February 05, 2012

Sunday Stash Report

First time linking up for the Sunday Stash report. I think I will do it on a monthly basis instead of weekly. I just don't buy fabric or finish projects on a weekly basis. So without further procrastination here is my Stash Usage (or not) report for January?

Fabric in: 5.75 yards
Fabric out: -.42 yards

Total change +5.33 yards

I don't think that's the direction this thing is supposed to be going in. LOL

Some people are counting things when they cut it for a project, but I'm waiting until the top is finished, then when I add the backing I'll count that, then the binding. The good news is that I have a top I think will be finished this week and a couple of more that I hope are done in February, so maybe it will look different next month.
My very small finish this month was several candle mat tops that should have been done by Christmas (sigh). I decided I was so close that if I did them now I would be ahead come December.

As for those "adds" well, let's just say I couldn't go to the local store for that sewing machine belt without looking at her clearance table (1.5 yards), and the quilt shop an hour from here has an annual FQ sale the end of January (4 yards) and I had a blog win for that last FQ.

If you want to see who might have done better than I did check out other stash reports over at Patchwork Times

February 04, 2012

NewFo for January

Well, I sure don't have the posting consistency thing down yet, do I? I knew it had been a while since I had posted anything on the blog, but didn't realize how long until I came here today to post. I will try to do better.
I was able to find that belt for my machine at the local fabric store and get back to sewing quickly. I guess there are some advantages to an older mechanical machine.

Now, on to my New FO for January. Remember this lovely pile of purples from my original post about the the New FO Challenge that Barb over at Catpatches has going on?
Well, they are now looking like this:
I realize that right now they are several different sizes, but it is a work in progress. Also, as I was uploading the picture I noticed that one block was missing. I did find that other darker purple block in my sewing room. Maybe if I wouldn't work on 10 things at once I wouldn't spend so much time searching for missing pieces, but where would the fun be in that?

I know that finishing these was not the point of the challenge, but I do intend to get this finished for my friend's birthday at the end of February. I should make some significant progress tomorrow. I hear there is a ball game or something going on and I'm sure my sewing machine will be calling my name rather loudly although I might check in from time to time since one of the rookie players for the Giants lived in our small town in AL and graduated high school the year ahead of our son and we actually know him and some of his family a little. It's always fun to cheer for the home town kid on the big stage so to speak. I hope you enjoy the game if that's your thing or get lots of sewing done if it's not.

I am linking up to the January Linky at CatPatches. Check out what other people started in January. If you are like me you will add a few things to your "want to do list".

January 06, 2012

Friday Night Fun...

turned to frustration

I was all set for a fun night of sewing. In fact, I was chain piecing up a storm. See my basket full of pieces and parts waiting to be pressed and moved on to the next step.
All those black and light triangles and the red and blue string blocks are parts of the Orca Bay Mystery that I am behind on, but still plugging away at. There are a couple of little Christmas Mug rugs that I was using as leaders and enders and decided to go ahead and finish. Somewhere buried in there is a Farmer's Wife block or two.

I also had lots more ready to stitch:
Those trays have more black and white, another FW block, and the purple pieces of my January NewFO that I told you about in this post.

Then this happened -
See the belt for my sewing machine? See how it is in 2 pieces? It shouldn't be. I'm not sure if the small fabric and notions shop here in town will have the belt I need or not. They carry the light that works for my older machine, so maybe the belt is a pretty standard part too. I hope so. If not, I have found a couple of places on line to order it, but that means several days before I can sew again.

January 02, 2012

Design Wall Monday

I have decided very late in the day to participate in the Design Wall Monday Link-up that Judy hosts over at Patchwork Times. The idea is to show others what you are working on and to check out what other quilters are working on. I've never participated before. Other bloggers have said it is very motivating to have that link-up every week. They sometimes make themselves go sew just to have something to report. I can see that working for me too, so here I am.

