Tuesday, March 29, 2016

March Progress on the Let's Book It Challenge

It's almost the end of March, so it's time to check in with Sharon at Vrooman's Quilts for this month's Let's Book it Challenge.  

My Let's Book it Challenge project has been a long term project.  Poinsettias was started back in March of 2014.  Long term project indeed!  To be fair  it also doubles as my leaders and enders project, so it's not on the fast track to being completed.  But since I've been making an effort to get into the sewing room more in 2016, progress seems to go be moving faster. 

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

Six of the nine blocks are assembled. The sashing for this quilt is also pieced, so there is still a ways to go yet.  Once I get Allietare into a finished flimsy, Poinsettias will probably take over the design wall and become the focus project for the month.  That probably won't happen till June or July.  But I do hope to get this one to at least the finished flimsy stage by the end of the year.  There are at least 2 potential Let's Book It projects waiting in the wings.  So I won't be at a loss when this one is done. I've already picked out a new leaders and enders project too, so I'm ready to get this one done.  

Monday, March 28, 2016

Weekend Stitching: Completion of One Monthly Goal for March

We had a pretty relaxed Easter weekend.  Drama Teen has one more day off of school, but My Guy and I have to go back to work this morning.  At least my big project at work is winding down, just the report writing is left.  So I'll be spending lots of time at the computer this week.  

Since we ended up staying home for Easter weekend, I was able to get in some significant time in the sewing room.  Enough time that I was able to finish stitching down the binding onto the McCall's Mystery quilt. 

I didn't finish until about 9 PM last night, so there wasn't time to get good pictures.  That probably won't happen till next weekend when I have time to do some staging.  But I was able to get  decent shot of all 4 bound corners.  This is my first finish for 2016 and the third time I've met my one monthly goal. 

Picking one goal a month has been really helpful to me.  It helps me focus on getting at least one project moved ahead.  I tend to work on multiple projects at a time, so the focus on one helps me set priorities in the sewing room when I only have a limited amount of time to stitch.  So far in 2016 that's resulted in finished top and a completed quilt.  I will definitely be picking a goal for April.  

Linking up with 
Red Letter Quilts for One Monthly Goal
Love Laugh Quilt for Monday Making
Cooking up Quilts for Main Crush Monday
Patchwork Times for Design Wall Monday

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Slow Stitching and Stash Management for the 13th week of 2016

It's a rainy morning here at Life in Pieces. No Easter egg hunts for us.  Which is OK, we have no little ones to hide the eggs for anymore.  Though Drama Teen asked last night if the Easter Bunny was still going to visit her.  It's the only day we've ever let her have candy for breakfast and she's still enough of a kid to not want to give that up.

On the stitching front, Friday has been the only day this week I had any significant stitching time in the sewing room out of the last two weeks. But I made do with some hand stitching when we were in Texas.  

This project is my "road work" project, it goes along on most of our road trips.  I don't typically work on it at home where time in the sewing room usually wins out.  This afternoon's hand stitching will be finishing up the binding on the McCall's Mystery quilt.  There's just one side left to stitch down. I should have a finish before the end of the day.  

I did get a bit of machine stitching done this week and finished up one of the star blocks for Allietare.  Yesterday evening, I figured out how to fix the error in the second brown vintage dress block, so it's done too.  That was it for fabric usage this week. 

Used last week:  0.21 yards
Used in March:  0.86 yards
Used year to date:  16.98 yards
Purchased this week:  7 yards
Net used for 2016: 9.98 yards

This week's addition to the stash was planned.  There are 4 graduation quilts on my to do list for May 2017.  The stash didn't have the right purple fabric with enough yardage to make the Zombies in Paris quilt.  So these two purples came home with me yesterday. 

As soon as the McCall's Mystery quilt is finished up, I'll start on this quilt.  So these should start going back out soon.  One other fabric made it home, but it's also destined for one of the graduation quilts. 

I have most of the fabrics for the Math Quilt this piece is intended for.  It's probably next in line after Zombies in Paris. So this fabric should start going out before the end of the year.  I'm trying to finish a quilt before I start a new one.  I won't make any headway with the project count, but I'm at least getting some of the UFOs off my list. 

I also track the days where at least 15 minutes of stitching happens.  I count the hand embroidery as stitching so there were a few days during spring break where I got in some stitching time. 

Days with 15 minutes of stitching time this week:  5 days
This month:  18 out of 26 days
This year:  70 out of 86 days

Not bad considering there were two business trips and a family vacation this month.  

You can find more slow stitching over at Kathy's Quilts and more on stash management over at Patchwork Times.  

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Rainbow Scrap Challenge: Playing Catch Up

It's the last Saturday in March and the first time all month that I've linked up with Rainbow Scrap Challenge over at Soscrappy.  I got in a lot of stitching time yesterday and had planned to have the second brown dress from last month ready to show off today.  Unfortunately, I made an error in the paper piecing and there's some significant un-sewing that has to be done to fix it.   

Even though I wasn't ready to move on to this month's color, the purple fabrics for March's dresses did get selected.   I really had hoped to start on those today.  

 Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell

The dark purple on the left looks black in the photo, but it really is purple.  I'm looking forward to starting on these later this weekend. Purple is one of my favorite colors to sew with.   I'll have to pull the fabrics for April's color as well.  Maybe I'll work on those first and work in the purple dresses as I can.   

