Drowning in Fabric

Forever cleaning, organizing and creating

2016 Goals

2015 has not been a productive year for me, in many respects, but especially in sewing and blogging. Readjusting to life with a new baby… there’s just things that take priority. Like sleeping, eating, using the bathroom, showering… and sometimes cleaning. Both my kids have been/are clingons so I don’t have free hands or time very often in the baby stage (and even after). And two is more than one! With one, when he napped or was busy I could get stuff done. Now I basically switch from one to the other and grab a bagel and a pee in between. But the little one is starting to have more independent time and he is starting to get mobile. We are starting to work on the sleeping. And the older one is in school. So, it all comes back to the goals. I am taking stock of where things are and where they need to be and how to get there. It is overwhelming.

1. The UFOs

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It may be funny that I put this first, but honestly if I have one overriding goal in 2016 it is to tackle the ever growing pile of quilt tops I am amassing. There are a variety of reasons why I “abandon” a project at this stage, and usually a different reason for each one, but I need to make this a focus and a priority.

2. Learn to longarm

This has been a longtime goal. I have a past teacher/friend who has moved near me and has a longarm and has offered many times for me to come learn. I absolutely intend to take her up on this as things settle down in 2016. This should also help to chip away at item #1, above.

3. Get back to sewing

Well, duh, right? Other than a burst of deadline quiltmaking to get my Michael Miller challenge quilt (#quiltconreject) ready in time, I haven’t done much this year. I’ve more or less kept up with my block of the months (usually in three month marathons). I’ve been slowly making blocks for my cousin’s wedding ring quilt. I’ve managed to make some teacher and birthday gifts. But really, not a lot. I want more time sewing, more stuff getting done.

4. Get back to blogging

I’d been doing a pretty good job blogging and reading and making connections. That’s mostly all fallen apart this year. I need to find the time to sit and type at the computer as much as to sit and sew. And rebuild my online presence.

5. Clean. Declutter. Reorganize. Reduce.

And oh, this one is so big. When I named my blog, little did I know how true those words would be.

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When I say it has all gone to hell, I am not kidding. So even when I do have the opportunity to sew, I walk into this and pretty much either start working on cleaning it or walk right out.

This is a theme for my house and my life right now. Other than the kids, the reason I am not sewing is that this is pretty much the state of my whole house. So when I have time, I feel I need to be cleaning, and even more importantly decluttering.

I kept a delicate balance in my home and adding another person, taking away the space that is now his room, taking away the time and ability I had to maintain and keep any order… it has all caused a perfect storm. This is the road to Hoarders, y’all. I am not kidding. I am so worried. One more life event before I get a handle on things, and that could be me so easily. I know it. So, I am working my way though my house. Trying to reduce, remove, declutter, sell, give away… None of this is easy for me but the overwhelming looming feeling I have when I look around is giving me the drive to tackle this. It means a lot for my house in general. It means less time to sew. And in my sewing room, it means I have to get rid of fabric. I need to use it, and I need to sell it. I just have to. I want to hold on to it all, but I can’t even work in there. I just shift piles from one surface to the other, then spend a lot of time looking for things I “just had”. It’s a waste and I have precious little time and energy to waste these days.

6. Storm at Sea

I throw this one out there for a stretch goal. When I started this blog, I wanted to pick one goal pattern to tackle every year that intimidated me. I did my kaleidoscope one year. I meant to do storm at sea last year, I believe. It didn’t even almost happen. So I’m throwing it out there again.

7. Put myself out there

Ok, one more. This is another hard one. I am so isolated. I’m being honest so far, so I can go all out, right? I said I  am a hoarder. I also have social anxiety. Badly. I have a hard time navigating new relationships. I need to. I have no friends. I want to try to bridge that gap with some people. I want to go to guild regularly. And, you know, actually talk to people there. Not just sit in a corner. I want to see if I can get a sewing circle or something to join. See people who can say more than a few word sentences that revolve around something other than bathroom habits. Y’know?

