Monday, April 29, 2019

Daisy Chain: Playing Catch Up

It's catch up time for the Daisy Chain Mystery quilt along. 

Alison is giving everyone three weeks to get all caught up on the bits and pieces needed to start assembling the next step on May 6th.  But you can link up today over at Little Bunny Quilts to show off all the progress on your block components. 

Here's a sampling of my bits and pieces for the twin sized quilt.  I've finished all but the border block D (far left) pieces.  I only need 8 more of those and I'll be ready for the next step when it gets posted.  I'm very curious to see how all these pieces fit together in the final quilt. 

Checking One Off the To Do List

It's been a whirlwind month.  April started with a week long business trip, followed by two weeks of some type of respiratory crud, a trip to see the Scientist in Training for Easter and then a weekend away for a family wedding.  Not a lot of time for stitching, so I wasn't sure that my "to do" item for the April One Monthly Goal was going to get checked off the list. 

The plan was to finish the binding on the Christmas Mystery quilt. With all the travel and not feeling well, it wasn't as easy to get all those hand stitches in, but that did happen last week.  I finally got decent pictures last night, just in time to post today. 

Ho Ho Ho (Christmas Mystery)
designed by Carrie Randall (Quilter's Hideaway)

This was a fun mystery quilt along. I also learned how to make a Dresden plate block, that was a new skill.  My favorite block is probably the nutcracker.  I embroidered on facial features because My Guy thought it was too creepy left blank. My Guy was right, the nutcracker looks more finished and polished with the mustache.  The poinsettia border fabric has been in the stash forever.   The blocks were made from scraps and left overs from other projects. I can't claim it emptied any of the stash bins, but no new fabric was added.  

I'm pretty pleased with the label.

Yes, I know it says March 2019. It was supposed to have been finished last month, but it didn't happen.  In 10 years it won't matter if it got finished in March or April, it was at least finished in the right year.  I'm planning to keep this one for myself to use at Christmas time.  

The talented Trudy custom quilted this one with a swirly beard and swirling snowflakes in the block backgrounds. She kept the whimsy I was aiming for with the quilting.  

This is quilt finish number 2 for 2019.  So I'm 1/6th of the way to finishing off my UFO PHD for 2019.

Just ten more UFOs and three new starts to finish off before December 31st.  I may be just getting a bachelors degree this year.

Linking up with The One Monthly Goal April Finishes, Monday Making and Design Wall Monday.  Ho Ho Ho is also on my second quarter list for the 2nd Quarter 2019 Finish Along, so I'll be linking up there come July.  

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Week 17 of 2019: Stitching and De-stashing

Finding time for all the things you want to do once you've managed to get through even part of the stuff you have to do or are supposed to do is tough.  Finding (taking?) those 15 minutes to play with fabric is so worth it, it adds a bit of sanity into what recently has been a packed on the go schedule with not a lot of down time.  How did you do this week at finding a bit of serenity in middle of the daily run around? 

The respiratory crud finally decide to quit tormenting me, so it was easier this week to not only fit the time to stitch, but actually feel like doing some stitching.

15 minute days/week = 7/7 days
15 minute days/April = 19/27 days
15 minute days/2019 = 105/117 days
Success rate = 89.74%

By rounding rules, I'm back to my goal of stitching 90% of the time. Hopefully, there won't be any other months like April this year. There is one more business trip planned for July, but it's only a two day one, rather than a week long one.  May will be a bit busy. Moving the Scientist in Training into an off campus apartment (I think the plan is for her and her roommate to stick it out there till they both graduate).  Hopefully that will be about it.  I'm ready for a few weekends at home to tackle a few have too chores, plus fit in a solo sewing retreat for one weekend. Hope your stitching week was a good one.  You can link up at the bottom of the post to share how your stitching week went.  

Reporting on the stash usage has been hit or miss this month. There's been a bit of stash out this month. 

Fabric out this week = 0.33 yards
Fabric out for 2019 = 19.25 yards
More out than in for 2019

I've done a good job of staying out of quilt shops and just deleting the quilt shop emails.  I keep reminding myself of all the fabric stashed away in the sewing room.  I'm going to try really hard to make even just a little dent in what's been stashed away over the last few years.  Linking up with Quiltpaintcreate for the stash report. 

