Sunday, January 31, 2016

Stash Report - Week 5

Most of Saturday was spent in the recliner, asleep.  This head cold really knocked me for a loop.  I did get some stitching time in, but not as much as I normally would.  Still I finished off the back for the McCall's Mystery Quilt on Friday and was able to add that fabric to the out column this week.

Used last week:  7.05 yards
Used in January:  9.15 yards
Used year to date: 9.15 yards
Purchased year to date: 0 yards
Net used for 2016:  9.15 yards

This year has definitely gotten off to a good start.  Still no fabric in. That will probably change once I get going on some of the graduation quilts, but hopefully by the time I have to add a bit, I will have used a good bit more.  

In terms of finding time to stitch each day, this last week was a challenge.  But I still managed to get in at least 15 minutes in the sewing room each day. 

This week:  7 out of 7 days
This month: 30 out of 30 days
This year:  30 out of 30 days

This is the best I've ever done in terms of finding time to stitch each day.  The One Monthly Goal challenge has been a big help in getting me up to the sewing room.  I finished January's goal, but now I need to decide on February's goal.  I'm torn between finishing up Allietare.

Allietare,  Bonnie Hunter's 2015 Mystery Quilt

Or finishing up the Midnight Mystery Quilt.

Midnight Mystery Quilt, From Meadow Mist Designs

I'm closer to being done with the Midnight Mystery Quilt, but it got put away so I could work on a few other projects.  I've got momentum going on Allietare, as everything is lined up to sew assembly style.  Both projects need to be up on the big design wall, so to work on one means taking the other down.  I have a couple of days before I have to pick which project is February's goal.  What would you choose?  

Linking up with the weekly stash reports over at Patchwork Times

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Rainbow Scrap Challenge - Vintage Blues

I'm moving a bit slow this morning.  The head cold is a bit better.  No runny nose, but I have one heck of a sinus headache.  No one in the office has been sick, I must have picked up this lovely infection from that conference last week.  My Guy was wondering if it was the flu, but I don't feel quite that bad.  

During my attempt to ignore my symptoms by stitching, I finished up the second blue Vintage Dress for January.

  Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell
 I love that blueberry fabric.  This looks a lot like a dress my Mother wore in high school.  I'm very happy with how this one turned out.  Here's both January dresses.  

I love the finished blocks, but I'm struggling with all the paper piecing.  It's a good thing I decided to only make two a month.  

That's it for me this week.  You can find more blocks in blue over at Soscrappy.  

Friday, January 29, 2016

One Monthly Goal - January's Completed

I don't normally draft blog posts this late, but the head cold that materialized out of nowhere this morning isn't letting me sleep. I might as well do something to keep my mind off the fact I'm not sleeping.   That's why I was sewing this evening, I was tired of sitting in the recliner trying to nap.  At least stitching took my mind off the worst of the cold symptoms.  (I don't usually get sick this often, this winter has been very unkind to my immune system).  

Part of my 2016 goals is to finish 8 quilts this year.  The most I've ever finished is 7, so it's going to take extraordinary measures to be successful this year.  So I decided to join Heidi of Red Letter Quilts in picking One Monthly Goal. January's goal was to finish piecing the McCall's Mystery Quilt and piece a back.  The mystery quilt was a finished flimsy on January 16th. 

McCall's Mystery Quilt, From McCall's Quilting Magazine
Jan/Feb, April/May, June/July 2012 

The plan was to use the focus fabric as the backing.  But this was a much bigger quilt than I expected and there wasn't enough of the yellow and blue teapot fabric to make the whole back.  An old tone on tone pink was the best option to fill out the backing.  After a few problems with the quilt math, the back was finally finished this evening.  

There are still 2 days in January, so I finished my goal just a tad early.  After a bit of pressing and de-threading this quilt will be ready to go out for quilting. But that's on next month's list of things to do.  

I'm linking up with Heidi's end of the month One Monthly Goal linky party.  You can hop over there to check out all the other finished goals.   

