Organization! It’s a wonderful, if short-lived thing.

I’ve been doing a lot of cleaning and organizing and getting-rid-of-stuff over this winter break. I culled something over seventy books from my overcrowded bookshelves, which means that the books I own now fit on my bookshelves without stacks on the floor for the first time since I moved back to NYC. (Some of them are still double-shelved, but shh, that totally doesn’t count.) I left the bookshelf-bit in this photograph, which is theoretically all about the fabric stash in the top half. You can see all the books! I am irrationally happy about this.


I also took the opportunity to re-organize my fabric, which is now organized by color, as well as by cut size (more than 3-yard cuts are all in one place), and my sewing cart, which has made getting to things a lot easier, as well as giving me a bigger box for scraps (which is amusing, since right now I’m at probably the lowest level of scraps I’ve been at in months, what with the Scrappy Trip quilt decimating my scraps. Even the contents of the fat quarter box are really organized! The pieces stuck in the left side are long quarters, so I don’t pull something and then get all disappointed when I realize that, no, I can’t cut a 17″x15″ piece from a long quarter-yard.


But I also got some fabric in the mail, as belated Christmas presents. I didn’t photograph much of it, but I couldn’t help but get a picture of the Pearl Bracelets fat quarter set that I got from Stash Modern Fabric. Look, isn’t it pretty? All the colors! I love this print so much.


I couldn’t resist pulling some of it right away — cosmonaut, anchor, and river bend are the colors I chose — and I made these three fabric boxes using a tutorial on The Sometimes Crafter.


I used an iron-on interfacing (Pellon 809, which is really stiff) instead of sewing in interfacing, and I think it’s working out pretty well. I pinned them carefully, with vertical pins at each corner, to hold things in place and horizontal pins for three sides, so I wouldn’t have to pull out the pins while I was sewing. I marked the turning hole with vertical pins, because I have been known to sew all the way around something and only then realize that I needed to leave part of it open to turn the project right-side-out.


Ironing them square was really fun, though I didn’t take any pictures of that stage. There’s a good tutorial on The Sometimes Crafter.

I’m using them to hold leaders and enders (light in the light box, dark in the dark, sewn pairs in the medium blue box), and I’ve already emptied the medium blue box once, because it was full of paired ones, and I needed more space!


These are actually my first finish of the year, so I’ve added a picture of them to the 2013 Finish-A-Long Flickr pool.

Finally, because I found it tremendously amusing, have a picture of my cat, Clio, attempting to supervise my sewing while I worked on the Scrappy Trip quilt. (She’s just next to the computer, which plays music or audiobooks while I’m working.)

2013 Finish-A-Long

This year, I’m going to be participating in the 2013 Finish-A-Long. It looks like a lot of fun, and like a great way to get me to finish some of these projects that have been sitting around forever.

she can quilt

There’s no penalty for listing more things than you can finish, so I’m going to make a pretty ambitious list for myself, and see what happens. (I can predict what happens: I don’t finish all of them.)

Let’s start with the biggest ones and work down:
1) I’m going to finish the Scrappy Trip quilt top. This is a pretty big goal for me, while the semester is going on, especially since it’s going to be a queen-sized quilt, but I’m going to go for it. It makes for really good mindless-sewing, so perhaps I’ll have some luck working on it.
Scrappy trip-a-long

2) I’m going to finish my New Wave quilt. It’s all cut — all I have to do is pick the order of the fabrics, piece it, and quilt it. All. Hah. I’m actually pinning the fabrics up next to each other for this one, and I’ll be posting about that soonish.

3) I’m going to try finish up the 2012 In Color Order Half-Square-Triangle blocks, sash them, and quilt the whole thing. These are one of my July blocks, and two of the March block:
July March2

Finishing this up is a bit of a bigger task than it sounds, because I’m doing 2 blocks for each month, which makes for a twin-sized-or-bigger quilt, not a lap quilt. The main question will be figuring out the sashing, backing and binding fabrics.

4) I want to make a Pinwheels and Postage Stamps quilt using two charm packs and two mini charm packs of Simply Color. I think it will look LOVELY. And I’m not sure how big it will end up being — that’ll depend on how much I can eke out of the fabric I have.

5) I’m going to make a handful of little change purses with keychain rings as gifts for friends using this tutorial on Noodlehead.

6) I’m going to make a trio of fabric baskets to hold my 2 1/2″x2 1/2″ fabric squares and my leaders and enders. The main question for this is picking the fabrics!

7) I’m going to make a weighted pincushion organizer for my sewing table, because it would be nice to have somewhere to put thread scraps without bending over to figure out where I’ve put the garbage can, and I actually don’t have a pincushion right now.

And, honestly, that’s more than enough for me to have on my plate for the spring semester, with all the coursework I have in store!