How did your stitchy week go?  

1. Julie in GA
2. Marti
3. Meloney
4. Chrisknits
5. Frederique
6. Libby in TN
7. Mary-kay
8. di
9. Angie in SoCal
10. DawnyK
11. Amanda
12. Christina's Handicrafts

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Monday, April 22, 2019

Weekend Stitching: Just Bits and Pieces

I'd really like a do over for last week, in just about every possible way. Upsetting things going on at work last week involving some long time and well liked co-workers.  The Scientist in Training received some very unexpected and significantly bad news over the weekend concerning her job. Plus the respiratory crud I caught on my business trip was still making me pretty miserable.  Thankfully I felt much better yesterday and was able to sleep without a dose of Benadryl before bed last night.  Hopefully that means the crud is fading fast. That should make it easier to cope with the ramifications of last week as we navigate this week.  

Consequently there wasn't a lot of stitching going on last week.  I was hoping to finish off the Christmas Mystery quilt, but didn't quite finish stitching down the binding.  That should happen this week. 

The only other visible progress was on the Storm at Sea project. 

A few more of the blue diamond blocks were added to the design wall.  The pattern is starting to show up much better with those additions.  I'm hoping to make a start on the purple blocks this week, as well as make some more progress on the dark blue diamonds.  

The one bright spot this week was the beautiful weather.  We took a stroll in one of the local botanical gardens with the cameras.  It's definitely spring. 

I loved the blue flowers. The moths were also out and about enjoying the floral bounty. 

I've got more floral pretties, but it's time for work so that's it for me this week.  Linking up with the typical Monday show and tells.  

Monday Design Wall
Monday Making

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Week 16 of 2019: Stitching and Destashing

Happy Easter Sunday.  We typically spend the holiday with My Guys family, but the Scientist in Training has too much school work (she's down to just two weeks left before finals) for her to get away, so we are spending the day with her.  I'll work in a bit of stitching time this afternoon, though it may just be 15 minutes. 

Unfortunately, the respiratory crud that I caught on my business trip is still hanging on, so a couple of days this week, I was in bed pretty early and missed out on my stitching time. 

15 minute days/week = 5/7 days
15 minute days/April = 12/20 days
15 minute days/2019 = 98/110 days
Success rate = 89.09%

So I'm a bit short of my goal to stitch at least 90% of the time.  Hopefully I've turned the corner on this sinus infection and will do better on finding time to stitch this week.  I knew April was going to be challenging with so much on the calendar, being sick didn't help. 

How did your stitchy week go?  

1. Julie in GA
2. Marti
3. Chrisknits
4. Mary-kay
5. Amanda
6. Angie in SoCal
7. DawnyK
8. Christina's Handicrafts

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Thursday, April 18, 2019

Daisy Chain Mystery - Clue 4 in Progress

It's been a bit rough the last couple of weeks, a business trip and this respiratory illness have really impacted my sewing time. Alison (Little Bunny Quilts) released clue 4 of the Daisy Chain Mystery on Monday, so I'm catch up mode at the moment.  

This clue calls for more 4 patches, though linear rather than square. 

My stitching time has been limited, but I've gotten one strip set made and have a few of the border chunks completed.  Someone called my tan fabrics serene rather than boring, I like that description.  With such serene border colors, that black paisley should take center stage, which was the plan.   

I'm still working on getting all of the clue 3 blocks finished, just ten more to make there.  Clue 4 ends the parts and pieces part of the mystery quilt.  We've got a few weeks to catch up before clue 5, where we start assembling the quilt, comes out on May 6th.  So if you haven't made a start you definitely have some time to select some fabrics and catch up on making the parts and pieces.  

Monday, April 15, 2019

Weekend Stitching: Good to Be Home

After a hectic business trip to the West Coast last week, I've spent most of the weekend trying to recover from the sinus crude that showed up while I was on the road. I'm still feeling pretty crappy, but at least the fever is gone.  It's nice to be home.  The sewing room doesn't have magical healing properties, but it was as great distraction from my symptoms.  

I spent some recovery time just sitting and hand stitching the binding for Christmas Mystery quilt, while binge watching the Great British Baking Show on Netflix. 

I'm just about to turn the third corner. So this project should reach the finish line before the end of the week.  

Progress was also made on the Storm at Sea quilt. 

