Thursday, March 8, 2012

What's in a name?

I have finally finished my son's quilt and it is exactly as I imagined it! How often does that happen? Where is it, you ask? Well, currently my little boy is sleeping under it, but I will try to get some pictures of it tomorrow. I tried today, but the rain swept in before I got the chance. I think it's the quilt I'm most proud of so far, so I will definitely tell you about it.

In the meantime, I thought I would explain a little bit about how I came up with the name of my blog. As I've mentioned before, I've been "thinking in blog" for quite some time and threw around the idea of starting my own. Besides being totally intimidated by the whole blog writing thing, I always felt that I couldn't start one without first finding the perfect name. I know that might be a little silly, I've heard of dozens of blogs that go through several name changes before they find The One, but there it is.

Then one day, I was standing at the ironing board pressing my seams for a quilt and just sort of ... drifting. And I suddenly realized that ironing was actually calming to me. Weird, right? I started thinking back to my life pre-Jack when I was working as a vet, and how stressed out I was then. And I thought "I should have ironed more back then."

You think I'm kidding. I actually thought that.

I never, ever, EVER liked to iron before I discovered quilting. Heck, I probably still don't like to iron my or my husband's clothes (I wouldn't know, I don't do it!) But there is something about getting that lovely pressed seam over and over again that just evens me out. Don't get me wrong, there are days that I put off any ironing I may need to do, but I do find myself going to the board to iron on the days that have been the most trying.

The zen of ironing. Who knew?

Having the right tools, of course, make a huge difference. I didn't really find that zen until I got a new iron (which subsequently broke). And my newest iron is amazing. I love it and highly recommend it to anyone who asks - and some who don't!

It is an oliso and it is probably my favorite quilting tool. It heats up in seconds, has a fabulous steam system and presses like a dream. It also has this cool "iTouch" system:

See that little foot there? When I'm ironing, I can just let go of the handle and these little feet automatically pop out and elevate the iron off the board and fabric just high enough to keep from scorching. Isn't that cool?

 This is also a quilting and sewing must, in my opinion. Nothing gives me sharply pressed seams faster than this. It saves me a ton of time when I'm pressing a bunch of blocks. I also love using it when I'm making binding - it really makes a nice, sharp crease. It does leave a bit of a flaky residue if you use too much, but it brushes away pretty easily and definitely washes out.

Now, I know there are people out there that would say I'm nuts thinking ironing is anything other than drudgery. But I would be willing to bet that they either have a really old or really crappy iron. It's all in the tools! Maybe you're one new iron away from finding your happy place!

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