Thanks Yvonne, for giving me the excuse to sit down and write this. Even though it still took me a week to get it done. And I’ll probably think of 100 more goals once I hit post. 🙂

2016 Planning Party

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ALYOF December goal

The one ALYOF goal I haven’t met this year was when I planned to quilt my Tula Pink anchor quilt. I’ve been intimidated – by its size, by my vision of what I wanted…. I’d like to give it to my parents for the holiday, but I have to finish it. It has just been sitting on my balcony collecting dust (well, really, other quilt tops). I’ve decided I need to go ahead and bite the bullet, which really means lowering my ambitions and getting it done. Instead of the elaborate swirl design I was hoping for, I think I am going to go with a more simple wavy line deal. I have it rolled up and under my machine ready to go.

drowninginfabric.wordpress.comOther posts about this quilt

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November ALYOF goal

I am not feeling very optimistic this month, as we are already a week in and I haven’t touched anything since I finished my economy block. I’ve been tearing my house apart trying to get things cleaned up and out. I am desperately needing to get rid of stuff, but it is really hard for me and there isn’t anywhere to put anything in the meantime. Anyway, that’s what I am up to. Plus there’s the holiday season bearing down on me.

So I’ve been debating between trying to chose between getting another quilt finished (I have three basted and waiting) or trying to finish my kaleidoscope top that is my goal for the year. I am not sure which is more likely to get done… I was tempted to choose quilting since my table is still extended and I’d like to get some more finishes under my belt, but I am at a loss on how to quilt some of these. I have most of my blocks done for my kaleidoscope, so that may be the better way to go.

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Here’s hoping

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October goals

Man, I can’t believe it’s really October already. Where is the year going??

I haven’t really been posting my goals the last couple months (I haven’t been sewing much either), so let’s see where things stand.

July goals

1. Improv quilt back – no

2. Make back for bloom bloom pow – no

3. Make back for Chevron – I am in the process of this. There was an incident with my fabric order, and a whole other complication that I am going to make its own post about. Cuz I need advice.

4. Finish Anchor quilt – Still sitting basted over my balcony. I’m scared to quilt it.

5. Kaleidoscope – haven’t touched it.

6. economy top – Done! And the back.

7. Finish tula top Done! And the back.

8. Reinstate cleaning regimen – mmm. I am not quite there yet. I try to do what I can but still haven’t settled into a routine and things keep coming up and some days when I clean up and my son has dumped everything out within minutes of walking in the door, I wonder why I bother.

9. Clean and declutter stuff. –I did a massive cleaning of my laundry room. It was desperate for it. I can’t even begin to tell you how awful it was and how much better it looks now. I still have some spots on the floor to work on, but I put in a book shelf and things are all organized and off the top of the dryer and it is just great. And that is all I’ve done.

10. Read – I read a bunch on vacation, and things have slowed down again. I have to try to remember what all I read.

October Goals –

1. Improv quilt back

2. Make back for bloom bloom pow

3. Make back for Chevron

4. Finish Anchor quilt

5. Kaleidoscope

6. quilt economy

7. quilt tula

8. Reinstate cleaning regimen

9. Clean and declutter stuff.(I think the focus for the month is on my son’s room/toys, guest room ,and maybe my closet)

10.Mug swap stuff

11. Start another stash only project.

12. Read

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Finish Along Q3

How depressing to be gearing up for quarter three! Where is this year going? Q3 to me means fall, and I feel like we just got out of winter into summer. I am not ready to start moving back into the dark cold months already. 😦  I logged two finishes last quarter, and anticipate several more this quarter thanks to the other thing fall represents – back to school!

Onto the ridiculous WIP pile –

 

 

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1. My BOM class top. I doubt I will get to this, but here it is just in case.

 

Chevron

2. My Chevron quilt. I am still hunting back fabric for this, but want to get to it soon as it is a thank you gift for a friend.

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3. My Tula Pink “houndstoothish” – still in this state. Blocks are done, need to be squared and sewn together

Bloom Bloom Pow

4. Bloom bloom pow – I haven’t touched this one since I put it away last summer. I need to make the back.

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5. Ribbon Chevron – This one is still festering in my sewing room. I will get to it some day – if for no other reason than to be done with it. I don’t love it as much as I did a year and a half ago. It’s funny to see how I’ve grown/changed.

drowninginfabric.wordpress.com

6. Tula pink sail away –Need to quilt and bind

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7. Kaleidoscope – Triangles cut, several blocks put together. That’s all.