Storm at Sea
Paper Piecing Class by Carrie Randell (Quilter's Hideaway)

All the dark blue Economy blocks are finished, I'm still working on the paper pieced dark blue diamonds.  There's a stack of unfinished  diamonds over at the sewing machine.  Hopefully, I'll be ready to start on the purple blocks sometime this week.  I'm really liking how this project is coming together.  

That's it for this week.  Linking up with the regular Monday show and tell linkies. 

Monday Making
Monday Design Wall

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Week 15 of 2019: Stitching and De-Stashing

My apologies that this week's post is a bit late.  It wasn't my intent to sleep in this morning, but my body had other ideas.  It's been a pretty miserable week on a number of fronts that severely impacted my stitching time. Hopefully your efforts to fit in 15 minutes of stitching time worked out better than mine did.  

Last Sunday started out at 4:15 AM with the drive to the airport for a business trip to the West Coast. Tuesday afternoon, either my allergies were on the rampage or a respiratory virus kicked in and I was pretty miserable from there on out.  Then to top it off, my flight home on Thursday was delayed till the next morning, so I spent the night in a hotel without any luggage (thankfully the Benadryl was in the computer bag). I ended up changing flights Friday morning because they kept delaying my original flight.  I spent the rest of Friday in bed trying to recover from whatever had taken over my sinuses.  Consequently there wasn't a lot of stitching time this week.

15 minute days/week = 1/7 days
15 minute days/April = 7/13 days
15 minute days/2019 = 93/102 days
Success rate = 90.29%

At least I'm still on track with my goal of stitching 90% of the days in 2019.  I've got one more business trip this year in July, but thankfully it's only 2 days.  Hopefully, I won't get sick on that one.  

I did manage to make it into the sewing room for a while yesterday afternoon and made enough progress to have something to post for this week's stash report. 

Fabric out this week = 0.32
Fabric out in 2019 = 18.24 yards
More out than in for 2019

I'm doing better on my stash busting goal this year. But it's getter harder and harder to resist some of those newer fabric lines.  Linking up with Quiltpaintcreate for the weekly stash report. 

So how did your stitchy week go?  

1. Chrisknits
2. Julie in GA
3. maggie f
4. Marti
5. Amanda
6. DawnyK
7. Christina's Handicrafts

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Saturday, April 13, 2019

2019 Finish Along: Second Quarter Ambitions

We are already at the end of the second week in April,  almost half way through the first month of the second quarter.  The linky party for the Second Quarter 2019 Finish Along is up and running.

So it's time to focus on what might become a finish before the end of the quarter.  Back in December of last year, I put together a list of quilts to finish up in 2019.  So far only one quilt has come off the list, but I'm close too finishes on the next two.  So those will definitely go on the list for second quarter.

1.  Christmas Mystery Quilt (Ho Ho Ho) - Just needs the binding sewn to the back.  

Ho Ho Ho (Christmas Mystery)
designed by Carrie Randall (Quilter's Hideaway)

2.  Christmas Angels - Ready to be sent out for quilting

Christmas Angels
Pattern by Kate

The last three quilts all need quite a bit of work.  I doubt all three will get finished this quarter, but they'll go on the list in hopes I'm really, really motivated the next couple of months. 

3.  Vintage Dresses - Needs borders, backing, prepping, quilting and binding. 

 Vintage Dresses by dress blocks by Charise Randell, setting by Kate

4.  Red, White and Blue Stars - Blocks done.  Needs sashing and broders, backing, prepping, quilting and binding.

White and Blue Stars
Setting by Kate

5.  Twinkle Stars - Needs assembly, backing, prepping, quilting and binding.

Twinkle Stars
Tutorial by Andrea Feldbush of Soscrappy

Being realistic, the first three quilts on the list should make it to completion this quarter.  I really hope to make really good progress on number 4, but doubt that number 5 progresses any this quarter. 

Linking up with the 2019 Second Quarter Quilt Along post.  Wishing you a fun, productive and quilty second quarter.  

Sunday, April 7, 2019

Week 14 of 2019: De-stashing and Stitching

This has been one of those weeks where the days have just flown by. Finding time for even just 15 minutes of stitching has been a challenge. 

It was close a couple of nights this week, but I did manage to fit in a bit of stitching each day.

