Two quilts made - Raef and Jared - yes
All four Block of Months (BOM's) current - yes
Applique finished on Jen BOM - yes
Cut 3 quilts for next month - yes
Do swap blocks for February - yes
Celtic Solstice - 20 blocks - yes
Hawaiian table runner finished - my UFO for this month - yes
Roll Quilt - yes
Yay Me! I started out the New Year in fine fashion and January was definitely a busy month in the studio. As I reported at the beginning of the month, I had taken classes and was full of new ideas. I had a one day break in my classes on Jan. 2 so Mister and I went to the studio to start yet another quilt. I'm pretty sure I have hit the insane point. We do have a good reason for this one though - it is for a grandson's birthday this month. Mister starts cutting squares and then triangles while I select and press the fabrics. He even takes the leftover material from each piece and pre-cuts strips for me that I can use later in other projects. No mess. Yay!
I join the light and dark triangles which are then pressed and cut into strips. The strips are then rearranged and resewn with the result being either an uphill or downhill block.
(6th) Once I have all the blocks made, it is into the house we go to pick a pattern layout.
It was time for a break and I had just recently learned about the fabric warehouse district. I asked Mister if we could go down and check it out. Woohoo. It is a bonanza with warehouses full of fabric everywhere. We stop at Golden D'or first and I am in heaven. I know I will be back here within the month.
A few more stores later and we have a new walking foot for the 301, some oil, and a border fabric for Jared's quilt that I will be making later in the month. Waay too fun.
(8th) I sewed the blocks together and discovered that I needed a couple more rows. Fortunately I had made several extra blocks and I had them added on in no time. I looked into the solids bin and found some chocolate brown that made a perfect inner border. As I was finishing it, I remembered the stack of 3 1/2" strips that mister had saved from cutting the squares. They were all 8 1/2" long and I just starting running them end to end until I had enough for the outer border. It turned out pretty dang sweet and the size made me happy. Just look at all the variety in this top. Awesome.
(9th) Mister and I cut the backing and batting to fit the top. After stitching the backing together, we create our sandwich. The next step is so intimidating to me that I am done for the day.
(10th) I headed out to the studio and made a sample sandwich so that I can practice free motion quilting. It took practice and we also had to make some changes in the studio sewing machine arrangement, but after a bit I thought I was ready to give it a whirl. I cannot believe how scared I was.
It turned out that it was much easier once we had the 301 involved and I had so much fun just letting myself go. I was giggling like a schoolgirl again. I got two quadrants finished and called it a day. There are a lot of mistakes, but overall I am pleased. And it was fun to boot.
(11th) I went out to the studio early and finished quilting the last two quadrants before bringing the quilt into the house to trim and audition binding fabrics.
I had brought in about 1/2 dozen green prints to use for the binding but we wound up deciding on a solid bright green. Back to the studio to cut and sew it on.
It only took me about an hour and a half before I could say that the quilt was finished. Well, almost. I still needed to write on the label, but all sewing was completed. This has been a great project and we certainly chose a good pattern to work with. This is Scrappy Mountain Majesties by Bonnie Hunter. We are going to use it in several other quilts this year, just with different layouts. Should be interesting.
Before sending, I wrote out the label and Mister took the quilt out back for one last picture: He wanted the true colors to show.
I jokingly mentioned that we didn't have a deck with a railing to hang it on while taking outdoor pictures. It appears that that is the correct way to do it if the pictures on Facebook mean anything. Too funny. A fence would work as well, but we don't really have a good display one of those either. I guess Mister will just have to stand there and hold it up. Such is life.
13th -- Yesterday, I had also finished the piecework on my applique quilt but still needed to do the appliques on all 7 blocks. I spent today cutting and ironing everything in place to prepare for blanket stitching. So many parts and itty bitty pieces. I worked all day and didn't finish -- perhaps tomorrow.
14th - I Finished ironing on appliques and wanted a change of scenery so I started making Jared's blocks.
15th - Since I finished the squares for Jared, I played with crumbs for awhile and started my Celtic Solstice blocks. Mister was out in the studio with me working on the Memphis (Sphinx - Singer 27) . We worked together to get Jared's quilt laid out in living room and ready to put the rows together.
16th - Trying the weaving method that I had been practicing with my CS blocks, the top went together easily. I loved it. I did a few more CS blocks as leaders and enders and then Mister and I attended the Featherweight club meeting that evening. It was a good time spent planning this year's meetings and getting a little sewing in as well. Allison was there and invited me to a retreat in May -- I think I'll go and perhaps invite some of the girls too.
