Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Taking Stock in the New Year

This is the post that I attempted to write yesterday, it being New Year's Day and all, but then this happened.

Banged up boy

And well, spending three hours in the emergency room kind of threw off my schedule a bit. He's ok by the way, he just bumped his noggin hard enough to need a few stitches.

So this is the post where I figure out where I am and what direction I need to go in order to accomplish a few goals. Be warned, this may get quite wordy and picture heavy. 

Looking back on 2012, I realized I accomplished a lot more than I thought I did. Sure, a lot of the projects were small ones.

2012 finishes

But I made a lot of gifts for a lot of people, hosted a quilt along, wrote and self published my first pattern and even managed to make a few things for myself. 

2012 finishes 2

And I remembered my word of the year and made it my mantra and kept the stress level way down. I'd call that quite a productive year indeed!

I took a good hard look at my projects the other day in an attempt to figure out where I was headed with them. I have a couple that have just been weighing me down and I finally just decided that they needed to go. 

These poor orphan blocks.


I can't bear to throw them away but I have no desire to do anything with them. I had an idea to sew them all together into one quilt and call it the orphan quilt, but I was only going to do that just for the sake of not wasting them. Instead, I offered them up for grabs in a small sewing group that I am a part of and my friend the Fabric Donkey will be taking them off of my hands. I know she will take good care of them.

The Farmer's Wife quilt.

Farmer's Wife

Yes, it has to go. I was enjoying the challenge of putting the blocks together. I template pieced all of them and it was like putting together a bunch of little puzzles. I had every intention of doing all 110 blocks in the book but lost steam halfway though. Then I started working on sashing them and got bored with that. They've been sitting for probably at least a good 6 months. They will be going to Bree, she will do them justice, I just know it.

Now for the keepers!

Prince Charming single wedding ring quilt. It's basted, ready to be quilted and finished.

Prince Charming quilt top

Castle Peeps quilt, also basted and ready to quilt.

My Precious QAL completed top

Cathedral Window Sampler. 

Cathedral Window Sampler final layout

Top is pieced, needs to be finished. I'm thinking it will be a wall hanging for the kids' room.

Creepy Raccoon house block for Allegory.

Creepy Raccoon

Al sent me a package with this little guy in it and asked me to make her a house block incorporating him somehow. That package was postmarked for the end of August. She said no hurry but I'm taking that meaning to new levels here!

Double Wedding Ring Quilt.


I still have that wonky, wavy block issue to sort out. Once I figure out where I went wrong in the piecing I bet I can get it done. Of course I would have to actually try to be able to do that instead of banishing it to a box.

Weekender Bag.

Weekender outer shell

I have an outer shell, I just need to figure out what I want to do for interior pockets and then finish it up.

Maple Leaf Rag quilt from Material Obsession 2. I have 100 crazy quilt pieces sewn to cut the kite shapes from, I need 128. I have used all scraps so far and hope to be able to finish it that way, though I may have to dive into my stash for some of the strips that I'll need.

Crazy quilt pieces for Maple Leaf Rag quilt

I do have quite a scrap strip assortment though, so maybe I'll get lucky and be able to use this up!

String scraps

Denim bed quilt. This poor thing has been banished to a closet, half finished. It is such tedious work! I need to make a real concentrated effort to finish it.

Hexagon project. This is my long term hand project and I will not rush it, not one bit. 

Hexi project

Christmas quilt. Top is pieced

Christmas quilt

Christmas stockings. I'm probably not even at the halfway point for these, which is why they got pushed aside. Hey, I have almost an entire year to make them now!


There we go, that's my whole list. I think it is anyway. I'm trying really hard to not add to it right now until I get something done but that Scrappy Trip Along sure has been calling my name, and hard. I've been putting in extra time with the Maple Leaf Rag in all attempts to ignore that calling for now.

Going into 2013 I'd like to set the bar for myself a little bit higher while still maintaining the level of stress free sewing that I have grown quite accustomed too. I have three main goals for the year.

1. Participate in a craft show. There is a Soft Shell Crab Festival every October in the little town I live in, it takes place a few blocks from my house. This year I want to set up a table. That gives me 10 whole months to make items to sell. In the meantime, I'm going to list said items in my etsy store and see if I can't sell some of them there as well. If it turns into a profitable enough venture, then I'll continue it! My intent isn't to get rich off of this plan. No, I just have a lot of fabric that needs to be used and  a lot of things that I want to make but don't have room to keep. I mean, we can only use so many quilts at a time, my walls won't hold every wall hanging I make for the rest of my life and I can only use so many purses, pouches, etc. But I still want to make this stuff! So if it keeps me sewing, which I love to do, and I make a little bit of money doing it, then it's a win/win situation in my eyes.

2. Write more patterns. I have ideas and I already have one that I've made a test quilt for. I just need to put them on paper and get them tested and out into the world. I've been working on finishing a few things before starting on these so that I don't add to the already huge UFO list. Which brings us to...

3. Finish my UFOs. I know this is on everybody's list and I'll probably have more projects that I start and don't finish that will carry over into next year, but I'd like to at least finish the ones that I am currently working on, with a couple of possible exceptions.

I'll be back soon with more things to share. I know there are quite a few pictures of projects on this post of things you guys haven't seen before. I think "be a better blogger" needs to be on my list of goals for this year too! 


Lindsey said...

You have some fabulous stuff on that list and some beautiful finishes from 2012. I can't wait to see what you do this year. And that raccoon is creepy.

Unknown said...

Um, you are pretty much amazing! I'm impressed that you can get so much done and have stress free sewing, love it. Can't wait to see what you make this year. And I love your weekender.

Rebecca said...

Oops, was signed into my gmail account for my shop instead of my blogger acct.

Lynne said...

You achieved a lot, especially in getting rid of things you neither want or will finish! If you'd like to join my monthly Linky party, the Year of the Finished Project, I'd love to have you!

Gemini Jen NZ said...

Happy New Year Julie! Thanks for sharing - you were very productive last year, isn't it great to look back and see what you accomplished? I have just done the same and had great fun today getting the first thing ticked off my to-do list! I love your Prince Charming quilt - super work! Have a good weekend.

Leanne said...

You are so organized and disciplined too. I love your projects and your plans. I encourage you to get that weekender done, the longer you put it off the longer it will sit. The lining will take you small parts of a day or two max. And just take that wonky block apart and try it again. I hope you share the progress on all of this, they are each lovely projects. You could consider the FAL too.

Pat Merkle said...

Love that castle peeps quilt!

Lisa said...

So glad he is ok! Kids spend the greater part of their childhood scaring us half to death! I know mine did! You got so much done last year and it is all so amazing. 2013 is going to be great!

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