I hope you all enjoyed the writings about thread, I do realize that it was a little intense. So I decided to keep it light this time and give you some fun things to ponder. I know some or most of you know that I was a bit "out of touch" these past days. I suddenly realized that not everyone has "wifi". I was at first able to get on the site and add comments but it wasn't long before I was even unable to do that, so it was a bit frustrating to say the least.
We went to Texas to visit my brother, but decided to stop in New Orleans so that I could see Bourbon Street. While that was cool, our stay turned sour when we arrived at the hotel. They are definitely not ready to have visitors again at this particular hotel. I won't get into the details but let's just say that it wasn't as pictured on the web site. We were scheduled to stay two nights but left after one so as not to take any "hitch hikers" with us. Then there was the issue of the vehicle burglary of the car next to ours. That is when we decided to chalk it up to experience and leave.
I loved walking about on Bourbon Street, the food smells, the music, the little kids who were dancing and it wasn't long before I was drawn in to a little bistro where I heard some of the best darn Jazz I have ever had the pleasure of listening to. I didn't want to leave that area it was so wonderful. I left humming the tune Summertime, I had just heard.
I had two objectives in going to Texas, one was to get our PT Cruiser Paint Detailed and the other was in hopes of being able to go to the Texas State Fairgrounds for a sewing expo. As usual, the best laid plans never seem to quite work. My oldest brother, Jerry and his wife, Cindy, also met us there. My brother (the artist) took his time and did some fancy work on the car, while it wasn't the flames we had hoped for, he really did a wonderful job. It looks awesome! I didn't make it to the Expo, but I did have a chance to chat with my Sister-In-Law, Star, ( yes that is really her name) who sews leather purses and makes dog collars.
Don't you just love the paint job?
Hard Top Convertible Top
You can see by the photos that she does spectacular work. She works on a Pfaff 180 commercial machine. Star went commercial because of the nature of sewing on leather. She has several places that she obtains her leather from, and even has some whole hides that while very beautiful, are very pricey. It really took me back to the days at the trim plant when I was sewing leather car seats. It also made me pine for the days of having a commercial machine to work on period. There have been many times over the years I have wanted one again. Keep in mind as you look at the photos of the details of the little car and how nice they look, that she does not have an embroidery machine. Each medallion takes her one hour or more to stitch, depending on how much detail there is to them. While she did divulge a few secrets to me about the construction, I had to promise my first born that I wouldn't tell. I can say that they are extremely well constructed, and would last a number of years.
We had a lot to talk about, she picked my brain for things like stabilizers, embroidery machines, needles and many other aspects of the details. I showed her the Ann The Gran Stabilizers and explained to her that if she used them it would save her some time. She had been using some iron-ons instead of the adhesive backed. Each purse is hand cut and stitched, it even has lining in it. Some have pockets for things like cell phones and change. The conch's are the same as what she uses to make her dog collars. The purses came about when they joined a PT Cruiser Club called, Big D Cruiser Club. Each one takes her two and one half days from start to finish. She got very busy with them, but unfortunately had to set things aside when her Mother became very ill.
Both my brother Richard and Star are into Greyhound Rescue. The collars she makes stemmed from them belonging to the rescue group and having several Greyhounds. They even have one named Mac, that they have trained to walk around with a small container for donations to the greyhound rescue group. I had the opportunity to watch as she carefully selected the beads, conch's, and nylon cords, webbing and "o" rings for this particular order. She then began constructing the collar. Let me just say that if one ever does break, it certainly won't be from poor construction.
Mac wearing one of the collars.
They have two greyhounds, both rescued from the abuse of the track. Their names are Mac, pictured above, and Jenny. They are both wonderful dogs and I don't know how anyone could look into their eyes and not fall in love with them, or abuse them either for that matter. Jenny and I formed an attachment immediately. Generally not a lap dog, it didn't take her long before she was up on my lap giving me "hugs". She was one of the significantly abused dogs and had tell tale signs of it. You could see on her haunches where she had fallen off the back of a truck and had been dragged. Luckily, while her injuries were significant, they were able to save her life. I had made the decision then that when the cats are gone, I would defiantly adopt a greyhound. They are so quiet, I didn't even know they were in the house. They are smart as well as loving.
This is why Star began making collars. Each one is made for each dog. These dogs all have different sized necks, so she takes the measurements on her website then makes the collars according to the beads, conch's, and neck size. Royal Image Collars are handcrafted with 250 pound (per strand, 6 strands per collar) tested nylon cord, nylon webbing, welded metal ‘D' and ‘O' rings, and acrylic and metallic beads. They are sturdy enough to hold even the largest of dogs. Martingale style collars used on Greyhounds were essential for their protection and the collar of choice. When fitted properly, these collars keep the Greyhound’s narrow skulls from slipping out of them in panic. Rescued Racing Greyhounds of today, should they get loose, are not familiar with the dangers of the world around them because they have been raised in seclusion. Because of their fright in new and strange surroundings they avoid coming easily to strangers to be caught. For more information on her purses and collars, or even if you want to chat with her about rescuing greyhounds, contact me and I'll be happy to send you her details.
So I didn't get to the expo, but I did have fun with the trip, and my family. I did manage to sneak in buying some fabric as well.( imagine that). My two brother's are a lot of fun to be around, and as usual I left there with my sides aching from the laughter. No matter how long we are separated, we still always manage to have fun.
Until next time>>>>> Remember to K.I.S.S someone you love today.
Judy (Travelin' down the road)
Photos Courtesy of: Tom alcumbrack, Judy Alcumbrack, Star Smelker, Royal Image. com
All photos used are copywritten, and I obtained permission from the authors.
Suzy's tip of the week >>> Whenever you are traveling, always take a list of things you would like to look at or buy for your sewing needs. Different states and areas have different types and styles of fabrics, threads and embellishments. You never know, you just may find that treasured item to make a gift a bit more wonderful and an heirloom piece to pass along to other members of the family.