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Let's Book It Challenge - January Progress

It's been one of those weeks.  My work days were just a bit longer as I had to drive into the big city for a conference this week.  Leaving the house at 6:30 AM and not getting home till 6:30 PM makes for a very long day.  I've been spending some time up in the sewing room each evening, but haven't really had time to read, much less write a blog post this week.  But today Sharon over at Vrooman's Quilts says it's time to blog about your Let's Book It Project for January. 

Let's Book It is all about actually making something from all the books, magazines or patterns we all collect.  This pattern has been my leaders and enders project for the last two years.  After finishing up all the 4.5" sub units in December, January has been spent stitching them into huge 20.5" blocks.  

By Judy Blok for the December 2013 issue
of American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine

There are 9 of these big blocks in the quilt, so I'm a third of the way done with those.  But then there will be the pieced sashing to finish before I can start sewing the blocks together.  I'm having fun building these big blocks.  Though I'm running out of design wall space to show them off.  Hopefully Poinsettias will be finished before we get to Christmas this year.  It would be nice to have a new Let's Book it Project, even nicer to have a finish.  

There's more eye candy posted over at Vrooman's Quilts.  

Monday, January 25, 2016

Weekend Stitching - Visible versus Invisible Progress

It was supposed to warm up yesterday.  Though the temps were higher the wind added a chill so that it certainly did feel any warmer on Sunday.  I spent Sunday afternoon stitching away in the my warm sewing room.  The cold did scuttle My Guy's plan for a bike ride.  He even tried going for a walk, but the wind just made it miserable outside.   

There was probably more cutting going on yesterday than stitching. The bodice pieces for the second Vintage Dress block are now all ready for assembly and the pieces needed for the back of McCall's Mystery quilt are mostly assembled after realizing I had the quilt math wrong. That's the invisible progress.  If you look at the big design wall, you can see visible progress on Allietare.  

Bonnie Hunter's 2015 Mystery Quilt

Just four more of the Pisa blocks to go.  I need to cut some more of the blue centers before I can finish those off.  Then its time to finish off the star blocks.  I'm hoping to have this one finished off in February.   

Linking up with:

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Stash Report - Week Four of 2016

Weekends always seem to just fly by.  We had stuff to do in the big city yesterday, so we weren't home for most of the day.  We had a nice lunch, plus Drama Teen and I had a nice chat about how things were going at school.  So it wasn't a wasted day, especially since I got to sew for most of the evening.  

There's been a lot of stitching going on this week. But not much to to show for it on the stash report.  

Used last week:  0.25 yards
Used in January:  2.10 yards
Used year to date:  2.10 yards
Purchased year to date:  0 yards
Net used for 2016:  2.10 yards

The back for the McCall's Mystery quilt should get done this week and that will provide a nice jump in the stash numbers.  I had to piece the back and it's taken longer than I thought it would (quilt math tripped me up a bit).  

As part of the effort to use more stash and finish more quilts in 2016, I've also been counting those days where more than 15 minutes gets spent in the sewing room.  The thought there is that more time in the sewing room equals more progress on projects.

This week:  7 out of 7 days
This month:  23 out of 23 days
This year:  23 out of 23 days

It may be tough to keep up the momentum this week.  I have a conference to attend the first three days of next week.  Though I'll be home each evening, it won't be till much later than normal.  

It's still pretty chilly in our part of the world, with not much sunshine this last week.  Though we've had it really easy compared to north and east of here.  I felt the need for something to remind me that spring will come before too much longer.  

The bright pop of color on the kitchen table is a nice reminder that in a few weeks they'll be blooming again.  

You find more stash reports over at Patchwork Times.  

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

WIPS - Lots of Yellow with a touch of Blue

Drama Teen is going to be disappointed this morning.  We had freezing fog and rain last night, so she was hoping for a day out of school.  No such luck, the roads are dry. But we apparently have another opportunity for nasty weather tonight.  She may get her wish for a snow day tomorrow. 

The colder weather has meant there's not much to do but stay indoors, so it's perfect stitching weather.  Over the weekend the last border was pieced and stitched to the McCall's Mystery Quilt.  It's outgrown the design wall, so it took me a couple of days to get it photographed.  