My design wall is actually a large flannel backed table cloth hung on a blank wall with command hooks. It might not be fancy but it works and it is easily removed when I need the spare bedroom for something else (like a guest room).

I am working on several things today, but the one I am going to show you is a 7 year old UFO. When I was learning to quilt with a group in 2003-2004 the lady teaching us had us making a queen sized sampler quilt. She chose traditional blocks with a variety of techniques to teach us the basics. We also did some little side projects from time to time - a doll using crazy quilting, a tote bag, things like that. Unfortunately, our teacher moved away and soon I put all the quilting away including the sampler. Fast forward to late 2010 - I decided I wanted to take up quilting again even if I had to teach myself and rely on the internet for help. That is when I started the red/white/blue quilt for my son that is shown on my first blog post. At the time I was still a little intimidated about working on the queen sized sampler by myself. Last summer, I decided I was ready to figure out what needed to be done with it. These are the 12 blocks that were done with the group shown with sashings and corner blocks I cut out in October, 2011. The original plan was for it to be on-point, but there were only 2 blocks done that wouldn't work in a straight setting, so they are going to be pillows, and I'll show those later. These are the 6 blocks I have made in the last 6 months. I need 2 more and one of those - a hand sewn Grandmother's Flower Garden, is nearly done. I need to choose and make the last block, then I can square them up and sew those sashings. Then on to the borders. There really is a good sampling of techniques and styles in this quilt and I can't wait to see it on my bed. I am so determined to finish this that I actually have the next few steps written on my calendar. Keep checking back for more progress and don't forget to check some of the other design walls.

January 01, 2012

New Years Musings

Does your family have New Years or New Years Eve traditions? Do you eat blacked-eyed peas, rice and pork chops like we do? Do you go out on New Years Eve or stay home and take a much needed break from the holiday rush? Do you always stay up past midnight, or do you, like my hubby, go to bed early just to protest all the hype? - LOL

For several years I have gotten out all my scrapbook stuff and 'scrapped in' the new year. I had to break that tradition last year since we were preparing to move and all my stuff was hidden away for showing our house. It just didn't make sense to pull it all out. I was looking forward to renewing that tradition yesterday.

I started by pulling out and reorganizing all my papers. Then I was ready to start on a quick paper-craft project then move on to the actual scrapping of pictures and memories. Unfortunately, I learned that scrapbook adhesive doesn't store well long-term and trying to use the old stuff was just an exercise in frustration. I did finish my small project, but didn't move on to pictures.

Would you like to see what I did accomplish?

I took some older paper scraps and calendar stickers, put them on cardstock and made these:

Then I cut a whole stack of these:
All so I could put them in this pretty box (sorry for the bad picture) and make a Blessings Box. When this was first posted at Triple the Scraps back in March it struck a chord in me. I had already been noticing that I had a tendency to rate a day as "bad" if anything not to my liking happened. Why is it so easy to forget the good things when one little annoyance comes along? I have decided to be more intentional in 2012 about looking for and remembering the good in each day. Call it a resolution if you want to. I think it is more about being grateful and positive - more the person God wants me to be. Recording the good in each day in my pretty little box will be a good way to stay focused on those changes. It will also be a way to remind myself just how blessed I am when one of those bad periods comes along, as they do for all of us.

Now I am going to go get some sewing done. I have been working on the Orca Bay Mystery Quilt at Quiltville and Bonnie revealed the final clue today. It is fabulous and I am way behind. There is a button on the left if you want to go check it out.

Oh, one more thing - Happy New Year!

December 30, 2011

2012 NewFO Challenge

If you've read my previous blog entries (both of them) you know I don't really need any motivation to start new projects. I start more things than I finish. I do have a list of things I'd like to do some day though, and I get excited about new things I see and don't ever get around to those things I'd really like to do.
That's why I love the challenge that Barbara at Cat Patches has come up with for 2012. She is encouraging us to make a list and start something new each month. There is no pressure to finish it, just start it. By making the list now it will be those things I have been planning to start some day, not the newest thing to hit the blogs and get me excited. I don't actually have 12 specific patterns on my list yet, but I have ideas for most months.

