Commentary

Can We Just…

Spend more time quilting and less time… all the other things?! At the beginning of the year, I was great about setting my quilting goals for this year, reflecting on everything I did and learned last year, and how I was going to share all of that with you.

Then 2022 busted in the door with a big ol’ “nah.”

And I know you probably thought you were done with happy new year posts, but I still wanted to share my successes and goals with you. We’ll recap 2021 and then talk about some exciting things I have planned for 2022.

2021 in Review

My 2021 goals were to find my signature color palette, learn more about modern quilting, and – to quote my planner – “become a walking foot quilting bad ass.” Let’s see how I did, shall we?

Find My Signature Color Palette

Short story, no. I’m a huge Rebecca Bryan fan girl and a member of her Playful Color Quilt Guild. Each month, she hosts challenges to help you learn to play with and use color in your quilts. The exercises are amazing and range from really simple to head-scratchingly curious. Each month, I would watch her challenge demo, get excited, and then get drawn into another project I just had to finish or a busy time at work.

This was on my goal list because I really admire quilters out there where you can tell right away it’s their work because of the way they use color. I wanted to use this goal to refine what I know and like about color so I could have a signature palette as well. This is still something I really want to do, so don’t be surprised if we talk about it again in the next section!

Learn More About Modern Quilting

Yes! At the end of 2020, I learned about the Modern Makes Membership from Amber at Alderwood Studio. Each month, I got a box with a modern quilt pattern and the fabric and batting to make a mini quilt. This was so fun! I could complete a project in a solid evening of sewing, and I could start to see what makes modern, modern. I posted my January, February, and March projects as I finished them.

Once I started to learn what I liked about modern quilting, I didn’t do every single project. Some I would trade away to quilty friends and some went to thrift donations. At the end of the year, I still had a solid collection of mini quilts to hang over my sewing table. I have a few more finished that I’ll share here if we can ever get a decent day for taking pictures.

sewing table with machine and quilts hanging on the wall

Spoiler Alert: Amber and Alderwood Studio will show up again later in this post! Can you figure out why? Read More…

Do You Name Your Quilts?

When I started quilting, I would go to quilt shows and marvel at all the quilts on display. One thing I noticed was the naming of the quilts. Some were very obvious while others clearly meant something only to the artist. So today I want to know, do you name your quilts?

By this time I had a few quilts of my own under my belt and never once considered naming them. It just seemed so pretentious. I mean, who did I think I was?! I’ve learned since then that there are three important reasons to name your quilts.

my personalized quilt labels Read More…

2021 Aspirations

I fell into a bit of a trap when creating goals for last year, so 2021 is about aspirations. I don’t want to measure success against anything but my own happiness and progress, so aspirations just seemed a better way to frame it this year. Plus 2020 really did us dirty last year and messed up everyone’s plans. Aspirations will help me be more flexible and focused, I think.

Three words sum up these aspirations: color, modern, and quilting. So without further ado, here they are:

Color

The first area I want to work in is color. A couple years ago, I joined the Playful Color Quilt Guild from Rebecca Bryan. I literally did nothing with the group for a long time, but I started hopping into sessions back in October, and I’ve already learned a lot. I realized how predictable and juvenile my color choices were, so this year’s aspiration on color means I’m going to find my signature color palette.

Which means I had to clear out all the old to make room for new projects where I could play and learn. I’m slowly chugging through my pile of quilts to bind, and I’ve already finished three!

a stack of finished quilts Read More…

Quilt-Life Crisis Update

I came to this space a couple months ago having a quilt-life crisis. I guess staying at home all the time during a pandemic can really make you over think some things! But it’s all good. I’m still refocusing my quilting purpose, and I’m pretty excited about the goals I’m setting for 2021. I’ll share those next week.

But before I moved on, I knew I needed to get my WIP list under control. I had jumped on quilt along bandwagons for the past several years, and some of those were still hanging on… from 2018. I also had a few fabric piles that had been pulled for projects that I never started. There was no space left to create anything new and keep it all organized.

So I went on a tear to try to finish everything I could before the end of the year. That’s a lot of sewing, but I’m proud to say I made it happen! In just over two months, I finished 5 quilt tops, basted 9, and quilted 8. I now have a stack of 14 quilts that need the binding sewn down!

a stack of finished quilts

While I still have a lot of binding ahead of me (I love it!), there are only four projects left on my WIP list that I’m carrying over to 2021: two EPP projects and two hand appliqué projects. This really does feel like the fresh start I hoped it would. So I guess it didn’t end up being a quilt-life crisis after all!

See you back here next week to talk about my plans for 2021.

2020 Highlights

2020 was simultaneously the most boring and most hectic year of my life. I can’t leave the house! (Boring.) And my workload exploded! (Hectic.) But I couldn’t let that crazy minx get out of town without another look to see what my 2020 highlights were. I’ll start with the quilty goodness and share a couple cool things from my work and personal life too.

2020 Highlights: Quilting

I went into 2020 with six quilting goals. Looking back, that was way too many! I managed to meet most of them despite All This, I crashed and burned on one, and I completely never understood why I made another. So here’s how I did: Read More…

What am I Even Doing Here?!

I know this sounds like the tagline to 2020, but I’m talking specifically about here: this blog and my quilting life. 2020 has really had me thinking about a lot of things, but the thoughts about my quilting life have been really unexpected in some good and bad ways. Let’s dig into some sweet, sweet therapy on it all.

Joni emoji Read More…

Hanging In & Making Do

Like a lot of you, our lives changed dramatically since we started quarantine three months ago. When this all started, I thought we’d likely celebrate my birthday (mid-April) in quarantine. Then I thought we’d likely celebrate Sir’s birthday in quarantine (Memorial Day weekend). Then I thought I likely wouldn’t go back into the office until after Labor Day. Now I’m starting to think I won’t see my office until early 2021. And that’s about all the emotional energy I have for these kinds of predictions anymore. Read More…

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