Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Shush goings on and 10 quilting confessions

My goodness my long lost friends.  What happened to August?  Which one of you stole it away and didn't let me write a single blog post??  I have been so out of touch with blogland that I was not even aware of the current craze to reveal 10 quilting confessions, until one of the lovely ladies at the Monday Modern group mentioned it.  Anything that involves a list is my kind of craze, so I though I would tell you my list, in between a show and tell of a few projects I have been working on.

The Tula Pink Prince Charming Gypsy Wife quilt continues (try saying that fast three times).  It's a love hate relationship.  I love looking at it.  I'm not loving making it quite so much!

  • I think I can do anything sewing related if I practice enough.  Don't take me the wrong way, I don't think that I will end up being great at everything.  For example, I will never practice FMQ enough to be as good as Angela Walters.  And I'm never going to produce haute couture clothing.  But I will give anything a go, and think anything is possible.  No talk of being scared of zippers here.  No siree.  Just watch a YouTube tutorial and give it a go.  The worst thing that will happen is some unpicking.  And the odd tantrum.  But I can live with that.
  • I've learned to really enjoy hand sewing.  I know, right?  Three years ago when I started, I would have NEVER believed you if you had told me.  But these things sneak up on you.  It's the same for other hand work like embroidery, cross stitch and English Paper Piecing.  Perfect for a tired night after work, in front of the TV.

Yes I keep making dumpling pouches.  Sneaky cute little things that they are.
  • I like pre-cut fabric.  Uncool right?!  But there is nothing like the simplicity of a charm pack or jelly roll for a quick baby quilt.  And all the fabric blends.  I'm fine with an easy fabric solution that looks good.  But don't think that means I reject yardage.  Nope.  I like that too - which brings me to the next point.
  • Fabric collections.  Yep, I'm the worst.  Give me fat quarter bundle of a whole fabric line and I'm happy, happy, happy.  I love how it all works together, and the effort that the designer has put in to balance feature and plain prints.  It's all good.  I do believe that the best quilts are made from mixed lines, and I have broadened my stash for this purpose, but a quilt from one line can sure be easy and satisfying.  Like Tula Pink.  Or Heather Ross.  I am an unashamed fan girl.  

And I've finally started some of the poster's for Hubby's zombie quilts.  Good things take time!
  • But while I'm on the fabric topic, I have to say it - I love low volume.  Not that I've managed to make many low volume quilts.  But I don't buy batiks.  It's important to leave those for the batik lovers.
  • Dense machine quilting.  Don't like it.  I admire it, and think it looks great on feature quilts (I'm thinking of Renee's amazing Tardis quilt - which I covet), little wall quilts, placemats etc, but I don't want it on a bed quilt.  Just not my thing.  It's too stiff.

I have started the Ginger Crush block of the month from Treehouse Textiles.  This replaces Citrus Sweet Love, but is completely different (in the best possible way).  I loved CSL but the journey was a long one, so I am enjoying the simplicity of this new project.
  • I am always on the hunt for the quickest and best way to do something.  Glue basting?  That's me.  Self threading needles for burying threads?  Yep.  Not burying threads?  Even better.
  • Machine binding.  Every time.  I sew the binding to the back first, fold it over, and sew down on the front.  I'm not going to change.
  • I've learned to appreciate the difference a new needle and rotary cutter blade make.  They're just easier to use.  I don't like the cost though. 

I'm keeping up with the Once Upon a Time sampler from Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery.  Stupidly cute.  But I'm probably just as proud of keeping up as anything else.  I seem to be slowly learning some stickability in my old age!

  • I'm a list writer.  I've done this for the last six months and it has been really good for me.  Since I've been back at work full time, a short list of goals has made me much happier about my achievements.  Otherwise I had a real sense of not getting much sewing achieved, which wasn't true.  A list is a good way of seeing what you have managed to do.  The List is VERY flexible though - I do not want it to make me feel bad if I can't get it all done.  So I am very inclined to move things to the next month if I can see it won't happen.  And adding things just to cross it off.  Heh.
  • I have slowly come to the realisation I do not like having too many projects on the go at once.  I do like a few, or else I suffer from boredom. However having many projects just makes me feel overwhelmed and like I am not achieving anything.  So I have had a real focus on finishing recently.
So tell me - what are your sewing confessions?  Your loves and hates?  Diversity is great - if we all liked the same things we would fight over the fabric.  Someone has to love the brown batiks, after all!

