Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Happy New Year

Happy New Year, quilters! I hope you all had a good Christmas.

Wanted to let you know that we're starting a brand new Mystery Quilt for 2019. It's free. No patterns to buy. I hope you'll join me. We'll work on it in small bits each month. The first block has been posted in the Files section of the FB group and also in the Files section  of  my online small quilt group.  I'm working on getting it up on my website as well. Look for the Mystery Quilt tab at the top of the page.

The Mystery is called Aunt Addie's Blue Ribbon Quilt and it will run through July. This is a Spool and Bobbin block. I've never made one of these before and had fun picking through my scraps. 

Here's how the Mystery will work: I'll give you directions to make a particular block each month and you make as many blocks as the directions tell you to make. (PLEASE read  the instructions.) Then, after 6 months, I'll tell you how to put all the blocks together into a quilt. C'mon - it'll be fun. EVERYBODY can make a few blocks every month. 

We're also working on our Small Quilt Challenge for January. Little Log Cabin Doll Quilt from my newest book A Prairie Journey.

One of the most familiar and beloved of quilt patterns from the nineteenth century has to be the log cabin pattern. I love this little quilt, with its light and dark strips resembling the logs in a cabin.

(Made by Sue Bennett and inspired by an antique doll quilt.)

It's a true scrap bag quilt, don't you think? I found it interesting that the "logs" were not arranged in any sort of order, just stitched along at random to give the quilt a wonderful scrappy look. Scrappy quilts often look more complicated than they really are. If you make one or two blocks per day you'll have the whole quilt finished by the end of the month. 

Remember my Scrappy Star Sew Along from last fall? We made the blocks and now this year we'll make some time to put those 6" stars together into a quilt. 

Your choice of setting, depending upon how many stars you've finished. Can be big or small. I'm making a simple lap quilt, using 33 stars and some setting squares. (This particular pattern can be found in Files in my groups.)

I didn't make any New Year's resolutions but I do have some goals -  I'm hoping to finish my "Birthday Quilt" I started last year.  Maybe I'll have a better chance of getting it done this year, ya think? I'm more than halfway though sewing the blocks into strips and not quite half finished sewing the strips together. Sheesh. Now I remember why I like making small quilts so much, LOL.

I used to be pretty good about finishing my quilts and limiting my UFOs but now I have  another simple nine-patch lap quilt I need to put together. And then there's Dear Jane. Oh, Dear, Dear Jane. Not giving up just yet.

Lastly, if January always puts you in the mood to organize those fabric scraps (so you can join us in making some fun quilts this year?) check out the front pages in my book Small & Scrappy. It contains lots of good ideas for keeping it all under control. I've done a little organizing myself this week. Needs to be done on a regular basis and if I don't keep it up I find myself avoiding walking into that room  . . . . So clean it up for even a few minutes every day to keep your creative urges going in the right direction.

For me, a set of neat scrap bins and a clean sewing table makes everything I work on go a lot smoother. 

Have a good week and make some time to clean up your space if it needs it. You'll be glad I nagged you. Just ask my kids . . . .