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Resolutions

June Recap

* Life got so crazy that I'm posting this 2 weeks into August! Sorry


June was an awesome month in the Wahn household.  Summer is in full swing, the garden beds are bursting, the girls practically live in the baby pool, and my days are split between play time and quilting.  Unfortunately for Handsomepants, work has been crazy.  June not only means the end of the fiscal quarter, but also the end of the fiscal year (he's a financial reporter for the state) and the state went live with an incredibly glitchy new computing system which has just compounded the normal stress of meeting work deadlines. I don't know how he likes his job, but he does, and I'm thankful for that.

I've also gotten lots of quilting done this month!  I've been able to get lots done and actually start preparing for a big, little something I'm thinking about launching in September, but I'll keep you posted on that as we get closer to launching!

 

Resolution: Blogging

I'll admit that I may have overstepped my initial New Years resolution to publish a blog post every week.  That's a goal that is overly ambitious  so I'm changing my resolution to publishing a post every other week. Two quality posts a month is a more realistic goal to work with my daily schedule, be a present mother, and sleep at night.  That being said, here are the links to June's posts in case you missed any of them.  

"Independence Day" Quilt Pattern

 

RESOLUTION: QAL's

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The Quilter's Planner QAL treated me very well this month.  I made the community spotlight on Angie's blog over that GnomeAngle again!  And I won the monthly drawing - woohoo!  Deanne over at Stitches Quilting sponsored May's giveaway, a generous $100 gift card!  It very quickly burned a hole in my pocket when I picked up two fat quarter bundles (Arbor Blossom by Nadra Ridgeway and Posy Garden by Carina Gardner both for Riley Blake), a new Olfa cutting mat, and some fork pins (which are amazing!).  And because Deanna is so awesome, she also sent me a mini charm pack of Bitter Sweet by Sue Daley Designs for Riley Blake.

52 Weeks with the Quilter's Planner

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Sewcial Bee Sampler

I'll admit that i missed this one this month!  Good thing there are no penalties for falling behind!

 

Resolution: Finish WIPs

Bust! Instead of trying to finish one of the many quilts awaiting quilting or binding, I decided to start a new project.  It's what I do people, don't hold my character flaws against me!

A couple of years ago at a quilt fair in Denver I waited until the last moment to to buy fabrics, and I made out like a bandit snagging up super deep discounts.  One of the things I bought was a bag of precut 3" squares for $1!  The fabrics were all calicoes or gingham, and to be honest, not all of the patterns appealed to me, but it was a $1!

I dug out the bag and grabbed an old white sheet and started making Granny Squares.  I have another post coming up about it, so keep tuned for that!

I did restart a baby quilt though! A good friend is having her second baby and I transferred a couple of embroidery patterns onto negative space on the quilt top that I'm going to use instead of a free motion quilt pattern.  I wanted a sweet, floral feel for the quilt, and nothing beats vintage embroidery for that!

 

I'll talk about why July was such a bust for me in the July Recap post, but I hope that August is just as productive in quilting that June was!

Hope you guys have all been having a great summer!

Happy Quilting!

- Rita

April/May Recap

Well I dropped the ball on my monthly report in April. I had meant to write the post, and the next thing I knew it was halfway through May! How time flies sometimes! 

Goose graduated preschool this month, and I promise that I didn't cry too much. How is it possible that my first born is going to be a kindergartner in August?!? M is no longer the shy little girl she used to be, those fabled Terrible Twos are in full swing, and Little Man cut 4 teeth! Handsomepants is also helping me revamp the laundry room by building a new surround for the utility sink. He's the best! 

But enough about the family, let's talk quilting! 

