TGI Thursday

What To Do This Weekend #5

I cannot believe how fast this past week has flown by!

Kids are back in school. Retail merchandise and displays are making their seasonal shift replacing outdoor furniture and pool side toys with Halloween, fall themed (and in some cases Christmas) decor.

As much as I love the scent of pumpkin spice, watching the transformation of color to the typical red/orange/yellow hues in everything from nature to fashion, snow flakes and jingle bells I’m not yet ready for any of that. Not yet.

Today, my main interest is the coming weekend and as I have been doing every Thursday for the past month, providing you with a handful of ideas to inspire that spark of creativity you need to make the most of your weekend.

Let’s enjoy these last few days of August and who knows, you might also find something that helps to be a little more prepared for what fall and winter will soon bring!

So with that in mind let’s head…


1) On the Road Again

If the combination of a road trip and quilt festival is on your agenda for the near, mid and/or not-too-distant future, now would be a good time to start making plans for one of American Quilter’s Society (AQS) sponsored Quilt Weeks. Their first is already underway in Grand Rapids, MI, but if you hurry and don’t have to travel too far, there is still time to attend on Friday the 23rd and Saturday the 24th!

This is too far a drive for me right now and if the hubs and I hadn’t made a trip to Michigan a few months back I would very likely be there now! Reading about this brings back memories of the Kansas city Regional Quilt Festival (KCQRF) I attended back in June. I loved every minute – especially the class learning to use the “Clammy” template and being able to take a test drive on a high an end Janome and Juki sewing machine.

Janome Memory Craft Quilting / Sewing Machine

I will admit, my bucket list does include another trip to Paducah, KY – this time to hopefully attend an AQS Quilt Week (I’m not going to make it there this year) and visit the National Quilt Museum.


2) Getting Things Done

IKEA Storage Fabric Sewing Room

So, let’s assume you’re simply not in the mood for another sewing/quilting project. Typically, when this happens to me it is largely due to feeling overwhelmed and nothing makes me feel more overwhelmed than disorganization.

I cannot live in clutter – everything must have it’s place and when not in use, it must be IN that place!

When I began quilting as a serious hobby, I soon realized (like after about 15 minutes or so) that this new hobby brought with it a new set of organization and de-cluttering challenges. There are a multitude of issues regarding storage alone – fabric, patterns, thread, bobbins, presser feet, rulers, scissors and rotary cutters and cutting mats – and this is just for starters. From this, you need storage for quilt kits and works in progress. And beyond storage, is the need to be able to access what you need, when you need it and be able to do without wasting a lot time searching.

Having a small space to sew is a double-edged sword. While there isn’t a lot real estate to store and display my quilting items, when I do find myself having to search for a particular item the space in which it is potentially located isn’t large, so… it should take too long to locate “that” item, right?

As much as I’d like to answer in the affirmative, most of the time the answer is no. If I had space to devote to the storage unit in the image above (hat tip to myblogika.com) I would be able to report that a majority of my storage issues would be solved!

However, until that day arrives, I have discovered a couple of very useful and efficient strategies that have helped immensely – especially in keeping up with my works in progress.

Kate Colleran of Seams Like A Dream reports she is currently working on “about 14 quilts”. I am finally down to 2 but the prospect of a third and fourth in the planning stages has me a little anxious – I cannot imagine how many anxiety-reducing medications I would need if I had 14 quilts PLUS a multitude of other projects in the works, and ALL with October and November deadlines!!! Wow.

So how do I stay organized and keep up with my handful of projects?

~~~ These handy, dandy storage bins with lids – Snapware 16″x3″ Storage bin w/ Turquoise Lid:

Snapware 16' x 3' Storage bins w/ Turquoise Lids

I have a stack of them – they are the perfect size to hold all your cut quilting pieces, backing fabric, pattern and thread. If you are like me, when you have o stop in the middle of a project – sometimes for a stretch of several days and do not have the space to leave everything out until you return, being able to pack everything into one stackable, covered bin is a lifesaver!

Another go-to storage item is from Sterilite – these are another of my favorites!

Sterilite Divided Storage Bin


~~~ Utilize a Design Wall for Multiple Purposes:

To channel Kate Colleran once again – she speaks of using her Design Wall to help with visually organizing quilt blocks and has taken the idea one step further through the use of a curtain rod for a similar purpose.

You can read more about my thoughts on both of my design walls here.

Wall Mounted Design Wall for Quilting

The more of use them (both the large wall mounted shown above with, if all things, a UFO from Kate Colleran’s Road Trip Quilt Along!) and small portable shown below with an empty surface…

Portable Design Wall

… the more I rely on them not just for quilt top design but to keep me on track. It is my intent that as long as an unfinished quilt is still up on both walls I won’t begin a new project until at least one quilt top is ready to come down.

