Monday, December 31, 2007

New Years Resolutions

I don't really like the term resolutions... I would rather think of them as modifications for next year. This year I hope to:

  1. Focus more on my quilting business
  2. Reduce/revise my fabric stash
  3. Finish some UFOs & PIGS
  4. Try to simplify and organize my life a bit.
  5. Be more consistent with my blog posts

I'm tired of constantly running around to keep "putting out fires" That chaos was supposed to stop when I left the Post Office. Oh well, we will see. Maybe I need to follow the mantra of the sports giant Nike... JUST DO IT. No putting things off, or I'll finish this later. Just do it now, then move on to the next thing.

My December quilting schedule was rather thin until I had 4 quilts come in on ONE day. And of course they were for Christmas... well 3 were. So, I was quilting like mad for about 2 weeks with the scheduled quilts and the "drop-ins". It was kinda nice, but I wouldn't want it that crazy all the time.

I had to finish piecing Ruby's hearts. She just ran out of time and gave me the whole thing in a bag and said "do what you can with it". It wasn't exactly like the pattern in the book, but she loved it.

Another of my favorites this month was Gail's "puzzle quilt". It was another of her shoebox swaps. There are 12 different blocks each done with different light/dark arrangements. It really is neat to see how the placement changes the blocks. Leggs was getting ready to attack his sister just as I took the picture.

On the stash front, I did some re-arranging of furniture and have all my unattached fabrics in one bookcase. It doesn't look quite so bad all in one rather than two. I know it's not much compared to some people, but it really is more than I need. Especially since it doesn't seem to be the right stuff.
I tried to make a table runner for a friend's birthday last week. It took longer to find the right fabric than to make the runner! Everything I picked out was just not right- too something or not something enough. My plan for this problem is if it won't play nice in this project- Cut it up for the strip bins and then it can play nice in a scrap quilt. Unless it's good-size yardage (1-1/2 or bigger).

All my UFOs are on two (slightly sagging) shelves and another shelf is just fabric that belongs together, but has no definite pattern yet. I'm thinking about "kitting" some of my PIGs. Once they are cut, the remaining fabric can go into the stash for other things. As it is, I won't touch anything in the UFO/PIG shelf for fear of leaving another project short. It might also get me interested in some of those old projects again.

I have started not one but 2 new quilts. The Quiltville Mystery, and a quick Christmas mystery called "just my size". Both are really good for stash busting. I'm going to go through my UFOs and add the list to my blog so I can (hopefully) track my progress.

I did get my December Log Cabin swap blocks out- and even on time- They had to go out by the end of the month. I mailed them at 11:45 am on 12/31. OK, so the Post Office was closing at noon, but they are gone- Yea Me!

So in short, I should get off the computer and get quilting- There's stuff to do.

Happy & Healthy New Year to everyone out there in Quilt-blog-land.

Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends...
Tell me where to get more wax!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

OK, now I'm officially behind on the Quiltville mystery quilt. Bonnie has posted the second clue and I haven't done anything more on step one than look at my 1.5" bin and try and figure out lights and darks. I need more hours in the day!!!

I think it's going to be scrappy darks and some fairly controlled lights since I have bolts of a wide beige toile & a wide yellow toile. 1.5 X 108 makes a LOT of little squares (LOL) and for the accent I don't know if I should use one of my "avoided" blues or some red tone-on-tone that I also have a bolt of. I'm leaning toward the red because the blues are boring... part of the reason I avoid them... and I can always cut up the blue and mix them with the other dark/mediums. OK That's a plan. Now to execute it... Wish me luck, and I hope Bonnie waits a bit to post clue #3.

"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
Tell me where to get more wax!

I Hate Snow!

It snowed on Monday...All Day on Monday...and on Tuesday...All Day Tuesday... 14- 16 inches of that blasted white stuff. Yes, I know, it's picturesque, and I live in Maine, and it's December, but I still hate the stuff.

