It’s been awhile I know. It’s not you, it’s me. I under estimated how much time a 5 year old would cut into my once limitless free time. I’m not complaining though, this has been a wonderful and crazy journey, and I absolutely love and adore my family. But with additions come subtractions, and in my first year as a parent my quilting became somewhat of a subtraction.
Before we adopted I was a “retreat” quilter. I would get up at 7 in the morning on a Saturday, start cutting things out, binge on Hulu and Netflix while piecing my top together. I would stop around 10 at night , then get up and do it all over again on Sunday. By the end of the weekend I would have a quilt top. Times they have a’changed. I now have a few options available to me. I have Hayden get some toys and come done to play in the quilt room while watching his favorite shows, or I wait until he goes to bed. I put in a hour or 2 a day, and the quilt top that took me 2 days or so, now take about 2 weeks, and that’s okay.
Take for instance that I FINALLY finished my “Postcard from Sweden.” I started it, too far back to remember, but it’s finally finished! I’m calling it my “Quilt of Many Colors” in honor of Dolly Parton. I was able to go see her, and now my son loves to listen to “Coat of Many Colors” and “Applejack” and sings both in the car. As I type this I have also finished another quilt, but that is a story for another day.
So I finally had time to start on my “Postcards from Sweden” quilt from Jeli Quilts. It’s a really fun, colorful quilt, you can find the pattern on Craftsy and I believe they also have kits available. It’s hard to find all of the Kona solids in one spot, so I was able to get mine by buying at my local quilt shop, but I also had to order online at Missouri Star Quilt Company to get a complete list of the fabrics needed. This also marked the first time of using my AccuQuilt Go! I’ve had it for years, but never really used it as I didn’t want to invest in buying specific dies for specific shapes. However I did buy the half square triangle die for this project which made cutting the triangles SUPER quick!
One of the biggest priorities to this quilt is LABELING! There are TONS of colors and some of them are just a shade that is SLIGHTLY off from one another. So I purchased printable return address labels and printed them out to keep my colors organized, believe me, it’s worth it!! With 36 colors floating around it’s nice to have them each labeled, also ADD the corresponding number to the label. I thought of this after it was too late, so I just added them to the label with a Sharpie. But having the name and number of the fabric will be a life saver.
While you’re only making half square triangles and pinwheel blocks. The time consuming part of this is matching up the colors according to the diagram and getting them all sewn together. I purchased large paper plates, and set each set on a paper plate to be sewn, then just stacked the paper plates. It make is REALLY easy to sew together and know what pair you have. (Thanks Pepper Cory for that tip!) So I am about a quarter of the way done. Hopefully before the weekend is over I will be about half way there.
Well I’m back again with an infrequent post. I am in the midst of learning to find some balance in my life. With the addition of Hayden, my life certainly has changed. Gone are the days of waking up at 6 in the morning and locking myself away in my quilt room watching Anne of Green Gables, and old episodes of Designing Women or the Golden Girls while piecing together my patchwork.
Time is now a luxury, and I have to start treating that way. Those 2 hours in the evening when Hayden has gone to bed and I can do whatever I want is a new golden hour. Currently I have been playing video games, which while really fun, is not very productive. I need to change my perception that I need to have at least 5 hours at a time devoted to quilting. I now need to have the mindset that perhaps I can get some pressing done, tomorrow, maybe cut out a few pieces of patchwork. In other words, I have to be okay with slowing down. I’ve always enjoyed quilting, but it was a retreat for me, a whole day or several hours of “me” time. So now I need to take the time where I can find it.
I have SO many quilts I want to make! I did start pressing fabric the other day for the “Postcard from Sweden” it’s a free pattern from Craftsy. (Click on the picture to be taken to the FREE Craftsy pattern) It’s amazing and it’s all half square triangles, which is easy and good project to start my slow quilting on.
Next up is a beautiful quilt that I have wanted to make for a long time now, and just haven’t been able to get started. It’s call “Shattered Dresden” it’s part template, part paper piecing. (Click on the pattern to be taken to the order page.) The templates are only used so you can conserve fabric on your paper piecing portion for this project, and I think it will be a good introduction to paper piecing for me.
So I guess the moral of my dilemma is sometimes you have to slow down to speed up. Currently I’m making nothing, so slowly but surely I will get some quilts created. Maybe not as quickly as I used to, but I need to make time for a hobby I’m so passionate about.