Looks like I can start something small 🙂


3) Vintage Quilting with Jo Morton

Jo Morton Hearth & Home

I can’t talk about Jo Morton without revisiting the KCRQF where I was able to view and vote on several beautiful quilts however, the ones that really struck my eye were those in that warm, primitive style that is so Jo Morton.

One of my favorite online fabric and quilting shops: Connecting Threads has available for sale (and on sale!) a book by Jo Morton entitled, “Hearth & Home”. I think this book paired with these fabulous fabrics would be the perfect ticket for some serious weekend sewing!


4- Words to Live By


Warren Buffet Quote


For those of us with an interest and desire to be our own boss – earn a living without corporate 9-5 grind, building an online business – at least today – seems like the most sensible and profitable way to achieve that.

The days of receiving any type of reward for company loyalty are gone and what has evolved is an entirely new mind-set. One that allows each of us to be in charge of our own financial destiny. The new start-up culture is slowly but surely replacing the oppressive corporate ladder that only a few were allowed to climb.

I will admit here today, one of the purposes of my website is to use it as a tool to earn income in my retirement (I actually have a 5-year plan for that), and a large part of that success is by harnessing the power of social media.

If your weekend plans – this one or any other weekend – involves building / tweaking / updating / branding or re-branding your online business image, Melissa at Tailwind has a ton of information to help you take your brand or business to the next level.

Here is an excellent and timeless article (note the date) on how to “Plan the Ultimate Pinterest and Instagram Visual Marketing Strategy”. However, after all is said and done, the key to success be it blogging or social media lies in knowing your audience. And this is the one main aspect I continue to struggle with.  (I do have one solution at the end of this article!)


5) Saving the Best for Last

Kristi's Craft Table corner Brackets

Adding this little jewel to my weekly blog was a complete surprise! Just as I was putting on the finishing touches, adding images, editing, etc., with only an hour or so from hitting the button to publish this blog another email from Kristi at Addicted2Decorating lands in my inbox! I was not expecting this but what a happy surprise this turned out to be!

Her newest project really speaks to me… actually, it’s practically yelling at me! This large Craft-Sewing-Workroom table is exactly what I’m looking for. As much as I love power tools I don’t have the tools (or right now the time, space or motivation) required to build a table like this but it doesn’t stop me from wanting one nor does it stop me from thinking of ways to acquire one (or two) as she plans to do.

Building two of these tables that can be pulled together when a larger surface is needed or separated when a smaller work surface is needed is a brilliant idea.

So where am I right now?  On pins and needles waiting for Part 2 of this project!

___________________________________________________

So here’s my plan for this weekend:

~ Finish a couple of charity quilts

Lap Quilts for Charity

~ Organize my sewing space (gotta make room for Christmas!) and,

~ Continue the quest to define my audience. This article may just what I need to better understand how to define my target audience so I can continue delivering high (maybe even higher) quality content to my loyal followers each week!

Now it’s your turn!    What will you be doing this weekend?

TGI Thursday

What to do This Weekend #4

Cnva - This Way to the Weekend

Once again it’s Thursday and with the weekend barely around the corner, you know what that means! A front row seat to view five of my favorite ideas and inspirations collected throughout the week – and in plenty of time to ensure you have the Best Weekend Ever.

So let’s get started:


1) My Sewing Room:

Making a Machine Stitch Bible. This is something I’ve wanted to do for quite a while and discovered it’s usefulness when I was making a baby blanket using machine applique. Knowing exactly how a decorative stitch – especially a blanket stitch – appears when using different stitch widths and lengths. This saves time having to reset these settings each time you turn off your machine or change from a decorative stitch to a straight stitch and back.

Blueprint - Stitch Bible

Of course, another option would be to invest in a machine with a stitch setting memory but until that happens, I plan to create a stitch bible.

I also see this as a great “filler” project for those says when I want to sew something but I don’t have the time or motivation to start a big project.

Need more reasons to sew a stitch bible? Five more can be found here.


2) Flipping Out:

Here is an update on the “stitch-and-flip” applique technique I talked about last week. It took a while to get a few shapes with edges that would easily turn and maintain the appearance of a flower.

Stitch & Flip Applique Flower

The blue background is one solid piece – I went ahead and did a blanket stitch all the way around. The yellow and gold petals are separate units – each sewn using the stitch-and-flip technique as well. Before adhering to the blue base I did a few quick embroidery stitches and finished off the embellishing with a button.

Here is a close up:

Stitch and Flip Applique flower

My plan is to make this into a small pillow – the checkered fabric will be used for the back, a white front with an applique flower and blue piping around the perimeter.

Stay tuned for the finished product!