 

RESOLUTION: BLOGGING

The 2017 New Quilters Blog Hop ended 😭 It was hosted by name,name,and name, and was an absolute blast! I met so many wonderfully talented quilters out in the blogosphere. I also found many friends on Instagram (check them out for yourself), a platform that I'm relatively new to, and it immediately became my favorite social media site. I think my favorite part is being made jealous of everyone else's fabric and it keeps me motivated to create more.  If you're interested in seeing any of the other bloggers in my blog hop "hive" click here to see my introduction or just follow these links:

Samantha Dorn at Aqua Paisley Studio

Andrea Hokanson at Goofin' Off Around the Block

Emily Leachman at The Darling Dogwood

Vivian Gutierrez at Quilting With Vivian

 Nancy Bekedam at Grace and Peace Quilting

Kathy Bruckman at kathyskwiltsandmore

April Adams at JANDABendQuilts

Gail Sheppard at Quilting Gail

Amy Gerlich at AmyScrapSpot

Nicole Hannah at Handwrought Quilts

Barbara Bremner at Crazy Red Quilts

Gina Smith at Quilts and Cakes

Kara Zevchik at Sunshine Kwilts

Sharon Denney Parcel at Yellow Cat Quilt Designs

Becca Fenstermaker at Pretty Piney

Gwen Sager at Tillalili

Wendy Tuma at Pieceful Thoughts of My Quilting Life

Overall in April and May I did alright with keeping up my blogging, I hope you all weren't too let down, although I realized that I did way more quilting than blogging! If you missed any of my previous posts, here's the links:

M's Bunny Backpack

The Picnic Quilt

 

RESOLUTION: FINISH 12 WIPS

I kind of moved backwards on this resolution. I did make progress on finishing some WIPs like A&H's Wedding Quilt and the Baby Cathedral Window Quilt.  But I did add some more WIPs to the pile, but I suppose that's the curse of a quilters, your work is never done and what a happy curse it is!

 

RESOLUTION: JOIN 3 QALS

The Quilters Planner QAL has been plugging along and fingers crossed I keep up the pace! I  plan on posting all blocks in their appropriate times, all 52 of them! 

April's Blocks

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May's Blocks

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I also kicked some serious butt on the Vintage Farmer Girls blocks, I have one block from the book left to make, and about 5 block spaces left in the layout I have planned. Lori Holt has some more blocks she's designed on her blog, and I'm still deciding which ones I want to incorporate into my quilt.

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The Blue Bird Flour fabric I'm thinking of incorporating somehow to give the quilt a more "authentic" feel  from when feed sacks were more commonly used for quilting fabric.

I am very excited about the Vintage Farmer Girl quilt, this one is mine and I've never made myself a quilt before. I'm thinking about a pink sashing and boarder with a dark binding, maybe black or blue, I don't know, and I still need to decide on a backing too. I think that means I need to go fabric shopping!

Happy Quilting!

- Rita

March 2017 Recap

March in Denver was beautiful!  Temperatures were in the 70's, spring was in the air, the grill was pulled out from the depths of the garage, and it rained the last week of the month!  It rains so little here in CO that the pitter-patter of rain drops is a treat for me.  Plus, any extra moisture on the ground helps postpone the start of forest fire season, which is kinda important!  

To me, rain and spring means open windows and fresh air, tulips and trees in bloom, and laying on pretty quilts spread over new grass.  I definitely was in more a quilting mood in March than I was in February, and I got a lot more done because of it!  Here's my monthly recap to see how my New Year's resolutions are keeping up:

Resolution: Blogging

I was more consistent with blogging this month, I published several posts and I did some serious housekeeping on the blog in preparation for the 2017 New Quilter's Blog Hop hosted by Yvonne over at Quilting Jet Girl.  I am very excited about how this is going to work, and things should start picking up the second week of April!  Stay tuned to see more over the next couple of weeks!

Resolution: Joining 3 QAL's

The Quilter's Planner Quilt-A-Long has been awesome and challenging to say the least!  I was a bit reserved about paying so much for the planner, but I justified the purchase with cost analysis of the number of patterns that came with the planner.But let me tell you that planner is worth every penny!  I have learned so much by participating in this QAL, and my skills have improved noticeably (Handsomepants can vouch for that) that I will certainly be pre-ordering the 2018 planner in the fall!

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Because the whole family was so sick throughout February, I almost missed a couple of deadlines.  I prepared a head of time and sewed a few extra blocks, I'm hoping to give myself some breathing room to meet future deadlines in case life gets a little crazy again.  Here's all of the blocks I've made so far.  I'm pleasantly surprised at how much I like the quilt, because I don't normally like black and pink paired together, but that color choice was a something I challenged myself with when I started this project.  I have to admit that I'm starting to get nervous about the finished size of the quilt.  I knew the blocks were large (12"), but this is only about half of the blocks.  I'm thinking that I won't have a backing to this quilt, instead both sides will be the "top."  I've also been thinking about the finished lay out of the quilt, I can't decide if I want to set the blocks on point or not, but I do know that I want to use black sashing.  

