Tuesday, July 19, 2011

a week for productivity

**Warning: the post is really wordy!**

I have a week off from work and I don't want to waste it. Since I am lucky enough to regularly get time off to relax, I feel like this week should be a productivity week. I have set some really lofty goals for myself and I hope that if I post them here I will feel more pressure to be accountable. Want to see the lists? Yes. LISTS.

Clean Upstairs Bathroom
Clean Downstairs Bathroom
Clean Kitchen
Wash Sheets
Make Bed
Wash Guest Sheets
Make Guest Bed Upstairs
Make Guest Bed Downstairs
Tidy Sewing Area
Vacuum Upstairs
Vacuum Downstairs
Cat Box
Wash Floors
Finish All Laundry
Garbage & Recycling

This list is purely my regular cleaning list. I usually neglect it, but it would be good to get the house really clean before we have 4 different guest over the next 10 days.

Extra Cleaning & Organizing
Organize Linen Closet
Organize Under the Stairs Closet
Organize Pantry
Organize Kitchen Corner Cupboards
Clean Out Laundry Room
Clean Out Bedroom Closet
Clean Out Front Hall Closet
Sort Winter & Summer Clothes
Find Joel’s Sandals
Clean Out Car
Weed Gardens
Cut Lawn
Edge Trim Lawn

This list is the list of things that bother me but I never get around to. For instance, the cat box is in the laundry room, and the cats tend to spread litter all over the floor around their box. I would love to pull up the foam mats on the floor and sweep really well, but I never do it. Or how about Joel's sandals have been missing for weeks and I can't get enough floor space in the downstairs storage room to actually stand there and look through boxes. The mowing the grass and weeding I may farm out to our roommate.

Am I seeming crazy yet?

Butter Chicken
Pea & Bacon Pasta
Chickpea Korma
Spaghetti Bolognese
Basil Pesto & Chicken
Pork Chops

The cooking list is a new one for me. A couple of days ago I was inspired to cook a pile of single serving meals for freezing. My hubby and our roommate both work in office buildings and both spend long days there. They each take different approaches to lunches. Joel just doesn't bring one which drives me crazy because I picture him starving all day. Our roommate always packs a good healthy lunch, but it's always whatever is convenient which is usually very expensive and ends up with us having to make more trips to the grocery store than we want. So I've come up with a plan to make (hopefully) a month to six weeks worth of healthy, yummy and interesting lunches that they can grab out of the freezer in the morning.

And finally...becuase I need to do something for myself in all of this or I might go crazy from the stress:

Just for Me
Finish Cosmo Bag
Finish DoublePlusGood Quilt
Cut Pieces for Christmas Stars
DQS11 draft
PLPS draft
Pillow Covers?
Dr.’s Appointment

Most of the things on that list are probably not going to happen, but oh well. At the very least I can take a trip to the fabric store on my way back from the Dr.'s office.

Please feel free to call me crazy. Do you ever get in moods like this? You've had enough and you just force yourself to push through all the annoying tedious things you don't usually find time for. Or are you more like the realistic me who knows that 1/2 of this won't get done but the 1/2 that does will make you feel really good anyway?

My plan is to update as I go through the week. Maybe if I get it all done (or at least a respectable amount of it) I will host a giveaway over the weekend. Stay tuned.

Monday, July 18, 2011

doubleplusgood - a new quilt

On Wednesday of last week I stopped by Traditional Pastimes after dropping my hubby off at work. I probably shouldn't have gone in. I was 1/2 in my pyjamas (read: pyjama top covered by cardigan and some denim shorts) and I hadn't showered or brushed my hair. Oh well. I needed some fabric yumminess to brighten what was a really dreary and rainy day.

Let me say, I love this store! The owner is a really sweet lady who does a fabulous job of balancing the needs and tastes of traditional and modern quilters alike. The staff are all very helpful and friendly and always willing to give an honest opinion.

I went in looking for some inspiration for an orange and aqua quilt for some friends. I wasn't sure what I would find, but after some chatting and wandering, we had managed to pull an amazing collection of fabrics that I knew would be just right.


