Multitasking

I was chatting with my mom about my sewing projects and she mentioned that while she works on one project and then moves on, I seem to always be working on several concurrently.

No, no, I assured her. The list is long, and while I rotate through the list, my focus is usually on one item.

This conversation made me aware of my sewing habits and I realized I totally lied. Well, not lied, per se, but I was definitely not fully aware of how I operate. Of course my mom knew this better than I did. As it turns out, even within one sewing session, I might rotate through four projects (that seems to be my balance number: keeps it interesting without overwhelming me).

Here is what The List looked like last week, along with my progress:

Quilts: 

1. Bill’s Quilt. — It’s with the long armer. When I get it back, I have to finish the binding and then send it off to Bill.

2. Sarah’s Quilt. — Fabric has arrived! Moving on to a whole mound of HSTs!

3. MQG Riley Blake challenge baby quilt. — no progress

4. Secret table runner. — Two blocks and a bunch of flying geese finished.

Quilt blocks

5. January blocks for the Stash Bee. — Done and done. Must mail them!

6. February block and tutorial for the Stash Bee. — I’m going with “any star block” and will include several examples for my bee mates. I’ve made a few and plan to finish 2 more before I write my tutorial.

7. starter block for Sisterhood of the Traveling Quilts. #sottq — color scheme selected and fabric pulled.

8. blocks for Rachel. These need to be mailed by February. — no progress

9. 4×5 Modern Quilt Bee blocks (6). — Signing up today!!

Mei tais – no progress

10. Brie: baby Brynn was born in October, so I need to get this one made ASAP.

11. Kim: I have been hoarding this fabric for Kim’s someday baby for ages. Really. Years. She studied tropical fish ecology in grad school (where we met) and the fabric has a scene of (you guessed it) tropical reef fishes. Her New Year baby was born January first.

12. Christine: My sister is expecting Oliver in March.

[Possible 13 + 14: my friend Kathryn mentioned wanting a couple mei tais for expecting friends, but I don't have any details yet, so these aren't officially on The List]

Other: 

13. Five pillow covers for the St. Louis Modern Quilt Guild cares project. — label acquired.

14. Curtains for my living room.  – one done, one to go. I mis-measured and it’s hanging a bit too short. I was trying to decide if it was worth moving the curtain rod down or if I should just go with it.

Only one item off the list this week, so now it looks like this:

Quilts:
1. Bill’s Quilt.
2. Sarah’s Quilt.
3. MQG Riley Blake challenge baby quilt.
4. Secret table runner.

Quilt blocks
5. February block and tutorial for the Stash Bee.
6. starter block (and journal) for Sisterhood of the Traveling Quilts. #sottq
7. blocks for Rachel. These need to be mailed by February.
8. 4×5 Modern Quilt Bee blocks (6).

Mei tais
9. Brie
10. Kim
11. Christine
[Possible 12 + 13: my friend Kathryn mentioned wanting a couple mei tais for expecting friends, but I don't have any details yet, so these aren't officially on The List]

Other:
12. Five pillow covers for the St. Louis Modern Quilt Guild cares project.
13. Curtains for my living room. Better get those done. We’re rather exposed at the moment.
14. Curtains for the dining room.

This list is a little long for my tastes. I prefer to keep it around 10 “priority” items (By that I mean, things I’m working on now and hope to finish in the relatively near future. Because I have a whole mess of other WiPs that are currently put away). I’d better get some things crossed off!!

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The List makes a comeback

For some time, I was in the habit of posting my works in progress in the form of The List each week. This was good for me, as it allowed me to see where I was and what I had to do, and it was also a good way to share with all of you about what projects I have happening in my sewing room. I enjoy seeing the progress pics of my online sewing friends, and I think the process is as important as the finished result.

I have a small dress full of Works in Progress, and one of my sewing goals this year is to work through those projects, but here is The List for what on the immediate horizon:

Quilts: 

1. Bill’s Quilt. This quilt top is finished. I hope to deliver it to the long armer this weekend, and then when I have it back, I will have to bind it.

2. Sarah’s Quilt. Fabric is ordered. I’ve designed a chevron pattern for her and ordered Moda essential dots in bubble gum and aqua (which is a little more green than your standard aqua: it will work perfectly for Sarah’s requested pink and mint green request).