Some more exciting news regarding the Quilter's Planner QAL, Miss Angie at GnomeAngle was generous to feature one of my blocks for the second time!  Every week, she showcases 9 participants she thinks her readers would benefit from following on Instagram.  She featured me last month too!  If I'm not careful I might start to get a big head!

Click on the picture to AngleGnome's blog to find links to other lovely ladies where featured here, there is some serious talent to be found on their Instagram accounts! 


The Sewcial Bee Sampler hosted Maureen over at MaureenCracknellHandmade has been agony, and I mean that in the best way possible!  I know that the point of a QAL is to work a bit at a time, but man oh man is it hard to be patient waiting every week for a new block to be released!  I'm kicking around the idea of starting a second quilt in some kind of monochrome variation too, but I should probably finish some of my WIPs first.


I've also been working on a wedding quilt for some friends (who got married in September) and I am soooooooo close to being done with the top stitching.  I'm just one of those people who looses steam on a project once the novelty of it disappears and I just need to muscle through it.  I also need to stop watching K-drama when I work on it, because I honestly spend more time reading subtitles than I do quilting!  I'll update on this quilt once it's finished, hopefully by next week!

How're you keeping up on quilting?  Have you met any New Year's resolutions yet?  Share them below and we can celebrate together!

 

Happy Quilting!

-  Rita

February 2017 Recap

Holy Spamoni, where did February go! It seems to me that the second month of the year literally disappeared overnight! February was a month of change and mess in our household.  Handsomepants has been working his butt off, he's financial reporter for Medicaid for the state and he's had major deadlines recently.  I started 2 jobs (because, ya know, why not?) as a personal Norwex consultant and as a children's karate instructor.  The girls are just crazy awesome as usual, and Little Man has started cutting teeth so everyone is sleep deprived, and I was diagnosed with pink eye... for three weeks straight! 

Needless to say, my quilting resolution accomplishments were not as spectacular as they were last month.  

Resolution: Blogging

FAIL! I think I posted once in February and it was probably my January Recap.  This is definitely a resolution where I need to pick up the slack.

Resolution: Join 3 QAL's

So far I have been doing quite well with keeping up with my quilt alongs, which seems to be the only quilting I've been doing lately.  

The 52 Week Quilter's Planner quilt along hosted by Angie at Gnome Angle was been awesome!  In January when I decided to join the QAL, I decided to challenge myself and I gave myself two restrictions: 1. I can only use what fabric I already have to make the blocks, 2. I can only use a color pallet that I wouldn't normally choose.  That means that my color pallet is largely based on black and pink.  Not that those aren't great colors, but I'm not a fan of that combination, and to my surprise I am very pleased with how these blocks are turning out!

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I've also been following along with the Sewcial Bee Sampler by Maureen Cracknell and I'm having a blast!  Tuesdays can't come fast enough when I have to wait for the new blocks to be released every week.  I suppose that's how QAL's are supposed to run, but oh the anticipation!

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Exciting News!

For as poorly as I've been performing in quilting lately, I do have some exciting things to share!

First, and this is completely a point of hubris, is that one of my blocks for Quilter's Planner QAL was featured on Angie's blog!  You see the proof for yourself here!

Second, I am very humbled and very excited to have been selected to join the 2017 New Quilt Bloggers Hop hosted by Yvonne at Quilting Jet Girl! OMG what have I gotten myself into!?! I'm hoping for some fun!

Maybe this will be the kick-in-the-butt I need to be more consistant with my blogging, finger's crossed!

Happy Quilting!

- RIta

 

January 2017 Recap

Since I made and committed to my New Years resolutions, you can find those here, I thought it would be a good idea to follow each month with a recap of all the things I accomplished (or not) for that month.  So here's what happened in January:

 

Resolution: Blogging

My goal was to write a blog post per week. To help me with that goal, in my Quilter's Planner I scheduled time every Monday specifically for writing.  That's great and all, but I didn't post new content every Monday.  I did post three articles though if you include my first post of 2017 with my list of New Year's resolutions, the other two are here, and here.

