Thursday, December 31, 2015

Out of the [quilt] box!

This is the third challenge from Prairie Moon Quilts.

And this year, I WILL try something new - I signed up for the 365Challenge - a new quilt block to make every day. AND it fits with my other "new" thing - I signed up for a local mini group.

I'll be cutting some tonight - I'm going to be working on a belated Christmas gift for my sister-in-law - AND un-decorating the Christmas tree so it can go out to the road for recycling.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Second Prairie Moon Challenge

The second challenge is:

Organize ALL our UFOs

I've made a good start on this - UFOs are listed in the sidebar as I think of them/find them. In previous years, I've made lists - and then lost track of them. Hopefully by keeping them on the blog, I can keep better track of them.

I'm up to 19 so far :) AND, I still like all of them and want to finish them! They're more due to life getting in the way, rather than hitting roadblocks. Although in a few cases, the roadblock is actually *finding* the UFO - I know it's hidden in the bins, but don't know where.

I've joined Stashbusters UFO Challenge again this year - that will keep me accountable.

First end of year challenge

I'm doing the end-of-year challenges from Prairie Moon Quilts.

These are my responses to the first one.

Take a good hard look at your fabric stash

Do you like the way you have it stored?
Not really. The bins work, for the most part, and are needed to keep the stinkbugs out. My biggest issue is not having enough space to have it all in one place, so it's scattered all around the house.
Do you like the way you have it sorted?
Not really. Some of the bins are sorted by color, some by theme, but most by "shove the fabric in a bin before the cats pee on it."

Do you like all the fabric you have?
Mostly - there is one bin of polyester I inherited from my MIL that is just going to go in a donation bag very soon.

Do you like the system you have, but aren’t working it like you want to?
I do, at least as far as I have a system. I don't store a lot of my scraps in pre-cut sizes, only the ones I've bought that way. I don't have a lot of yardage - having a designated place for pieces that are big enough for backings would be a big help.
Have you seen a system you’d like to implement, but haven’t taken the time to implement it?
Not yet :)

I've done MUCH better at not buying randomly this past year, and plan to continue that in the new year.

And overall - I like having a stash. I like being able to find and use odd fabrics. But better organization would definitely help.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

2016 Word of the Year - Discipline

Self-discipline, that is.

Every new day is a chance to work on what I need or want to do, to make changes for the better.

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

UFO completion

This was an Orphan Block Challenge for my guild.

Completed guilts were donated to our Service Projects group for donation.

My orphan blocks were the wonky log cabin in the middle, the flying goose part of the arrow/house block, and the sawtooth star. I made the friendship star and the six nine-patches to complete it. The leftover blocks were from quilts I made for my daughter's BFF and the BFF's mom.

The back is a soft flannel.

Close-up of the back and quilting - not perfect, but not awful.

I made a scrappy binding to finish it off.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Mojo returning

I finally started sewing some again.

It started with some split 9-patch blocks:

After a week or so, I have a nice little stack.

And I can play with them, to see what kind of pattern they want to make.

This past weekend, I dug out some printed panels and made blocks to go with them. Not showing much; this is a Secret Santa gift :)

Now maybe I can dig out the quilts started for Hannah and Deana and get to work!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

County Fair

I entered a bunch of stuff in the county fair this year for the first time. The Lovely Daughter entered artwork a couple of years ago and won some big awards, and TMOTH had a bowl in last year.

THIS year, TMOTH put in a bowl and 3 photographs.

My grand total was 29 entries in various categories :) It was fun having a goal to work for this year- and I'll definitely do it again next year. Most of the Home Arts stuff I entered won ribbons of some sort; I had one big ribbon with the shawl I finished just in time:

Groot only won second place :(
All the hard work on the chair paid off: A blue ribbon for my efforts; as with a little pumpkin table-topper and this redwork Santa that I did in about 45 minutes one evening:

The baby shoes were a last-minute project as well:

All in all, I feel well rewarded. And I had a great time at the fair!! photos below:

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Studio organizing

So, this week's task for studio organizing is: Choose 10 things to deal with.

Since my "studio" is spread out over the entire house, does cleaning up the chip corner in the kitchen count? Eh, didn't think so.

SO, my 10 things off the top of my head:

1. Finish Cecile's quilt. This I finished quilting today; waiting on a decision about binding and can get to that.

2. Pack a project or two to take on the back-to-college trip.

3. Put away the random craft stuff in the living room next to the couch - only keep the stuff that I'm working on in the evenings there.

4. Clean off the dining room table. (This IS studio-related; it's where I pin big quilts. The used-to-be-swastika quilt is ready to pin.)

