Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A Look Back at 2013

In the book of life every page has two sides: we human beings fill the upper side with our plans, hopes and wishes, but providence writes on the other side, and what it ordains is seldom our goal. 
Nisami

2013 Finishes

The year is drawing to a close so it is a good time to take a look at what has happened in my little corner of the quilting world.  I didn't get as much done as I would have liked to but then I seldom do.  I always make plans to do more but time runs much faster than I do it seems.  That's OK.  As long as I keep getting some things done on the 'to do' list I am making progress in the right direction.

So what have I done this year?  The first thing I had to do was to get over a knee injury.  It has been a joy to walk around without pain and without a cane!  I have an occasional twinge but I can live with that.  Many days I do not have any pain and that is something to really be grateful for!

What have I finished in the studio this year?  These are all projects that I have shared info about on the blog so if you want to know more about them just do a little more reading.


QUILTS COMPLETED
I'm a little biased Wall Quilt



A Small Wall Quilt with Faux Binding
A Bunny Crib QuiltOne of my oldest UFOs.
A Poodle Print Flannel Crib Quilt

A Panel Crib Quilt
Tweety Bird Crib Quilt
The Sunny Side Bed Quilt

Bed Sized Mystery Quilt

Hexagonal Tree Skirt
Christmas Table Runner
Halloween Wall Quilt

 TOPS COMPLETED
Christmas Tumbler Top
Blue and Orange Plaid Tumbler Top

Baseball Strippy #1 Top

Baseball Strippy #2 Top
Take 5 Purple Top

 OTHER PROJECTS

3 ORTS
3 Owl Pincushions

NICU Blanket
Fake Fur Pillows
Tapestry Table Runner

Tapestry Pillow

Last but by no means least was this BIG project!

I put together my new INNOVA

I also quilted a few bed sized and lap quilts for other people on my new Innova.  Not sharing pictures of those because I don't have permission.  You can see a glimpse or two sometimes of a back on the blog posts.  Mostly I'm just trying to record my projects here.

I also made 99 posts on this blog and have topped 600 followers.  Thank you so much for your support!  I really enjoy reading all your comments and emails.  It's great getting to know other quilters around the world!

Seven of the projects were UFOs.  All the rest were started within a few months of being finished.  That's an accomplishment in itself since I have so many multi-year projects hanging around in the studio.  The other interesting thing about ALL these projects is that they were made from my stash with the exception of the plaid tumblers top, the NICU blanket and one print in the baseball tops and one in the Take 5 top which were from the Charity quilt group's stash.

No, I can't see much of a dent in my stash yet but I do have a little space where the 20 inch pillow forms were.  LOL  

I'm looking forward to being even more productive in the New Year!  I hope you will be too!

Linking with: Let's Bee Social

December Gifts and Finishes

One of the greatest gifts
That life can give to anyone
Is the very special love that families share...
As years go by,
It's good to know that there will always be
Certain people in our lives who care.
For there are countless things
That only families have in common
And memories that no one else can make...
And these precious ties that bind a family together
Are bonds that time and distance cannot break.
How fortunate we are
When we have relatives to love us,
It makes the world a happy place to be...
Few gifts in life
Will last as long
Or touch the heart as deeply
As the very special gift
Of family.
 

Craig S. Tunks


It's been a busy month and I didn't have a lot of time for blogging about all that I was getting done.  I was able to finish up a few gifts in time for giving them.  There were still more things that I had hoped to get done but that's OK.  I will be working on them later.

First to get started was several pillows (cushions for my UK friends).  As I was reorganizing my studio I came across some fake fur that I've had for a few years.  I've never sewn on fake fur so it was a new experience for me.  The pillow turned out great.  I made 2 - 20 inch ones and one 16 inch one.  Here is a picture of 2 of them.  You can tell by how they are being held that they were a hit.


Fur pillows

I also found a garden seed tapestry panel and piece of cotton with a seed theme print.  The two were just made to go together.  I added a little denim to border the tapestry and a zipper to the back.  A nice fat piping finished the edges and I had a nice 20 inch pillow all made from the stash.