3. MQG Riley Blake challenge baby quilt. Will I or won’t I finish this by February???

4. Secret table runner.

Quilt blocks

5. January blocks for the Stash Bee. I’m in Hive 3, and you can see Alison’s request here, if you’d like.

6. February block and tutorial for the Stash Bee. I’m up next!

7. starter block for Sisterhood of the Traveling Quilts. #sottq

8. blocks for Rachel. My friend Rachel and her fiancé have requested quilt blocks from friends for their wedding. I wrote a tutorial, so I have one, but there are two others that I would like to include. These need to be mailed by February.

9. 4×5 Modern Quilt Bee blocks (6). Okay, so sign-ups for this bee don’t even start until Monday, but I’m planning to sign up, so I’m putting this on here!

Mei tais

10. Brie: baby Brynn was born in October, so I need to get this one made ASAP.

11. Kim: I have been hoarding this fabric for Kim’s someday baby for ages. Really. Years. She studied tropical fish ecology in grad school (where we met) and the fabric has a scene of (you guessed it) tropical reef fishes. Her New Year baby was born January first.

12. Christine: My sister is expecting Oliver in March.

[Possible 13 + 14: my friend Kathryn mentioned wanting a couple mei tais for expecting friends, but I don't have any details yet, so these aren't officially on The List]

Other: 

13. Five pillow covers for the St. Louis Modern Quilt Guild cares project. I have to pick up some labels at the meeting this weekend.

So, there you have it. The list is rather longish at the moment, even for my preference. I’m happy when it hovers around 8-10 projects in the works.

Edit: Whoops! Almost forgot: 14. Curtains for my living room. Better get those done. We’re rather exposed at the moment. 

And to a lesser degree (probably won’t get done until the rest of the things on this list): 15. Curtains for the dining room. 

Works in Progress: No List

In past Works in Progress posts, I often posted The List of projects currently in the works. I’m going to put that on hold right now. I have a newborn. I need to focus on just one thing at a time. And this week, it’s my project for Moda Bake Shop. I currently have a pile of 300-and-some squares with little triangles sewn to one side. I have close to 200 more to complete. Then, it’s time to trim the extra white, iron the pieces, trim the squares back to 2.5 inches and make a quilt. Whoo-hoo!

Bake Shop Wip

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WiP: The Big Clean

Are you going to QuiltCon this weekend? Yes? Good for you. I shall live vicariously through your social media updates. No? Me neither. Which means it’s the perfect opportunity to clean our sewing spaces! I’ll have a link-up on Monday where we can show off our newly cleaned/organized spaces and meanwhile, we can bond over our respective creative messes.

So, that’s my major work in progress this week: cleaning my sewing room. Still plenty of time to link up your “before” space in this post. And I’ll see you Monday to link your new, improved space!

Where is my cutting table?!  There it is! See, definitely a work in progress.

 

I’m also finishing up my blocks for the 4×5 Bee.

hexagon pieces for 4x5 Bee

And I now have 7 of these monochromatic English paper pieced rose stars and not one single idea what I will do with them. I’m open to suggestions … ?

Monochromatic English paper pieced rose stars

 

What are you working on this week?

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January Fresh Sewing Day

Ack! It’s February! I saw my husband flipping the calendar and had a mini panic attack. “It’s already February!” Him (sarcastically): “Yes, that usually comes after January.” Me: “That means we are having a baby next month!”

As far as things on the sewing front: they were slow, to say the least, in January. Nothing like a new month to remind you what you didn’t do last month. Blah. I spent the early part of the month in a serious no sewing loss of sewing mojo. It has only returned to a moderate level. I’m fairly certain that a major clean and reorganization of my sewing room would help, but I’m sort of dreading that task!

I did manage a few sewing projects, though. As well as some sewing related projects that were exclusively digital.

I’ve got all the blocks planned out for the Road Trip Quilt Along this summer. I think they will make a nice little sampler quilt!

Road Trip Quilt Along sampler quilt 2013

I made my first printable PDF for a quilt block. This one is to go with my tutorial for the Spiderweb quilt block.

paperpiecetemplate-spiderweb

finally finished the top of the quilt from the free form robin I participated in last year. I can’t wait to finish this one!

Wonky diamond border for free form robin quilt

I have a few more blocks for Brian’s quilt finished. I really need to get this put together!