If I really want to stick to this resolution, I need to step it up on my content ideas and creation, and stick to my calendar and scheduling.  I guess we'll see how well that goes in February's recap.

 

Resolution: Organize the Closet

RESOLUTION COMPLETE! Over the last week of January and into February I completely organized my quilting closet (post is here.)  What a breath of fresh air to have everything nice and neat and in its place, plus I'm done with a resolution!  Hooray for me!

 

Resolution: Join 3 QAL's

I am well on my way to completing this resolution.  I have officially joined 2 1/2 quilt-a-longs.  The first is the 52 Weeks with the Quilter's Planner QAL.  I broke down and actually bought the planner, and I do not regret that decision.  It's an awesome planner (which is huge for me!), makes the QAL easier to complete, and I'm now eligible for the multiple giveaways offered every week and month. (Fingers crossed!)  Also, because of this QAL, I learned how to paper piece! This was a new technique for me an I am hooked!

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Week 1 Sewcial Bee

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The second QAL is the Sewcial Bee Sampler by Maureen Cracknell.  I am super excited about the possiblities with this QAL.  It's shorter than the Quilter's Planner QAL with only 25 blocks, and I'm using a fat quarter stack from Cotton & Steele fabrics so this quilt should look more cohesive than the Quilter's Planner QAL since I've pledged to use scraps.

The 1/2 QAL is a full QAL that I've joined late, like almost a year late!  I borrowed Lori Holt's book Farm Girl Vintage from my mother in law.  My goal is to make one of every 6" block in the book, along with some of the larger 14" blocks to make an entire quilt top.  I think I'm going to have to make a few blocks from Lori's website to fill in some open spaces in the layout I designed, but I'm very excited about this quilt.  I'm using it as a skill builder, I'm being very meticulous with my piecing, more than I usual. I really want the points of my blocks to be spot on and the pride of this quilt.  These are just a few of the blocks I've made so far.

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Resolution: Make a Quilt by Hand

I'm off to a good start on this resolution.  Using a small fat quarter stash and a charm pack, as well as some templates from Love & Patchwork Quilting Magazine, I have chosen a pattern, color scheme, and started cutting and sewing.  If I stick to pace that I've been moving, I think I could be done with all my blocks by about June.  Thinking about it now, I'm not sure if I can complete this resolution in one year, but it never helps to be pessimistic. 

 

Resolution: Machine Binding

I'm not sure about this resolution, I haven't really done anything about building this skill since I haven't finished that many projects.  I need more practice before I can call this resolution complete.

 

Resolution: Finish 10 WIPs

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I have almost completed my first WIP!  I'm making a wedding quilt for some dear friends from college.  I feel a little bad that the quilt wasn't finished for their wedding (in September!) but I had a baby half way through piecing the top, so I don't feel that bad.  This is first quilt I've made with a center medallion.  It looks pretty cute and I'm pleased with the way it's turned out, but I have to admit that applique is not my cup of tea! Holy smokes is that tedious! So far I'm about half done with quilting it, I did some FMQ around the medallion then simple top stitching over the rest of the blocks.  

I've also been doing some small quilting that really has no place in my schedule but it's super fun and eating up my scraps.  Like I said earlier, I learned how to paper piece while constructing a block for the 52 Weeks with the Quilter's Planner QAL, and I am in love with this new-to-me technique!  It does create some more waste than other quilting techniques, but the accuracy is on point! I've been piecing together 4" blocks for coasters.  I decided that I need a set of coasters after I made some Kitty Coasters for my awesome little sister for Christmas. 

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Besides all of the success' and short comings of January, this family has been busy! M broke her finger the day after Christmas and that was traumatic for everyone involved, (it is incredibly difficult to protect a broken finger on an 18 month old!)  Goose started back to preschool and I am actively procrastinating enrolling her into kindergarten (there is no way my baby is almost 5!)  Handsomepants got a promotion at work (I'm so proud!) and I have had a couple of exciting opportunities fall my way.  I have been invited to become an instructor at a local karate school and I surprised myself by becoming a Norwex consultant!  

So far 2017 has turned out to be pretty awesome (except for M's finger) and exciting.  I hope it stays that way! How has your first month been? Have you completed any of your New Year's resolutions? Leave a comment and let me know!

Happy Quilting!

- Rita