Wrapping up 2018

I did not get a whole lot of quilting done in 2018, but many of the things I did accomplish had been on my to-do list for a long time.

2018 was the year I finally joined an online quilting group, in this case, The Endeavourers, and here are the four small quilts I did for that group.

Sedge Wren“, from our Nature theme, in February.

Artist’s Alchemy” from our “Transformation” challenge, in May.

Sewist’s Universe,” aka “Big Bang Hits the Sewing Box,” from our “Spirals” theme, in August.

Dutch Bouquet,” for the “Improv” theme, in November.

I finally designed fabric and had it printed up, for a nature quilt for a new grandbaby!

The related fabrics with the central panel.

The front.

The back.

Said baby enjoying his quilt!

I also joined in with a more informal online group to celebrate ScrapHappy Day, the 15th of every month, and that was the impetus for me to finally finish this quilt, Chips and Salsa, that I had started in 2017.  This was the only large quilt I made this year.

My older daughter loved it and took it home, so I am happy it has found its forever home already!

Chips and Salsa, 9 patch and fence rail pattern.

I made four lap quilts for Veterans’ Administration Hospital patients.  One is way too plain to even take a picture of.  But for the others, I finally made a sailboat and lighthouse quilt I bought the fabric for in 2010!  And I used just a few of the red scraps I bought from a downsizing sale in January 2017.

Red lap quilt 1, about 40 inches square.

Red lap quilt 2, also 40 inches square.

Sailboat lap quilt, 40″ square.

Back of the sailboat lap quilt.

And I finally treated myself to a new sewing machine —

A brand spanking new sewing machine!

These baby quilts were made in a more timely fashion — this post from KatyQuilts caught my eye in December of 2017, and I had these three pieced in February and finished in October.  That is very rapid for me!  🙂

Scrappy baby quilts.

I did not do any weaving at all this year!  But I did make 7 of these gift bags from designer fabric samples (that I rescued from a dumpster in 2017).

Fun fabric gift bags.

A few of the things I accomplished were ones I had no inkling about at the beginning of the year.  While working on our family archive project,  I found some wonderful primary sources about the textiles available in Ohio in the first half of the 19th century, and I did my part for textile history by typing them up.  I started with the textile inventory of an ancestor, in an ordinary Ohio household from 1844.   Then I found two estate inventories of Ohio shopkeepers in the early 1800s, Thomas Kincaid from 1838, and Jacob Weaver from 1847.

Estate inventory with spinning wheel.

The record of the estate of Thomas Kincaid, Ohio, 1838.

One half of a page from the 20-page inventory, from 1847.

I also found out a friend of mine is an extraordinary cross-stitcher and author — Jo Lopianowski-Roberts.  I was lucky enough to see her pieces in person and to conduct an interview with her.

Lunette of Jesse-David-Salomon, designed and cross-stitched by Jo Lopianowski-Roberts.

Back in January, I picked “Quality” as my word of the year, and I made an acronym out of it:

Uploading (more of my pictures, and the family archive materials)
Art Journal and Archives
Layers of —
Interest – My role model here is Joanna — she finds such a variety of ways to mix interesting fabrics, shapes, and details into quilts that hold my attention.
Thread Sketching – I have received lots of different kinds of thread and I want to make the most of it!
Yoga – for my flexibility and circulation, I really need to get back into doing yoga almost every day.

While I didn’t get as much done in any of these categories as I would have liked, one thing that really helped me stay on track was a bullet journal.  I used a blank book, and divided each page into 4 sections — Quilting, Uploading, Art Journal, Yoga & Exercise.  Then once a week I just noted what I had accomplished in each of those categories.  It was interesting to track those activities, and to see that a busy week in one category correlated with a drop in the others.

I am still thinking about my word for 2019, but I plan to continue the bullet journal.

The news has been so bad these last few years; a lot of times I feel that the light nature of this blog is inappropriate.  I don’t want it to seem like I am skimming over tragedies unaware, but I certainly don’t have any wisdom to add to the issues.

Connections through textiles across countries and across the centuries spark my curiosity and give me comfort, and I hope these posts do the same for you.  Three years ago, listening to my old quilts whispering stories, I wrote a poem that still expresses my hopes for this blog:

Pull out all the colors
Blend the patterns bold and bright
Swap your scraps and stories
and slowly build the light.
Gather in a circle,
place your stitches next to mine.
We’ll pass on all the love we can,
our hands always intertwined.

Gwen Lanning, Textile Ranger