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.  Howdy visitors.


Little Island Quilting said...

Interesting...I think I am the polar opposite to your list in most aspects apart from the one about not having too many projects on the go...makes me feel antsy. Confessions? I love honest, heartfelt blog posts as opposed to commercialised drivel. If I click on a blog post that is the latter I feel I just wasted a bit of time I'll never get back. If it's the former I feel I learnt something new. Oh and I don't like Cotton and Steel because it's been over exposed. I have waaaay more random confessions but now us not the time ;-)
And one final confession. I like you and your blog and you being on IG. There needs to be more people like you. Just don't tell anyone I said that. OK?

Megan said...

Bahahaha. Laughing at both your post and Alison above. I think stay at home days are good for you :-)

Karyn said...

I concur re dense machine quilting, low volume fabrics and batiks. I hate blog hops and pple who blog just to sell their latest must have weird shaped ruler. And I use Spotlight solids frequently!

grace said...

What are these self threading needles and where do I find some?

stitch quilt knit said...

Love that little dumpling pouche!! Good that now you're back :)

Tilkunviilaaja said...

Great to have you back! I've missed your blog updates. Thank you for returning with a long post!

Leonie said...

Hi!!! Wow you have been busy!! Love all these points but mostly agree with not too many things at once - tooo stressy!! What's not to love about ranges of pretty fabric all holding hands? Looking forward to seeing more of your goodies all sparkly and finished!

Glinda ♥ said...

Oh, I have missed you!
Pinks for me all day long, will NEVER machine bind and will carry on burying knots until my eyes or fingers give up first :)

Mel said...

Hi Liz, I'm very much with you on the 'don't be afraid' front - give it try, zippers/triangles/curves etc etc can't hurt us, and they just might become our friend. It's only sewing after all. My guiltiest quiltiest confession is - basting? Do I have to? Can't face it - won't a coupla pins work just fine...? Trouble is, that usually they won't, ho hum. I like your dumplings too, and your gypsy wife, and I'm not usually a big Jen Kingwell fan (yikes, another guilty confession). Keep on sewing! Mel

Julie said...

Welcome back. I second the difference a new sewing machine needle and rotary cutter blade can make. Your TP gypsy wife quilt is one of the nicest I have seen, looking forward to seeing more. No pressure.

I tend to have a couple of large projects, some small projects and one or two swaps on the go at all times. Sometimes I end up a bit stressed, especially now, when I think of the Christmas sewing i have to get done!!

jenni said...

I love your list! I am like you in so many ways, which makes me feel better about my habits. Thanks for the uplift!

DeborahGun said...

I am with you on so many of these - especially the hand stitching and not having too many projects on the go at once!

Linda B said...

I think we are quilting soul-sisters. You voiced many of the things I think. Thanks for making me smile!

arncar said...

I did a little chuckle at your list confession. So I am not the only person who adds things to a list so that I can cross them off!!

I am a fabric addict. Always have been but now with all the exciting quilting fabrics tempting me I often can't resist the temptation and add to my stash. I save all my scraps because I know that someday I will have time to use them all. Yeah right!

hydeeannsews said...

well hello again! very little of what you said here surprises me, but you must explain the "self threading needle for burying knots" bit, please! and that dumpling pouch photo makes me want to bawl my eyes out. i'll tell you why in private when you respond to my comment.

ps - the list really is working for you. that and focusing in on a "few" projects. =)

Sarah said...

I dislike batik fabrics. I've never buried a thread when quilting. I wasn't taught to, so why would I change now? I always hand bound my quilts, till I discovered they could be machine bound. I don't think I will hand bind anything ever again. I LOVE precuts and I'm a fan girl of some fabric designers. I totally agree that my best quilts include many fabric lines. Low volume doesn't do it for me. High contrast does.