McCall's Mystery Quilt, From McCall's Quilting Magazine
Jan/Feb, April/May, June/July 2012 issues

The bright blue border does a lot to balance out all the bright yellow in the center of the quilt.  The focus fabric looks better in person, the pink just swamps the blocks in the photographs.  But overall I like how it turned out.  

The finished flimsy is half of my One Monthly Goal for January.  The other half of the goal is to get the back pieced.  That's been started but hit a snag when I realized there wasn't enough of the focus fabric to make a complete backing.  There's not enough left over of any of the other fabrics to use on the back, I have enough blue or yellow to make a binding (actually it's a bit iffy on the yellow).  After a search through the stash, I came up with a pale pink that looks good with the focus fabric.  It's been in the stash for at least 10 years, so it's on the cutting table waiting to be ironed.  I should be able to get the back pieced by the end of the weekend.  It feels nice to be on top of this month's goal.  

Linking up with 
Let's be Social at Sew Fresh Quilts
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Leaders and Ender Progress for December and January

Cathy over at A Quilting Chick hosts a monthly linky to inspire and encourage those of us who start/finish projects using Bonnie Hunter's leaders and enders method of piecing.  

My current leaders and enders project, Poinsettias, started in February of 2014.  I finally finished piecing all the 4.5" inch blocks that make up the 20" poinsettia blocks in November 2015.  

So this has definitely been a long term project.  I don't have another leaders and enders in the wings just yet, so I've proceeded to assemble the big blocks.  Now there are 2 big poinsettia blocks up on the design wall.  

Poinsettias By Judy Blok for the December 2013 issue of
American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine

The blocks  won't go together this way there will be pieced sashing between the blocks.  I'm hoping to finish this project up in 2016.  At some point it will probably make the jump from being the leader and ender project to being the main design wall project.  But there are still 7 blocks to assemble, so it will be a while before it gets to that point. 

Monday, January 18, 2016

Weekend Stitching - The Last Finish in 2015

It's the middle of January, so why a post about the last finish in 2015?  The stars just didn't align for it to be posted any sooner.  It took me a bit to get decent photos and then I was so focused on this year's goals that it faded from my memory that it had not been posted.  So before the new year gets any older, here's my last finish from 2015. 

Lily Pond (Back to Square One)
Pattern by Judy Laquidara of Patchwork Times
Quilted by Trudy Lindemann
Started June 8. 2013, Finished December 30, 2015

Drama Teen named this one, she said the colors always reminded her of a Japanese lily pond. Since there's not a single oriental print in this one, I just shortened the name to Lily Pond. I don't often go with custom quilting, but nothing else seemed right for this one.  Trudy did an amazing job.  She used white thread in the white areas and a bright teal blue in the colored patches.   I asked for quilting that was both modern and organic.  (How Trudy figures out my vague ramblings is beyond me, but she always comes through with something that's perfect).   Here's the quilting in the center. 

There's more leaves, vines and curly-q's in the log cabin blocks and friendship stars.  

It's really amazing from the back (click on the photo to see more details).  

This quilt isn't staying here.  It's going to go live with the family that set up and hosted the writing camp that Drama Teen attended last summer.  DT and I both had a great time, they were wonderful hosts. I have my fingers crossed that they will like it.

 Linking up with:

Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times
Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt
Main Crush Monday at Cooking Up Quilts

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Stash Report - Week Three of 2016

It's cold this morning. The high is projected to be only 7 degrees higher than the it is now (which is about 20 F).  Thankfully I have no place to be so I can hang out inside all day.  After a full frontal attack on the laundry, I do hope to spend some time in the sewing room this afternoon.  

It's not been a bad week of stitching.  The McCall's Mystery quilt is now a finished flimsy.  No pictures as yet, it's much too big to fit on the design wall.  Not a lot of fabric out this week as most of the pieced border on that mystery quilt had already been counted as out.  

Used last week:  1.17 yards
Used in January: 1.85 yards
Used year to date:  1.85 yards
Purchased year to date:  0 yards
Net used for 2016:  1.85 yards

Most of the outgoing comes from finishing a few Allietare blocks.  Next week should be really good as the next step for the McCall's Mystery is to make the backing for it. 

This year I'm also keeping up with how many days I manage to find at least 15 minutes to stitch.  Time in the sewing room equals progress and more fabric out. 

