Wednesday, July 3, 2024

Working smarter, not harder!

I am not alone in the decision to keep that "wet" bag of scraps! And I've found a fun way to tackle what's left in it. 

I have a subscription to The Quilt Show, but I'm so far behind in watching the episodes. I'm way back in the 700 series. We were chatting about this at Monday Sewing, and it's hard for me to "watch" TV when I'm in Studio B. I'm back and forth between the long arm, the stash room, the cutting table, or whatever, and I can't follow along. 

Then it hit me; I could move the laptop beside the ironing board and press scraps while I watched. 

Watching The Quilt Show while pressing scraps

The way the tables are positioned makes it easy to move the laptop. Since it's on its own table, I just rotated the laptop and pulled the table close to the ironing board. I must look at that rolling cart so I'm not dragging the legs on the floor. 

I filled the shoebox with scraps and got out the last empty box. 

One shoebox filled with green scraps

Does it look like I made a dent?

The status of the scraps last night

Well, if you look at the photo from the day before, it doesn't, but I know I did. And I'm also finding lots of pieces large enough to throw in the 365 Challenge quilt basket. So when I cut blocks, the fabric will be WAY more accessible and hopefully more inviting to tackle. 

The status of the scraps from the previous day

And guess what? The quilt backing is DONE! 

The quilt backing for the community projects quilt

I managed to use all of the same-colored material for the backing except one large piece. I still have lots of fabric left over, but no large pieces, so that got put away in the storage room along with the rest of my flannel scraps. 

The leftovers

I just need to join some batting bits for this quilt, and it can go on the long arm. Yeah -- that would NEVER have happened without my "new" system. One thing at a time comes off Mount Projects, and I focus on it. 

I have the next project on the cutting table, which I want to work on today. Then, I'm going to have to take a break and work on my blog posts for QUILTsocial, which are also on the cutting table. 

The status of the cutting table

So, YES—my "new" system seems to be working, but it requires much discipline on my part not to drop everything and move to something else. I get enough variety in my day that I don't feel like I'm working on the same project for eons. I don't even feel tempted to break out something new. Some projects on Mount Projects take up room but won't take long to complete. Those will be welcoming tasks!

I found this pillowcase when I went through the blue bag last week. It's a cool pattern, and I ripped it apart yesterday. It's one long piece of fabric that was folded and sewn with two seams to make an envelope-style cushion cover. I'm not sure what I'll do with it yet, but I put it in the bin with words because it reminds me of writing.  

"Found" fabric from the scrap bags

I also managed to quilt a customer quilt. I will show you the back first because if ever there was a backing perfect for the front, it's this one. 

The back of the quilt

And now let's look at the front. 

Customer quilt - DONE

It was a great match! I need to get this trimmed today so it can be picked up. The next quilt is HUGE, so it will take most of the day to finish. 

My days are so full that I'm exhausted at the end of them. I walked a ridiculous amount of kilometers—over 16 km. Yes, that involved two main walks and a shorter walk, but also walking around my Studio, which is why I'm not a good candidate to "watch" a show on the computer because I'm never in one place long enough! 

I stopped at Indigo on my way to the dollar store—you'll see why tomorrow (hopefully)—and I looked at the craft book section. OH MY!! There might be one or two books on quilting, but quilt books in a bookstore are a thing of the past. It's all about knitting and crochet, and tons of books on making amigurumi exist. 

The meagre craft book section

There wasn't much on mixed media either, which was the rage for a while as well. It's knitting and crocheting! 

Before I go, have you figured out a system where you are making a dent in your old projects? Or figuring out a better way to work? It's all about making changes and working smarter, not harder or longer. But it takes a LONG time to realize that. It took me a long time to figure that out and I see the odd thing or two sitting on the cutting table that shouldn't be there. I'm evaluating how I work to see how I can improve and become more efficient with my time. 

Putting things on Mount Projects, into a big tub, or whatever has really been an eye-opener and has given me the space that I want to work in—a space where nothing is sitting around to distract me or to inhibit my work. I don't think it matters how big or how small your space is; you need to try that to see how it is. But it requires a lot of discipline. 

And for all the organizing I've done in the office, I did a bad thing. I had a library book that I've now lost. I had it just a few days ago, and where did I put it? My account is now so overdue that I'm blocked, and I can't renew or take out new materials. So I must find that book. But where did I place it? 

More happened at the house, but I don't have time as I'm on my way to spin class. 

Have a super day!!!


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