Turning twenty again blocks for Brian

And I wrote a tutorial for a pretty little checkbook cover.

Checkbook cover tutorial

 

I also have finished bee blocks that will go in the mail today and have been practicing free motion quilting by working on quilting my Road Trip Quilt Along Sampler quilt from last summer.

So, that’s it. No real finishes per say. Leaves me something to strive for I guess.

button_fresh sewing day

Works in Progress

Brrr! It’s cold outside. Though, compared to some other parts of the country, Virginia is a tropical 17 degrees F! Makes me wish I had a nearly finished quilt so I could sit under it and sew on the binding. Sadly, though, none are that close to being finished. The three I have in progress are in various stages of finish:

a. Brians quilt: I still need a couple more block and then the top needs to be put together.
b. Free form robin bird quilt: top and back are finished, needs basting and quilting
c. Road Trip Quilt Along quilt: still working on FMQ

Phew. Speaking of works in progress, here’s what The List looked like last week in entirety:

1. Inventory for my Etsy shop: clutches + totes. None.

2. Six more blocks for Brian’s quilt topNone. 

3.  Finish quilting on Road Trip Quilt Along sampler. Minimal progress. I quilted a couple more blocks. It’s a long process because I”m learning to free motion quilt as I go, including watching my Leah Day Craftsy class here and there.

Road Trip Quilt Along free motion quilting

4.  Backing and quilting for the free form robin bird quilt. Progress. Back is finished. Needs to be quilted and bound. I’m kind of in love with the back. It is particularly special because it includes the panel with the names of all the ladies who worked on it with me. I wanted something fun, so I picked up a Kona Modern Quilts print on sale at the Fat Quarter Shop. Then I pieced a strip to imitate the print in the fabric and added the signature panel.

Back for free form robin bird quilt

5.  Kelleigh’s wonkey star blocks for Bee a {Modern} SwapperSome progress. These should be pretty easy to finish up, if I just sit down and do it.

6.  Nancy Drew project for the Nancy Drew Get a Clue blog hop, using Moda’s new Nancy Drew fabric as part of the project.  Still need to actually buy the fabric. None. Must buy fabric.

I also worked on some things that weren’t on The List. I decided I needed a checkbook cover and made tutorial for that.

Checkbook cover tutorial

And I did a little bit of hand sewing on those monochromatic English paper pieced rose stars (how’s that for a description!).

Here’s The List today (didn’t change much):

1. Inventory for my Etsy shop: clutches + totes. None.

2. Six more blocks for Brian’s quilt top.

3.  Finish quilting on Road Trip Quilt Along sampler.

4.  Basting and quilting for the free form robin bird quilt.

5.  Kelleigh’s wonkey star blocks for Bee a {Modern} Swapper.

6.  Nancy Drew project for the Nancy Drew Get a Clue blog hop, using Moda’s new Nancy Drew fabric as part of the project.  Buy the fabric.

See more Works in Progress in the sewing and quilting world at Freshly Pieced!

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Works in Progress: Finding my mojo

Last week, I said I had lost my sewing mojo. Well, I seemed to be finding it a bit and then I was derailed by the unfortunate appearance of a stomach bug. Not fun! Despite being out of commission for a couple days, I did manage to get some sewing done this week.

First up (not on The List), I finished my first printable PDF quilting template. It’s a cutting template to go with my method of completing the spiderweb block. I already had one person test it out, but if you feel like it, I’d love some more feedback regarding whether it loads and prints correctly to size (there’s a 1-inch test square to test the size). You can find the PDF template here.

paperpiecetemplate-spiderweb

 

I also designed a project to submit for Moda Bake Shop and made a sample block, but I can’t seem to get the submission form to completely load.  Don’t know what to do about that.

And here’s The List from last week:

1. Inventory for my Etsy shop: clutches + totes. None.

2. Eleven more blocks for Brian’s quilt topProgress. I sat down to make 2 blocks and then I would cut a piece that I didn’t quite like with the current block, etc. and I ended up with 5! Monica wants to make some blocks for the quilt as well, so I’m certain this will be finished soon.

Turning twenty again blocks for Brian

3.  Finish quilting on Road Trip Quilt Along sampler. No progress.

4.  Final border for the free form robin bird quilt. Finished. And I love it. It was pretty labor intensive for “just a border” with all the little pieces, but I’m really happy with how it turned out. I’ve even already ordered some fabric for the back. Yay!