This week:  7 out of 7 days
This month:  16 out of 16 days
This year:  16 out of 366 days

So far I'm doing a good job of not succumbing to the gravity well of the recliner in the evening.  

That's good progress on two of my sewing room goals. I'm also doing well on this year's photography goals. My Guy has challenged me to take a picture a day this year.  We've done this before, but it's been a few years.  Typically taking shots of a WIP or two will save the day if I need a shot at the end of the day.  But I didn't really have any progress to photograph yesterday, so that meant finding something else.  My Guy opted for a walk, but with temps hovering around freezing, that wasn't one of my options.  Here's what I came up with for my photo of the day.


That's it for me today.  Now it's back to the battle of  laundry and probably a second cup of coffee while I take a peak at who is winning the battle of the stash over at Patchwork Times.  

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Rainbow Scrap Challenge - Blue Dressing

It was definitely time for a weekend.  The work week just seemed to go on and on.  For some reason, January always seems to be that way for me.  The month just drags. Not true of any other month in the year just this one. 

I've made it to the sewing room every day this week.  At the start of each sewing session, I'd tackle one more section of the paper piecing for the first Vintage Dress block.  Last night I sewed all the sections together.  

Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell

The block size is a little off, but that can be fixed by floating the dress with some added sashing.  So it's not perfect, but I like how it came out.  I learned a few things from piecing this first block that should make the others go a bit smoother.  I'm glad I only need to finish two blocks each month, this is not a fast block to make.  But I think the final quilt will be cute.  

I'm going to finish my coffee while checking out the rainbow of blues posted over at Soscrappy.  

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

WIPs - Making Progress

It's been a weird week.  There was this very fast moving virus that invaded suddenly Sunday evening.  Fever, chills and body aches were it's signature.  But after a good's night sleep (from 8 PM to 1:30 PM the next day), I was almost good as new.  Though not a lot of weekend stitching got done.  I was too busy putting on flannel shirts, sweaters, blankets while asking everyone else in the house if the furnace was really working to get much real sewing done.  However there is a bit of progress to report.  The top border for the McCall's Mystery quilt is assembled and pinned to the rest of the top, so it just needs to be stitched.  But that's not very photo worthy, so here's a shot of the Allietare blocks up on the design wall. 

Bonnie Hunter's 2015 Mystery Quilt
I just realized that one of the 4 patches is turned wrong in one of the Star Blocks.  I'll have to fix that next time I'm up in the sewing room.  You can get a better sense of how the blocks are going to work together with the addition of two more red star blocks. I'm happy with my color selections, now I just have to get all the blocks made (without turning any more 4 patches).   

Progress was also made on figuring out the paper piecing directions for Vintage Dresses.  The skirt for the first dress is complete.

Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell

The bodices are a lot more fiddly, so starting with the skirt seemed to be the best option.  Two of the 7 bodice pieces have been completed, but they by themselves weren't really very photogenic. I'm hoping to have one completed dress for the RSC post on Saturday. 

So that's the progress on my WIPs this week.  Not as much as I'd like, but still there was progress.  You can see more WIPs over at

Esther's Quilting Blog
Sew Fresh Quilts
Freshly Pieced
My Quilt Infatuation

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Stash Report - Week 2 of 2016

It's 9 F (-13 C) this morning.  Thankfully we have no place to go today and can stay in out of the cold.  It wasn't quite as cold yesterday when we ventured out for part 2 of Drama Teen's birthday celebration of lunch with friends followed by ice skating.  It had snowed in Tulsa overnight and the drive down was quite pretty.  

The photo looks like it was taken in black and white, but that's actually a color shot.  If it hadn't been for the snow, it would have looked quite dreary.  

My sewing time this week has been spent learning how to paper piece those Vintage Dress blocks.  I don't have one of those finished, so the fabric going out this week is just 3 Allietare blocks from Monday's design wall post

Used last week:  0.40 yards
Used in January:  0.68 yards
Used year to date:  0.68 yards
Purchased year to date:  0 yards
Net used for 2016:  0.68 yards

Still no fabric in for the year, so the fabric diet is holding for now.  Last year I didn't buy any fabric till July.  Since I've got a few  quilts to make this year, I'm not sure I'll last that long as I'm already fairly certain I need to find a medium purple for Zombies in Paris.  