Friday, March 25, 2016

Stitching Interruptus (Otherwise Known as Spring Break)

It's been over a week since my last blog post, mainly because I've not had anything stitchy to report on. I still don't have anything stitchy to write about because last week was spring break.  Drama Teen, her BFF and I were off

beach bumming in Galveston, TX, though the photo is actually of Surfside beach.  Surfside is actually better for swimming than the Galveston beaches.  When we lived in Texas, our house was about 20 minutes from this beach.  

We rented a historic bungalow a few blocks from the Seawall in Galveston.

It was a great little place on quiet street, but close enough that we could walk to some of the best restaurants in Galveston.  If you've never eaten at Guido's, you've definitely missed some of the best seafood to be found on the Gulf Coast.  

There were amusement parks to visit, 

Rides at the Pleasure Pier on Galveston Island
ferries to ride, 

Ferry between Galveston Island and the Bolivar Peninsula.

museums to visit, 

Butterfly Garden at the Houston Museum of Natural History

And of course time for a coffee break with a good book.  

It was a very enjoyable week away from it all.  We got back on Sunday and I promptly boarded a plane and headed back to Houston, TX on a business trip.  So now that I'm scheduled to be  home for awhile, stitching and posting should get back to a more normal pace.  We are off work for Good Friday.  My plan is to spend some time in the sewing room, I'm in desperate need of an attitude adjustment and some significant stitching time should do the trick.  I should get going on that if I plan to have anything to post for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge tomorrow.  Have a very happy Easter.  If you don't celebrate Easter, have a wonderful weekend.  

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Mid-Month Progress Report

It's been a busy week, with not a lot of time to stitch.  That's been typical this month.  Looking at the work schedules, I knew that March was going to be lean on stitching time.  But there has been some progress on the four WIPs currently in rotation.  Though I don't have pictures of all of them.  

The McCall's Mystery Quilt is this month's "one monthly goal".  The binding has been sewn to the front and I'm working on getting the hand stitching done.  

I'm still working on the second brown Vintage Dress for last month's color.  This dress has lots of little pieces and it's taking a lot longer to assemble. I haven't picked the fabric for this month's purple and yellow dresses.  Those may not get started until April.  

I have made visible progress on Allietare.  

  Allietare , Bonnie Hunter's 2015 Mystery Quilt

A few more red blocks are finished, just nine more left to make.  All the blue alternate blocks are made, they just aren't up on the design wall at the moment.

Poinsettias is moving along slowly.  Since it is my leaders and enders project, it only moves forward when everything else moves forward.  

So I'm still stitching, just not as much as I would like.  I'm hoping that April will be a much slower month at work and that I can pick up some steam with my stitching.  

I'm linking up with Kelly over at My Quilt Infatuation for Needle and Thread Thursday.  

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Slow Stitching and Stash Management (Week 11 of 2016)

March has really roared in like a lion.  I'm not talking about the weather at the moment.  One of two business trips is done, though I'm still writing up the report.  Last week was Energy Days.  That's a science program for the local 5th graders.  Volunteers did demos for 900 kids over the course of 3 days.  As the organizer's spouse, I'm part of the set and take down crew.  I'm also the fill in for any slots where My Guy can't get volunteers.  I was ready for an energy transplant once we got all the demos packed and unloaded at the storage facility Thursday afternoon.  There's still one business trip on the horizon, hopefully I can get the report done for the last one before I have to head out for this one.  

I've been catching what time I can in the sewing room working on my one monthly goal for March.  The plan is to finish off the McCall's Mystery quilt.  The label is made, the binding is made and finally on Friday night the binding got stitched to the front of the quilt.  Now I'm working on slow stitching the binding to the back. 

I count the fabric used in the binding as out once it's attached to the quilt.  That's good because that's about all I have to report as outgoing this week. 

Used last week:  0.65 yards
Used in March: 0.65 yards
Used year to date:  16.77 yards
Purchased year to date:  0 yards
Net used for 2016:  16.77 yards

This year I've been trying to get into the sewing room for at least 15 minutes every day.  I did really well in January, fell off the wagon in February, but did pretty well at getting back on the stitching bandwagon this month. 

This week:  7 out of 7 days with 15 minutes of stitching
This month:  9 out of 12 days
This year: 61 out of 72 days

Hopefully I can keep up the momentum now that I've got it back. 

That's it for me this weekend.  You can find more slow stitching over at Kathy's Quilts and more stash management over at Patchwork Times.  

Monday, March 7, 2016

March One Monthly Goal

There's been no Internet at our house since last Tuesday.  Drama Teen broke the wires in the power supply cable for the router. It's taken us a week to find a solution that didn't involve buying a new router (that's another story entirely).  After finding a replacement power supply and buying the proper adapters, we were back on-line this evening.  

Internet is back just in time for me to link up with Red Letter Quilts for March's version of One Monthly Goal.  Work is going to require some travel this month, so there are some days I'm just not going to be home to stitch.  So in consideration of that, I'm needing an easy goal for the month.  The McCall's Mystery quilt was sent out for quilting last month. 

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

It came back from the being quilted last week.  The plan for March is to bind and label this quilt.  The binding is all cut and is almost assembled.  Hopefully I'll have it sewn to the quilt by the end of the week. 

You can check out other goals for March over at Red Letter Quilts