Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Ready to TOGA

It's probably not what you think.

I'm getting ready to go to Monroe NC for the annual NC TOGA, which stands for Treadle On Gathering and Academy.  I have never attended a TOGA before, but from what I read it is a wild and wooly gathering of treadle and hand crank sewing machine enthusiasts.  And any gathering that includes a field trip to Mary Jo's Cloth Store is obviously meant for me.

This seems like the perfect opportunity to "pay it forward" on the gift that will arrive soon from Wilma at Wilma's World.  The idea is to give a small craft gift to three people, then instead of paying you back, they pay it forward by giving gifts to three more people.  According to Wilma (if I've got this right) the recipients have to commit to paying it forward, but neither one of us cared much for this.  Gifts should not be given with strings attached!  So I will be bestowing three swan pincushions on three recipients at the TOGA and they will not have to promise to do a darn thing. 

Thrift shops are just full of these swans and I adore them but I have no idea why someone would buy them in the first place.  What are you supposed to do with them?  I have NO idea.  So I rolled up some funky handspun yarn (not the best I have ever seen) and wrapped some OLD but new cotton batting (old stock still in the package) and used my hand-dyed fabric to turn them into pincushions.  The idea is that the lanolin in the wool will help keep the pins from rusting.  Pretty cute IIDSSM.

I'll be taking some classes and I got my gear together.  I made an ironing board/cutting mat out of a wood scrap, a piece cut from an old cutting mat, a scrap of pre-quilted fabric, spray adhesive and staples.

The rest of the old cutting mat now lives in a turntable, and very handy it is indeed.  I used this to cut the blocks for the block exchange that will take place at the TOGA.

The exchange blocks. Decided to stick with the quick and easy rail fence block.


  1. Where did you get the great 'bird' fabric in the 2nd TOBE block? I love it. It's sew cute! I got a china swan when I registered for our wedding china. It's still around here somewhere. Yours are MUCH cuter than mine is. I have an old egg cup I purchased to turn into a pin cushion. Guess I aughta get it done. My first TOGA is in July, but, it's different than the regular TOGA's. We're just there to get machines working.

  2. @Cheryl from Cheryl: I got the flamingo fabric at equilter.com, and got some with a lime green background at the same time. this was probably a couple of years ago.

  3. Have fun at your first TOGA! I recently attended the Gold Country Mini TOGA, and I had a blast with all the wonderful folks that showed up for the Gold Country's first Mini TOGA. I love your blocks, the fabrics, and pattern. I like your idea of taking a ceramic piece to use as part of a pin cushion, cute and clever.

  4. What at the dimensions of your blocks?


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