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8. Economy block – have a few more blocks to finish up.

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9. Improv quilt

 

Is that it? It feels like there is lots more. Well, that’s a good bit to keep me busy. I have a lot of backs to make.

 

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July goals/June review

June goals

1. Supernova swap for June Yes! And the July one!

2. Mini quilt swap Yes! Mailing it out tomorrow! (I was really nervous about this one)

3. Make back for bloom bloom pow No

4. Make back for Chevron No

5. Make anchor quilt back. Finish? Back done, basted, sweating the quilting

6. Kaleidoscope Um… I am not sure what, if anything, I had done at the beginning of the month. I have several blocks started, but that’s about it.

7. economy top Still plodding along on this one. I have 75 or so blocks completely done, and some number of others in progress.

8. Finish tula top No

9. Reinstate cleaning regimen Heh. No?

10. Clean out office and/or baby’s closets. Guest room? Gather stuff to sell As we are in the midst of (what I expect to be a long process) potty training, I did spend some time going through diapers. I have a ton of diapers, and many we haven’t even used for one reason or another. They are taking up a lot of space in his room that could better hold other things now. I started to make decisions on those about what to sell and what to store and what will still be in use for a while. I also went through some rather large boxes of clothing taking up space in the garage. I decided what I am going to sell/donate and what I just can’t bear to part with (even though it has been living in a box for 8 years). I am glad to say most of it is going, and I have a large pile of memorabilia tshirts from high school and college for a someday tshirt quilt. Most of the other stuff I kept includes some really nice dress coats that I don’t even remember owning, and some dress clothes that I can’t fit but just can’t part with yet and a couple of my grandmother’s sweaters. Um. Not near what I hope to accomplish, but small steps in the correct direction.

11. Scrappy trip swap Yes! Although I have one I need to remake due to cutting error, but all the others are done and ready to mail.

12. Read

 

July goals

1. Improv quilt back

2. Make back for bloom bloom pow

3. Make back for Chevron

4. Finish Anchor quilt

5. Kaleidoscope

6. economy top

7. Finish tula top

8. Reinstate cleaning regimen

9. Clean and declutter stuff.

10. Read

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May review/June goals

Ok. I know before I even look that this month is gonna be bad in goal achievement. It was a crazy busy month. My main goal was to finish my piggy quilt, and I have gotten very little done since. I am also over run with swap sewing again too.

 

May Goals
This is a super busy month for me, so we will see

1. Investigate tank mass extinction – Oh wow. I am still in fish mourning. My snails still seem completely unaffected. So, now that things are calming down I may risk getting a single fish and see what happens.

2. Make back for Pixel. Finish? Done!

3. Make back for bloom bloom pow No 😦

4. Make back for Chevron I tried to buy the fabric and instead of the 5 yards I ordered, I got less than two. I tabled it again.

5. Finish Anchor quilt top. Make back? Finished the top.

6. Kaleidoscope I’ve started playing with some piecing. That’s about as far as I’ve gotten.

7. economy top I am making steady progress with this. However, have set it aside for other things again. I think I had more than 60 blocks made last count?

8. Finish tula top Nope. I did some squaring. Then moved on.

9. Keep to cleaning regimen Yeah…. We are going to try again this month.

10. Clean out office and/or baby’s closets Oh hey! I worked on the baby’s closet a bit this weekend. Not the whole thing, but the bottom couple shelves and the floor. Then he proceeded to put all kinds of crap in there and lock himself in. I did (at some point?) do a lot of good work on the office, but of course, the baby happened in there as well. Never ending, I tell you.

11. Have a successful bday party Debatable. But done. Thank god.

12. Read Pathetic. I am in the middle of like 3 books. I keep starting and then moving on to another. I never used to be like this. In all things – reading, sewing, cleaning – I seem to have no focus lately.

 

June goals

1. Supernova swap for June

2. Mini quilt swap

3. Make back for bloom bloom pow

4. Make back for Chevron

5. Make anchor quilt back. Finish?

6. Kaleidoscope

7. economy top

8. Finish tula top

9. Reinstate cleaning regimen

10. Clean out office and/or baby’s closets. Guest room? Gather stuff to sell

11. Scrappy trip swap

12. Read

 

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April review/ May goals

My laptop died this weekend. So did my entire tank of fish. I am assuming these events are unrelated. In any case, I have a harder time getting on the computer now:(

My goals tend to look the same month to month, but it really does help me to focus and accomplish when I make lists. Without them, I tend to flounder from thing to thing as another thing I “need” to do occurs to me and I leave a terrible trail of partial done in my wake.