This year I'm also tracking how many days I manage to make it to the sewing room for at least 15 minutes.  The more I'm in the sewing room, the better chance of having a reduction in the stash and the UFO pile.  It was a good week on that front too.

15 minute stitching days this week:  7 days
15 minute stitching days in January:  9 days
15 minute stitching days in 2016:  9 days

That's the summary of my stitching efforts this week.  How did yours go?  You can check out how other fabric diets are going over at Patchwork Times.  

Saturday, January 9, 2016

2016 Rainbow Scrap Challenge - Getting Educated

The biggest accomplishment this week was surviving a full five days of work.  It's amazing how hard that is after having two weeks off.  Well, maybe that wasn't the biggest accomplishment this week.  Yesterday was Drama Teen's 17th birthday.  She didn't mention till Thursday night that she really wanted cookies and cream cupcakes from the bakery downtown. I had planned to do an ice cream cake, as that's been her favorite.  Thankfully the bakery had a few cookie and cream left when we went by at lunch yesterday.  She was happily surprised when dessert was served.  

Mom messed up by not having any candles in the house, but Drama Teen was happy to make do with a long fireplace match.  Hard to believe she's only got one more year of high school.  

With all the celebrating last night, there wasn't much time in the sewing room,  This year's Rainbow Scrap Challenge project is taking a bit of preparation before I can start sewing.  I finally got the patterns printed to size, selected the two Vintage Dresses to make this month, and picked out the fabrics. 

Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell

After looking at the minimal directions, I decided to educate myself a bit more about paper piecing.  The only project in my repertoire was really simple, nothing like these dresses.  There's a Craftsy class on paper piecing by Carol Doak in my library that I haven't had time to watch yet.  So I'm go to watch a bit of that before I get started on the piecing.  Hopefully that will save me some grief and unsewing down the road.  

That's all the rainbow scrap stitching I've managed this week.  You can find some pretty, blue scrappy projects linked up to Soscrappy. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

WIPs - Progress on the January Goal

We are 6 days into the new year, almost a week in already.  So how are you doing on this year's goals so far?  I'm doing pretty well with mine at the moment.  I'm trying something new this year.  I'm participating in the One Monthly Goal over at Red Letter Quilts in hopes that it will help me focus on one project and move it closer to a finish.  Whatever that project is, will probably be the subject of each week's WIP update. 

This month's goal is to get the McCall's Mystery Quilt ready to go out for quilting.  Last night I added the second pieced border. 

McCall's Mystery Quilt, From McCall's Quilting Magazine
Jan/Feb, April/May, June/July 2012 issues

It's a huge quilt, much larger than my design wall and there are still two borders left to add.  I like the bright blue borders. They do a lot to calm down all that yellow in the center of the quilt.  If I keep up the pace, this should be a finished flimsy this weekend. 

I'm still working on Allietare.  

Bonnie Hunter's 2015 Mystery Quilt

There's one more completed alternate block up on the design wall, plus three other blocks that need to be sewn together.  I need to rotate the bottom row of that middle block before it gets stitched down that way.    

That's a partially assembled Poinsettia block in the lower right corner.  It's still my current leaders and enders project. I need start this year's Rainbow Scrap Project.  I printed out the paper piecing pattern, but didn't have the printer set right, so I'll have to reprint those before I can start this month's Vintage Dress blocks.  

That's my 4 WIPs at the moment.  I try to keep the WIPs at 4 or less.  Any more and I can't make good progress on any one project. 

Linking up with:

Let's Bee Social
WIPs on Wednesday
WIP Wednesday
Needle and Thread Thursday when it's posted.  

Monday, January 4, 2016

Holiday Vacation Stitching

A lot of last week was spent in deep cleaning mode.  The master bedroom is sparkling and there is now room in all the dresser drawers to add in all the socks and sleep clothes that was under the tree this year.  You can actually walk at least half way into the attic. That part of the house still needs more work, but at least now there is room to move.  That made it a lot easier to get all the Christmas decorations put away.  

