2017 Planning Party

We are heading toward New Years’ and it is a good time to look ahead toward 2017.  Yvonne at Quilting JetGirl is hosting a linky party that is a great opportunity to make some plans and check out what others in the Quilty World are up to.

2017-planning-party-300x300

 

So what is on deck for 2017?

I’m trying to pick a word for the year, and the best I can come up with is ‘Settle In’ (which I understand is two words, but you’re going to have to give me a break here!).  I had a lot of change in 2016 – leaving my job of 23 years and starting a new one, and in quilty life starting this blog and buying a long arm – so I’m looking to find some balance, make time to sew, and get really comfortable and skilled with the things that I’m doing.  With that in mind:

Long Term Goals:

  1. Find a good balance between work and life and make sure I keep making time to sew.  Getting  bit more physical activity and losing a few pounds wouldn’t be a bad idea either!
  2. Continue to try new things with my quilting.  Learn new skills, make things that are outside my norm and my comfort zone.

Short Term Goals:

  1. Long arm, long arm, long arm.  I want to get very comfortable and capable with my new big machine!  I’m taking an Angela Walters class in March that should help.
  2. Figure out something to do with all of these quilts!  I will be making some donations, but I’m also considering opening an Etsy store.
  3. Do less BOMs and quilt alongs this year and do more of my own designing.  I joined a monthly design group that should push me to do this.
  4. Keep up with my Bee group.  I’m in a group with some great folks from my New Blogger’s group.   I’ve never done a Bee, so it should be fun.

Projects on the list:

  1. Sugar Block Club BOM layout and finish
  2. Splendid Sampler layout and finish
  3. Death Star quilt
  4. Blueberry park Drunkard’s Path
  5. Hawaiian batik sampler
  6. My embroidered Bee quilt
  7. Other stash projects – I have a large amount of fun bundles I have purchased that I need to get working on (more Blueberry Park, some Alison Glass, Me+You batiks, some Grunge…)
  8. Long arm practice quilts (rings, funky squares, Circa 1934 Squares, mess-of-a-quilt)

I think that gives me plenty to work on!  I’m going to try and get some focus and get some of these projects knocked out.

Here’s to a healthy and productive 2017!

 

 

Best of 2016 Linky Party

Cheryl of Meadow Mist Designs is hosting a Best of 2016 LInky Party, which seemed like a good opportunity to reflect on 2016 as I make goals for 2017.  It has been a very busy year and it has been fun looking back.

best-of-2016

These are my Top 5 Posts of 2016:

5.  Most comments – Cloud9 Block Design Blog Hop – Abstract Cabin (67 comments)

This post was an offshoot of my New Bloggers Blog Hop Group.  We were given a tremendous opportunity to get a bundle of Cloud9 fabric, design a block, and publish a tutorial on how to make it.  This was very outside my comfort zone.  It was hard to design a block, and especially to try and create one that I was pretty sure had not been previously made.  I also had never done a tutorial before, but had a great time putting the tutorial together using a whiteboard.  I was really happy with how the tutorials came out, and got a lot of really nice comments on the whiteboard technique.  I wound up making 2 blocks that I was really happy with, and had enough fabric to make a small quilt.

quilt flowers

4.  Second most comments – Welcome to my stop on the New Bloggers Blog Hop (50)

I don’t remember how I heard about the New Bloggers group, but I’m so glad I found it.  Yvonne at Quilting JetGirl, Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs, and Stephanie at Late Night Quilter did a great job bringing us together and getting us organized, and I learned so much from the group.

me and bucky

This is me and one of my pups – Bucky.  You can learn more about all my furry kids in my New Bloggers Blog Hop Stop post.

3.  Proudest Finish – “Do the Math”

This quilt was outside my comfort zone with the improv piecing and the very dense quilting done on my domestic machine, but I so love how it turned out.  I also took a risk and entered it in the New Mexico State Fair, and was surprised to win a ribbon!

Do the Math
Do the Math

 

2.  Finish the Longest Time coming – Row Houses – I Can’t Believe it’s Done!

I started this guy nearly 15 years ago and finally finished the piecing late 2015 and got up the courage this year to quilt it.  I love it, and am so happy it is done, but quilting this thing on my domestic machine was the straw that broke and convinced me to go buy the long arm.

Row Houses

 

1.  Best post – New Beginnings…my first post

I didn’t have anything all that interesting to say, but this was my first blog post.  I am proud and happy I took the very big step to get this thing off the ground!

To finish up 2016, I also wanted to take a moment and look back on my goals for 2016.  Looking back, my goals were:

1.  Start this blog (check!).  I now need to figure out how to link up to things and add buttons.

I’ve done really well with this (see #1 above!), though my blogging has really fallen off since starting a new job in July.  However I did write 30 posts in 201 after starting from scratch, learned about links and adding buttons, and made friends with the New Bloggers group.

2.  Improve my Free Motion Quilting (FMQ). I’ve been doing FMQ for some time, but have kind of fallen into a rut of stippling and swirls. 

I think this was a success too.  I did some quilts I was really proud of, and did some really dense quilting on them using my domestic machine.

back quilting detailback detail 2

3.  I joined a few quilt alongs – the Stitchery Dickory Dock’s Sugar Block Club 3.0 BOM that my Albuquerque Modern Quilt Guild is doing, Christa Watson’s Facets QAL, and The Splendid Sampler. These should be fun, educational, and push me outside my normal boundaries.

I’ve done well keeping up with these projects, and I did learn a lot.  I finished my Facets QAL (see #3 above) and I’m a few blocks behind on the Splendid Sampler but the end is in sight.  I have finished all of the Sugar Block Club blocks, and am working on a layout for them.

splendid-sampler-blocks-nov
Splendid Sampler Blocks
Sugar Block Club Blocks
Sugar Block Club Blocks

4.  I have an awesome hand-dyed houses quilt that I need to finish…I’m holding on to it for a little while until I improve my FMQ!  I want to do something with big swirls.

DONE!!  YAY!! (see #2 above).  I didn’t do the big swirls, but I’m still really happy with how it came out.

5.  Use my stash! I bought a few new things for these quilt alongs, but I really want to focus on using up what I have. I’m trying to do the whole Splendid Sampler from my stash.

Uhhh….not so much.  I did do the whole Splendid Sampler from my stash, but found too many deals I just couldn’t pass up!

6.   Work on a few other pet projects – I need to make some little zippered bags for some friends, and I’m really digging the Plus quilts that She Can Quilt makes – so I think I’ll tackle those too.

Sorta 50-50 here – I did the zippered bags (post here), and replaced my Outdoor Cushion covers (post here), but no plus quilt.

All in all I think I did really well, and I’m really pretty surprised at how much I was able to do.  I’m really looking forward to 2017!

 

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