Although I didn’t complete my January One Monthly Goal in time, I’m linking up again this month. I find the targeted sewing goal helpful, even if I don’t fully achieve it. In January I managed to make a few drawstring bags and also finished a number of unexpected UFO finds that were squirreled away. I’m still plugging away at the bags, too.
For February, I’d like to concentrate on moving this quilt top into a finished quilt. I’ve selected the backing fabrics and should be able to get the whole thing done in a weekend. The big question is setting aside enough time to get it done! I’m linking up at Elm Street Quilts with a few hours to spare.
So. Here is a pretty awful photo of what I’m planning for the back of the nautical baby quilt. I think design wall pictures can be hard to capture anyway and the fact that we are in the process of moving my husband’s work desk into this space made it all that more difficult. Also, my phone (which is probably not what I should be using for photos, but, well, it’s what I’ve got right now) tends to render any indoor shots in a terrible yellowy cast. I messed around with the saturation, color and brightness on this picture just to get it to this point. This next photo shows much more accurate color, but I wasn’t able to get the whole wall in the photo by being so close.
As you can see, I am using the blue to add size to a small square of seersucker I had in my stash. The seersucker seemed appropriate for this quilt given the navy blue anchors running in stripes down the length. The blue is a flannel. You can see the quilt top peeking out behind the seersucker, since I kept it on the design wall to help me know how large my blue borders needed to be.
And at the very top, behind both of these items, is Bri’s quilt. It’s my next quilting project, I think, regardless of what number is pulled for the UFO lottos I’m following. My parents are visiting soon and I want them to take these quilts with them to hand out to my niece and nephew.
I was really excited to finish the refashion on the nautical baby quilt top, but when I added up the yardage I was reminded of why baby quilts are usually such quick projects — they just don’t take that much fabric! According to my calculations, the top used up 1.48 yds. More will certainly be used when I finish the backing, but I didn’t manage it this week, so it doesn’t count.
I also have been steadily going through my craft (mostly fabric with the occasional surprise) supplies and culled about an additional half yard that went straight into the trash — all fabric pieces that were ridicously small or had other problems and just needed to be gone. For example I dismantled a bag I really screwed up and salvaged what I could but a lot of that just went into the trash. I didn’t measure or weigh this fabric, but I would say that a half yard is a pretty reasonable estimate. Which means, rounding up, that I can add 2 more yards to the “used” column in my tracking spreadsheet. Hooray!
Of course, I did fall prey to the fantastic sales at Craftsy’s this weekend, but since that fabric won’t arrive until next month…I’m not counting it until it passes through the door!
Used this week: 2 yards
Used YTD: 4.56 yards
Added this week: 0 yards
Added YTD: 24.75 yards
Net Used Yards (Used YTD – Added YTD): –20.19 yards
I’m feeling rather pleased this morning — the ugly baby quilt that I just wanted to get done and out of my life has turned into something I rather like, now. Adding the borders and cornerstones definitely quieted down the busyness that really bothered me in the earlier rendition and I think that the eye can more easily trace the pattern with the sashing/borders than when the blocks were huddled up close together. The bottom border will probably give me problems when quilting — hanging here I can see that it is way less than perfect, although it’s not as visible when hanging on my design wall. I suppose that perhaps the way my husband is holding the top might have an effect? I don’t know.
As a reminder, this is what it looked like before:
I really think the changes I made improve this by about 100%. I’m also really trying to embrace the idea that finished is better than perfect and am making it my motto for 2018. I think this qualifies! ;) Here’s another shot, with slightly different lighting — the sun was a little tricky this morning.
I plan to quilt it in a simple grid. I am using stash fabrics for the back and binding — a seersucker with navy and red anchors/life preservers on it, and a blue flannel combo for the backing and then a solid red for the binding. I have three random cuts of seersucker to use up and am happy to get some of it out of the stash and into a project!
Quick, while it’s still today. The cushion insert and burp cloths used nearly a yard this week. And I miscalculated last week on the actual yardage for the burp cloths so had to adjust for that. Although it’s not something I’m tracking, I was also pleased to use up a bag of polyfil…one less thing!