3) What’s Happening in Hamilton:

Today’s Daily Deal: The “Deal” is for today (8/15/19) only but even without the discount, this is still a very good deal for any day of the week. Perfect for the little ones in your life. When I see such fun projects like this it makes me sad my “little ones” are too old for these cute guys however, I may go ahead and sew up a couple of these for Christmas.

Mickey Moose Plush Toy

Returning to the subject of applique – a topic I can’t seem to get too far away from these days – you must check this out! I’ve renamed it, “applique-all-the-way” and a great way to get through a small basket of scraps!


4) Planning Ahead:

” The Quilting Tool that Makes You Smarter” ~ Stephanie Palmer.

2020 Quilter's Planner - Aqua

Taking a closer look, I certainly agree however…this new (and improved) 2020 Quilting Planner offers so many more benefits! Not that being ‘smarter’ isn’t great…it is! But this “quilting tool” is just as functional, informative and inspirational as it is educational. That’s packing quite a punch between covers of a spiral bound stack of paper!

Just for starters, this planner will help you become more organized which translates into better time management which leads to improved creativity. An elevated level of creativity then leads to higher quality products which in turn not only makes you a happier (and smarter) person but increases the level of happiness your followers and the recipients of your handmade treasures will experience as well!

I cannot think of one reason not to go here and pre-order yours today but, if you do need a reason, maybe this will help!


5) Kristi’s Sewing Room:

Simple DIY Curtains: It’s been a long while since I’ve attempted making my own window treatments. It is a project that requires a lot of space – tabletop / counter top space and LOTS of fabric. Sure, the interior designer in me prefers the quality of designer drapes ( you can read why here and here) but at the same time, the logical left side of my brain finds it hard to resist a great bargain on ready-made off the shelf drapes.

DIY Drapes - Addicted 2 Decorating

Kristi at Addicted 2 Decorating has found a solution that is nothing short of pure genius. For her particular space I think it is a very logical solution that checks off many boxes: 1) Softens the hard lines and finishes within the space, 2) absorbs sound, 3) visually provides a line of continuity between the trim height discrepancy between the french doors and the solid doors on either side and 4) creates a design detail that helps to establish the french doors as a focal point.

The image above gives only a sneak peek of the room but does give a good illustration of the drape’s effect.

Going back to give greater attention to that trim detail in the image above (and she has blogged about it as well in a previous post), I’m wondering if there is another way to camouflage that height discrepancy. It would involve some deconstruction and re-construction…something like this maybe?

Door Trim Options

I believe, continuing with the current drapery panels on either side of the doors, the trim height discrepancy would not be noticed at all.


Anyone with a DIY project on their To-Do list this weekend? Feel free to post comments or any images you would like to share in the comments section below.

Happy Thursday and as always….

Have the Best Weekend Ever!

Susan

TGI Thursday

What to do This Weekend #3

Canva - this Way to the Weekend

Here we are again… Thursday has arrived and Friday just called to announce she will be arriving bright and early in the morning!

I’m glad you have arrived – the perfect place to gather all the ideas and inspiration you’ll need to carry you through and have the Best Weekend Ever!


So, let’s get started:

Missouri Star Quilt Co

1. Let’s Have Some Cake.

It’s Layer Cake week at the Missouri Star Quilt Co. Head over and take a look at the great deals on layer cakes and while you’re there, take a look at the multitude of and eye-catching and layer cake friendly quilt patterns! Each one is available as an instant download (my favorite) or for purchase in paper. The layer cake special end tomorrow (8/9/19) and if you’re looking for an excuse – reason to take a road trip to Hamilton, MO, this Friday would be the day!


Artisan Collection - Creative Market

2. Vintage Finds

Looking for a fresh Vintage font, or, even better, a fresh, Vintage font bundle? Rather than release just one product, the Artisan Collection bundle is being released to include 6 different products: 11 fonts, 16 premium logo templates ( for use only with Adobe Illustrator) and 20 vintage shapes. If your brand is calling for some vintage style you can also save a bundle on this bundle but you’ll need to move fast – it is only for a limited time.


Black & White Neighborhood Mini Quilt - Flamingo Toes

3. In the Neighborhood

Nothing does a better job of catching my eye than the contrast of black and white or, as in the image above, black and white with little pops of color and this great find has certainly caught my eye! I’ve been saving (hoarding) fabrics that would be perfect for this project. This is also THE project for when you cannot or do not want to invest in time-consuming tasks such as perfect cutting, perfect piecing or perfect anything and yet you want the finished product to have a perfectly neat and polished appearance. I also feel these particular geometric shapes lend themselves to this applique technique – something I’m – once again – putting on my to-do list for this weekend!


4. Just Beachy

Anyone ready for the beach? Already at the beach? Or anyone, like me, who would love to be at the beach but a beach vacation is simply not on the itinerary for this summer?