Here's my list: Click on the button to the left in order to see the other lists of NewFO projects and find out about the prizes Barbara is offering.

1. Log Cabin/Friendship star for my friend. Her birthday is in February and I plan for this to be my January start. I've been collecting purple fabric (her favorite color) for several months. I do plan on finishing this one. Here's a picture of some of my lovely purple fabrics.

2. BOM kit that I bought at a yard sell. It is from JoAnn's and all the months and finishing kit are there and only one had even been opened. Perhaps I should tell that lady about this challenge. I think I'll start this in February then try to do one block a month after that. Here's a picture of the package.

3. Sudoku kit throw for my living room - bought the kit in fabrics to match my new LR furniture. If I don't get it done soon it won't be new furniture - LOL

4. Something applique - I want to improve my applique skills and the only way to do this is to do some applique. I have several things on my Pinterest boards and will have to decide and just do it. It will probably be a pillow or wall hanging.

5. Christmas Tree Skirt - I bought the kit last year, but never started it. If I haven't started this by July I will start it then to give me plenty of time to finish.
6. Cathedral window pillow - I remember watching my grandmother make a CW quilt when I was a girl. I want to learn the technique and make something that I will finish that will remind me of her.

7. Black or dark background quilt - no pattern yet, but I have seen several that I like.

8. Christmas stockings for Hubby and me

That's all I have for now. I know there will be other things I will start this year - mystery quilts or fun challenges, but I think this challenge will help me start some of these on my wish list.

2012 UFO Challenge

We all have them - those UnFinished Objects hiding in our craft room. We started out all excited with the pattern or the fabric or, usually, both then other projects stepped in and they got pushed aside. Well, Judy at Patchwork Times has a challenge to help us rid our craft rooms of those UFO's and finish some great quilts.

I've decided to participate. Most of my UFO's are from several years ago when I first started quilting then took a long break from it. A few of them though are from the last year when I have started more than I've finished.

The idea is that you list your projects and at the beginning of the month Judy will draw a number and you work on and try to finish the project that corresponds to that number. Sounds like a fun way to stay motivated and clear out some things.

Without further adieu here is my list for the challenge.

1. A seasonal project - explained below
2. Hexagon Flag - One of those insane things that you aren't sure how you dreamed it up, but all the hexies are done, so I just need to get them together and quilted and bound.
3. Orca Bay Mystery - I am still working slowly on this and there are more clues left, but I am so far behind I know it is bound to need a push to get finished this year.
4. Another seasonal project
5. Flower Basket 1 - My mother-in-law got 12 beautiful appliqued blocks in a swap through her guild several years ago and gave them to me to encourage me to get back into quilting. I split them into two twin sized quilts. One I need to finish the quilting and bind.
6. Flower Basket 2 - the second one from above. Still in pieces.
7. Seasonal again
8. Embroidery wall hanging for my sewing room - small project but I still need to finish the embroidery.
9. Pineapple Blossom - I won the block lotto in May and got 36 of these wonderful blocks. They need to be a quilt.
10. The last seasonal project
11. Embroidery Quilt Along Quilt - 2 more stitcheries to finish then put it all together, quilt and bind.
12. Crumb quilt from the crumb along earlier this year. Most of the blocks are done.

The seasonal ones are a Spring Table Runner, a summer beach wall hanging, a fall table runner and a Christmas quilt (actually Judy's Road to Brownwood made in Christmas colors). I want to finish the spring one by spring, summer by summer, etc... and since Judy will be drawing the numbers each month I wanted some flexibility.

I don't know if I will get all 12 completed. I will also be starting new things and have a few that are long term works in progress, but I like a challenge and hope it will motivate me. If your closet has some of these go check out the challenge and play along.