Dec 292012

Everyone else in the blogosphere is doing a year end report (or so it seems), here’s mine.

Looking back I’m amazed I managed to finish 12 quilts this year! The year started out as The Winter of Our Last Move (we bought our forever house in November 2011), and in January my sewing room quilt studio looked like this –

The early part of the year was spent trying to settle in and getting the old place ready for market, yet I still managed to finish two quilts in February, and three in March. A Finish-Along run by Quilter-in-the-Gap helped push me to finish things instead of starting anything new.

Then garden season came along and I had little time to quilt. That on top of some sewing machine issues kept me from finishing anything until August. Instead of sewing, I bought the remains of another quilter’s stash, an entire carload of fabric to sort out. I’m almost done sorting and counting.


I injured my hip in late July, then had an impacted wisdom tooth removed in the beginning of August. Those kept me out of the garden, and for weeks the bar stool at my sewing machine was the only thing I could sit on without pain. Good excuse to get some sewing done, right? I finished four quilts in August, before recovering enough to spend all day out in the garden again. We also sold the old house in August, so that was a very good month.

By November I had the itch to stitch something new, yet had the self-control to choose something quick. I made a crib-quilt and finished it by the end of the month.  In December, garden now under a layer of snow, I finished two more, including the horse quilt I’ve worked on all year. A dozen quilts finished during a year where I felt like I was at a dead run all the time, up until mid-October.

And by sheer coincidence, I also finished UFO number 12. So all in all, a good year in the quilt studio. Which is still a shambles but I’ve added shelving and bought more bins. 2013 is going to be the Year of De-cluttering. In the studio, that means sorting and organizing, plus turning clutter into finished quilts. I’m aiming to double-down: 24 finished quilts in 2013. You heard it here first.

How many quilts did you finish in 2012, and how many are you aiming for in 2013?

 December 29, 2012  Posted by at 7:39 pm Year In Review No Responses »
Dec 242012

I’m still working on a few more quilts to send to Sandy victims, people who have lost their homes. I’m hoping you are too, if you are able. is NOT accepting any more quilts, they have been inundated. Blankie Depot at will accept new handmade twin and queen quilts (for adults) through Feb. 15 only. Equilter is still accepting quilts, preferably twin or queen, I have not seen an end date. They are aiming for 5000 quilts collected. See this page for details (do not send quilts to equilter).

 December 24, 2012  Posted by at 8:57 pm Charity Quilts No Responses »
Dec 152012

I’ve been madly quilting away for what seems like weeks, but probably hasn’t been. I have finished the quilting on the horse quilt I’ve been working on off and on all year, finally! Here’s a quick picture on the floor, I’ll take a better one after I get the binding on.

And a couple close-ups of the quilting. I did one big flower, inspired by Leah Day’s Quilt Along number 40. I made mine pointy at the ends of the petals, thinking I might want a place to pause from time to time. I also didn’t think through the first one well enough and made the petals too narrow. I had thought to place 5 or 6 of these on the quilt, but after the first one I said, enough. I did the rest with free-hand ferns. I don’t know how well it shows in the photo.

I also quilted Squiggles, as written about here. And started quilting this SouthWest themed lap-size quilt, and a twin-size quilt destined for charity. Both are UFOs, having been started then set aside and packed away. The SouthWest one is about 15 years old, the other only a couple years. They aren’t done yet, I’ve set them aside once again. It’s time to get a last few Christmas projects out of the way, not to mention bind the two that are all quilted.


 December 15, 2012  Posted by at 8:14 pm In Drydock No Responses »
Dec 152012

Leah Day’s Quilt Along over at The Free Motion Quilting Project had a design last week called Cough Up Cat Hairball Filler. Lovely name, yeah? When I saw the design I thought, ah ha, that would be perfect for Squiggles. In fact, Leah mentioned that the design is sometimes called squiggles, although she thinks cat hairball is the better name. (I think she’s been hanging around her 5 yr old too much.)

It took a little digging, but I found the Squiggles top and made a backing and got it basted all in an afternoon. Fortunately it’s not real big, about 27 by 31.5 inches.

Here is Squiggles, all quilted. For a fast design it still took me several days to get it done. I suspect that might be the density of my version, I seem to have spent more time winding bobbins than quilting. I love how it looks with this quilt though. And I’m glad I picked a variegated thread, I love how the design shows up sort of patchy. If you want to try this yourself, pick a thread with a fairly long interval between color changes, so you can get the clumpy look.

Here are a couple close-ups. Don’t look too close, or you might see a few irregular circles and extra long stitches. My speed control is still a work in progress.

 December 15, 2012  Posted by at 7:59 pm Free Motion Quilt-Along 3 Responses »