Maybe I'm just grumpy because while everyone else had a snow day, I didn't get to go 100 feet to my warm quilt studio and spend the day warm and productive. No, I had to drive 10 miles in the snow to my husband's radio station at 5:30 in the morning to handle the cancellation calls and record the announcements. He couldn't do it because he had to go to his regular (almost full time) job. So I guess the message here is when you hear those cancellation announcements on the radio or TV, remember, somebody went out in the mess, so you don't have to.

Enough whining about the snow- I did see something cool yesterday. The wind caused this interesting "wave" to form off the roof over the back door. I got pictures, but I'm glad it fell. It was right over the back door and those icicles could have hurt.

As far as quilting- not much going on with all the other schedule interruptions. I have just finished a customer quilt. It was just a panto on a lap throw. The actual quilting took about 4 hours, but it took 3 days to do it little bits at a time- ARGH! I have got to figure out a better schedule. Or should I say ANY schedule?

"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
Tell me where to get more wax!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

I didn't think there was much to post about today, all I did was busy-work. Baking bread for the week, laundry, you know, basic "stuff".

On a more quilty note, I did get a customer quilt about half done and I am going to TRY to do the Quiltville Mystery quilt. I have some 1-1/2" strips cut already and I think this would be a good way to get rid of some of that fabric I keep avoiding. If Bonnie can manage to plan the quilt and sew it with all the other stuff she has going on, I can at least give it a shot. Sometimes I think her days have more hours than mine! :)

I'm going to try the Mr. Linky thing on JudyL's blog, but for my last post, since that's really where my stashbusting report is.

So my To-Do list for Monday is:

  1. Finish the customer quilt and load the next one.

  2. Finish the Log Cabin swap blocks that were due in November (oops)

  3. Spend some time making 3-1/2" rail fence blocks.

That doesn't sound too bad. And they are expecting this year's first "Killer Storm" Monday and Tuesday, so maybe I can just sit inside and sew.

"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
Tell me where to get more wax!"

Saturday, December 01, 2007


OK, I know it, I'm a bad blogger. It's not like I don't have great stuff I want to post, I just think about it when I'm not near the computer, haven't uploaded pictures, "will do it later", all the usual excuses. I guess it comes back to the whole disorganized thing. Which brings up the next item...

It seems the New Years Resolutions are starting early this year. JudyL has posted a stash busting challenge on her blog I re-arranged my sewing room and was reminded just how much fabric (and UFO's) I really have. Most I still love, but some I just keep avoiding... it's too blue, not blue enough, it's a big piece and I don't want to waste it on a small project... I just avoid it. SO I believe I see a lot of scrap quilting in my future.

The second challenge is from the Stashbusters look back at November and see what we actually DID and what we have learned. Well, here goes:

  • Quilted 10 customer quilts.

  • Finished quilting and returned a group of 9 charity quilts.
  • Finished 2 quilts of my own- both completely from stash
  • Completed 1 year of not buying fabric "just because" only bought borders, backing or binding to finish existing projects.
  • Had a table at a local craft fair. (Didn't sell anything but made great contacts)
  • Actually got some quilts to a local shop for consignment, and sold one!
  • Learned not to move whole folders of pictures on the computer in an effort to get them organized. (Don't want to think about what I lost)
  • Actually did better at staying on schedule with customer quilts. (baby steps)
All in all not bad I guess. December will be even better.

This is the quilt that sold. It was a mystery quilt from ages ago. I couldn't find all the directions so I just finished it on my own. The lady who bought it is hanging it over her couch.

This is one of JudyL's quilt for an hour projects. And that's how I did it. Just took an hour every (almost) evening and treated myself to some piecing time. And it really got done! All from stash and a "controlled scrappy" look.

This is the Atkinson Designs pattern "Tic-Tac-Mo" But since it is all the colors I saw out my window this fall, It should be "Tic-Tac-Maine" Again, all from the stash.

So, my goals for December:

  • Keep up with the customer quilts
  • Finish at least one UFO for me
  • Post to my blog on a regular basis.
  • Stay strong and not buy any "just because" fabric.
  • Use some of the fabric I'm avoiding.

That seems like a plan- we'll see

"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends...
Tell me where to get more wax!"