There was some time devoted to stitching. Mainly in the evenings during the week, but I got in my typical afternoons during the weekend. The main focus was on finishing up some Allietare blocks for today's reveal linky over at Bonnie Hunter's Quiltville.  I finished 2 of each block over the weekend. 

Bonnie Hunter's 
2015 Mystery Quilt

I substituted blue for the red and gray, then added back the red in place of the gold.  I like how the blocks came out.   Just 4 blocks isn't really enough to show how this is going to look when it's all together.  Since the blocks are on point, I needed to do a mock up in EQ to determine how many blocks were needed to make a reduced size version that fit the QOV size requirements.  My quilt math isn't good enough to do that based on just block size. 

Bonnie Hunter's 
2015 Mystery Quilt
It looks very different than Bonnie's, moving the red fabric highlights another block pattern.  I like it.  

That's it from me this week.  I'm linking up over at Quiltville, Patchwork Times, and Love Laugh Quilt.  Unfortunately it's back to work for me today, so I won't get a chance to see many other versions of Allietare before I have to head in.  

Sunday, January 3, 2016

January - One Monthly Goal

One advantage to the extended holiday vacation this year has been having time to explore a new blogs via both end of the year linky parties and checking out the blogs of those who comment on this blog.  That's how I found Heidi of Red Letter Quilts.  Heidi has started One Monthly Goal to fill the hole left by the retirement of A Lovely Year of Finishes

The requirement is to select one quilt related goal and finish it by the end of the month.  It doesn't have to be a finish. That's always my problem it's rare that I can finish a quilt in a month.  Since I have 8 quilts and plans to start 7, having a monthly linky where I have to show some accountability usually helps with my motivation.  So I'm going to give it a try. 

So for January, my goal is to get McCall's Mystery ready for to send out for quilting. The center is all assembled. 

McCall's Mystery Quilt, From McCall's Quilting Magazine
Jan/Feb, April/May, June/July 2012 issues

Now it just needs the borders pieced and attached, as well as the backing pieced before it can go out to be quilted.  So that's my one monthly goal for January.  

You can check out the rules, the giveaway and the other one montly goal posts over at Red Letter Quilts.    

First Stash Report for 2016

This is the last day of our holiday vacation.  My Guy and I go back to work tomorrow and Drama Teen goes back to school.  We've had a really good holiday.  My Guy and I got lots done this last week. We've slowed down on the deep cleaning since New Years, focusing more on our regular chores, like laundry.  I did get to spend yesterday afternoon in my sewing room.  I have two blocks of Allietare completely assembled, with several more close to being done.  I won't have my top together tomorrow, but there should be enough blocks on the design wall to show what one corner will look like.  

I usually count my fabric as out when a block is completed.  So I have my two Allietare blocks to count as out for this first stash report of 2016.  

Used last week:  0.28 yards
Used in January:  0.28 yards
Used year to date:  0.28  yards
Purchased year to date: 0 yards
Net used for 2015: 0.28 yards

Back in February and August of last year, I measured the height of my "in use" fabric.  If I'm making progress on my UFOs and WIPs it should be going down.  Between February and August it actually rose an inch as I had added fabric for a backing and started a new quilt.  It's an imperfect measure, but it's a nice visual of the amount of fabric that could go out of the stash if I'd finish up all my projects.  

The stack was at 19" back in August. 

It was at 15.25" last night. 

I've completed three quilts since August, so that must account for the reduction of almost 4".  Of course not all of that fabric went into the quilts, the left over fabrics were removed from the stack and returned to the stash closet. Still it's nice to see a bit of a reduction in anything related to the stash.  

Another of my 2016 goals is to use more fabric than I buy.  In order to use more fabric, I have to get to the sewing room.  Some days that is more of a challenge than it should be.  Having to report my progress on the blog has been a good motivator for me, most of the time.  So in addition to the stash report, I'm going to start reporting how many days I've managed to spend at least 15 minutes in the sewing room.  Here's how I've done since the start of 2016.

