Friday, July 18, 2014

Taking Stock

It only took several hours each day for 3 weeks (!), but after going through 142 upholstery and drapery fabric sample books given to me by a Freecycle (Yahoo Group) member, here is what was salvaged for quilts--both landscape quilts and quilt-as-you-go scrappy blocks. I now have a real stash! All but the big tub are now stored in my little closet, the one part of the studio I hadn't yet organized.

Also saved were a few specialty fabrics, impractical for quilting but too beautiful to let go. Here are a few of them. This group is 100% silk. (You can click on the photos to enlarge.)

I tore as much of the paper backing off the samples as possible, and trimmed off the rest. So now there is a stash of these trimmings, as well (next photo). They may end up in the trash, but not not until I've thought about possible creative uses for them.

Also, the fabric samples were interspersed with semi-glossy photos of some of the larger-scale designs, so that a customer could get an idea of what, say, an entire sofa would look like in that fabric. All these photos were saved. They could make lovely paper collages or even greeting card panels.

The fabric samples that I didn't want (mostly synthetics, but gorgeous) were put back on Freecycle (a Yahoo Group of local people with items to give away) and picked up by a young lady who wanted them for crafts. Nothing went to waste.

No-sew fleece blanket

The closet reorganization snowballed into a general, overall studio cleanup. After putting everything in its place, I pulled all UFOs out of hiding. First, the oldest one: a no-sew fleece blanket, which I cut and fringed that afternoon and evening.

This was originally intended for my older son, long before he met his wife, and it might look nice in their living room, the walls of which are the same blue as that in the blanket.

Then came three UFO quilt tops (no photo), two of which went into the scrap drawer to be cut into strips, and one of which will make a nice Christmas table runner. Back to the closet for that one. I'm not ready to work on Christmas!

After that it was time to face hard facts regarding three different in-progress landscape quilts. They were all begun nearly two years ago, and for various reasons have lost their appeal for me. Only two of them are pictured here.

All these fabric pieces are back on the shelf now. There was originally a Mayan temple on the upper design, a ready-to-fuse piece which is now tucked away in a drawer to be used some other time (maybe).

A few UFOs were put back in the closet--my lizard totem mandala quilt, a smaller 'kissing geckos' quilt, and two pillows to be made from my younger son's heavy metal band t-shirts. They will all be finished eventually.

At present, I'm back to the quilt-as-you-go project started weeks ago on the amazing old Singer 403 (1958 model). That's the machine my husband found at the thrift shop for 8 dollars. It was originally set up in the dining room--not the most convenient or ergonomic situation.

Suddenly it occurred to me where it could go in the studio. How serendipitous is this arrangement?

I say this because the table was already there. The white storage tubs and drawer unit were stored under it, and when moved out to make chair space, they became instant accessory tables on either side!

Still mulling over what my next landscape project will be. Meanwhile, have also been gorging myself on the first three seasons of Game of Thrones. And season 4 is due out soon!

On an unrelated note, my closest friend Kathy, also a quilter, is having a kidney removed in two weeks (cancer), and lives alone, so blogging may continue to be sporadic this summer as we pitch in with the family to help her through pre-op and recovery. Game of Thrones, by the way, has gone a long way toward keeping her distracted from this upcoming scary event. However, the cancer is believed to be contained, and if so, will not require further treatment. Crossing our fingers!

Hooking up here with Sarah at the Whoop Whoop Friday blog. Check out her amazing giveaway (hint: 3 quilts!!). And hopefully next time I'll have some free motion work to share with the wonderful folks at Free Motion Mavericks, another favorite blog.

Have a wonderful weekend~~



  1. That was a lot of work!
    I find those two not-finished landscape quilts very beautiful. I can understand that you somehow lost interest in making them. That sometimes happen to me. But I think it's a shame to just keep hidden. I personally would trim them to make two rectangles and bind them. They are gorgeous as they are. They would be stunning on a wall!

    1. Thank you! Somehow after a while they just weren't exciting me like they did in the beginning. Of course the pieces will wind up in another landscape...maybe even together again. (One nice thing about having a photo of them is that I can always re-piece them as they were. :)

  2. OMG! You do a lot of work for organization. You've now got sooooo much with which to work. Maybe a scene from your Thrones show should be fresh in your mind... would be a popular quilt if you wanted something to sell. (wondering about copyright...)
    I see you sew on my machine... Singer 401 - love mine. It was my Mom's and I learned and sewed a dress and other things on it decades ago. Now only quilts.

    1. I know, I kept telling myself it would be worth it as I slugged away at prying those sample books apart and then struggled with the paper backing on each sample. Some peeled right off, most did not. Shoulders, arms and hands were constantly sore!
      Oh cool! Yes, I loooooove this machine, as well as my late mom-in-law's 503 from 1962. They are such workhorses, so strong and dependable, although the 503 is slowing down. That's why I was so happy when my husband found the 403 at the thrift shop and got it working. It runs like a race car!

  3. I love to see how people organize and reorganize. I do it myself from time to time and it feels great and rejuvenating to do this. You've done a lot and share more! I love that! I absolutely love your landscapes! those water scenes are lovely! My prayers go out to you and your friend!

    1. Thank you so much for the prayers and your comments. Organizing is something I really like doing, so whenever my brain gets overloaded or muddled and things start going repeatedly wrong in the studio, tidying up and reorganizing clear out the cobwebs...literally and figuratively. (Well, I don't really have cobwebs in the room, just in my brain now and then. lol) Definitely rejuvenating, as you said.

  4. Hello Linda,

    Plenty of real cobwebs here. Will you come and sort me out before I turn into Miss Havisham?

    It doesn't sound like the best time to start a serious landscape project, helping look after Kathy comes first. Perhaps a couple of nice cushions with those beautiful silks, one for you and one for Kathy?

    Love, Muv

    1. LOL Muv! Yes, you are so right about Kathy; maybe thats what has me in tying-up-loose-ends mode. Oh, what a great idea about using the silk samples for cushions, as Kathy is quite the bird lover! Except, I haven't figured out how to get the paper off the back perimeters. Thought about using iron heat and then trying to peel it off, but am afraid the adhesive would just sink further into the weave. I need to take another look at those.

  5. all the tubs looks like my back porch, i sew in my dining room


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