dangerous to the fingers as the hand quilting is. I don't wear anything when I attach the binding.

The graduation quilt is coming along. I spend at least 2 hours on it each day. There are 4 blocks and the outside border on it that haven't got any hand quilting done on them yet, and I am working on the 5th block. Yes, it is still February, so technically, I have three months to finish it.

I listened to (occasionally looking up at) a You Tube Documentary on Ike & Tina Turner this morning as I worked. It took me back a lot of decades. They were not on TV at the time. I suppose a little too racy for the times. They were on the news. What surprised me is how much Tina's wardrobe, hair (though it was a wig) and dance movements influenced me. What I did see is that her back-ground singers did most of the movements through the songs. Her hair was longer, her costume 'more' so she was front and center. 

I always thought she took control of her life without 
blaming anyone, left Ike when their lifestyle turned sour, and gets out there and at age 76, still entertains. I haven't seen her, but imagine that she has good costumes, good wigs and lets her back-ground singers show her in her best light. 

Anyway, my point is, that we all have to take care of our bodies, our minds, emotions and spirits. No one else really does that for us, not even when we are wounded or taking our last breaths.