Monday, November 28, 2016

Motivational Mondays

Good morning!

Today is the first day of the rest of your life.  In my case, my life seems to revolve around quilting and so today is the first day of an improved quilting life. I'm ready to stand up and shout to the world - "My name is Elaine. I'm addicted to quilting and I have an obsession that needs to be contained."

I'll start with a bit of background. If you've been following my blog, you know that I have so MANY UFOs that need to be completed. I won't embarrass myself by posting pictures, yet! There is a constant stream of stuff being packed and unpacked. There is constant chaos. The worse part is that new stuff gets started, new supplies get purchased, but the number of finished projects doesn't increase at the same rate.

I've made numerous changes over the years and I'm way better than I used to be, but a very sobering fact is if I don't come home tonight, what would my family do with that huge mess I created? How many of those projects would get ditched because no one could understand the mess that I've left? How many people would be fighting over my stuff? I decided that this situation won't do and as a responsible quilter, it's up to me to take control and do something about this.

I'm going to start by having you ask yourself a couple of questions. While this project is quilt related, you could use it to improve any part of your life.

  • Are you frustrated because you don't seem to get much done?
  • Do you spend top much time trying to find things in your studio?
  • Are your shelves overflowing with quilt related items?
  • Is the amoung of UFOs crushing your spirit?
  • Do you know how many new projects you start in a year?
  • Do you know how many projects you finish in a year?
  • Have you gone to the quilt store to buy a tool/pattern/book that you know you already have, but can't find?
  • Have you gone to the quilt store to buy fabric rather than search at home?

1.       If you answered YES to any of the above questions, then you might want to consider participating in my project. I failed miserably and answered an emphatic YES to all the questions. 

The object of this project is to help us get control of our quilting lives.

I've been quilting for close to 20 years. I’ve been a quilt teacher for a great part of those years and have started numerous samples. I’m also an enthusiastic quilter, but I’m not a great finisher. Making class samples and getting caught up in the latest trend has resulted in a huge pile of UFOs. There are so many UFOs that I don’t want to count them – even I would be shocked at the number. Even the number of quilt tops that need to be quilted would blow your mind. 

Not only are there a lot of UFOs, but there are magazines, books, tools, notions, patterns and fabric that fills the entire basement of my house.  I don’t even want to imagine the amount of money that was spent. Nor can I even begin to imagine what it would be like to move it all. Thankfully, there are no plans to move, but I will have to one day!

I’m tired of looking at the same old projects over and over again. I would love to get some of these things finished, so they can be donated, gifted or simply used for my trunk shows. I’m tired of digging through boxes of quilt tops to find examples for trunk shows, only to have to put everything back again. I’ve tried numerous times to fix the problem, but I get sidetracked or forget. Not the old age forgetfulness.  Nope, this is the kind that relates to – "I’m onto the next project already and no time to cope with the old|. Out of sight, out of mind also comes to mind on this one.

I’ve found over the years of blogging, that I've become more accountable to myself to get things done, but I need to take it one step further and by making this a regular plan and making it public, not only could I help myself, but hopefully I can motivate one or more of you to get control of the situation.

I’m calling my plan, Motivational Mondays and each Monday of 2017, I’ll post some inspirations, some tips, some photos on how we can get this situation under control.  It'll take some time, it'll take some motivation, it'll take some control and hopefully it'll change some of our behavior so once we dig ourselves out, we won’t get buried again.

Here's what I’m planning to do:
Each Monday, there be a new post  on the blog related to the situation. One week, it may be on magazines and how to get them under control. It may be tips on putting labels on quilts, culling projects or UFOs or just checking in with you. In order to make it easy for everyone to participate, I’m going to create a Facebook group where we’ll be able to post pictures of our mess – the before and after, we can post our finished items and we can motivate each other. 

This isn’t going to be easy. There will be times when we’re going to struggle, but I strongly believe that unless we start to clean up our acts, nothing will happen until the day we don't come home.  

I don’t think I even need to list the benefits of this program, but here are a couple in case you’re not convinced. 

  • A more inviting sewing space, perhaps even enough room to share with a friend or two from time to time. 
  • The ability to find ALL your tools when you want them, so no more purchasing duplicate tools.
  • No more clutter
  • Gifts that you can give ON TIME because you now have more time to sew, less time searching for things. 

Stay tuned!  You can sign up for the Facebook group next week. (If you don't do Facebook, then send me pictures that I can post on the blog or you can send me comments via e-mail).  I'll post the link to the weekly blog posts on the Facebook page. Share this post with your friends who you think need help. 

      This program is for those that are serious about making this life-changing event. If you’re not sure, then this may not be the program for you, but follow along, you many change your mind when you see how much we're getting done.  The same way, you can't convince other addicts to stop their behavior, I can’t get you started. Only you can do that. But together, we’re going to remember that we’re in this together and imagine what our lives will be like this time next year!!

The Topic for Next Week:
How to choose your top 12 priority projects for 2017

Have a super awesome day!



  1. How odd that I find you this morning! I was thinking to myself over my morning coffee that I feel like I can't do any more work in the sewing room til it gets some much needed attention. A couple of years ago my husband created a beautiful studio for my sewing and longarm business. I'm ashamed to say that I won't take my clients there because of the disarray.

  2. Count me in! My studio is fairly well organized, but I am only there in the summer. My space in the winter is severely limited. I do have a suggestion though........the unit that I have found that works great are wire baskets that slide into a frame I got them at Ikea. They stack, and have wheels. there are also covers available so the sunlight is kept off. Best thing ever. But there is carpet in the room I use here, have to figure something out for that

  3. I will definitely follow along. I started myself on a program such as this last year. I've done well at getting some really old UFOs done this year. I need to continue. I don't have a huge stash. It's big enough though and I'm trying to use what I have and not buy too much new stuff. Most of my purchases are backings, thread, batting and magazines. I do have a magazine problem. Darn, I just can't help myself, love those things. Yep, I'm in.

  4. Hi Elaine. I've only started following you since you spoke at our guild;Yorkshire Rose; this year. I'm enjoying your daily posts and from the outside looking in, it looks like you're heading for a meltdown. Except for the retreat, it doesn't look like you're getting much pleasure out of quilting right now. All the best with getting organized.

  5. For two weeks I have said I have to get my space organized so cluttered even I don't want to be in it....I have two rooms..small sewing space on the main level..which is over spilling with WIPS and UFOS...and upstairs bedroom storing fabric, quilts,tops, batting, and a machine I use to quilt the tops.... The part the really intrigued me was on your post of staying organized I have been quilting for around 25years, and this isn't the first time I have been in this zaps the creative excited to start

  6. I usually keep my sewing room quite organised. I tidied up, as usual, went to bed, leaving the door open. We got two new rescue kittens. My tip: don't let new kittens in an otherwise organised sewing room. Chaos!

  7. My room is not to messy(working on three quilts that need to be done by Christmas.) But not being able to find stuff!!! That is what I spend my time doing...looking. Then no time to quilt or lost the urge!! I will be following along for ideas and encouragement! Thanks for doing this!

  8. Good timing! I lost my mother April 2nd, and my 'baby' brother on July 7th of this year! Threw me into a tailspin! I couldn't sleep, or work, but I did manage to finish EIGHT quilts. I look around my over stuffed, cluttered basement, and worry that my three sons will just have a garage sale, turning my huge investment into pennies! I am gifting a lot of finished projects to coworkers and friends this Christmas. Once those are out of my house, I intend to keep working on the UFO's, then tackle the stash. I also spend too much time looking for stuff I know I have.... count me in!