Monday, January 30, 2023

Day 7 - Blogging Challenge; Weekly Goals Jan 21-27, Jan. 28 - Feb 4

Day 7

Dream Project

My dream project isn't really a project as much as trying and learning something new. I would like someday to learn to use a long arm quilting machine and do a whole quilt. I haven't worked out all the details because it's not a priority at the moment. It's not in the budget and I haven't researched any of the different machines available. Many of the local quilt shops that sell them also have classes to learn how to use them, rent time and use theirs, so that's always an option available to me. 


Weekly Goals

January 21-27

1. Daisy Days

- tint block - DONE, I also started stitching

2. Crazy Quilt BOM
- continue stitching - Progress made :)

3. Baby Quilt
- sandwich and quilt - DONE

I managed to finish the entire quilt :)

4. Sew One Garment - DONE

T-shirt - back

T-shirt - front
It's way too big, but it was an experiment with gifted fabric. So I'll wear it around the house and in the garden.

5. Grocery Tote #2 - DONE

I used up more of the leftover cotton yarn. I also used a different stitch that the original and like it much better. Overall, I'm pleased with my efforts to follow the pattern and try something new.

6. Baby Afghan - DONE and delivered

 I used leftover yarn from the big afghan Sister and I made during autumn. She gifted hers to her husband, I just put my on the back of the sofa. Anyway, this is for an acquaintance who is having her first child, a boy, in March and I just wanted to do something for someone because I could. I delivered it today and she was thrilled :) That made me feel good. There was a time when I wouldn't have gone out on a limb like that. Life is too short not to be kind.

How cute is this ?!?!? I've linked you to Joy's web page that links you to the tutorial for this project. It was a little fiddly at times, but I just think it's adorable. I can't wait to make more. It's very scrap friendly and is going to hold all kinds of little gifts for whoever gets it.
Sister Time
Woolie Christmas Gnomes
Block 1 - DONE

 I'm sorry, my computer wouldn't let me rotate this picture. The applique pins you see across the gnome are for placement of the light bulbs for the string he is holding. I had a scrap piece of fake silky fur and that's what we used for his beard and will continue to use throughout the project. I think I need to loosen my stitches so the wool background doesn't pucker.
All in all, a very productive week. So that brings me to next weeks goals . . . 
Goals for January 28 - February 4
1. Daisy Days - continue stitching block 1
2. Crazy Quilt BOM - continue stitching
3. Sew One Garment - choose pattern and fabric
4. Mending - get as much done as possible
5. Read - finish book
6. "TV Tray" projects 
Sister Time - finish stitch Gnomes block 2
Since this week falls into both months, I decided to do some finishing up of projects that have been sitting around and waiting their turn and get ready for February. So odds and ends this week. 

Have a good week.



Monday, January 23, 2023

Day 6 - Blog Writing Challenge; Week's Progress

 Day 6

Oldest Project

That's an easy one:  Trip Around the World Quilt AND the hand pieced, hand quilted wall hanging.

I LOVE the Trip Around the World quilt. It's actually one of my favorites from the ones I've made. It also took me the longest to make.

 Back story: This is one of those quilts that was supposed to be done in a weekend. Yes, two days. A friend had talked me into doing it with her and her mom at a local quilt shop.
It is also the first and only one of two quilts that I went and purchased fabric specifically for. Every other quilt I used fabric from my stash, because they all came years later and I had years of collecting since working at two different fabric stores. At the time, I worked for JoAnn Fabrics and had never made a quilt. Unfortunately, I ran out of fabric for one of the colors and couldn't find any more. So I put it away . . . for 20 years !!

In the meantime, I got more involved in quilting and had made several quilts. And I acquired some much need experience. I think it was part of the One Monthly Goal challenge that I decided to pull it out and figure out how to fix and finish this quilt. I did and now it adorns the bed in the guest room because it's a small quilt, twin size I think. But I also think it is a very happy quilt with the bright, primary colors.

I know you are going to ask: how did I fix my problem. It was so simple I almost hate to tell you. I simply had to remove an end row. It didn't throw off the design and I could make up the difference in size by adding a border, which I did.

LOL, I spent a lot of time fretting over how I was going to find the fabric and finish this quilt! Problem was easily solved, it just took 20 years to figure it out.

The other project. I was the final sign up for a class or we couldn't do the class in our store. A co-worker taught the class. It was all about hand quilting. We made a four block wall hanging. I got to the point where I was hand quilting, but never finished it. It is still not done, so technically it is my oldest project. I pick it up every once in a while and do some quilting on it.

Taking the picture today, I realized I'm quilting the fourth block, some sashing probably needs done and that the border then it will be ready for binding. The goal of getting it done this year is doable. I just need to keep my focus.

I'm hoping to finish it this year, finally.


