Travelling Quilt-Month One

My Modern Quilt Guild has started a fun project! We’re making “travelling quilts”. In essence, this is the same concept as a Round Robin quilt, except anything can be added, as opposed to just borders. We’ve settled on an amount of square inches to be added, so that we all have roughly the same size quilt when we’re finished. It was so, so much fun seeing each person’s starting block! I’m excited to see what comes of this process, and how it will grow my skills as I add to each quilt. This is the first “travelling quilt” that was passed to me, Patty O’s block. She asked for a “Garden Party”, and anything can go in that you’d find in a flower garden, bugs, butterflies, etc.

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I heart it so much, that it’s now difficult for me to think of what I might add. All I know is that I want to bring my A game! Here’s my fabric pull thus far for the project, although I’m not sure what they will become. But, in true me fashion, I wanted to match the colors well first! =}

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Any thoughts?

A Scrappy Tree

I was able to get another quilt off my UFO list this week. This one has a pretty quick deadline, so I was thankful when I put the last few stitches in last night!

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How are you all doing on your UFO’s? I’d like to challenge you to work them into your sewing time weekly, biweekly, or monthly. Think how many UFO’s you could finish before the end of the year!

Slant Six Mystery Quilt

In an effort to move things from To Do to Ta Da, I’ve been chipping away at the UFO list these past few days! One of those things I wanted to get done was my Slant Six Mystery Quilt, from Aby’s blog! A Mystery Quilt-along was something I was reticent to do. I don’t generally do mystery quilts, because I like to see the quilt before I commit to making it! But I trust Aby, and I’m glad I made this one! I’m considering not adding borders!

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UFO List, And Not Keeping One

A UFO is not an Unidentified Flying Object to a quilter! It’s an Un-Finished Object! Also called Works In Progress, these little items that we just haven’t finished sewing nag us into quilt guilt. Life has enough unpleasant things, so I don’t like to keep a long list of UFO’s. At most, before my current list, I had something like seven or eight ongoing projects. Right now, that number hovers closer to twenty! I haven’t even uncovered all the partial projects that I’ve packed away! As an added bonus, I can’t find the painter’s tape in order to pin baste the UFO’s that need quilting, which are quite a few!. Oh, the joys of moving! =}

Truly, though, I feel the need to tackle this quilty list of things to finish. When you’re facing a long to do list, and you get that slightly overwhelmed feeling, just start somewhere. In fact, much like Dave Ramsey, I suggest you start with the smallest task, or the one closest to completion. After that small “win”, work on whatever you’re most passionate about at the time, or continue to work on the smallest item.

This method has worked for me time and time again. Let’s hope for a productive fall!

New Sewing Space

We’ve finally set up my sewing space into what it will look like for a while. Until we put money into a new kitchen table, and then move the table into this room, etc. etc. etc. {It doesn’t end when you have a house, does it?} It’s good to have the Bernina set up and in its interim spot. I have an L shaped space in this new sewing area, for which I’m very thankful! It looks as though it will work well. Now I feel like I can work up a storm! =}

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A Second Bee Block-Triple Star

This bee block wasn’t anywhere near as hard as the last one! I needed to get completely caught up today, and thankfully I did! Hooray for completed things! If you’re game, this triple star isn’t as hard as it looks, especially if you do more than one. I’m considering it for my month, but we shall see. I like some of the other ones in the book, Modern Bee, as well! =}

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A Bee Block

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This was hard. I mean really hard, until I started sewing, that is. I’ve put this little block off for an entire month plus a week. I finally determined I was going to get it made, and put it in the mail. It was due in August. Yes, I am late this month. I’ve notified the appropriate people. Robyn’s parameters were the grey fabric and the black and white fabric. Everything else was supposed to be “fabric we love”. Welll……I love blues and greens. I do, honestly, have more blue and green fabric than I do many other colors combined. I tried, valiantly, to make my beloved blue and green work for this block. But they just didn’t match. In the end, I used exactly the colors and placement in the book, Modern Bee, with some prints I like very much. Close enough, and the block turned out pretty!

Are you struggling to sew something? Could it be that you need to rethink your choices?

Quilt Sleeve and Shows

I don’t really make show quilts. I make things I like, and mostly give them away! But every so often a friend asks me to submit a few things to be judged. I hem and haw, trying to pick out my own “best work” and try to fit the theme of the show. Then it’s a race to see if I can make myself put on sleeves and labels and then cover the labels, etc. I’m at the “sleeve” stage right now. it’s certainly not a fun part of quilting, but it’s a worthwhile chore, especially as a modern quilter. Why? Because modern quilting is quilting. There should be modern quilts at any quilt show, so my theory is always to make the show interesting. I could beat myself up all day long about what’s pretty, my favorite, most popular, perfect colors, etc. At the end of the day, it’s all about having a pleasing variety of quilts in the show! So, here I am, sewing a sleeve onto a black quilt. =}

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UFO Question

One of my blogging friends, Aby, asked an interesting question on her blog recently. Her blog post suggested leaving a Un-Finished Object (UFO) for future generations to finish and have quilts from you! She asked which quilt you might leave for the future.

I’m struggling to figure out what type of UFO I could leave for my children or grandchildren to finish! I have plenty of things that aren’t finished right now. The machine I use to quilt is not set up, and hasn’t been for some time. I’ve continued to piece tops, though, in an effort to stay active. I have at least ten tops that now need to be quilted, a daunting task! To be fair, many of them are baby sized, and can be quilted in an afternoon. I know those things need to be quilted and find new homes, and technically, they are UFO’s. I wouldn’t want to leave any of them for future generations, though. I think there are some good reasons why I don’t collect UFO’s or orphan blocks.

1. Quilt what you love. I made a commitment to not work on things that didn’t fire me up! There are so very many awesome patterns out there, and there is only so much time to make them. I only spend my sewing time on things I really want to try!

2. Make new things in small amounts. When I try a new pattern, I make it small enough for baby, wall hanging, or pillow size. That allows me to finish the project quickly and move on if I didn’t love the technique or color choices.

3. Give it away! So many times, someone in my family loves a piece I’m working on. If it doesn’t find a place in my house, it can be given away to someone who will love it!

4. Donate. When I try something new, I often work in fabrics and colors that will work for a baby quilt for the NICU, or in patriotic colors for a Quilt of Valor. From the beginning, I’m purposing to have fun and make something, but to give it to a good cause when it’s finished. Yes, there have been one or two things that were kept that maybe were originally donation quilts, but it’s very rare. I especially do this to test a new pattern! There’s a certain freedom in knowing it doesn’t have to match the living room!

5. Sell your wares. Set up a booth at a craft fair, an Etsy shop, or just get the word out to friends and family. When something is for sale, you put effort into the details, and many times you do your best work! Commission work is fun because it stretches you to meet someone’s needs and wants!

6. Make a show quilt. If your work turns out well, consider putting it into a show. They are fun to go to and visit if they have a good variety of styles and colors! Consider making that block you didn’t love into a medallion quilt!

It’s a good idea, saving something unfinished for your children and grands. Do you have UFO’s? Do they give you “quilt guilt” or do you want to save them for future quilters?