Friday, September 8, 2017

GOAL SETTING

Ive always been a goal oriented person, even if I don't write them down. I keep a lot of things in my head. A friend once told me I had a calculator in my brain and I think she is right. After 33 years in business, I can add and subtract and multiply in my head with ease. I am an interior decorator and when you measure a window for blinds or draperies, you have to get the measurement down to 1/8 of an inch. Sometimes less. It is critical, especially for an inside mount treatment.
Back to Goal setting. About 30 years ago, I went to a conference where we had a speaker on goal setting. At the time, she had about 7 goal categories on the list but I can't remember them all. Right now, I have 3 major goals I'm working on and I am juggling to keep them all in play.


1. I am still in business after 33 years but slowing down some. Clients still call for appointments and I go. When they don't call I move onto my second goal, quilting. Keeping up with my business is very important to me because it enables my quilting habit and I want to take care of my clients and create beautiful rooms, one room at a time!


2. Quilting is my passion and second goal! My sewing room and hobby has taken over the house. Every room has bits of fabric, quilting books and notions in it. As a result, I lose things and then I have to go into all the places where I might have put them to find them. My Honda Odyssey is filled with fabric samples and books for my business but it also holds a sewing machine and fabrics for my quilting. Every once in a while, I go and clean it out and organize everything. I need to do that now, because I've lost something and need to look in the likely places. Quilting is a large part of my life as I am a member of an active quilting guild, and also a member of our Lutheran church guild where we meet twice a month to make charity quilts. I have dozens of active projects going on at one time and it would be nice to get a handle on them.


3. My third goal is my personal life. In January 2017, I embarked on a weight loss plan when I joined Bright Line Eating, an online program where you give up sugar, flour, eat 3 meals and weight and measure everything. It is the best program I have ever found and I've lost 34 lbs since January 2017. I still have about 10 to 15 to lose but now I am enjoying the process of buying clothes in a smaller size and going through my closet to find things I forgot I had and can wear again. Some of the clothes I have need alteration and I certainly know how to do this. But taking out a seam requires me to find the seam rippers that I have misplaced and the proper needle and thread to convert to sewing a knit stitch.


I belong to the Quilt and Lose team on Sparkpeople. I love this team as we help each other learn about quilting techniques, work on our UFO's and lose weight too!

I have always been a multi-tasker. I've got a lot of balls in the air right now and the older I get the harder it is to keep them in the air. Still working on it.

Thanks for reading! Carol

Thursday, August 17, 2017

I NEED TO SEW SOMETHING!

I've had a pretty stressful week. I still own my interior design business and I have been busy with clients lately. Usually my clients are spaced out allowing me time to sew in between on rest days. But I haven't been able to get creative at the sewing machine for over a week. Feeling withdrawal pangs. Does anyone else feel the same way when you can't get to sewing? Pushing those bits of pieces of fabric through a machine is so therapeutic!. Sometimes I get a mind block but usually I find time to sew something nearly every day. I have quilt guild tonight and made up a block to take for our BOM. And got my things ready for show and tell. Maybe I'll be inspired tomorrow to press on with the creation! I've got lots to do. My efforts to organize myself with a planner haven't worked out yet. Still planning to plan. Have a great day! Carol

Friday, January 13, 2017

QUILTER'S ALMANAC/PLANNER

So I started out the year 2017 thinking that I ought to start writing blogs on a consistent basis. I also ought to have a Quilter's Planner and I looked at the various options out there on the market place. But knowing myself, I am not that good at keeping records or diaries after January and some of those looked way to detailed. While cleaning up some older magazines I found something that I thought I could use. It is a daily planner also known as QUILTER'S ALMANAC by Eleanor Burns dated 1991. Evidently, someone else who didn't use it gifted it to me and it has been in my magazine stash every since. Eleanor is a great teacher and in the almanac, she talks about gathering up a group of women, giving them each a piece of challenge fabric and then conducting a year long Block of the Month. I could do that. I can use the calendar to keep track of my progress on quilting through the year and also make a block of the month with stash fabric. Note, I said stash. Off I went to the stash to find what I needed for this years sampler quilt. Its somewhat embarrassing to have all of this in my stash but hey, we have to shop. Let me tell you how I buy fabric. I have a large section in my brain for fabric and I have the ability to remember nearly every piece that I have bought over the years. I don't seem to remember where I put it but I can remember that I have it. I bought this piece of butterfly fabric at Quilting by the Bay in Panama City, Fl. I knew that I had the green with dots in my stash because it goes with more butterfly fabrics that I purchased in Maine when my mother in law died. I bought it to go with along with the large polka dots with dots inside them. And I always have a variety of black and white prints as well as plain black and plain white. I thought these dots were so cute! And I like cute! All of this is on sale of course as I rarely pay full price for large pieces. The first block for this quilt was a star and here it is, already made. If you are a novice quilter, start out with Eleanor Burns. If you follow her directions, the blocks come out perfectly with only a bit of trimming. I now have a perfect 12.5" block! I am going to do this each month and use my planner. Not sewing ahead! Until next time, Happy Sewing! Carol

