Monday Musings - Sharing Blog Links

>> Monday, January 26, 2015

Before I finally sit down to sew tonight I feel the need to blog about a few links that have been waiting to be shared.

Box of Crayons - How to end 2014 on a High Note (yes this link has been open on my mini iPad since Dec. 16th!) I love to come up with my word of the year. Several (thousands?) of others do as well. I already knew my word this year is CLARITY but this post really helped me get into the process of thinking forward with action. A post to share because I actually found most of the links in it useful!

Gefilte  Quilts - somehow the post sharing her amazing quilt in response to the Charlie Hebdo killings - Quilting Paris - Make Art, Not War found its way to me. Strange because I've pretty much stopped watching the news, but some tragedies still filter through. Since this post she has posted two more quilts that have pulled me into her art. Now I follow her blog and can't wait to see what she creates next!) Check out her adverbs quilt!!

Speaking of creating. . . I have started and need to finish blanket stitching around a new winter table runner. That's a peek in the photo up there! Next to make the pattern - one of my goals for the 1st quarter of the year:)

I've noticed a slow return to browsing blogs. At least for me. Blogs are a more personal voice and space online - not boxed in by ads and other people's stuff vying for attention. Back to basics I guess!

Do you enjoy reading about my blogging discoveries?

Here's one more - Kusherie Egyptian Rice and Lentils - a new regular recipe for us!

With Joy,

Sarah V


I Couldn't Resist a New Block of the Month

>> Saturday, January 24, 2015

I couldn't resist joining in after all! Pat Sloan is offering another free Block of the Month through this year. After seeing so many variations of this block on facebook (yes, I'm heavily into facebook this year!) I decided I probably had enough stash fabric to start my own. I have a variety of animal characters travelling that I can put in the blocks and loads of that funky Caribbean flavoured fabric to play with. We'll see how it goes.

You still have time to participate and do January's block before the groundhog and the next block arrive :)

Pat Sloan's Vacation Time Block of the Month

Back to quilting this weekend after a marathon week of report card writing.
I have my Bodacious 1st Quarter Quilting Goals out and some chocolate!

With Joy,

Sarah V


Roosting Robin Round One

>> Monday, January 19, 2015

Round one directions were given out on January 15th. This is through a group of quilters that I chat/hang out with/love! at Pat Sloan's Quilt Mashup.

We needed to use some scraps from the block and could set our block on point or add a plain border that could be big enough for embroidery and/or applique.

On point wasn't going to look right with this block!
I added a really wide border - 6.5 inches wide - not necessarily for some big applique but simply to grow this quilt. There will only be 6 rounds. Now, I could add both border options each round, but that might not happen. I also had quite a chunk of the green fabric so I decided to use it up now - I still have a little bit left.

Ideas are stewing - to add applique or not?

We'll see. I've had a few ideas pop in my head when I glance up at this on my design wall.

Report cards are calling my name! Gotta go do some more teacher stuff.
My reward will be a weekend where I can really focus on my quilting list.

With Joy,

Sarah V


Creating Again

>> Saturday, January 10, 2015

I've spent the last two days down and out with pink eye and fevers.

Today I woke up with a new zest for life!
Grateful for everything (freezing temperatures and dirty dishes included.)

After working on some of the UFOs on my list (quilting on the large churn and fusing applique on a new tablerunner for a pattern) I couldn't resist some liberated churns.

It didn't turn out exactly as I had envisioned it (which is probably good because I'm pretty sure I was hallucinating yesterday!), but I was happy to have enough energy and stamina to get an idea out and DONE in a day.

Then I asked my husband what he thought.

Now, this isn't always a bad idea as my Liberated Churn Dash Quilt was created based on his preferences for a quilt.

He said there needed to be fabric between the churns.

I was already feeling noncommittal, and I had watched this video with Victoria today.

So I cut the runner in half.

And then cut it up some more!
I took a small pile of stashed fabrics that I found last week folded up in some fabric (probably to make a little quilt with) and started to play.

Is it strange that the churns have more life all cut up?

I sorted through my stash bin and found a few more fabrics to add. I'm going to leave it for tonight and see what it feels like in the morning.

Right now it feels like my creative heart is beating again.

With Joy,

Sarah V


Getting Clear on 2015 Quilting Goals - First Quarter

>> Friday, January 2, 2015

Happy New Year!

I hope you SHINE this year. I came up with this block while napping over the holidays. The computer generated star will be a button on the block. I have a few more word blocks planned too.

My Word for 2015 is CLARITY - getting clear on what I want, need, am, etc. When it comes to quilting that means looking at my UFOs and getting clear on what I'm doing with them!
I have 35 UFOs.
13 of them are quilts ready to be quilted.

I'm trying to be realistic about planning what to finish, what to make and how quickly as I know my teaching job will require me to use some of my nights for replenishing my energy and doing paperwork.

This is where I'm at today. I'm thinking/planning 3 months at a time and leaving myself wiggle room for those tempting projects that all seem to surface in the first 3 months of the year!