I was scrolling through of the images I captured while on vacation 5 years ago: (The “Good Pictures” are on another PC)

Atlantis Lodge and Beach Atlantic Lodge and Beach

These still do the job to convey as sense of nostalgia – I so love the sound of ocean waves and the feel of sand beneath my feet!

Ironically, my next great find is not found anywhere along the east coast or even on a beach for that matter but rather in a Bake Shop, the Moda Bake Shop to be exact. So where is this leading? To another sea shore. This link will take you to the latest block of the At the Seashore Quilt Along – a QAL I didn’t have time to start when it began June 3rd. However, the blocks are available by scrolling through the blog roll and the QAL itself continues through August 26th.

Here are few of the beach – seashore inspired blocks:

Moda At the Seashore Quilt Blocks

Need more inspiration from Moda? Check out their Cutting Table here.


Interior Design Magazine Cover

5. Good Design

This final item for this Thursday’s round-up still has us enjoying the great outdoors. A short trip inside a major retailer will quickly remind you that fall and winter are in the not-too-distant future and now is the time to take full advantage of all the fresh air, warm sunshine, and cool water summer has to offer!

A visit to one of my favorite monthly publications has all the outdoor inspiration you’ll ever need to help you soak up every last bit of summer in the most stylish way possible.

Here is a slideshow that showcases the best in terms of architecture and design. It is a home that was designed and built to take full advantage of lake views and demonstrates one the most efficient uses of land resources I’ve observed in a long time.


Whether it’s a short road trip to Hamilton, MO, a medium-sized road trip to Austin, TX, a long road trip to the Atlantic beaches of North Carolina or no road trip at all – we’ve got you covered and ready to have the Best Weekend Ever!

What inspired you this weekend?

TGI Thursday

What to do This Weekend #2

Canva - This Way to the Weekend

Hello!

And, welcome back to “Thank Goodness It’s Thursday”, or (TGIT) !

The day when Friday calls to announce she will be arriving tomorrow, but have no fear! My Quilting Space has been busy this past week collecting a few fun ideas and inspirations all designed to have you prepared and ready for you to have the Best Weekend Ever!

August Calendar

For the first time in a really long time I’ve taken the time to observe summer’s transition from July to August – a pastime I typically save for the fall when the change in seasons, weather, etc. is more noticeable and much more anticipated.

However, this year, I seem to have a new perspective on life and I feel I have this blog, my quilting hobby and my website to thank.

I am also thankful for This past week has been chocked full of useful information and inspirations culminating into this one serendipitous event and the result of pure coincidence (I don’t think I could pull this off if I intentionally tried)but, all Four of my Favorite Finds this week revolve around the letter “K” – Kansas City, Kristi and Kori or the “K” soundChristy!

Special 'K'

So, lets get started with this super Special “K” Weekend!


FLW Home Roanoke, KCMO

1. Calling All Architecture Aficionados! In particular, those, like me, who love the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright. If you want to own a FLW home, it just so happens one of two FLW homes in the Kansas City area will be put up for auction in August. I’m looking for my checkbook now!


Kristy of COASD - Before Headboard

2. DIY of the Week – Christy of Confessions of a Serial DIY’er has a great solution for that pesky headboard (Shown above), or in my case a foot board, just lying around in your basement collecting dust. While I don’t have power tools or access to power tools needed to make this same transformation, I do have a couple of ideas that I can do. A) Attach the foot board to the back of a ready-made bench. Or, B) Re purpose it into a rack to hang quilts!

Gail at My Repurposed Life has at least 50 different solutions for that headboard or foot board just sitting around doing nothing!


Bathroom Make Over - A2D

3. On the Subject of DIY – If you’ve never heard of Kristi at Addicted 2 Decorating, now is a fine time to get to know her! In addition to totally remodeling and renovating the home she shares with her husband, Matt, she is blogging about every aspect of every project she does. The image above is from one of my absolute favorites!

Her latest project can be found here.

If ever you needed color inspiration, project instruction or just want to see what happens when you make a decision, create a plan and stick with it, this is the place where you will find all this and MORE. This girl is amazing!


Stitch and Flip Applique Bed Runner

4. It’s OK to Applique. And this video by Kori will have you saying it’s not only OK to applique, it’s Thursday…and what better way to spend the day than doing a little applique? The video is short and sweet but the technique is a huge game changer!

The image above is just one example of a “stitch and flip” applique project from Kori Turner-Goodhart’s amazing new book.

I DO have to try this technique THIS weekend – and I promise to post my finished project here so, stay tuned!


I hope you were able to find at least a little inspiration to get you motivated for the weekend. If you went with item #1, then you could potentially do items #2- #4 in your new address!

Leave a comment and share how this was Your Best Weekend Ever!

Susan