Monday, December 12, 2016

Mish Mash Monday: Piecing, Projects, & Partnerships

A Little Bit Sweet

Oh, Sweet Monday! Through the wonders of air travel, I woke up in foggy Florida, and was back in a snowy Ohio by lunchtime. I was travelling very light, and my computer was stashed at home--not my choice. My little phone had such a workout to stay connected, but with big limitations for me. Can I please do a quick catch up for you?

Last Friday morning I started a quickie project with 2.5" strips, and a Creative Grids ruler. I turned out this Dresden Plate early in the morning, then used the rest of my free time before my trip to blanket stitch it on to a low volume background. I added a few spunky borders to round it out to a 36" square, and it was ready for something I'd never tried before.

Flannel As Batting

This all started when I had a 36" piece of Minkee leftover from the Clementine quilts, and knew it would be a perfect backing for a baby quilt. Friends of ours had just had their first granddaughter, and I thought to surprise them with a little quilt. I wanted it to have a very fluid feel to it rather than be puffy, but I wasn't eager to use just the Minkee and the quilt top. I had some double washed and dried flannel ready to go so I sandwiched one layer as batting. This was purely experimental so I only sewed down two sides to test it. 

Wow! It was just right! I loved the thinness of the layers, and will finish the sewing early tomorrow. This is the first time I've done this style of quilt without a binding, and I'm thinking hand quilting that Minkee will be a luxurious experience! I'll keep you up to date.

En Provence Continues

Last week's instructions were for a block using a Tri Recs ruler. I took the template to my wall of rulers, but nothing fit. Since the rulers are sold out outline and none available locally, I started to panic. I just knew I had seen that shape somewhere in my ruler stash, but where? Low and behold, my set of Marti Michell C's worked, and my blocks were quickly completed. 

We Have a Winner!

There were over 150 entries for the Sew Mama Sew Give Away, and an online random number generator picked the winner for me. Sarah, a.k.a. 'jellybeans' was the winner, and has been notified. Thank you all for joining in the giveaway fun with me!

Accountability Partners

The New Year approaches quickly. It's a time when many of us start summarizing how our year went and make goals for the new year. Most of you know I'm a list maker, but goal lists aren't quite the same as weekly lists. When a task is done on a weekly list, it's crossed off my list, but a goal may be something that takes months or even years to achieve. How do I keep that idea alive, and continue to nurture it if it takes so long?

It's not a secret. I have a partner. More specifically, I have an Accountability Partner. 

Beth, who blogs at Cooking Up Quilts, and I started this process without really realizing it. In the beginning it was important to have another quilter blogger to talk with. There seemed to be dozens of questions that arose about quilting, blogging, or our small businesses. She was also rural like me and had a similar local economy. While her interests ran more toward pattern creation and quilting, mine were pursuing original work and teaching. Often her perspective was unique, and I left the phone call thinking I was (once again) ready to keep pushing ahead. 

What It Isn't

This isn't talking to your mom--though mom's are awesome people! It isn't the kind of friend you can whine to nor takes your excuses. This is the person who has the guts to say, "Darling, don't even ask me if your butt looks wide in those jeans. It does. Go try another pair on." It's where the rubber meets the road, and we all need that honesty. Not someone who will tear us down, but someone who we trust to see the full view of the side we can't see clearly.

This is a peer-based partnership with a person in your field, who understands and can give you support, feedback, ideas, or just listen to you. It's a non-competitive colleague who will keep you moving toward your own goals. Or as we say, our "personal cheerleaders." 

Though we've mainly used our time to brainstorm how to do things, we've now chosen to use it more specifically. We've asked each other to submit a list of goals in writing and our plan how we choose to meet them. We will hold each other to those goals by listening and often just being there. As it is often said, "90% of success is just showing up."

Check out what Beth has to say about this. As usual, she has a fresh perspective from mine. We encourage you to think about your coming year and make your own goals. Is an Accountability Partner something that would help you stay committed? Do you have other ways to attain your goals? We'd both love to hear, and I'm sure many others would too. Please leave your ideas in the comments.

Come on, Doxie girls.
Let's go sew.

Linking up with~
MOP Mondays
Cooking Up Quilts
Show and Tell Monday


AlidaP said...

Great update! I have never tried using flanner as batting, it could be an interesting experiment. I keep my self committed by posting on my blog every week and having lists. Of course there are still projects that I haven't touched for the entire year, but having them there helps me not forgetting their existance. I also recently switched to a Bullet Journal system and that works great in keeping me on track. Thanks for sharing your experience and thoughts!

Angie in SoCal said...

Is it and envelope finish or bring to the front finish? It's so colorful.

Anja @ Anja Quilts said...

I've used minky on a few baby quilts. I love how it feels. An Accountability Partner is a great idea. That's why I like linky parties, especially where you set goals.

Lena Pugacheva said...

The baby is quilt is very bright and happy, hope it behaves well in quilting. Your En Provence blocks look promising too (love the cute birds fabric), so I'm looking forward to further updates!

Jasmine said...

That is such a cute baby quilt. I have thought about just using flannel before instead of batting with the minky. I look forward to hearing more about your experience. :)

Tish Stemple said...

Julie, do these pants make my butt look big??? Joking, I know I have a big butt :) I think this is a great idea, having an accountability partner. I'm hoping to be more goal oriented in the next year. This quarter has felt like my most productive one and I'm not ready to give up on that feeling yet.

Kate said...

I really like the dark blues you are using in the triangle in a square blocks. I've really liked the One Monthly Goal challenge this year. It's helped me move ahead on one big priority and since I just pick one thing, it's easy to take into account what the month looks like. I guess my biggest accountability is posting on the blog. Knowing I have to fess up to to not meeting my goals is usually enough to keep me moving in the right direction.

Kimberly Smith said...

I've been using flannel for batting for years. Pre-washing in very warm water and drying with high heat is essential to get the shrinkage out of it because it doesn't shrink at the same rate as cotton quilting fabric. (Just putting that in there for comment readers.) Welcome to the flannel side!

JAYNE said...

I love the scrappy dresden plates! really lovely -

evaj said...

Thans for linking to Show and Tell monday ,Julie!!hug Bambi