15 minute days/week = 7/7 days
15 minute days/March = 30/31 days
15 minute days/April = 6/6 days
15 minute days/2019 = 92/96 days
Success rate = 95.83%

How did your efforts finding time to stitch go this week?

1. Julie in GA
2. Chrisknits
3. Meloney F
4. Marti
5. Shasta
6. Mary-Kay
7. DawnyK
8. Deana
9. Amanda
10. Christina's Handicrafts

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Saturday, April 6, 2019

April To Do's

Six days into the a new month and it's already been a bit of a madhouse.  Unfortunately, it's not going to get a lot better anytime soon.  A week long business trip, Easter and a family wedding are going to keep me pretty busy this month.  So the April One Monthly Goal needs to be a pretty light one. 

There's lots to choose from, but not a lot of it is doable based on the time I'll have in the sewing room.  Based my time constraints this month, finishing off the Christmas Mystery quilt is probably  doable. 

The binding has been sewn to the front of the quilt.  As of last night, I had turned one corner with the stitching the binding to the back.  It's a small quilt, so I should be able to finish it up even with a packed calendar.  

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Daisy Chain Mystery: Focus on the Focal Fabric

Yesterday Alison released clue #3 for the Daisy Chain Mystery quilt along

Now we get to play with the focus fabric.  

I love this dark paisley print, it works very nicely in this week's ribbon blocks.  These blocks take a bit more effort (and trimming) then the 4 patches in clue 1 and 2.  I only managed about half the count needed for the throw size quilt.  But the other half should come together pretty quickly when I find a solid hour to stitch later this week.  There's still time to grab the other other two clues and stitch along. Clues are posted every 2 weeks over at Alison's blog, Little Bunny Quilts.  

Monday, April 1, 2019

Weekend Stitching: How's it Going?

Weekend's are definitely too short.  March was too short. April marks the start of the second quarter of 2019.  One fourth of the year is already over.  There's still three quarters of the year left. Seems like a good time to check on how well I'm doing with those lofty quilty goals outlined in this post for the 2019 Planning Party.  

First goal was UFO reduction.  The strategy for 2019 was to pick and prioritize 12 quilts.  I'd start with #1 on the list and work on it till it was done and then move on to #2.  So how's that working?  

Inverted Star was a finished flimsy at the beginning of the year, it needed a backing made and prepping for quilting.  

The binding was finished in March.  

Inverted Star (Second Star to the Right)
 Inverted Star block by Jessica Boschem of Common Threads available from Blueprint 
Setting by Kate, Started January 1, 2014, Finished March 11, 2019

The Christmas Mystery Quilt (HO HO HO) was the second quilt on the list.  It also needed a backing made and prepping for quilting.  My Guy also insisted that the nutcracker was too creepy, it needed a face stitched in.  

Christmas Mystery
designed by Carrie Randall (Quilter's Hideaway)

Those things got done.  The quilting is done, the binding and labels made.  The label's been pinned in place, I hope to start stitching on the binding tonight. This one should be finished by the end of April

Number three on my list was another Christmas quilt.  

This project needed borders added before it was ready for backing and prepping. 

 Christmas Angels
Pattern by Kate

The borders are done, the backing made and prepping for quilting happened was finished last night.  It's ready to go out for quilting.  

So projects are moving along, slowly, but they are moving.  All three of these projects were on my list for the 2019 Finish Along.  

My last two ambitions were on finding time to stitch and to sew from the stash.  I've managed to find stitching time 86 out of the 90 days so far this year.  That's not shabby at all.  Both new projects started this year, the Daisy Chain Mystery.

Daisy Chain Mystery
2019 Little Bunny Quilts Mystery
by Alison of Honey, Bunny & Doll Designs

and the Storm at Sea quilt

Storm at Sea
Paper Piecing Class by Carrie Randell (Quilter's Hideaway)

were made with stash fabrics.  I've added a bit of new fabric, but first quarter ended with more out of the stash then into the stash. 

So first quarter's been pretty good.  I'd probably do better at finishing projects if I'd quit starting new projects, but what's the fun in that?  

Hope your year has been productive. Linking up with the normal Monday linky parties and the 2019 First Quarter Finish Along when it's posted.  

Design Wall Monday
2019 First Quarter Finish Along