Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A Finished UFO for January

At the beginning of the month I decided to participate in the 2012 UFO Challenge over on the Patchwork Times blog, and I made my list of 12 unfinished projects that I'd like to bring to completion this year.  Judy chooses a number each month, and that is the project that we work on.

January was #5, and on my list that was to quilt my Autumn Schnibbles quilt top.  I got it quilted and bound...and on time by the end of January!  That's one finished UFO for 2012 :)

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Friday, January 20, 2012

Quick & Easy Block Keeper

While working on my Bee exchange blocks for the Baltimore Modern Quilt Guild, I decided that I needed a little block keeper to hold/transport my collection of blocks.  Nothing elaborate, my only requirements were that it had to be quick, easy and cheap.

So I cut a 20" square from this felt backed tablecloth that I had found at Target.  (I started with 20" to give me plenty of room to house 12" finished blocks, if you'd like to make one, you can adjust your measurements up or down for larger or smaller blocks).  You can get several block keepers out of a felt backed tablecloth too, so make them in whatever different sizes you need!

Fold under the edge about a half inch and top stitch to elevate the raw edges.  The felt backed table cloth finger presses pretty well (definitely do not use a hot iron, it would melt pretty quick I think).

(Do that all the way around all four sides.)

Fold one side in wrong sides together about 2 1/2" and use a pin or two to hold it in place.

Then fold in the opposite side wrong sides together 2 1/2" as well.

Now fold up the bottom about 1".  Sew down the stitching line that you already made when you first turned the raw edge over, and then topstitch about 1/4" from the folded edge.

Repeat this step on the remaining side with one exception...

In the top stitching, stitch down a piece of ribbon (approximately 20" long and folded in half).  This will become the ties for the roll.

The blocks tuck nicely into the flaps created by the 2 1/2" folded sides (These are the blocks I received from round one of our block exchange ~ I can't reveal the ones I'm making for round two just yet). 

Then starting from the side without the ribbon, roll up the block keeper, wrap the ties around it, and tie it shut. Easy, quick, and surprisingly durable!

...And ready to go to my next guild meeting :)

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Sunday, January 8, 2012

One Little Word...

Do you choose One Little Word to be your theme word for the year?  Last year my word was Simplicity ~ with all that was going on in 2011 with taking care of my dad and his affairs, working my "job that pays", and trying to grow Spring Water Designs, that word was a very appropriate thing for me to strive for.

This year I've chosen the word Enjoy as my word of inspiration.  I like to make an effort to do something that I enjoy every day, even if it's just a little thing.  I'm realizing how short and precious life really is (Ack ~ is that a symptom of old age?), and want to focus on enjoying all of my blessings.  So don't be surprised if you hear about a gillion little things that I enjoy this year...consider this your advanced warning :)

The Baltimore Modern Quilt Guild issued a challenge for us to make a small project or block using our theme word to help us keep it in focus throughout the year.  So I made this happy little Enjoy quiltlet using the Summer Song fabric collection from Riley Blake Designs (my all-time favorite bright fabrics), and it will hang in my sewing room and make me smile every time I walk in. (Even when it's messy!)  I tried something new to me with the free motion quilting ~ I'm getting better at just "doodling" and filling in an area with quilting stitches without planning it all out ahead of time and marking everything :)

Here are a few of the other Word quilts that were shared at our meeting today.  (More are in the works and will be shown at next month's meeting).  I was impressed and inspired by the thought that everyone put into their chosen words, and as always love the fabrics that were used!

Daniela chose the word Balance, a word that I actually pondered for my theme word and I can so relate to.  I loooove her border fabric and it's so perfect with her black/white letters!

 Laura chose Grow, and did this lovely tree quilt (How cool are those different colored leaves!).

Lainey chose Journey as her word for multiple reasons that fit her life this year.  You can see a better picture of her quilt and read about it here.  She paper pieced her letters, and the little wonky stars are a perfect touch...I always love the colors and fabrics that Lainey uses!

Heather made this little sweetie and will be "sewing seeds" in 2012 :)  You can read more about her project here on her blog.  Her chosen fabric was just perfect for this project, and don't you just love the font that she used for the word!

Finally, Maria made a larger quilt.  She chose the word Improve, and set out on a hunt for fabrics that represent things she wanted to improve on in 2012, and her quilt just kept growing.  I love how she has a significance to each focus fabric in the quilt making it a very personal keepsake to her. 

Have you chosen a theme word for 2012?  I'd love to hear

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Got UFOs?

Do you have quilt tops that are sitting around just waiting to be quilted?

...Or piles of carefully chosen fabrics just waiting to become quilt tops?

...Or that Christmas quilt from 2010 that just needs the binding put on it for petes sake...

Well I do!  So I'm going to jump in and take part in the 2012 UFO Challenge.  I'm always moving on to new projects, and that's what keeps quilting fresh for me, but this year I'm going to go back and finish up some of my old projects in progress.  I figure that even if I can work around my current deadlines and bring an older project one step closer to finished that would be good.

So in the spirit of commitment, here's my list of things I'd like to move forward in 2012:

1. Bind/finish that Christmas quilt darnit!
2. Bind/finish my Thimbleberries Spring quilt
3. Sew my friendship Swap Blocks together
4. Quilt Jo Morton Patriotic Strippy quilt top
5. Quilt Autumn Schnibble Quilt top
6. Finish Blanket Stitching Walk in the Moonlight Quilt
7. Quilt Harvest Moon Quilt top
8. Quilt Snowman Quilt top
9. Quilt Jo Morton Club Mini Baskets Quilt
10. Finish blocks for Jo Morton Warm Wishes quilt
11. Quilt Jo Morton Second Hand Rose Quilt top
12. Quilt Winding Ways Quilt top

(There's a lot of quilting on that list, and since I know me and my moods, my alternate project to work on for each month is to complete A Tisket A Tasket applique block ~ I have 5 more to make). 

So each month over on Patchwork Times Blog a number will be chosen and my challenge will be to work on the UFO on my list that corresponds to the chosen number.  These are all side projects that I've started just for fun, not related to my Spring Water Designs business, so we'll see how I do...

What do you have in the wings to re-visit in 2012? 

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Here's to a Delightful 2012!

I've taken my annual holiday sabbatical from the computer (and it was glorious!), but I'm back now with a little snapshot of some of my favorite projects from 2011 and I'm fresh and ready to take on 2012!

I did hop on the computer to do quick little things, and read some of my favorite blogs, (and I have been working, sewing, and doing a little planning), but I've spent most of my time this last month with family preparing, worshiping, celebrating, re-fueling, and generally enjoying moments like this...

Abby and I want to say thank you to all of my blog friends for your support, friendship, and sweet  comments in 2011, and wish you all a 2012 full of moments to delight in! 

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn