Monday, October 19, 2009

2009 Goals - Where am I now?

Some of my earlier followers will remember that I set some goals for myself earlier in the year. I figured I'd post an update on where I am as a check-in for myself and to show off my mom's first quilting project below that, as you'll see, goes with one of my goals.

Here were my goals.
  1. Machine quilt and finish all my unfinished quilt tops
  2. Do all the Carol Doak Yahoo Group Scenic Block of the Months (more about this below)
  3. Make a quilt for my mom (she's been asking for one for a while)
  4. Teach my mom to quilt (she's been wanting to join us for a little while now and it's about time we get her going...)
  5. Use as many fabrics and patterns from my stash as possible
  6. Spend more attention to color tones and values and how I use them in my quilts
  7. Finish our wedding guest book (we had people sign quilt squares instead of the traditional guest book)
  8. Name and Label all of my quilts (I know, I know... this is something I should be doing anyway)
Here's where I am with them:
  1. Yeah, this isn't going to happen. I've just added to my pile of quilt tops needing to be machine quilted. I have finished two, have two partially done, and another out to be quilted by a long arm. I have another 7 or so besides what I just listed that need to be done.
  2. I've done 11 out of the 12. I have the fabric picked out for the 12th block, I just need to piece it and put the top together. This is one I'll be able to mark as met.
  3. I decided to give my mom the Merry Merlot quilt (from the Happy Hour book by Atkinson Designs). I just need to trim up all of the loose threads and attach the label that is already made.
  4. My mom took her first quilting class last Tuesday and made a table runner. It's the table runner shown above. She enjoyed it, and signed up for another class at the quilt store she took the first one at. Pretty soon she'll be able to join us on our quilting gatherings and we can help her expand her skills.
  5. Ok, so I have been using fabric from my stash, but I've also been adding quite a bit to my stash. My Fire & Ice quilt uses fabric that I've had for a while, the Merry Merlot quilt uses a fat quarter bundle I've had for over a year, the Carol Doak Scenic BOM uses all fabric from my stash, and most of it uses scraps, the Bright Bold Block quilt is ALL from my stash, and the McCall's mystery quilt is using Mark Lipinski's Calfilon from my stash. I'd say that's pretty good.
  6. I'd say I've done well with this.
  7. I still need to get the squares from my Aunt, so I haven't made any progress here, but there's still time.
  8. No comment. Ok, so the one quilt I finished completely already and gave to my aunt I didn't label on purpose because I really disliked the quilt so much (it was a mystery quilt) that I didn't want a label on it. I have a label all set to go for the Merry Merlot quilt once I get rid of all of the loose thread. We'll see if I label my other near-finishes.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

I Won!!!

I'm so excited!  I woke up this morning and read my email and all of the recent blog posts that I subscribe to.  I was reading who won the Fat Quarter Shop's giveaway from Fall Market for the newest Moda precut package, the sampler pack, and I saw the name Jen.  I thought, "alright with over 250 comments, that must be another Jen."  Well, I clicked on the name, and my profile came up!!! I had won.

The new sampler box contains 12 packages of 40 2 1/2" squares of all of the new lines of fabric coming out beginning in a few months.  Now to decide what to do with all of these. Hmm...

Also, I got a call yesterday from my local quilt shop.  I had won their monthly drawing!  Man, this must be my week.  I went in there this afternoon and picked up my prize, a couple of patterns and 5 spools of thread!  One pattern is for a bag and the other is for an eye glass case.  

Whoo Hoo!!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Bucket List of Quilts

I started thinking of what kind of quilts I've made in the past and what kind of quilts I'd like to make eventually. As a result, I thought I'd share some of the styles of quilts I've made and other's that I'd like to make. I'd love to hear what quilts are on your bucket list.

Quilt Styles/Techniques that I've made (some are just tops needing quilting, but I'm including them here anyway) I'm including techniques because I think learning a technique is just as important as a style of quilt.
  • Bento Box
  • Blooming 9 Patch (as a gift, I'm thinking of making one for myself eventually though)
  • Disappearing 9 Patch
  • Crazy 9 Patch
  • Bargello
  • Fence & Rail
  • One Block Wonder
  • Braid Quilt
  • Stained Glass
  • Mariners Compass
  • Applique
  • Paper Piecing
  • Curved Piecing
Here's what I'd still like to make, or my bucket list:
  • Coin Quilt (I know, it's simple, but I'd like to make one)
  • Loan Star quilt (I'm still trying to gather the perfect fabric for one of these)
  • Aunt Millie's Garden (I know I said I'm not an applique fan, but I'm starting to like this quilt)
  • Tumbler Quilt
  • A quilt to be entered into a show bigger then a local quilt guild show such as the Lowell Quilt Festival, a much larger show
  • A Red and Aqua/Teal quilt. I know this is a popular color combo right now, but I've always loved this color combination, long before it became popular
  • Perfecting my machine quilting (I've done about 4 quilts on my machine now, but I'm not at the level I'd like to be. My skills in making quilt tops is far superior to my machine quilting skills. This is why I have so many unfinished tops. I'm trying to bring my machine quilting skills up to quilt my better tops.)
  • Y seams. I've never made a quilt needing it, but I'm sure I will need to learn this when I make the loan star quilt. I'm not avoiding it, I've just never needed to learn.
The other thing on my bucket list that's not a style or technique is to eventually buy a much better machine, preferably a Bernina Aurora 440 QE (or equivalent when the time comes). Right now I'm sewing on an average Singer. It does a great job piecing, but I've had a horrible time machine quilting with it.

I'm sure my bucket list will grow/change as new techniques are introduced, but that is my bucket list of quilts. What's yours?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

No Pics, but progress

So I still can't find my camera chargers. :o( I'm debating on whether or not I want to break down and buy new ones because not being able to find them is driving me nuts. At the same time, I don't want to spend the money on something I know is somewhere in the house.

Anyway, I've made some progress on my quilting projects since my last post:
  • Finished piecing the top of the blooming nine patch. I'm just debating on if I want to add a border or not.
  • Finished piecing the top of a disappearing nine patch using 2 Figgy Pudding by Moda charm packs
  • Cut out all of the pieces to sew 4 additional, smaller stars for my Fire and Ice quilt from the Carol Doak class
  • Continued machine quilting my bento box in between everything else. I've found that I can't do a lot of machine quilting at one time, so I'm making much more progress then I would have by mixing things up.
  • Picked out the fabric for the final two Carol Doak scenic BOMs from August and September (yes, I know I'm behind)
  • Installed (ok, hung up) a cork board next to my sewing table so I can hang patterns that I'm currently working on and other ideas. I also put my checklist here to help me track my progress. To hold a book up there, I use a couple of binder clips hung using a couple of tacs, which works GREAT!
  • Dropped off my Autumn quilt with a new machine quilter that I'm trying out. This quilt is just too big for me to do on my home machine, so I'm trying this one out so I can see what her work is like since I want someone to quilt the blooming nine patch quilt in an all over cherry blossom pantograph that I'm still searching for. Anyone seen a good cherry blossom pantograph I can purchase somewhere?
  • Started a lap quilt at a little gathering with my aunt KK using Moda's Eva by Basic Grey line.
That's all for now, happy quilting!!!