Wonky diamond border for free form robin quilt 5.  Kelleigh’s wonkey star blocks for Bee a {Modern} Swapper.  Some progress. Not very impressive progress on this one, but I did manage to eek out the beginnings of one of the stars.

IMG_5849

6.  Nancy Drew project for the Nancy Drew Get a Clue blog hop, using Moda’s new Nancy Drew fabric as part of the project.  Still need to actually buy the fabric. No progress. Still haven’t ordered fabric. Though, still plenty of time, so no worries.

7.  FIND SEWING MOJO. I think I’ve found it!. :-)

And now The List looks like this:

1. Inventory for my Etsy shop: clutches + totes. None.

2. Six more blocks for Brian’s quilt top.

3.  Finish quilting on Road Trip Quilt Along sampler.

4.  Backing and quilting for the free form robin bird quilt.

5.  Kelleigh’s wonkey star blocks for Bee a {Modern} Swapper.

6.  Nancy Drew project for the Nancy Drew Get a Clue blog hop, using Moda’s new Nancy Drew fabric as part of the project.  Still need to actually buy the fabric.

 

More fun Works in Progress at Freshly Pieced!

 

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WiP

I’m suffering from a serious lack of inspiration right now.  I’ve lost my sewing mojo, so if you’ve seen it lying about somewhere, please let me know, m’kay.

The last time I posted a Works in Progress update was the last Wednesday in November (eep!).  So, here we are, new year, time to get back to reminding myself what I’ve been up to in the sewing room (lately: not much) on a weekly basis.

We left for two weeks over the holidays, and my poor sewing machine was left home alone with only the cats to keep her company.  Poor Tori.  I did bring some fabric for a little hand sewing while I was away, and have been working on these monochromatic black-white-gray English paper pieced rose stars.  I have no idea what I will do with them when I’m finished or how many I will have when I’m “finished.”  I would love your suggestions …

English paper pieced monochromatic rose stars gray

Since we’ve been home, I have managed very little sewing.  It’s not me, and it makes me a little sad, but like I said, sewjo seems to have temporarily gone.  I did spend a lot of hours on “digital sewing” because I drew up all those blocks for the Road Trip Quilt Along for this summer.

Road Trip Quilt Along sampler quilt 2013

I think I need to clean/rearrange/reorganize my sewing room and I will find the sewjo in the process, but ugh, I really, really don’t want to do it!

I do have some things I want to accomplish, though, so I will go ahead and write The List.

1. I’d really like to increase the inventory in my Etsy shop to see if I can make that endeavor work, which means I need to make some clutches and totes for that purpose.

2. I need 11 more blocks to have enough for Brian’s quilt top.  My goal is still to finish the quilt before his house is finished!

3.  I had been practicing free motion quilting on my quilt from last summer’s Road Trip Quilt Along, and I want to finish that quilting so I can call that project D.O.N.E!

4.  The birds quilt from the free form robin requires one more border.  I’ve been making some wonky diamonds to finish it off.  Free form robin quilt top

5.  This is the last month for Bee a {Modern} Swapper.  I have two wonky star blocks to make for Kelleigh.

6.  Nancy Drew project for the Nancy Drew Get a Clue blog hop, using Moda’s new Nancy Drew fabric as part of the project.  Still need to actually buy the fabric.

7.  FIND SEWING MOJO. 

Works in Progress: Occupied by other things

I didn’t have a particularly productive sewing week this week.  My time has been occupied by organizing a silent auction fundraiser for my older daughter’s preschool and trying (as yet, still unsuccessfully) to remove dry erase marker that my 2-year-old decided to use to decorate my beautiful mini quilt, which is for a swap.  First time I have cried over a quilt.  Sigh.  This is how the worst of it looks after oxyclean, rubbing alcohol, acetone, higher concentrations of oxyclean, and hair spray.

Meanwhile, big news regarding my biggest non-sewing WiP: our third child, due end of March …
Baby Girl #3!  Whatever will we do with ourselves?!

