Monday, March 13, 2017

Motivational Monday - January - DONE!

Yes - you read that right!  I'm finished my January UFO. Well, as finished as I wanted to get it. The backing is done, the top is complete and the binding is made.  It's in the stack of "to be quilted" and I'm OK with that. I thought it would be fun to throw it on the long arm, but I have other things to do so it will just have to wait.

The important thing - the January UFO is DONE!

The backing for the January UFO - DONE
 Here's the reason that things take so long. I saved all the little bits from cutting the strips and triangles for the one-block wonder top. Not one to throw stuff away, I joined all the bits and then inserted them into the backing. Why??  Because I could!    I know - totally insane!!!

The backing, the binding and the top - DONE!

I thought it was time to dig out the March UFO.  February UFO is going to take some time and it's become my ender and leader project. There's a ton of sewing in it - fussy sewing - adding small triangles to a lot of pieces.  But it will get done as is witness to the January UFO.

So let's look at March.  In this laundry basket are FOUR quilt tops.  They all require the binding and borders to be made. The backings are these pieces of fleece so technically all that is required for the backings is to cut the appropriate length. That's easy!!!

Fleece backings for four quilts

The tops already have ONE border on them, but there is a scrappy border to go on and then another border of the brown. The binding is also brown.

First border on the quilts (2 more to go)

A LOT of fabric so no danger of running out.

Fabric for the borders and binding

I decided to make each of the quilts a tad different. Well one of them at least. Instead of adding two borders, I cut ONE wide scrappy border.  The length of the border strip is made. I now need to cut the lengths that I need and sew them to the quilt. One is pinned on, but no time today to sew it on.

The border is made for quilt number one

Ronda came over to sew today. I love her method - she has other friends who sew and every week for the last four weeks, she's been visiting a different friend for a day. She brings her sewing machine and projects and gets a LOT done. It also encouraged me to get sewing for the day.

Center four blocks for Ronda's Kaleidoscope
 I was also working on the Kaleidoscope quilt.  I got my four center blocks done.  Notice how Ronda and I seem to work on the same quilts???  She is copying me - just saying!

My four blocks for Kaleidoscope
 But not before I had to make one more of the green/yellow units. Do you think I could find it?  I had made some units up for the class in January, but couldn't find this last one. Same as I couldn't find two of the four patches. I had to cut an extra one of those and Ronda had one extra. So where are  my bits????

I did manage to find the missing yellow/green unit. It was included in the bits for Month Two. Go figure!  Now I have an extra unit.

The missing unit is found!!!

So Ronda pulls out her next project. Hmmm - got lots of fabric here. It's also a project that I made. Actually I made two of them  - one was the lap size, the other was the queen sized which I haven't quite finished because I HATE the way the borders were designed. It was a mystery so I had all my fabric cut and then realized how the next step was sewn and I'm still balking at that one.  I think I need to put the quilt into EQ7 and redesign the border with what fabric/blocks I have.  I won't mention the name of the quilt to protect the designer.

Ronda is thinking because there is a lot of fabric that she must have a lot of sewing still to do. Turns out she has to sew on four borders (which are made) and the quilt top is done. That was supposed to be her March project. I told her to get something else a bit more complicated!  Thank goodness we're friends!  She took it quite well and agreed to find something else to work on.

She also found not one, but TWO rulers - Tucker Trimmers no less!  Apparently she had to borrow these from someone. No idea that she owned her own and of course, no idea where they were!

Almost finished UFO

Last week, when Ronda was sewing with another one of her friends (actually I think it's a brilliant idea!), she made this bag. It's the Crafty Tote from Quilts and More (designed by me!). Instead of making it with squares, she used yardage from her favourite movie - Wizard of Oz.  Now isn't that a cool idea.

Crafty Tote in Wizard of Oz fabric

The other side

The ends of the bag!
 Nice job Ronda!

Now here's something else to consider. If you've been following along, you know the story of the upcoming retreat and that darn laundry basket. Tish supposedly brings all her work (tools and supplies) in ONE laundry basket for a five-day retreat.  I think that's rubbish!  But I thought I could perhaps see if it was possible. I've been thinking about it a lot.

Have a look at what Ronda brought to my house for a few hours!  THREE bags!!!  Now one of the them was just a show n tell, but still!!!!

Ronda's project bags for the day
 She says that she will likely fill the two totes with projects for the retreat. I will try to cut down, but on almost all retreats (and I'm way better than I used to be).  No that's not true. I used to travel with someone to the retreats and so I had only the back seat in which to put my stuff. Now I have the entire car - OK - so I'm worse!

But here's the thing - the last couple of retreats?  I've worked on almost everything that I took.  Often, I need to just bring the project to the next step for a class for instance. Or only so much of it is cut.  I'll try to bring projects that I can take to completion to cut down what I take. Or maybe, I'll just wing stuff in the car and let it go!

Our local guild managed to put together 303 blocks for Canada's Bee Quilt Bee. While that's great, someone needs to be putting those quilts together.  I have already made one quilt with our retreat group but I decided that I could piece the top of a small one as well.

I took 12 blocks home with me and they are now together as a top.

One more quilt top for the Quilt Bee is DONE

Hmmm - I must have some backing somewhere in the house.  I found a piece of flannel that was washed and almost the right size. Then I found another smaller piece (not washed - which I will wash) and between the two of them, I've got a backing.

Backing for the Canada quilt

Then I was back to working on the Kaleidoscope blocks.  I put more blocks up on the wall and was quite happy with them.

Center bits of the Kaleidoscope quilt

Then I was looking ahead to the next section and OH MY GOD. What's this???   Did I make a goof???  Well, I did sort of. I never even mentioned the tricky part to the class, althought it was quite clear as I had cut my fabrics.  I just didn't read the pattern very well.  Can you spot the mistake? It's slight and I'm NOT changing it.

Ronda got one more project done before she left.  This cute little bag.

Cute little bag completed by Ronda!

It's amazing what you can get done when you put your mind to it. I'm quite happy with the progress. I didn't get a chance to update the Task Master this weekend, so that must be done tomorrow. I think I'll be checking off a few boxes which will allow me to add a few more.

I see from the Facebook group that many of you are also getting projects completed. Or completed to the stage that you wanted to get them. That is so super exciting.

I've been in a bit of a funk for the last couple of days. Busy with work, busy with sewing for work and when I get home, I just don't have the heart to sew for me. But Ronda invited herself over (which was a good thing) and got me back in the groove.  So if you're in a funk, can you arrange a sewing date with a friend?  Even if you don't get a lot done - well I always get tons done when someone else is around. There are no chances to slack off.

Here's the other thing - can you arrange a couple of days away (like at a retreat) to sew to your hearts content??  Retreats are super exciting.  I have a spot open for the week prior to Easter is anyone is interested.  It's not that expensive and promises to be loads of fun. It's about one hour north of Toronto.  If you're interested, e-mail me and I'll give you more details.  Well you can have a look at the web site for the retreat house and see how beautiful it is. And it's five minutes away from a superb quilt shop. That's very deadly!

On that note - have a great week. Keep posting those pictures and inspiration/motivations to us.


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