April Review

1. Finish Bento – I did!

2. Make back for Pixel. Finish? Nope. This is my goal for this month

3. Make back for bloom bloom pow I did not, and I really expected to.

4. Make back for Chevron Still waiting on a sale code!!

5. Work on Anchor quilt This is almost done. I could complete it today or tomorrow if I really push.

6. Cut/work on Kaleidoscope I did cut most of  it, but have not worked on it

7. economy? I am getting these done! I am working them as leaders and enders as I work on my anchor top.

8. Keep to cleaning regimen No not really.

9. Read

 

 

 

May Goals
This is a super busy month for me, so we will see

1. Investigate tank mass extinction

2. Make back for Pixel. Finish?

3. Make back for bloom bloom pow

4. Make back for Chevron ?

5. Finish Anchor quilt top. Make back?

6. Kaleidoscope

7. economy top

8. Finish tula top

9. Keep to cleaning regimen

10. Clean out office and/or baby’s closets

11. Have a successful bday party

12. Read

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ALYOF: May Goal

I have so many I could choose from this month. But it is my son’s birthday month and we just switched him to a big boy bed last night, so I am going to try to finish his Piggy quilt for his birthday. I am not doing any fancy quilting on this one, so it is really just a matter of tearing myself from other projects and activities to finish it up. I do need to find some binding for it too.

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Friday Finish: Citrus Bento

It is done! It only took a year! Well, most of that year it was just sitting on a shelf ignored.

To recap:

I started this quilt last year at stash bash where I was led to believe by the tutorial that it could be completed in an afternoon. Well, I spent 15 STRAIGHT hours that first day at stash bash working on it and it still wasn’t finished. That didn’t include the cutting, which I had done ahead of time. I completed the main part of the top the next morning. I made the borders last May. Then, lacking inspiration for the back I folded it up and put it away.

As Stash Bash 2014 crept closer, I felt the pressure to complete this quilt, as that would mark a year since I started it. I do have one (much) older wip, but really didn’t want this one to languor past the year. Over the course of the year, I had collected fabrics that might work for backing or binding. I also had quite a bit of leftovers. I was still not sure what to do with the back, but finally sat down and busted something out. I immediately basted and worked on quilting.

I again wasn’t sure what to do, and even though I’ve really been trying to FMQ, I felt with all the straight geometric lines I needed to go that route – even if it would probably take longer. I used my walking foot and straight(ish) lines quilted on either side of the seams in the blocks. (Which I don’t have a good picture of) I used variegated Aurifil thread in orange/yellow/white (choosing against the lime green. Wisely, I think.)

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Then in the white borders I quilted several lines which crossed in the corners. In the middle border I quilted Xs. I still struggle with keeping lines straight on large quilts on my machine. No matter how careful I am, I still have drag or shifting.

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I am in love with the binding. I found it at my favorite store last fall and knew immediately it would work great in this quilt. It works so well as the binding, having all three colors in it, making a nice frame and transition from front to back.

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I also tried something new – I hand sewed the binding on this one. I have never done that before and felt it was something I needed to do. I am aware there is a certain …snobbery… over how bindings are attached. I’ve always liked the speed of machine binding, but believe I need to try something before I knock it. So now I can knock it. LOL. I was not enamored of the hand binding process. The upside was that I could do it while being with my family in the evening (instead of at 2am like I normally do). Other than that, I am not sure what the love affair is. It does not seem nearly as secure to me, for starters – and most important. And it took forever.  I definitely got better and quicker as I went along – my stitches are more even and invisible at the end than the beginning.

Citrus Bento

Citrus Bento

Citrus Bento back

Citrus Bento back

See all my posts about this quilt here

See my goal post here

Finish it up Friday!

Linking also to the FAL

Here is my goal post: https://drowninginfabric.wordpress.com/2014/04/10/finish-along-q2/

 

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