A few plans and a word for 2021

My Word for 2020 icon by Allison ReidMy word for 2020 was GROW. It was an extension of LEARN, the word I chose a few years earlier and of 2019’s word COMMUNITY. During 2020 I did GROW patchwork skills: curved piecing through making the Dear Dottie quilt; improving my understanding of colour by following the Quilter’s Color Quest (both the pattern and the Quest were creations of Rachel Hauser of Stitched in Color); practising quilting; and learning hand turn applique. I also got my GROW on in other ways: more teaching; working at Purple Stitches (even being left for a few hours alone in the shop! That was scary but I did it!); grappling with technology – I’d have to say GROWth was rather patchy in this area – but I did manage to draw a quilt in Adobe Illustrator… and *most of the time* work the electronic till in the shop!

My word for 2021 is SHARE. I had a brain-storming session around everything New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting: this blog, the Facebook and Instagram pages, planning and teaching workshops, writing Sunrise Patchwork Patterns, selling on ETSY. It didn’t take too long for me to drill down to my WHY? Answer: The motivation that drives all these activities is the pleasure patchwork quilting brings me and the great satisfaction I gain from being with other patchwork quilters – online or in person – sharing skills and seeing creativity flourish.

I’ll be sticking with Saturday Quilting Bring & Share blog posts as they are an obvious place for sharing to happen – a weekly collection of clickable links to the inspiration provided by so many amazing quilty bloggers.

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A thousand piece rainbow quilt

I hope your Christmas has been a peaceful time, perhaps even an opportunity to embrace different ways of gathering and celebrating. Our Christmas moved on from Plan C to Plan D as our daughter and S-I-L were plunged into Tier 4 restrictions – no mixing of households, no travelling. We hoped to have my parents share Christmas Day with us, then we heard the new Covid strain was indeed ‘going viral’ and we too would be in Tier 4 as from Boxing Day. So we played it safe, keeping households apart, and celebrated at home just the three of us. We were so grateful for a live-streamed Church Service in the morning and access to family via the internet.

No guests this Christmas meant my intentions to tidy my sewing room and convert it into a guest room could be set aside. I did a bit of tidying and sorting after finishing the Dashing Stars quilt last weekend. The Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilt was the obvious next project. The blocks were up on the design wall and slowly through the week I pieced the quilt top together. Some days I just didn’t have the heart for sewing, trying to absorb the increasingly severe restrictions being broadcast from Downing Street and the resulting changes to our plans just left my head too full.

But by Boxing Day the quilt top was complete. I spent upwards of half an hour pressing all the seams – what a job! The quilt top measures 60″ by 66″ and I calculate (well my calculator calculates!) there are 1,080 two inch squares! I’m calling the quilt ‘Thousand Piece Rainbow’. I had a two metre length of Michael Miller ‘Calligraphy’ extra-wide backing in my stash and plenty of Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 wadding to make up the quilt sandwich. There was just enough space on the kitchen floor to centre the layers.

Next task will be pin basting. I will use my walking foot to stitch out a quilting design. I’m not yet decided on the actual pattern. Maybe a wavy grid to follow the wave of changing colour in the patchwork or a diamond grid to overlay the patchwork design… There’ll be plenty of time to ponder the choices while I’m basting.

The label is prepared and I’ve made the binding strip, I’m wondering if I can finish this years Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilt before the end of the year? Are you challenging yourself for a final finish for 2020 or maybe doing the opposite by enjoying the opportunity to relax into sewing mode with no goals in mind?

This isn’t a Saturday Quilting Bring & Share post and I sure do have a LOT of blog reading to catch up on but here are a few links I’d like to share 🙂

Alyce has shared an encouraging post about free motion quilting and how to break through five common myths that could hold us back from using this skill to enhance our patchwork.

Jo Westfoot aka the Crafty Nomad has launched her on-line sewing school. Her in-person workshops are great so I’m sure her new easily accessible classes will be informative and a lot of fun. The latest course to be launched, ‘Confident & Joyful Free Motion Quilting‘ takes participants beyond the anxieties of starting free motion quilting with a series of four step-by-step tutorials designed to grow knowledge and skills.

And Jasmeen is offering free tutorials sharing her love of needle turn applique. She is extremely skilful and wonderfully calm. A bit of slow stitching may be just what’s needed as we wait for 2021 to shake off the troubles of 2020. The series of video and written tutorials begins on 1st January.

Thank you for following my blog posts through the past year. All things being equal Saturday Quilting Bring & Share should return on 2nd January. I might even sneak in another post before then if I make significant progress on the RSC quilt 🙂

Allison

 

Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (233)

Using a walking foot and guide to quilt a spiral.

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share 🙂 I hope you can fit some creativity into your weekend. Bring along your projects(s) and share in the conversations and quilty goodness of our Worldwide Quilting Community. Use the links below to discover new techniques, find inspiration and enjoy what has been shared this past week.

I’ve been switching my creative time between the steep curve of learning how to use Adobe Illustrator and the rather smoother curves I’ve been quilting on my Wonky Windows scrap quilt. No surprises that the quilt is finished and the AI learning still has a long way to go!

A few weeks ago you may remember I made a spiral template? As the spiral is one of my favourite walking foot quilt designs I decided to take the fiddle out of re-drawing the centre of a spiral each time I come to quilt it by making a reusable template. Doh! Could I find my spiral template when I needed it? No! I could not! I still haven’t found it… but

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Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (231)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share 🙂 Bring along your project(s) and share in the inspiration as well as the ups and downs being experienced by other members of our Worldwide Quilting Community. Please do share your comments in the box at the end of this page. Thank you!

In stereo-typical fashion I’m going to start with a statement about the weather – how British is that? 😀 It’s been a grey skied, rain soaked week (a particular shame for all the families with children home for half-term holidays). The past couple of days have been so overcast and damp that I’m having trouble taking photographs of a finished quilt – the outdoor photos below were taken pre-breakfast this morning just before the next lot of rain clouds did their thing!

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