Here are my numbers:
Used this week: .92 yards
Used YTD: 2.56 yards
Added this week: 0 yards
Added YTD: 24.75 yards
Net Used Yards (Used YTD – Added YTD): 22.19 yards
Just a quick post to share that blue cushion cover I mentioned in my stash report last week — I ended up having to make the actual cushion insert, too, as the one I had on hand was smaller than I thought. I was focused on getting this done and so there are a number of imperfections that will bother me but not enough to keep from throwing it on the guest bed. Or my husband borrowing it while watching tv. The block is one that I made a couple of years ago from blue scraps but was not paying enough attention to my seam allowances so it came out smaller than I planned. I never made any other blocks so it truly was orphaned. I did add a simple border and then used a scrap of batting and more scraps for the backing. I didn’t take the time to use a walking foot or change to quilting thread and really just motored through the quilting, so the fabric pulled a bit and became a bit unaligned. I’m not that concerned about it for this pillow, but it’s helpful to see how those things really do affect your end results. Probably I also pulled it a bit through the machine.
The back is just a simple envelope backing using up yet more scrap fabric, from the County Fair line by Denyse Scmidt from years and years ago. Which you can’t see, but which I am terribly happy to finally move out of my stash — I really like this fabric, but it has a muted tone that is hard to pair with other fabrics in my stash, plus it’s home dec weight canvas. I bought it before I really knew anything about how fabrics would work together. The inner cushion (also not visible) is made of fabric culled from a total wadder of an apparel project — I had great plans to make myself a nightgown using quilting cotton, which, when I tried it on, was both too large and so stiff that the thought of sleeping in it was not a dream. So. Not perfect, but done and serviceable, which suits me today.
I also made a couple more burp cloths to go with the one I finished last week. Again, more random fabric out of my stash! I am especially unsure as to why I bought the blue print — it has Easter eggs on it, I believe. I am not the kind of person who does a lot of seasonal quilting or decorating so I’m at a loss. Although as I’m typing, I think there was a period of time that I collected cute prints for an ISpy quilt. There is probably a stack of squares cut out somewhere, even! Anyway, these three cloths will all go to my sister, who is rather unexpectedly pregnant with her third child and having to collect all the essentials again. The pattern is from Stop Staring and Start Sewing and in my opinion is the best burp cloth shape — I like the gentle contours but appreciate that there is still plenty of coverage.
I’m quite pleased to have these little projects done and am ready to move on — it’s always amusing to me how starting out on one project leads to working on something entirely different! At least that seems to be my path. I found these pieces when I was looking for fabric for the drawstring bags…and they were small enough and quick enough to do that I just wanted to get them done rather than stashing them back into the bins where I found them. There should be no other squirrels in my path to completing the bags, though, so hopefully I’ll have a post up sharing that completed project soon!
I really need to do something about my photography — these didn’t look too bad on the phone, but look awful in this collage. I’m walking a fine line of wanting to have nice photos and keeping myself from getting hung up in perfecting the photography or allowing the less than nice photos to keep me from doing and posting. Ugh. Anyway.
The last of the items I ordered in December came in. We’ll go counterclockwise from the top right: I picked up 3.5 yards of Essex Linen in Steel from the Missouri Star Quilt Company and while I was browsing their site the daily deal caught my eye, which was the layer cake of Aflutter in the next photo. I don’t have a ton of purple in my stash but these saturated colors really appealed to me. I have an idea for the pattern I’d like to use, although I suspect it will be a while before I get around to it. Finally, on the bottom are all the materials assembled for the Paint Pots quilt I’m planning to make. I’d already had the Kaffe Fassett design roll and, in addition to the Essex Linen, I picked up 5 yards of the floral print (also Kaffe) for the backing and two yards of two different green shot cottons as I wasn’t sure which would be best for binding. All that remains is to get started! But a few other projects take priority right now.
I did finish a couple of small projects this week and hope to get more done tomorrow, since it is a holiday. I found an orphan block and decided to finish it up into a cushion cover. And I also found a burp cloth cut out and just needing to be topstitched, so I did that as well. Finally, I pitched another burp cloth that had awful stitching (looked like it was eaten by the machine) and that I messed up further when I tried to salvage it. Each burp cloth uses almost a third of a yard, while the cushion cover used up three quarters of a yard. Right now my intake is far out pacing my usage, but I’m not planning on any additional purchases this month, so I hope I can catch up at least a little!
Used this week: 1.34 yards
Used YTD: 1.69 yards
Added this week: 13.25 yards
Added YTD: 24.75 yards
Net Used Yards (Used YTD – Added YTD): 23.06 yards