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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My Hubby's Hobby

Many people don't know his "real" name... that's because he's often referred to as "that radio guy"! LOL! He had always enjoyed radio and tv as a child. But, it wasn't until we moved into our home in 1997, that he actually had the space to refinish, repair and tinker.

One of the radio shows we attend twice a year is in Kutztown, PA. The main building is Renninger's, where they have a farmer's market section and a section where folks have booths where they sell their goods. Some stuff is antiques and some of it is just stuff they hope someone will buy and repurpose... you get the idea! ;-) 

Anyways, about 2-3 years ago, "that radio guy" found this 1937 Philco console at one of those booths... the Lady at the booth said... 20 bucks takes it!... And so, he did!

After testing and repairing the chassis... sanding and refinishing the cabinet... cleaning up the dials and knobs... and some fine tuning... I'd say it looks fantastic! All dressed up to be a family heirloom!

This is a picture of the top of the cabinet. How can a person not find beauty in and appreciate the attention to detail that was put into these radios when they were "made"? 
This is a closer picture of the front to show the dial and the original knobs. 
And here is the chassis... the parts that make it sing! Yes, those are genuine vacuum tubes!

There are some folks out there that enjoy the sheer beauty of these radios, and place them about their homes as decorations and pieces of fine furniture. Then, there are the folks that also enjoy the unmistakable warmth in the tone of hearing it actually play their favorite radio station! Most antique radios can be restored to their original beauty and function. An important note, however... should you buy one... PLEASE have someone test the electronics BEFORE plugging it in. Age has taken it's toll on some of the electricals in some of these pieces, and plugging them in (without testing) could cause more damage to the chassis, or may even cause a fire. Local radio groups exist in every state and would be happy to help you get your radio back to the way it was "back in the day". 

Thanks for stopping by! 

Monday, April 26, 2010

I'm Quilting!!!

Last weekend, our online group, An American Primitive Gathering (USAPRIM on eBay) hosted a Mini Quilt Retreat. It was for all that knew how to quilt, to enjoy a couple of days of quilting... and for those that never quilted before, encouragement to finally take the plunge! So, after a couple of years of collecting some fabrics and tools (most of which have been donated by friends).... I finally cut my squares and began to stitch! My original intention was to hand piece... but then decided I wanted to have something to look at by the end of two days... so I brought out my machine and pieced the squares together. Some points match better than others... but it is my "first" go at it, so I let well enough alone. Here's a peak of what it looks like in the hoop...

After the piecing was complete, I basted it together with a one piece back and some warm and natural batting. I've since started hand quilting. I wanted a simple motif that would accent the prints in the fabrics. So, I chose a leaf shape. Hopefully you can see some of the quilting in the pic (I have yet to figure out how to make the pics "click to enlarge").

I'm having some difficulty with marking the shape before stitching. After reading the directions on some of these marking pens, I was afraid most of them would not wash out and the quilt would look icky when done. Managed to narrow my choices down to a taylor's chalk pencil and a quilter's soap stone pencil. So far, I'm finding it very difficult to see the soap stone whether it's a dark fabric or not. Seems kinda hard. Haven't tried chalk yet... what do you use to mark your quilting templates?

After getting this far with this 21" square quilt... I can say that I really do enjoy the piecing part of making quilts... I'm just undecided about the quilting part... maybe next time I will try machine quilting... though I've never used that darning attachment... hold onto your socks folks... this could get ugly... LOL! ;-)

Have a great day!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The What's, Who's and How's

I had a day all to myself today! Whoo-hoo! Managed to finish the three projects from my last post... what a wonderful feeling it is to pronounce a project "finished"... and then tuck them into places about the home for display!

The front views...

The back views...

The details...

On the left is a cross stitch pattern by Primitive Betty's called "Spring's Tweets". I stitched this 2 strands over one thread on prairie cloth using the pattern's recommended DMC threads. I then took a piece of complimentary fabric from my cotton stash for the back, stuffed it lightly with cotton fill and whip stitched them together using two strands of the brown threads that are in the design itself. Finished size is approximately 4" x 5".

In the center is another Primitive Betty's cross stitch design! This one is called "Tea Thyme In The Garden". I stitched this 2 strands over 2 threads on prairie cloth using the pattern's recommended DMC threads. I then took a piece of complimentary homespun from my stash and stuffed it lightly with cotton fill. Finished size is approximately 8" square.

And lastly, on the right is a needle punch make-do pattern by Brenda Gervais of Country Stitches called "Home Tweet Home". This pattern arrived already drawn onto the weaver's cloth, so I just started punching with the recommended 3-strand Valdani's! I then backed it with osnaburg and stuffed lightly with cotton. The original pattern called for an antique oil can for the base... but I did not have one of these... so I "made-do" with a silk thread spool I had purchased at a flea market a couple of months back. I then stitched my initials and date into a wool heart and attached it to the back of the bird. The final touch is a weathered tie of osnaburg. It stands about 8" high. Actually... looking at the pic, I can see I forgot this little birdie's button eye! LOL! I'll stitch that on later... maybe... ;-)

So that is it in a nutshell! I'm getting ready to have a nice bowl of hot chicken soup for dinner. It's been cloudy, windy and cool all day... 'tis the ever changing weather of Spring... 

After dinner, I hope to get stitching on a lap-sized quilt I have in mind. Simple squares... keeping it "low stress" for my first official quilt!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Spring Stitchin'

Not too much happening here... just been soaking up the warmer temps and sunshine! I've been spending some time on the back patio enjoying some needle punch and cross stitch. Every once in awhile I take a break to stare down my garden... seems a bit bland... trying to get some sort of a design plan going and then drive to the local greenhouse... So, for now, here is a pic of what I've been working on...

Just did the stitching and punching for now... will share all the who, what and hows when I post the "official finish". That is, when it's finished into an ornie, make-do or pillow...

Until then... Happy Spring!!!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Happy Easter!!!

You see this picture?
It's me in my bathing suit after I finish what's in my Easter Basket... LOL!

Enjoy a blessed day filled with friends, family and celebration!

Happy Easter!
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