Archive for the ‘New Mexico Sights, Sounds, etc.’ Category

And Sew On…Reigniting Passion

Sunday, December 16th, 2018

Life is funny.

You can love something so much all your life and yet one day you wake up and find yourself in a rut. Tired. Burned out. It’s not that you–and by you, I mean me–hate what you’re doing. You still love it way down deep inside, it’s just not quite the same anymore. What used to hold so much excitement now feels lackluster and dull.

Shhhh….I’m going to tell you a secret. This happened to me with sewing and quilting. YIKES!!!!

Don’t get me wrong. I still love it.  I’m not leaving. I plan to be around for a long, long time.  But the same old stuff just wasn’t lighting me up like before.  I felt like something was missing. I needed something….more.

But…what?  I reflected a long, long time. I resisted an even longer time.  And then…I surrendered. Meet my new best friend, Buelah.

  • B – is for Brave, together we will bravely explore new territory.
  • U – is for (virtually) unbreakable…quite literally, she is an industrial machine.
  • E – is for exquisite stitches sewn, strong and straight.
  • L – is for love, my love for creating beautiful new items out of old stuff that would otherwise go into the trash.
  • A – is for able, because together we are.
  • H – is for happiness and the joy that has been returned!

Buelah is a Juki DU-1181N, single-needle, straight stitch, top and bottom feed industrial sewing machine. She is truly a WORK HORSE! She comes with a high capacity M bobbin, has her own Servo motor, and can sew up to 2,000 stitches a minute (not that we ever get close to that!). She has a max stitch length of 9mm and even has her own sexy knee lifter that can lift her presser foot up to 15mm.

Right about now you’re probably asking what on earth possessed me to purchase this machine. The short answer to that is: Bike Tubes.

As you may–or may not–know, I love recycling UP-cycling old bike tubes (and other things) into useful items. Yes, it’s true. I was able to sew bike tube on my domestic machine…but not without a lot of fiddling, prepping and babying because that machine was NOT made to sew rubber. Buelah? Well…she sews rubber like butter, baby. The truth is that–before I made the decision to get Buelah–I knew I was killing my domestic machine. That made me really sad. So I realized what I was doing was really limiting myself not doing the sewing/work that I crave the most because of course I couldn’t bear to kill my domestic sewing machine. I love her.

What have I created so far?  These are just a couple items. Several more prototypes are in the works.

UP-cycled Bike Tube and UP-cycled Bike Map Cell-Phone Wallet/Pouch gift I made for a dear cycling friend from the southern part of New Mexico
Inside of the UP-cycled Bike Tube/Bike Map Cell-Phone Wallet Pouch.
The patch pocket is an original block print by Tammy Schurr, my very dear friend and Adventure Cycling Event Director/Tour Leader.
Minimalist UP-cycled Bike Tube Zip Pouch
Minimalist Zip Pouch
Lined with UP-cycled DenimJeans

Sew what’s the point of all this?  Here are 3 points I can share right now: 

  • Exploration of my passion to recycle/UP-cycle old materials into something new, useful and beautiful through sewing.
  • Diversification of business for SewThankful. I will be sewing and selling a limited number of finished UP-cycled bike related items. Many bike friends and associates have asked me to sew and SELL my creations. This will be a new adventure and I am excited to see where it takes me.
  • Vehicle for development of new Sew TracyLee Designs patterns. The patterns will be adjusted and written for sewing quilting cottons and traditional fabrics.

What do you think?  I’m interested in your constructive thoughts and comments.  Please feel free to share below but note that in order to prevent spambots and junk I have to moderate each comment so it may take a little while for yours to post.

SewThankful Crew Rail Runner Field Trip to Santa Fe

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

Jeff and I recently took the boys up to Santa Fe on the Rail Runner Express Train.  It was a wonderful afternoon and a delightful experience with the boys.  I’ve included some pictures below. If you click the image, it should open to a larger image in your internet browser window.

We thoroughly enjoyed riding on the upper level of the train, watching the New Mexico landscape whiz by.
Jared, age 13, contemplates the train ride and the day about to unfold…

 

Upon arriving at the Santa Fe Depot, we got off the train and walked to the Plaza.
Santa Fe – The Plaza
We walked through some shops and galleries, then decided to take a quick tour of the New Mexico History Museum where they allowed photography, but no flash.
Museum Courtyard Fountain
Museum Courtyard – Corner View
Here are just a few of the really spectacular pieces we enjoyed:

Junk Mail Fan Dress (Wrap Skirt) by Nancy Judd

This piece was made in 2000 from catalogs, solicitations and newspaper ads sewn on to a skirt made from canvas scraps.

Eco Flamenco Dress by Nancy Judd was made in 2011.

Cereal boxes painted with recycled paint became cascades of ruffles that contain over 5,000 eco-pledges–commitments of actions that people will take to help the environment. Ruffles cover a dress made from parachute scraps.

On the left – Escavada Black-on-White Jar, maker unknown. Circa 925- 1125 CE
On the right: Tularosa Black-on-white Jar, Circa 1100-1200 CE.

Both jars are clay and pigment.
Tile Chairs — Jared & Jacob enjoy a little break. Notice the kitty on the side of Jacob’s chair.

I hope you enjoyed sharing part of our excursion.

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 2011

Sunday, October 16th, 2011

Here are some more of the pics I snapped while volunteering at the Bike Valet at Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.  Click images to view larger pic.

 

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 2011

Sunday, October 2nd, 2011

My dear husband, Jeff, recently decided to take up road bicycling with me so we could experience some wonderful adventures together.  I have done a fair amount of bicycle riding, but I’ve never seen the balloons by bike.  So…

This morning we took  a nice 14 mile ride and here are a few pics:

Hot Air Balloon Deflating 

Balloons Galore

Jeff...and hot air balloons in the background

Jeff on his bike

It’s really amazing to see so many balloons in the air all at once. It still excites me after more than 15 years of seeing it and being around them.  I have to say that seeing them by bike was even more incredible than I thought it would be. It’s hard to explain the glorious, peaceful, graceful beauty…just makes me happy to be alive and celebrate life.

My plan is to get more close ups of the balloons this week.  Let’s all pray for continued good weather so the balloons can launch, everybody can stay safe and I can hopefully get some great pics to share.

New Mexico Sunrise and Walking Stick Bug Surprise

Sunday, August 14th, 2011

Beautiful blessings in plain sight.  We all have *those* days where everything feels off or seems to go wrong.  But, have you ever have had days when everything seemed to be a wonderful, beautiful surprise?  Sometimes all we need to do is slow down, breathe and take a look around. 🙂

I was exceedingly blessed to witness a most spectacular sunrise last Thursday morning.  AND I happened to have my camera with me so I was able to snap a few pics to share.  Click the images to open larger images. Use your browser back button to return to this page.

New Mexico Sunrise

New Mexico Sunrise #3

New Mexico sunrise #3

Later this very same day, I found this little treasure:

Phasmida - Walking Stick Bug underside

Looking through a window at the underside of a Phasmida (Walking Stick Bug).  It’s about 5-6 inches long not including the super long antennae.

Phasmida - Walking Stick Bug

On the outside of the window (it’s highly reflective!). Gorgeous, subtle colors.  Such a treat to see this amazing creature.

Now…how about you tell me about your blessings in plain sight?  😀