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

SEWING WITH HANNAH

I have a beautiful almost 15 year old granddaughter named Hannah. She is very artistic and I've been trying to get her interested in sewing for some years. A few years ago, I gave her an inexpensive singer sewing machine for Christmas and she made some pillowcases. And then it sat. Last year, she asked me to help her make some costumes for Cosplay, . She is very much interested in the Japanese Anime characters and she showed me a picture of a costume so we were off to Goodwill to see what we could find to make it. Here is Hannah with the finished project but we had so much fun at Goodwill, she wanted to go back. The day we went was 10 items for $10 day. Whoo HOO! I found a black jacket and an orangegold sweatshirt to make her jacket with. I cut off the sleeves of the sweatshirt and sewed them onto the jacket and you can see the finish above. Not only did we get these items but I also got 7 mens cotton shirts to use for quilts later on. So this past Saturday morning, I got a phone call from my son. "What are you doing today?" I'm sewing I guess. "Hannah wants to come over and get help for another costume>" YES!! Of course!! Any chance I get to sew and teach my granddaughter is a wonderful thing. She showed me the pictures of the costume and off we went to Goodwill to look for a small vest, a pair of black shorts and a purple jacket or shirt we could alter! IT wasn't $10 day but we found what we needed, the perfect black vest that fit her perfectly, the shorts, and a large purple men's shirt that we could alter to make a jacket. I don't have any pics yet of the finished costume but let me tell you, it turned out cute! And Hannah was so pleased! We didnt' have time to sew on the outfit on Saturday so she came back on Tuesday to finish it up. In the meantime, I had sewed a green with black stripe front to the vest. Why I had the perfect matching fabric to the costume picture is beyond me but it turned out cute. So our task on Tuesday was to figure out how to turn a large man's shirt into a jacket/coat. I cut the sleeves off, pinned and tucked. When I sat at the machine to sew, Hannah would watch what I was doing. I sat her down to sew the darts which I had pinned and several other things. Each time I sewed, she stood and watched. Today I have to go to Joann's and get some gold buttons to sew on and she is coming over again! Thank you Lord for the blessings of getting to know my granddaughter and helping her to learn how to sew! If you can sew, you can earn! Carol

ROW BY ROW CHALLENGE

I am very fortunate indeed to live in an area where we have 8 participating Row by Row shops within an hours drive or less from my home. Two of the shops I can get to within 10 minutes. There is also a good sized Joann's nearby and A&E Pharmacy in Pensacola. If you are ever in Pensacola drop by A&E. It is awesome. So this year, I decided to collect the rows and sew up a quilt to try and win a prize. My granddaughter, Hannah, came over to sew one day and she helped put one of the rows together! I sewed all weekend, quilting as you go on my Platinum 16. It started giving me fits on the last two rows I added but I managed to finish Monday morning. I headed to Unlimited Embroidery in Navarre, Fl and walked in to win the prize! I was so pleased and Lynda, the owner, was very generous with 30 fat quarters, a pattern and burlap bag with embroidery.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

THE JOURNEY HAS BEGUN!

My Journey has begun! I've decided to start the retirement process from my interior design business and delve into a quilting life. I've set up an Etsy Account which I will address later. See you soon! Carol

Friday, February 20, 2015

COLOR CONFIDENCE PART 6

My philosophy on selecting fabrics and colors for a quilt is a five part process that I have shared in my recent postings. Let me restate them here
FIND FIVE FOR FABRIC FREEDOM 1. find your fabric; 2. find your theme; 3. find your neutrals; 4 find your accent fabrics; and 5 find your pattern.
In the case of the fabrics and blocks I've been working on I already had a pattern in mind. A friend and I had agreed to take advantage of Jacquelyn Steve's free Sew Sweet Simplicity BOM. You can visit the pattern at http://jacquelynnesteves.com/sew-sweet-simplicity-free-block-of-the-month/
The center 6.5 inch block of Jacquelynne's quilt could be either applique or a fabric. I'm not all that fond of applique and when I saw the fun floral fabric at the LQS,I thought immediately how much fun it would be to fussy cut the flowers for the center block. So in this case, the pattern came before the fabric.
Most of the time, I think I find the fabric first and then search for a pattern to go with it. In my travels and visiting local shops, I look for what is on sale. If I think it is a good buy and I like the fabrics, I will buy 1 to 2 yds, depending on the pattern repeat. I have a set of fabrics in my stash that I purchased on a New England vacation in 2013. I tuck these fabrics into my mind and then I search for patterns through magazines and books. I think I have hit on a pattern that will be wonderful for this set of fabrics. On the other hand, I have bought patterns that I like and I'm not sure I've ever made them. I do make bags from patterns, many of them. My husband continually asks why I can't throw the magazines out. You all know the answer to that one. We save them to find patterns to use for fabrics we have. And the books, I have many many books and buy more. After all it is like reading a novel and you learn so much. And, unlike a novel, you will read it again. I hope you have enjoyed my take on finding fabrics and mixing and matching colors. Its been fun. Carol