Friday, January 31, 2014

End of January "State of the Studio" Report

I'm very happy to report that the studio is looking much better than it did on January 12th. To begin with, the design wall is showing a different quilt:
This is the kaleidoscope quilt that was cluttering up my cutting table at the beginning of the month. It's still cluttering up the cutting table: 
but other projects have moved along to where I can now work on it again. It's a project from the Craftsy class "Mining your Stash." The basic idea was to create new "fabric" from strips of other fabric, then cut that "fabric" apart into pieces for your quilt. I have enough triangles cut to make the quilt shown in the instructions, but I'm not sure that's a finished size I want. So I'm going to put those pieces together, then see how much more I want to add. 
The quilt that was taking up the whole design wall and more has moved on to the next stage in its life. The top of Spring Meadow is finished, and I've sent it out to the longarmer to be basted. Since it measures 110" by 110" I need all the help I can get to bring the quilting down to a manageable task. But I think it's looking good:
and I expect to have it back in a week or so. Then the quilting will begin. It's a big quilt. It's going to be a big job. I just hope the end result looks good.

The rocking chair looks different as well. Theresa and Devan's quilt is still lurking in a corner there, but most of it is taken up with this quilt:
This is the Tilted Stars quilt I pulled out of the drawer in hopes that I would have it completely quilted and bound by the end of the month and I would have a finished quilt to show off. Alas, that plan fell a bit short. When I pulled out the project box to see what I had in there that might serve as binding, hoping at least to find some of the border fabric, I found 2 packages of navy blue quilt binding. I rarely use this because I think it's too expensive for what it is, and doesn't come in very many colors, but there it was, so I sewed the ends of the 2 pieces together and started attaching it to the quilt. That's when I discovered that 2 packages weren't enough to go all the way around. So it's going to sit in the chair and wait patiently until I can get to Hancock's and get another package of binding. So very close, but not quite there. 

The other quilt that was in the rocking chair on January 12th was Ms. Zula's quilt. I am happy to report that that top is now finished and has now taken up residence in the drawer for unbasted quilt tops. 
I will do a separate post about this quilt, because it is rather special, even though it's quite humble in appearance. My goal for the month was to get the top completed, because it also needed design wall time, and that's been done. That makes me happy. 

Other surfaces are showing improvement. The ironing table is completely clear except for irons and ironing gear:

 The card table is still here, but it has a lot less stuff on it. The pile of cat fabric is still there, but in putting away other things on the table I found a pattern book that I may have thought of using with these fabrics. I'm still not sure about that, but now they're stacked together and I can think about the possibilities.

The little cabinet behind the sewing table has been tidied.
The serger table still needs help. There's the stack of fabrics left over from the Spring Meadow quilt, at least one piece of which is destined to become binding. I'm thinking about ideas for using the rest of it, since it is a lovely coordinated group of fabrics, but that's not a priority at the moment. The fabric is there because there are no empty project boxes at the moment. There is also the bowl of pieces for the strip-piecing project. It usually lurks somewhere near the sewing machine. 

 And the sewing table itself is empty except for a few tools. I've been working on big pieces in the past week, so all loose items had to find new homes or end up on the floor.

 The one new project I've pulled out is this small top that is waiting patiently for the cutting table to be clear enough for it to get basted. It's a wall hanging that I pieced when I was in seminary nearly 20 years ago. When I pulled it out I realized I still like it a lot, so it's time it got quilted so it can show itself off.

And I didn't take a picture and my camera's memory card is now full, but I also have a stack of 36 quilt-as-you-go blocks ready to be made into a donation quilt. I just have to decide what I want to use for sashing. I did a sort of sew-in to mark Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, with the focus being on doing good for someone else. The sew-in ended up lasting almost a week; I decided to keep going until I ran out of something already prepared, which ended up being batting squares. 

So on to February. In February the Olympics will be going on, and that means the Ravellenic Games will be running concurrently. That's an occasion to work on yarn-related projects, so there might not be as much quilty stuff going on for those two weeks. For now I'm going to go play with triangles. 

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