Quilts and Other Stuff from Frances

How do you do that….Part 5

OK….now I come to the part of traveling that I have the most trouble with……what to take to work on!!!

On our first long trip (2 months in England), I didn’t have any idea of how much time I would be spending in the house while Michael was at work.    Consequently, I took lots of fabric to work on a quilt and even took a small sewing machine with me.   I set everything up on the dining room table, plugged the machine into the convertor and turned it on.   Everything worked great until I pushed on the presser foot…..then there was a loud pop and a puff of smoke!!!!  Apparently the convertor hadn’t worked properly and I blew up the machine!!!! 


I ended up buying a VERY basic machine while in England (for less than $50), but I couldn’t use it for much except paper piecing.  BUT, what I learned was that I don’t tend to spend much time sitting in my apartment and sewing.  Instead I prefer to be outside, observing the newness of the place that I am visiting.


For the 7 weeks in Italy, I took fabric and doo-dads to work on an undersea collage.  I spent a couple of days working on it, but am not sure that it was worth carrying all of the stuff for it……


I also took a lot of drawing supplies, thinking that I would be sitting in various piazzas and sketching what I am seeing.   That particular idea didn’t work because there is simply no place in Rome for people to sit!!!  

On many of the shorter trips I have taken an unfinished Counted Cross Stitch project.  But face it…..I will NEVER finish it, so why waste the time and effort in carrying it with me!!!!

So, now I am trying to decide what to take to China.  This trip is a bit different because Kunming is not a huge tourist attraction and there wont be lots of museums or other things to see.   Having said that, my favorite thing to do when we were there last year was to sit at one of the parks and watch people.   Also, we will be visiting during the Rainy Season, so I may be forced indoors more.

My plan (at the moment) is to take the quilt that was made by my friend, Pat and add some beads and hand quilting…..

_3161984[4] Here is the post where I talked about this little quilt….

I am also planning to take some drawing/water color supplies and hopefully spend some time playing with those.   I have just watched a great video that I will tell you about in a few days……

My question to end this post……what are your ideas about what to take on long trips?????

4 thoughts on “How do you do that….Part 5

  1. I would definitely take some hand stitching and probably a sketchbook and some basic supplies, although having said that I never go on long trips these days.

  2. I have actually taken glass with me to cut for a stained glass project. I don't know how well that would go over with you going to China, though. I like to take projects that have lot of small things I can work on as I have a chance and then have something to do when I get home pulling it all together and remembering where I was when I did a certain part or piece. It makes things have so many memories that way.

  3. Frances, I love this travel series you're writing. Lately I've been carrying around some simple background blocks with a big needle-turn applique circle to sew to it. It's easy and lightweight. All the “equipment” I need is a pair of small scissors, needles, thread (on bobbins)and a few pins per circle. Check my blog later today to see them, http://www.anitaheadyfiberarts.blogspot.com

  4. I am planning to take knitting on my upcoming trip to England, and I take binding projects on road trips where the bulk of a quilt is not an issue. I can't believe you took an actual sewing machine to a foreign country! :)I haven't ever taken water colors on a trip, but I've taken them around town before and I imagine they would be great on a trip. I'm not even very good at them, but people will come up to you and be super impressed. I bet it would be a nice way to meet people while traveling.

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