2012 was over in a flash, so it is time to start thinking about what I want to acheive in 2013. I know that life is hectic when I am busy juggling a full time job, a preschooler, and a school child who is a little bit high maintenance, so I am not going to be aiming too high this year, but I do want to keep making time for my crafty pursuits. So my main goals for this year is to get some long term WIPs out of the cupboard and turn them into finished items I can actually use, or give away, and in doing so, I want to bring my stash level right down to what it used to be pre-kids.
I was never one to buy fabric just because I liked it, but had to have a project in mind when I bought it. However with a little bit of influence from online quilty friends, and also recognising the need to have fabric on hand when I don't often get much chance to go shopping sans kids, has meant my stash has built to a level where I can easily find something to work with when inspiration grabs late at night when DH is at work and the kidlets are dozing. Now that is a good thing... But, I am starting to find that a lot of my stash is not really my taste now, and getting increasingly harder to use. So I need to clear some of it out and make some room in my cupboards, which should hopefully also allow my fabrics to be better organised and brought out of Madelyn's room into a new shelf in my sewing corner this year.
AJ is running a "Sew Your Stash Thin" challenge over at her blog this year, and I am right there! The idea being that more fabric turns into completed projects than lands in storage. Now I did think I was starting off well, as I have pulled out and made good progress on not 1, but 2 quilts (that have been half made for 2 years) already this year.
Madelyn's cot quilt, now needs to be a single bed quilt so I have had to more than double the blocks I had already joined into strips to make the quilt top. (now up to 40 blocks fromwhere it was when I pulled it out and photographed it!) This has meant a couple of new fabrics needed to be purchased to extend what I had - glad it was a scrappy style, as it was easy to expand at this stage! So that meant 5 FQ worth in and some more on the way (backing and border fabrics). But that's okay, as long as it gets finished this year, and with hubby up in the shed building a new bed for her as I type, hopefully it won't be too far away.
I checked through Flickr and saw some stunning quilts being made with equally (if not more) busy blocks, so thought to myself I should just get it out and finish it, and who knows, it might grow on me. It's a shame because I love the fabrics, I just think they would have worked much better used in a different pattern. I have learned my lesson though. I pushed myself to try something new - a mystery quilt - and now I am certain the planner and control freak in me doesn't like them! So I won't be doing that again.
Anyway, I have now finished all 16 blocks and in the hunt for borders and backings, I was sent to Tricia's Discount Fabrics in Melrose Park. Now the quilt shops around me have dwindled from 3 closeby, to 1, which is only open for a couple of hours on a Saturday, when I am meant to be at swimnming with Austin. And with a full work week there is no chance of getting there on a weekday. So to come across a quilt store open on a Sunday is like magic. And then I walked in... I thought I died and went to heaven. I described it to hubby as having more fabric than I had ever seen in a quilt store. He responded "Even in America?" Okay, he got me there, I still have my very favourite store stuck in my memory from my Michigan work trips but Tricia's definitely comes close. Unfortunately this shopping trip set me back a little with my stash count, but a large part of the purchase was backing for the Blockapalooza quilt, and the rest was fabric for a new BOM I have signed up for this year (more on that once I make my first block). So as long as I use it all this year I am safe!