A rather late review of 2019…and what next

This blog has been sadly neglected of late but the end of the year and beginning of a new decade has inspired me to review last year and think ahead to this year. And yes I know we are halfway through February!

While the blog posts haven’t been that regular, sewing continues……. and looking back over the past years, I’ve got into the habit of reviewing  the previous year under the headings of the good, the bad and the ugly. There is always more good than bad or ugly but a bit of reassessment of what has gone well and what hasn’t is no bad thing. Nor is having a plan, however vague, going forwards.

So to the good of 2019

The items I have enjoyed making the most

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Oddly enough the things  I’ve loved making and have proved so useful in keeping me on track are these scrap pouches. All credit to Tori Smith #cloudtori for the inspiration, hers  are far more exquisite but I love these bags which are quick, easy and effective. A blog post to come….

 

The quilt of which I’m most proud

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Now this quilt would miserably fail under the heading of ‘the quilt I most enjoyed making’ but I loved this design idea and thought it doable with templates etc.  I mocked it up on TouchDraw and it looked good.

But in reality the template curves weren’t precise enough and there was much resewing to get the quilt top to lie flat.  And letting you into a secret, this quilt is currently sandwiched between two sheets under a heavy Indian rug in my bedroom going through more flattening!

The idea for this unusual treatment was when I received a quilt back from the Modern Quilt Group. When I sent it in for exhibition it was less than perfectly flat, but thanks to it being kept in a box weighted by all the other quilts on top, it arrived back beautifully flat!

But that aside I like the colours  and design. I might enter into it the Festival of Quilts.

 

The quilt I most enjoyed making

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I love curves, that is no secret. So when the Modern Group Challenge announced that the theme was to make something inspired  by a 19th century coverlet I was delighted to find it had curves. Needless to say curves had to feature and  I did improv curves which are easy and quick.

What was interesting about this year’s annual challenge was that it was thrown out to all the sections of the UK Quilters Guild and was shown at the Festival of Quilts.

It made for an interesting display, they were all so very different. I think mine was the brightest of them all! It was also the first time I had entered a juried competition but in saying proudly mine was selected this must somewhat tempered by the fact they had very few from which to select!

 

 

The Bad

 

My organisation skills

My sewing room continues to be messy and disorganised. Having said that the pouches mentioned above mean that crucial things like Siblings Together  Bee blocks are safely kept under control but the sewing process is a mess. And my large working surface cluttered and inefficient. Oh dear maybe the new year will inspire me.

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My calendar management

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Nicky Eglinton with the Group Siblings Together quilt to which we all contributed 

I spent the entire year thinking that our holiday clashed with the Festival of Quilts, the UK’s biggest quilt show. So I didn’t bother to enter anything and put it out of my mind. A blog post literally the week of the FoQ mentioned the dates and to my amazement I’d got it wrong, I had one day that I could go.  The problem was we were asked, after we’d booked the holiday a year before, to move it back 2 days and thereby creating a window of opportunity. I could only go for a few hours but go I could and did. The best thing was seeing Nicky Eglinton above with the Group Siblings Together quilt

 

The rising tide of Siblings Together Quilts as WIPs

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I hang my head in shame here. I think  I have some  9 sets of blocks, some of which are quilt tops I hasten to add! The problem is, in respect of my motivation, we have been a bit of a victim of our own success. There is no desperate need for quilts  in the here and now as we have enough for this year’s camps. So that vital push isn’t there. But some will be 2 years in my possession by this summer and that isn’t good enough. So this will be the spring and summer of assembling quilt tops and quilting them.

 

And finally the Ugly

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It has to be this little pouch tray, looking in particular at the one on the far left.

In a vain effort to be more organised and to combat a work surface that’s slopes ever so slightly so everything rolls off, I like having trays to put essential things like seam rippers, pin cushions  etc. by the side of my machine.

Bonnie Hunter, one of my favourite  bloggers, mentioned this pouch as being similar to a shop bought one she had. I made it from  scraps and as you can see whilst it’s OK as a small tray, once zipped up it doesn’t sit squarely and has openings so things can slip out. And let’s be honest it looks plain ugly!  I made two others to slightly  different dimensions and not so scrappy and they are better, particularly the end one on the right but I’m still  on the hunt for the perfect side tray….

Ugly but much loved

In my review of two years ago the item that won the ugliest award was this.  It was entirely because my leather handles looked ridiculous and try as I might I couldn’t remove them.

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Its part of a free pattern by Anna Graham of Noodlehead fame called Little Treasures and actually this design and the smaller curved trays are lovely, I just didn’t read the pattern properly.

Well it seems that my cats don’t think it is ugly at all and it has become a favourite bed of my daughter’s cat Bella.  It lives on my daughter’s bed and Bella loves to curl up inside. So it just goes to show that what is someone’s ugly is someone’s favourite!

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What next?

A good question….

I have a Modern Quilt challenge quilt I need to finish by the end of March

I would like to finish off a quilt I started last year and even got to a finished top but my daughter suggested it would look better being hung the other way. And she was absolutely right. Unfortunately there are a lot of directional fabrics so it needs major surgery…..

Another granddaughter of a friend has been born so there is a baby quilt to make.  But new mum is a London fashion stylist/buyer  so I’m having doubts…..

And the old perennial of trying to work tidier and more efficiently. In my dreams….

4 thoughts on “A rather late review of 2019…and what next

  1. That’s a really interesting account of your recent sewing activities: I especially enjoyed looking at your improv circles piece and it inspires me to have a go at something along those lines.
    I was delighted ( and proud) to see the lovely pink pouch that you gifted to me featuring in what you have enjoyed making!
    As for your dissatisfaction with the perceived state of your sewing room, at least it has been productive, and long may that continue, 😀
    Best wishes, Kate B

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  2. The Really Useful Company do a very large shallow bos, about A2 size, with a lid which I use to contain my mess. One at each side of the sewing table. Very convenient to move the lot when you need a clear space. The box sits neatly inside its own lid and with the lid on the boxes can be stacked.

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  3. Interesting and funny post. Going through the mess in my room as well at the moment, so can really relate to this. No matter how much I tidy up, the moment I am working on something, it looks like a bomb has gone off.

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