Goals for Jan. 14-20 

1. Daisy Days - draw blocks 8 and 9  



2. Crazy Quilt BOM - begin stitching  


3. Sew one garment - finish this week  

Not done, but made some progress

4. Grocery tote #2 - finish this week  

Not done

5. Baby afghan - finish this week  



6. Baby quilt - applique block 

DONE, still needs quilted but top is done


7. Sister time - Assemble quilt block for new quilt 


I wish you could see this in person, it's gorgeous


- Finish Woolie Gnomes block 1 

Not done, but made some progress. Actually, we decided last week to stitch the tree area, and this coming week the gone, so I guess it is done.

Goals for Jan. 23 - 28

1. Daisy Days 

- tint the blocks



- continue stitching


3. Baby Quilt

- sandwich/baste

- begin quilting


4. Grocery tote #2

- finish


5. One Gift

- make


6. Woolie Gnome

- finish stitching the gnome


7. Sister Time

Shop Hop BOM

- cut out block 2, assemble

Woolie Gnome

- assemble block 2


Final push to month's end. 


Wasn't it just New Year's Eve???



Friday, January 20, 2023



I promised myself that I would be more productive in the sewing room this year after an extended hiatus. Since getting involved in quilting, embroidery and blogging several years ago, I haven't been very many days without doing something until we moved about a year and a half ago. And I wasn't prepared for losing all interest.

However, since getting back into my sewing room, I have discovered that the time away was actually good for me. I'm not as interested in starting new projects, although I have done some, as I am in finishing what I have already begun.


My first example of that is Crazy Quilting. Pintangle has a beautiful new project starting this year. I was going to do that, but instead decided to finish the one I started several years ago. To that end, here is where I am so far:

Not a lot of progress, but I'm at least moving forward. I also promised myself that I would work on one section of the dresden plate every day. Starting late in January.

Next up, I worked on the Woolie Gnomes. My sister and I are doing these together and decided we could do the stitching on our own. Together we chose wools, cut out all the pieces, and assembled the blocks. We divided this on in halves, working first on the tree house. Over the weekend we will assemble the gnome itself.

After the gnome block, I finished putting together the baby quilt I've been planning to do for this month.

The hedgehog in the center is a free block of the month from Pumpkin Patch Patterns. The blocks I used around it are from the color block challenge. This month was pink, but I made these a couple of years ago and never did anything with them. So now it's a new baby quilt. I'm hoping to quilt it next week.

Last but not least, the baby afghan I've been working on.

This should be done within the next week.


Very happy with today's progress. Clink the button at the top to see what all the other participants have been accomplishing.


Thursday, January 19, 2023

Busy January

 Since deciding to blog again, after an extended break to move two households into one, I have been very busy in my "studio". I've also been keeping up with some of my favorite blogs.

My Crazy Quilt BOM is getting new inspiration from  

Pintangle's Take a Stitch Tuesday (TAST) 


I'm excited to learn and try new stitches.


Friday is Friday Night Sew In (FNSI) hosted by Wendy.

It's a great excuse to get in some much needed stitching time and post a blog with my efforts. Sign ups are on Wendy's blog linked above.


Joy has added some interesting topics that need or want some of my attention.


First, is Organize Your Home 2023 Challenge.

There are all kinds of declutter/reorganize/organize home challenges, but this is by far the most professional one I've seen. I just really like the approach Joy is taking on this challenge. There is a free sign up required to access all the tools designed to help us simplify our lives and homes.


Second is One Gift a Month Challenge.

 I have tried to do this in the past, but it was based on my own choices and after a couple of months fell by the wayside because I got involved in more immediate projects. Joy is offering a selection of patterns and tutorials to give us a jump start. Joy is offering suggestions for gifts and of course, we can make as many or few as we choose.


 The first one is a very practical fabric basket that is perfect for using scraps. I plan on making several for the sewing room, but can you see it filled with toiletries or snacks? Or even sewing or embroidery supplies for your favorite sewing partner?

I'm adding all of these to my monthly goals.

I hope you'll join me :)

Monday, January 16, 2023

Day 5 Blog Writing Challenge - Weekly Goals

 Day 5

First Projects

First projects . . .  they were garments in high school. I haven't though about this for a very long time. My first project - start to finish - was in high home economics classes. But my first experiences came with Mom at her sewing machine. She still has the machine and I did lots of sewing on it all through high school and even beyond. Anyway, I cut threads for Mom while she sewed, both of us always very careful.

Mom was always making something. Clothes for us, cooking, baking, gardening, reading, knitting, crocheting. Later, when we were all grown and on our own she did a lot of embroidery. Can you see where I'm going? I do a lot of those things these days.