Days with 15 minutes of stitching this week: 2 days
Days with 15 minutes of stitching January: 2 days
Days with 15 minutes of stitching this year:  2 days

That's it for me this week.  I'm linking up with Judy's Patchwork Times for the stash report.  Now it's time for another cup of coffee and a bit of blog reading before I go start the laundry.  

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Rainbow Scrap Challenge - A New Rainbow Scrap Challenge Project

This is my first Rainbow Scrap Challenge post since November.  I got sick right after Thanksgiving, then had Christmas preparations to manage, so there's been no progress on getting the Twinkle Stars all set together.  I hope to get back to that project as soon as I finish up the borders on the McCall's Mystery Quilt.

Enough about 2015, I'm ready to start a new project scrappy project for 2016. It's taken me a bit to decide on this year's scrap project.  I started playing around with potential scrappy blocks back in September, but just couldn't settle on anything.  We've been on vacation all week, so I finally had some time to consider all the projects pinned to my Pinterest boards and to look through all my downloaded patterns. There was one pattern I kept coming back too.  After playing around with some setting ideas, it finally became THE scrappy pattern for 2016.  

Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell

I've done some paper piecing but nothing this intricate.  These Vintage Dress blocks will finish at about 7" X 10".  I've played around with a couple of 5 x 5 setting options in EQ.

This setting requires finishing about two blocks a month.  That should be doable.  Plus this pattern would work well with Angela's new addition of an accent color suggestion to this year's RSC. So I'm excited about getting out all my blue and purple scraps and starting that first block.  

I'm looking forward to checking out all the new RSC projects for 2016 over at Soscrappy.  

Friday, January 1, 2016

Sewing Room Successes for 2015

Hard to believe it's already the new year.  I spent the last hours of the old year playing in my sewing room before I was summoned downstairs to participate in the champagne toast and a good luck kiss at midnight.  It was a very good way to end the old year and start the new.  After that, I was ready for bed.

I spent a bit of time yesterday finishing off and archiving my 2015 quilting spreadsheet, then setting up the new one for 2016.  My spreadsheet is my quilting record for the year. I tried to use a journal last year so I would have a non-electronic record, but it only lasted about 4 months before I lost interest in keeping it up.  Paper just doesn't work for me, while I've been really successful in keeping a spreadsheet since 2010.  At any rate here's what my 2015 spreadsheet had recorded for 2015. 

Four finishes.

Flame Test (2014 Rainbow Scrap Challenge Sampler)
Pattern by Angela Feldbush of Soscrappy
Started January 2014, Finished  May 2015

Grand Illusion
The 2014 Bonnie Hunter Mystery Quilt
Started November 2014, Finished September 2015

Experiments in Paisley (Layer Cake Quilt Along)
Pattern by Konda Lukau of 
 Moose on the Porch Quilts
Started November 2010, Finished November 2015

Lily Pond (Back to Square One)
Pattern by Judy Laquidara of Patchwork Times
Started June 2013, Finished December 2015

Of the four quilts only Lily Pond is destined for a new home.  It's a gift for the family that hosted Drama Teen's writing workshop last summer.  I haven't had a chance to get photos of the finished quilt, so I had to make do with the photo of the finished flimsy for this post. Three of the four were on the UFO list by the time they were finished.  Grand Illusion was a WIP at the time it was finished.  I ended 2015 with 17 UFOs, up one from 2014. 

It was a good year on the stash management front. I managed to stay on my fabric diet for the year and only added about 30 yards to the stash in 2015, while using 45 yards.  So for the first time in the six years of stash tracking, I ended the year in the black.  I'm really happy with that accomplishment for 2015.  

It may seem silly, but I also track the number of days where at least 15 minutes gets spent in the sewing room.  As I said it seems a bit silly, but it reminds me to get off the computer and get up out of the recliner to go sew.  With a full time job, an active teenager, and a spouse that travels a lot it can be hard at the end of the day to convince myself I have enough energy to sew.  My worst year ever was 2014, where I only made it to the sewing room 191 days out of 365.  I managed 213 days this year.  So 2015 wasn't my best effort, but it was better than 2014.  

So 2015 was a pretty good year.  I'm going to have to do better on all fronts if I want to achieve my 2016 quilt plan.  Wish me luck, I'm going to need it!