Tuesday, May 7, 2013

A Dream Come True

You are never too old to set another goal 
or to dream a new dream.  
C. S. Lewis

You have been very patient with me waiting and waiting for me to tell you the name I chose for my new Innova.  At long last it will be revealed.  She's resting under the dust cover below waiting to be named.

Here she sits awaiting the unveiling.

But first a little background story.  A long, long time ago, way back in the last century I had a dream of opening a quilt shop.  I had turned 40 and there was a new specialty magazine that had been published for the first time called Quilt Sampler.  I bought one and spent months looking at it and thinking about how I could, if I could, did I dare, what would happen, etc. if I opened a quilt shop.  I was teaching some quilting classes and working at Cloth World (it wasn't JoAnn yet) and working at the library.  Two part time jobs that didn't pay very much but had hours that I could be home most of the time after school with my kids.  

My husband was supportive of the idea so after turning over a lot of stones, dotting my i's, crossing my fingers and a lot of prayer the light turned green and it was a go!  This happened the week before Quilt Market so you guessed it I was on a plane and off on a new adventure.  Just getting on a plane by myself was new!  Getting around in a strange city by myself was even more of an adventure.  

Thanks to the Quilt Sampler magazine and visiting every quilt shop in the area I had a vision of what I wanted my shop to look like and the merchandise I wanted to carry.  Quilt Market is overwhelming if you go just as an observer.  To go and make 144,302 decisions while you are there is ... there are no words to describe it!  Wondering along the aisles I notice a few longarm dealers,  I got to drive one for a few minutes but had to hurry along to get other things done.  They were just not in my budget for the shop but the idea intrigued me.  If I had one where would I put it?

Fast forward about 5 years and Handi-Quilter came out with a table top quilting frame that would hold a domestic machine and allow you to use it like a longarm.  I soon bought one and sold them at my shop.  It wasn't too hard to use and I was hooked.  The next year I upgraded to a shortarm commercial machine with a 12 foot table.  There was a little more to running it but I caught on and used it for several years.

Eventually I bought my used Ultimate XX, APQS 14 foot table machine.  By then I had closed my shop, moved to a house with a basement and 3 of my 4 children had moved out so I had the whole basement for a studio.  This machine was a workhorse with a 36 inch head.  We got along  very well but Dinah had no advanced features except for a fabric advance motor.  I dreamed of having a machine that had stitch regulation and needle down.

This year my dream has come true!  So what should I name her?  I chose something very fitting I think.  Let me introduce:

Aislin Joy
Aislin Joy Is the name I decided on. I looked up names that meant dream or vision and Aislin is a spelling variation of an Irish name that means just that!  I had not thought of using a two word name but in the comments to my What's Her Name?  post Joy was suggested (thanks lynaeve).  The two names fit perfectly!  I also like this spelling because the 'lin' is part of my last name. Aislin seems like a name found in Fantasy Novels, one of my favorite genres.   I may refer to her as A. J. too.

To celebrate her naming she got some new accessories.  Is there a better way to celebrate?  While driving through Virginia to get to Massachusetts we stopped at Virginia Longarm which is an Innova dealer.  I bought some handle cranks for my rollers.

Top Roller and Backing Roller Handles

Take up Roller Handle

They work very smoothly, before the roller end only had the black cover on it like the leveling roller does in the picture above.  I thought I would have a hard time removing the covers since it had taken a bit of hammering to get them in place but it wasn't difficult.

I also bought a magnifying lens for close work that will mount at the needle.  I will wait until I'm ready to use it before I add it to the machine.  These old eyes can use a little extra help from time to time.

Small Dream Catcher

Large Dream Catcher Chime

I had been sent these Dream Catchers for donating to a Native American School.  I think they have found a new home.  I'm not superstitious at all but I think they fit with her name and they make me smile.

So that's my story about Aislin Joy, what do you think?  Did I name her well?

Don't forget to sign up for my giveaway on the previous post.


  1. You definitely did Patricia, I am sure she will bring you lots of joy over the years to come!

  2. congratulations! I love the name!


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