  
Garden Seeds Pillow Front

Pillow Back

One funny thing about giving away four pillows that I had made as gifts was that one of the first gifts I opened was four pillows for my living room from my son and DIL.  They were purchased but they match my decor perfectly.  I'm sure I will remember this Christmas as the year of the pillows. LOL

I also put the finishing touches to the binding and ties on the Hexagonal Tree Skirt I made back in July.  I finished up that one on Christmas Day, nothing like waiting till the last minute but it was done in time for gifting.  I bet some of you were doing the same thing too.

Finished Tree Skirt
I am always amazed at how much the finished binding adds to a project.  I was really pleased with how the points at the corners turned out nice and sharp too.


See the Bow Closure?

Tie at the center

Machine Stitched Binding

I also finished up a tapestry piece for myself.  This was the easiest project of the year.  All I had to do was trim and stitch the ends into nice points.

Tapestry Table Runner

A nice point
I had one other finish this month but no picture.  I did the binding and hanging sleeve on the landscape log cabin quilt that I quilted earlier this Fall.  You can see the quilting on the back of it HERE.

One last thing to share.  Back before Thanksgiving I picked up this potted poinsettia plant arrangement at the grocery store.  It was a little expensive but I loved the peach color.  I thought it may have been dyed and I'm pretty sure now that it was since the new leaves are white.  When I first brought it home it only hung over the edges of the bucket it is in a little like the back side does now in the picture above. Look at it now!  I've really enjoyed it.  I'm trying to keep it alive, it takes a lot of water.  I'll probably separate the different plants and repot it in the spring.  It has a peace lily and a schefflera in it too.

It is so pretty!

I love the mini schefflera! 

Well, that the finishes for the month.  It was a good ending for the year.  I hope your year finished off nicely too!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

A Working Studio

When you think something, you think in picture. You don't think a thought in words. You think a picture that expresses your thought. Working with this picture will produce it into your experience. 
Grace Speare




Today is the last day of Vicki Welsh's Real Studio Tour.  We are supposed to share our studio with you.  I've shown parts of my basement studio in the past.  First I shared A Few Good Ideas with you.  Then I showed you some pictures of how I Store Things.  

In the past I have also shared a few other looks at my studio.  My sewing studio, then my New Machine and Rearranged Sewing Studio.  Before that I had shown off my longarm machines, the New One and the Old One.

Today I'll share a few more pictures of my work space with you. In the Longarm Studio you can find tools and office supplies.

Longarm Studio

Tools and white board

Bobbin Winder and Inspiration Board

Desk and Bookcase

Longarm Necessities

Metal Cabinet for Thread and Dyes
Rack for Displaying Tops

Another rack of stencils and tools

Office Supplies
 Racks of quilt tops await my attention also. 


Tops to Quilt and my
Old Longarm is in the closet behind
 In the main room of the studio is my cutting table, bookcase and ironing area.  There is also a TV and piano.  Art supplies are located in a dresser under the TV. (no picture)

Quilting and Art Books

A right turn here takes you into my Sewing Studio or to the stairs.

Old Notions and Buttons in Jars 

Cutting TableYou can even see the matt today! 
Today the table is cleared enough to be used.  Can't say that everyday. LOL You can see into the longarm studio here.

Strips in Bins

Big Ironing Board Workspace

The other end of the ironing board.
Can't work without books on tape.

Since this is the Real Studio Tour I'll show you my Grandmother's Rocker which may or may not still be full of things waiting to be put away.  Hey, they aren't on the floor and they are all projects neatly organized with all the parts together.


Waiting to be put away?

Even a few quilts can be found here

With the studio in the basement sometimes it takes a while for things to find their way back upstairs.  I need to come up with a nice use for those wooden peach crates.  I'm tired of moving them around.

Behind the green curtain is a stubbed in bath that I hope to have finished next year.  Having to stop working to go upstairs for a bathroom break interrupts things for too long. A finished ceiling in the basement would be nice too.  Of course having workers tracking in and out to do this and all the rearranging it would take is an issue.  I guess no pain no gain. 

I have a lot of space but I have a lot of stuff filling it all up too.  If I could sell my old short arm and old longarm it would clear out some space.  The shortarm is in my sewing studio (no pictures) and takes up 12 feet of it.  The longarm fills the closet under the stairs.

I hope you've enjoyed this glimpse of my Real Studio.  It's not a showcase but it's very functional for me.

Linking with Sew Many Ways
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