Once I got home I worked feverishly. I neglected everything else that needed to be done. Including eating. After about 5 hours, I had all the blocks sewn together. The next day I took another hour or so and completed most of the quilt top.

Here it is so far:


Actually, since that picture was taken, I've completed the partial crosses on the left and right edges, and sewn up another row to be added to the top. I need to go and buy a bit more white since I have used up every bit in my stash - even the scraps. Once I have that, I will be able to add one more row to the bottom and start working on the back.

My plan is to create a pieced back out of 3 left over blocks and some larger pieces of the fabric from the front. I want to try and man it up a bit since it's for a couple. I feel like it might be a bit of the girly side right now.

I hope to have this baby completed by the end of the week, but we will see how that goes. I have the whole week off work except for a few hours today, and I have big plans for productivity. Lots of cleaning, organizing and cooking needs to be done this week so I can feel stress and guilt free and spend the rest of my time sewing.

I've also started slowly working on another new quilt top, but more on that later.

Hope you all are having a fabulous week and a warm and relaxing summer so far. What projects are you working on right now? **Also, bonus points to anyone who can tell me where the name of this quilt comes from without having to Google it.**

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Pretty Pink Baby Quilt

It's been quite a while since I complete a quilt. A few weeks ago, I got the sudden urge to start stitching up a quilt and I had a pile of pink fabrics left from my Hope Valley collection bundle and a small stack of Kona White scraps.

I wanted something quick and easy to sew up, and have been wanting to make another quilt in the style of Hop, Skip & Jump from Denyse Schmidt's Quilts book.

In a matter of just a few hours I went from nothing to a quilt top.


Little Cheddar helped me hold the quilt down so I could take a picture.

I managed to get the top complete, and the quilt basted and 1/2 quilted in a matter of just a day, but then, life got in the way, and the quilt went by the wayside. Then, just a week ago, I was struck with the same urge to just sew, and I finished it up and got it washed that morning.

Here are the stats:

Size: 42" square
Fabric: Kona White, Denyse Schmidt Hope Valley, Kona Cerise for the binding and Kona Blush for the Backing
Quilted in concentric circles, bound by machine.

Pink Baby Quilt

I had been seeing concentric circle quilting for a bit and kept thinking it would be so much fun to use...but on what? And then, once I had finished the quilt top I couldn't think of any quilting that would go better than the circles. I love the juxtaposition of the straight(ish) lines of the top and the soft, circular quilting.

I didn't end up using the pattern from the Denyse Schmidt Quilts book, but rather, got my inspiration from Kate Conklin Designs and her Stack and Slash Tute for Chasing Cottons. I followed the basic instructions, but instead of 2 groups of 4 fabrics, I used 1 group of 5 fabrics and also cut my blocks a little smaller. All in the name of using only what I had.

Pink Baby Quilt

I have come to the decision that I need to start creating and giving away more or selling more if I want to replenish my stash. I have a sizable bin of fat quarters and some 1/2 yard cuts and also a small amount of yardage and it's starting to be boring to me. Not that it's not all totally fabulous fabric, but a lot of it is small pieces that I don't often have a use for. So in order to facilitate a re-stocking of my stash in larger cuts, I have listed this quilt for sale. If you are interested in this quilt or would like to talk about a custom order, please email me.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Pretty {Little} Pouch Swap - Inspiration

I'm very excited to say I have made it into the second round of the Pretty {little} Pouch Swap! I have made a few pouches previously, and am really looking forward to creating something for my partner.

Here is the inspiration mosaic I created to help in her creating:

Pretty {Little} Pouch Swap - Inspiration

I can't wait to get started!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

DQS11 - I'm In!

Well, I am over the top happy to say I got into DQS11! I had such a great time in the last Doll Quilt Swap and I am really looking forward to participating again. This time around they have decided to go back to their roots and have asked that people create tiny versions of bed quilts as opposed to art quilts.

I think I will find that both challenging and extremely fun!

So, to start things off, here is the inspiration mosaic I created for my partner:

DQS11 - Inspiration

I've already had a chance to peruse my partner's mosaic and favourites and I can't wait to start coming up with some ideas!