My first sewing project  was a pair of tailored trousers in high school. My first embroidery was actually a free needlepoint kit of Raggedy Ann. Boy I remember struggling with getting the stitches going in the right direction. Later when Mom started selling embroidery kits through Creative Circle, I helped her make samples. I remember her trying to teach me the zigzag pattern for a crocheted afghan. I've always dabbles with needle and thread of some sort. And that's not likely to end any time soon.


Goals for Jan. 7-13

1. Daisy Days - draw blocks 6 and 7 - DONE

2. Crazy Quilt BOM - begin stitching - No

3. Sew garment - finish this week - Started

4. Grocery tote #2 - finish this week - 

lots of progress, but not done yet. 

5. Baby afghan - begin this week - Yes

6. Baby quilt - assemble applique block - DONE


Goals for Jan. 14-20 

1. Daisy Days - draw blocks 8 and 9

2. Crazy Quilt BOM - begin stitching

3. Sew one garment - finish this week

4. Grocery tote #2 - finish this week

5. Baby afghan - finish this week

6. Baby quilt - applique block

7. Sister time - Assemble quilt block for new quilt

- Finish Woolie Gnomes block 1


That should keep me out of trouble and at home this week.


Friday, January 13, 2023

Blog Writing Challenge - Weekly Goals

Day 4

Favorite Tools 

This took a little thought because there are so many wonderful tools out there. Many of which I've never even tried. I did come up with a list:

Wonder clips - I love these. Again, Honey Do has some responsibility here. I put them on a Christmas list many years ago and he purchased a tin of 100 small ones. I use them regularly, especially when binding a quilt. I've graduated to some bigger sizes, but don't have many of them.



Rotary cutter and mats - What's better for cutting straight lines, because I couldn't even if my life depended on it. I have several cutters and just as many mats. There is always a mat on my work tables and I use it for more than just cutting fabric. It's a ruler after all :)


Wool pressing mats - another wonderful tool in my studio. I wish they made them bigger, although I do have one that I need to put on my ironing board. It's meant to be cut to fit, but I really don't want to cut into it.


Sewing machine - where would I be without it? It allows me so much creativity.




And a couple more that I thought of after I made my list and that I have been using recently.


Quilting gloves - these really help me to move along that queen size quilt that seems to have a mind of her own.


Brown micron pens - these are wonderful for marking, but especially for drawing off patterns. The micron pens come in multiple tip sizes and colors, but the brown are a favorite among those of us that embroider. 


How this week went:

1. Daisy Days

six of eight designs drawn 


2. Crazy Quilt

no further progress


3. Sew one garment

different fabric chosen, I didn't have enough in the original choice

pattern pieces all cut out, ready to sew


4. Crochet

continuing to make progress on second grocery shopping bag


5. Baby Quilt

applique pieces all cut out



That's it for this week. 

Have a happy and safe weekend. 


Monday, January 9, 2023

Blog Writing Challenge - Weekly Goals

 Day 3 

My Machine

Janome Horizon (8900)


It has all the bells and whistles!!


Fancy stitches . . . 

and all these buttons for stitch length and width, needle placement (I love this feature). 
Needle up and down, reverse, thread cutter !! 

But my favorite feature is the deep throat!!

All my previous machines have had a small throat and when you're quilting a queen size quilt it's a major struggle.
How did I choose and get my machine?
Honey Do was the biggest catalyst in its acquisition.
You see, I'm a major worry wort . . .  where will we get the money?, how can we afford it? etc., etc.
Well, when Honey Do sets his mind to it, he usually gets what he wants. And he wanted this for me!!

One Saturday, a few years ago, I was working on a quilt. Or should I say struggling with a quilt on a small Brother machine gifted to me by a friend that didn't need or want it. I was struggling to quilt, keep the quilt on the table, keep the machine on the table, breaking needles, messing up stitches. Honey Do had been working on something in the garage and took a break to come in the house and caught me in the act. He asked if I needed a new, better machine. I hemmed and hawed and said yes, someday. 

He went back outside and came back in shortly, very shortly and said "come on, let's go. Do you know where we can get the machine you want?"

I didn't have a specific machine in mind. I hadn't had a chance to talk to any of my trusted quilting friends who know a lot more about machines than I do. But I did know a place and still hemmed and hawed and he still said "come on". He had no clue how expensive these machines can get.

We spent the next few hours in the store, shopping machines. He talked to the store owner and I worked with a very patient sales lady.
The store owner suggested a model that had come in as a trade in, after making sure that we didn't have to have a brand new one. It had been serviced and had a warranty and saved us about half.

In my opinion, the machine had more than I ever dreamed I would need. Honey Do made sure I had everything and then some that I needed. He signed my up for a quilt class so I could learn my machine, a table for it to sit in, a rolling cart to go back and forth to the monthly class and the feeling of being well taken care of and well loved.