19th - We went out playing and shopping today and came home with big bags of fabric from several places. It is definitely time to clean. I finished the neutrals for two quilts and then started cleaning. I need to get the scraps managed and into their new homes. After ALL day -- the studio is under control again and I am thrilled. I decided to take a few shots of the different areas in the studio at this point in time.
21st - Finished quilting the last two quadrants and worked on pink appliques. Another lesson learned today -- when cutting borders that are obvious stripes, one must cut straight. Oh well, he will love all the bugs anyway. This is the fabric I got on my first trip down to the warehouse district.
22nd - Quilt bound, all threads worked in -- Fini! Back outside we go! Do you know how hard it is to hide when you are in your pajamas with messy hair in the front yard taking pictures? Well, let's just say, I did my best.
23rd - I spent all day cutting fabric for a recycled shirt quilt. Had to take inventory again to make sure I have enough variety.
24th - Went to some estate sales, picked up a few shirts and a box of fabric. No work in studio.
25th - Finished cutting shirting strips, unpacked goodies (my fabric ordered online arrived today and needed to be refolded and put away), and started sewing strips. I had myself a Twilight marathon and just kept working.
Then we were off to the estate sales and OMG -- I hit a gold mine. I was able to get a ton of yarn, hooks, and books for crocheting, a Gazelle stitching frame for needlework and small hand quilting along with so many accessories, and a very cool pine case that has two shelves and a small ironing board attached to the back. What a fun find. No work in the studio today as I had to totally go through my crocheting supplies and organize everything once I had my treasure trove home.
27th - In studio all day -- green applique finished (wow - that took awhile but the blocks are now ready to be embroidered). The blocks for shirt quilt started and I am loving them. It is called Dancing Nine-Patch by Bonnie Hunter and I can't wait to see how it turns out. Just 2 inch strips everywhere. I think that perhaps these shirt quilts are my favorites of all. They just feel right.
Another item marked off the list. I am running out of days -- will I make the goals I set forth at the beginning of the month?
When we got home, Mister weighed the fabric and it came to almost 20 pounds. Yes, we are stocked up for awhile I think. Can you tell we have some girl quilts coming up?
When we arrived home, treasures were in the mail. Scrap bags from MODA and the first February swap block. I need to get mine mailed tomorrow.
It is still cold out and so I spent the rest of the day completing my table runner hand quilting. It was another movie afternoon spent in the den. In the evening I made a dash out to the studio (brrr) and grabbed a cutting mat and the fabric for binding my table runner. I cut binding for tomorrow using the new rotary cutter. It is going to stay in the house in my mini studio that we are setting up in the office ((the madness spreads - Mister)). Yep - that way I can still do my thing in the evenings AND be with Mister.
31st - It is the last day of the month. I still have two items on my list that are not checked off. Our cold weather disappeared during the night and it is now 55 degrees at 7:30 a.m. so I take my cut binding out to the studio and quickly attach it to the runner. I then bring it into the house and sit by the Christmas tree to hand finish. It is the last day for our decor -- it comes down today. I have an enormous list of things to do today -- better get moving.
I finish the table runner and settle in for a cup of tea with Mister. We go through the day's plans and then get busy, busy, busy.
The laundry gets sorted and going, the decorations come down, and we settle in for some lunch. It is now noon -- yep -- moving units here.
I finish cleaning the front room, switch laundry to the last load and make a dash for the studio. I have one item not checked off on the list.
In almost 2 hours time, I have finished 10 more Celtic Solstice blocks and the laundry is behind me as well. Now to get the international swap blocks ready to mail and my scrap swap as well. I then head to the grocery store and post office. It is now 5:30 and we need to leave at 6:15 for the auction. There is a white featherweight tonight and I am interested. After a quick dinner, we are off and running.
The machine sells for $450.00 -- way out of my range, but I am able to pick up an original featherweight table at a reasonable price of $45.00. It has been painted white though so Mister is going to strip it down and see what we have. I am hoping we can get it back to what it originally looked like, stained top with black edges.
It has been a great month! Very productive and exciting. I did manage to accomplish all that I set out to do and don't feel as though it consumed my time. We went out often and spent a good amount of time together. We saw friends and neighbors, worked on our yard and home, cooked and baked, and just all around enjoyed life. Now -- onto February.