1. Finish machine quilting this wall hanging.
It's for me.
I have 2 more quarters to quilt, then sleeve, label, bind.

Dreamy deadline - February 14th!

Plan - to make this my 15 minute of quilting project
-always leave my machine ready with the thread for this project in it
-leave this project out and ready
-if I really don't feel like working on this - make the binding!

2. Christmas Quilt/Threads of Memory BOM

This quilt is to get quilted.
I'm quilting in 2 halves - one with 3 rows, one with 4.

I've made the backing for one half.
This project is BIG. I'm going to chunk it down into what feels like doable parts, knowing that my least favourite part of quilting is - quilting!

From January to March I would like to have these 3 things finished:
1) backing for second half (2 blocks of quilting time)
2) pin together first half of quilt (1 block of quilting time)
3) start quilting 1st row of first half of quilt (1 block of quilting time)

3. Finish last 4 Halloween 1904 blocks

The stars need to be blanket stitched.
I need to make more half square triangles for the blocks.
Some of the blocks will have border parts added as well.

I need to get this (even more) organized!

4. Roosting Robin
Some challenging fun!
This starts January 15th and is being hosted by some of the quilters at Pat Sloan's Quilt Mashup Forum.
We each need to pick our own centre - the fun is that the block never leaves home (hence it's roosting!)
Each month 2 border options will be given for us to pick from and use - or we can use both.
We're supposed to use only stash, which I love.
I picked this block because it's been sitting around for awhile and because with all the scrappy colours in it I should be able to find stuff in my stash to go with it!

The plan here is to stay caught up - one border each month.

5. Birthday Gifts
Of course there's more! I was planning to make my nieces and nephews pillowcases this year. Already I can see my stash is not going to cooperate. I will come up with something!

Two birthdays this quarter.
Plus mine, my husband, mom, my brother in law and daughter (but that's a different list, right!)

6. Sew Joy Creations
I'm also planning to make more designs this year.
My dream goal right now is 15 - that's 5 things a quarter with wiggle room!
Some will be free blocks or tutorials.
I really want to design another quilt pattern this year.
I really want to incorporate selvages into some of my designs this year.
This means incorporating design/play time into my quilting time to make it happen - then using quilting time to write, edit, photograph and put out the designs.

Goal - 3 to 5 designs by end of March.


As you can see I'm always working on something and thinking about working on even more! Here's a few more things I'm going to add to this list because I'm already thinking about how they're quick and easy and great little procrastinator finishes (and if I put them on the list they'll stop whispering in my ear!)

7. Primitive Gatherings' 10th Anniversary Stitch a Long

I love this little project. The pieces are small - those corner stars are 3 1/2 inches square! There's a few more borders to this one getting it all the way to 39 inches square. It was going to be my centre for the Roosting Robin (see #4), but I'm growing this with stash in rainbow colours and am going to need to do some more of my Halloween 1904 (#3 on the list) to free up some oranges.
I do have a yellow and a pink picked out for the next border and will play with it for a refreshing {mini} change.
{You can still find the instructions to make this one in the sidebar at Primitive Gatherings blog.}

8. Orphan Christmas Words

I found this in the pile of Christmas blocks while searching for fabric to finish my Christmas/Threads of Memory quilt top (#2).
I just need to blanket stitch around 'peace' then it can go back in the pile of blocks waiting to be made into a Christmas quilt.

9. Placemats to quilt

There are 4 here - ready to be quilted. They stare at me every time I sit down to sew. If I'd had a little more mojo at Christmas I would have snuck these in when I was finishing gifts. As it is, they will get done before the end of March!

10. Scrap block with desires of being an apron

This one just grew out of playing with leftover half square triangles from my free placemat pattern. I have some more hsts and some more scraps of the chocolate fabric. I think it would make a fun Valentine apron.
It's on the list which gives me permission to play with it. ;)

11. (I know this is a ridiculously LONG list!)
Batik mini 9 patch wall hanging

This one is still on my design wall like this.
I want to cut the remaining charm squares into 1.5 inch strips and do a border followed by a blue batik border.
Then it will be a top - this will get it checked off the list.
 I kind of know how I want to quilt it so it might get quilted this year too. Might. It's joining a long list of tops!

Overachiever? Yes.
Over planner? Yes.

But, I'm doing all this in my head all the time. Maybe I'll stop over planning or make doable plans if I put it out here - make it readable/real.

{Side note here that I am also thinking about the quilt that JUST needs quilted for my daughter (birthday in March), the wallhanging for my husband that JUST needs quilted (birthday in March) and the fact that it's a BIG birthday for my mom (in March!) Not officially on the list, but it would be nice if I became Superwoman for the month of February and made miracles happen in the quilting department. . . Maybe I will realize from this list making that these quilts can be quilted in time for Christmas and they can be put into next quarter's list - if this quarter's list shrinks!}

I think I should have made this list last year!

Oh well. I will update monthly on progress from the list.
Then at beginning of April I'll make a new list. It might look a LOT like this one!
We'll see.

Wishing you Joy in your life,

Sarah V

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