Here’s what I did manage to accomplish from The List last week:

1.  Road Trip Quilt Along: create back.  Finished.  This is a pretty big deal for me; this quilt has been a long time in the making.  Now to quilt it.  I’m very nervous because it is a bed sized quilt and I have never attempting something that large on my home sewing machine before!
2.  Be Free Bees free form quilt robin: finish top.  Minimal progress.  I did manage to cut a few scraps that I will use in the outside border.

3.  Quilt for Brian.  Minimal progress.  And no progress by me.  I did receive a few blocks in the mail from my mom.  Thanks, Mom!

4.  Equilateral triangle hexagon block tutorial.  Finished!  This was a bit of an undertaking.  I put a lot of time into putting the photos together for this one.  I’m calling the block “Multiples of 3″, and the tutorial is now available if you want to try this block!
5. Gathered clutches.  No progress.  
6.  Luna Bags: the Essential Tote.  No progress.
7.  Ba{M}S mini quilt.  AAAUUGH!!!  Wish I were telling you that this was finished, but I got it all done except for the binding and then the marker-weilding tiny terrorist attacked.  So, no, it’s not finished, but it is causing me a lot of angst.

Hmm, now that I wrote that out, I’m feeling better.  I actually did more than I realized last week.  Moving on.  Here’s The List now:

1.  Road Trip Quilt Along: quilt that baby!
2.  Be Free Bees free form quilt robin: finish top
3.  Quilt for Brian.
4. Gathered clutches.
5.  Luna Bags: the Essential Tote
6.  Ba{M}S mini quilt: remove stain or come up with a creative alternative solution.  Sigh.

(Hey!  Look how short my list is!  There are actually at least 3-4 projects in my head, or way on the back burner, but until I begin them/pick them up again, they are staying hidden from the published List.)

There’s a lot happening in the sewing world.  Go see what’s going on at Freshly Pieced!

 

Works in Progress: Just a little bit forward

Happy Wednesday!  We were expecting some serious weather effect from Hurricane Sandy here in Virginia, but she just clipped us.  We had wind and rain and the power went out briefly a couple times, but it really was no worse than any other bad storm.  My heart goes out to all who experienced more serious devastation than we saw.

Meanwhile, in my sewing room, I’ve been working to finish the two mei tais on my list, and the rest of The List is taking a back seat.  I have one that is meant for a gift for a baby shower that is to occur this weekend, so I hope to finish it up today and get it in the mail first thing tomorrow.

Here’s The List:

1.  Road Trip Quilt Along: create back.  No progress. 
2.  Be Free Bees free form quilt robin: finish top.  No progress.  
3.  Quilt for Brian.  Minimal progress.  But not by me.  I received another quilt block in the mail from an online quilting acquaintance.  Thank you!!
4.  Mei tais.  Progress.  
4a. for Gaby #2.  Straps are finished.  I just have to do the top stitching and put it all together.
4b. for Kathleen.  Same place in the process as the mei tai above.  This one is priority for today for the above mentioned reason.  I hope to finish the other this week as well.
 5.  Equilateral triangle hexagon block tutorial.  No progress.  
6.  4×5 Bee Blocks.  Minimal progress.  
6a.  Samples: hexagon.  No progress.
6b.  Blocks for bee members (5).  I’ve pulled fabric for all 5 of my bee members.
 7. Gathered clutches.  No progress.
8.  Luna Bags: the Essential Tote.  No progress.
8a. Gracie tote

So, no finished this week.  Boo hoo.  Oh, no, wait!  I DID finish something.  But it wasn’t on The List from last week.  This cute little pouch for a friend’s birthday:
 And, I’m adding my mini quilt for the Be a {Modern} Swapper swap.  I’ve already made some progress with a bunch of scrappy little 9-patch blocks.

 That means The List remains the same with the addition of one item.

1.  Road Trip Quilt Along: create back.
2.  Be Free Bees free form quilt robin: finish top
3.  Quilt for Brian.
4.  Mei tais
4a. for Gaby #2
4b. for Kathleen
5.  Equilateral triangle hexagon block tutorial
6.  4×5 Bee Blocks
6a.  Samples: hexagon + boxes
6b.  Blocks for bee members (5)
7. Gathered clutches.
8.  Luna Bags: the Essential Tote
8a. Gracie tote
9.  Ba{M}S mini quilt

To see what others in the sewing community have been working on, go check out the Works in Progress Wednesday link up at Freshly Pieced!