5. Send glitter to Del.

6. Put the donation fabric in the donation bag.

7. Clean and oil the sewing machines.

8. Change the cover on the ironing board.

9. Finish dd's mending before we leave.

10. Clean up around the zig-zag machine so I can use it :)

11. Check to see if the Brother works in case The Lovely Daughter wants it.

August Laundry List

Been a while since I tried one of these - and the month is half over! and I miss part of it traveling! Nevertheless, here it is.

1. Finish Cecile's quilt. This is more than half quilted; I might actually be able to finish the quilting today, depending on what other crises pop up. I just have to find something to bind it with.

2. Keep up with weekly Studio Organizing prompts. I also arrived late to this project, so I've been trying to do some of the earlier ones if I finish the task of the week before a new one comes out.

3. Work on started quilts - quite a few of these.
   3a. Blue and yellow quilt.
   3b. Deana's quilt.
   3c. WOTB quilt.
   3d. Split 9-patch.

4. Start crocheted moccasins.

5. Finish cat potholders.

6. RE-start menu planning.

7. Work on hooked rug.

8. NO computer puzzles.

Saturday, August 08, 2015

Quiet Saturday

It's been a lovely day today.

I went to karate by myself this morning rather than dragging the karate kid out of bed. It was great! They got a punching dummy, so we did boxing drills!!

I stopped at the local hardware store and got a couple more cans of spray finish so the chair can get done this weekend. I put a coat of shellac (per TMOTH's instructions) on it this afternoon.

I cut into one of our volunteer cantaloupes from the garden. We brought two in yesterday - one because it looked like it might be going bad, and the other because it looked ripe. Well, the one with a bad spot kind of exploded a little (because it WAS bad) so I thought I should go ahead and check the other one. It looks lovely, and it tastes OK - not great, but most definitely edible.

When I was taking the remains of they explodey cantaloupe out to the compost, I noticed butterflies (look like Appalachian brown satyrs to me) loving the rotting fruit.

There was quite the jockeying for best spot - this guy [the baldfaced hornet on the watermelon] chased off all the butterflies at one point!

We still have cicadas, and their shells.
And now, there are burgers on the grill, and a quiet Sunday to look forward to.

Friday, August 07, 2015

Shawl complete

I finished my shawl while waiting for The Lovely Daughter to test for her driver's license today.

The pattern is the "Yes Yes Shawl" found here:

 I made mine a little longer.

And the Lovely Daughter passed, so we have a fully qualified driver now!

Tonight we also went to gallery openings at Washington Artworks.

TMOTH has a couple of pieces in the woodturners show there.

Thursday, August 06, 2015

New quilt start

Yes, I know. But I was inspired by this post, and a bin full of pre-cut squares.

First the squares got sorted into light, medium, and dark. The light and dark are here:
But like most quilters, it seems as if I have more mediums than anything else!!

I sewed up a few blocks last night:
It's very satisfying to finally start sewing again.

Eradicating a Pile

I've been following along on Prairie Moon Quilt's Studio Organizing Challenge. Never mind that my "studio" is a scattering of spaces across the house, and some weeks have been better than others.

This week's challenge was to eradicate a pile. This was the one I decided to tackle, before:
This is in the dining room, near the fireplace. I sew on my Featherweight on the dining room table for most piecing, and iron over by the window in the dining room, so it tends to accumulate stuff. The photo doesn't show the extent of the piling-ness; it extends up to the top of the stove insert.

And after:
You can see the rest-of-the-room pile starting on the left, but by golly that corner is clear! One bite at a time is manageable.

Today's challenge should pop up later today :)

Staining the Chair

It was lovely over the weekend, so the chair got stained - "Summer Oak" oil-based stain. Supplies: mineral spirits, rags, stain, a test board, and the all-important gloves!

And after:

I'm VERY happy with the color. I may be able to spray some finish this afternoon; otherwise, I'll get it done over the weekend.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Chair Refinishing

Wow, no posts since April?

 I started refinishing this chair, that I've had since about 1992. It was being thrown away at MTSU, so I rescued it. And it's stayed in its battleship grey camouflage since then.
 Nice lines, though.
 And you can see bits of the oak underneath peeking through.
 Starting supplies - I've refinished furniture before, but not for a LONG time.
 Stripper bubbles paint!
 Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble :)
 Look at that pretty wood underneath!

 They even put a coat of grey paint on the underside.

 Ready to move to the shade again.
 Definitely progress.
 Taking a break to replant succulents :)
 Laying out supplies on the picnic table.
 Stripper success!

 Little chip in the wood that needs to be repaired
 Sanding time1
 This may or may not create problems - it's a drip of superglue that I used to glue the splinter back in place.
 All sanded smooth.

This project got started the end of May, and I hadn't gotten much done in the month of July - too much travel and work crap.