She has been a work horse and made many quilts, many baby quilts, many pajamas and will make many more.
I thank God every time I use this machine for the love with which she was purchased and all the many blessings she has afforded me to provide. 
God has blessed me richly !!
Weekly Goals
1. Embroidery/Stitching
- Daisy Days BOM -
three of seven blocks drawn

- Crazy quilt 
block has been prepped for stitching

2. Sew one garment
fabric and pattern chosen

3. Crochet
- Grocery bag - DONE

and a second one begun, that would be the pinkish/orange and ball of yarn :)
- baby afghan (gift)
yarn chosen, it's going to be a boy, so I'm doing it in blues.
4. Quilt
- one baby quilt (donation)
I wasn't planning on collecting any new patterns this year. Then I saw this . . . 
The pink blocks I found already made will be the base of a baby quilt and I'm going to try and work out this cutey for the center of the quilt.
Those are the things I worked on last week.  
These are this week's goals:
1. Daisy Days - continue drawing off designs. If time allows, start stitching the first block.
2. Crazy Quilt Block
Begin stitching
3. One garment/month
cut out the pattern and begin sewing
4. Crochet - grocery bag #2
continue stitching 
5. Baby Quilt
draw off design and prep block
It's a short list, but should be plenty to do this week.


Friday, January 6, 2023

Blog Writing Challenge - How the Week Went

 Blog Writing Challenge - Day 2

Sewing Space

It's a mess!!!!

I set up my space when we moved in after painting the walls a really light grey. The room had carpeting and it was driving me crazy because my chair wouldn't roll across it.


Then we had issues with water coming in. I'm in the basement. Honey Do got this brilliant idea to epoxy the floor. Issues resolved. Another wonderful idea of his was to add shelving to the walls. Three of four walls have some kind of shelving/storage. I LOVE IT :)


These are taken from the doorway to the room. Tables are in the center of the room and accessible from all sides. The wall of shelves holds all my embroidery and wool applique projects and patterns. The three drawer stacks on the floor hold all the wool fabrics.


This wooden table holds projects that have been stitched and just need finished. Those have priority, so they can be finished and I can put this table away and free up the space.



This metal shelving unit holds more embroidery supplies and projects.

The center unit holds scrap fabrics. There are more, they just haven't been unpacked yet.

The unit on the floor with the red front is the radiator and the unit on the left holds my fabric stash. I think most of that has been unpacked.

The closet wall - contains pretty much everything else. Backing fabric, projects kitted, batting, interfacing, thread, buttons, ribbon and UFOs. There was enough wall space above the close for Honey Do to attach these wooden crates and they now hold all my yarn supplies. I only purchase enough yarn for a project so it can't ever get out of control.

Finally on this wall, the entertainment unit. These are the only fabrics that I have separated from my stash. They include Tilda and Tula Pink :) I belonged to a Tilda subscription box for a few years and this is all the fabric I've collected and everything else from those boxes. I haven't really done anything with it yet, so I keep it separate. As for Tula Pink, there's only a specific collection or two that I found fabrics on clearance. I don't necessarily want everything she produces, but there are certain ones I really like. I also purchased a quilt kit that I'll get around to eventually.

And the tables. This is where everything seems to collect, where my sister and I spend the majority of our time together, where I do my Bible study, pay bills and write my blogs (again).

It's a goal this month to get it cleaned off and work on more projects.


And I did !!!
I needed it to trim Maggie so I can get her bound.



How the week went 

1.  Blog more consistently
Check - This is post number two.
Number three is in the works :) 

2. Embroidery/Stitching - probably my favorite past time.
- Daisy Days BOM (Elefantz designs)
Check - two blocks were drawn off
- Crazy Quilt (started several years ago, time to finish)
Check - pulled out the block to be worked on. Accessing what stitches to do next.

3. Color Block Challenge - January is pink
Check - Found a box that had 12 blocks done !!!
Forgot to take pictures. I think I maybe able to get three baby quilts quilts made from them. 

4. UFO/OMG (one monthly goal)
 - Maggie's First Dance (Jacquelynne Steves)
Check, check and double check :)
Major happy dance here. The quilt is quilted and working on the binding. Should be done this weekend.


5. Sew - one garment per month (I have lots of apparel fabric I want to use)

6. Crochet 
- baby afghan (gift)
- grocery tote
 I got some crocheting started.

7. Quilt - one baby quilt (donation)
8. Read - at least one book per month
Check - The Beach House Book 1 by Mary Alice Monroe, began the second.
Swimming Lessons Book 2 in the series
9. Any extra accomplishments
Check - I got this cute little Christmas design stitched and finished for next year. Pattern was a freebie from Flamingo Toes.

Hope you all had a productive week.