Wrapping Up 2020

Considering that I stayed home most of the year, I didn’t get that much done — but those things I did finish brought me a sense of comfort during this crazy year.

Big Projects

I worked on some bed-size quilt tops, but didn’t finish any.

Small Projects

My favorite organizational guru is Cassandra Aarssen of Clutterbug — she divides people into 4 groups based on their preferred storage style.  I definitely belong in the group she calls “Bee,” visual thinkers who will organize on the micro level. So, I am happy to alphabetize my spices, but if things are not out where I can see them easily, I forget I have them, and then buy duplicates.  Choosing to follow her organizational system has been a time-saver for me, in part because I have just made a choice instead of looking around at all the other possibilities. 

So I finally mounted a pegboard in my sewing room, and brought all my rulers, rotary cutters, hoops, etc. out of the drawers where they had been hiding.  Hanging them out on the pegboard did not save me that much drawer space, but having them visible has helped me make better use of them.


Since I couldn’t attend International Quilt Festival this year, I missed my yearly visit to the Spirit of the Artisan booth.  They sell beautiful fair trade handwoven silks and cottons, and batiks, and I usually buy packs of coordinated handwoven fabric from them —

Thai cotton handwoven textiles

Handwoven fabrics from 2013.

Handwoven assortment from 2018.

I decided to sew some tops from these fabrics, but there was only a yard of each one. Finally it occurred to me to use one fabric for the yoke, and one for the body.

Huipiles made from handwoven cotton fabrics.

I used this pattern for a huipil from the V & A Museum — since it is a traditional garment, there is very little cutting, and I only needed that pattern to figure out how big to cut the neck hole.

I made these huipiles very large, about the size of football jerseys!  But they are so comfortable, especially when it is hot outside.  I also finally finished two tunics I had started in 2015 — I finally had the confidence to set in sleeves!  But the picture didn’t turn out well so I am not posting it.

I also made myself a casserole carrier for my oversize casserole dish, and I made six pillowcases and 20 microwave bowl cozies as gifts. 

I think I finished 6 lap quilts of the 40″ x 40″ size.  I have two more lap quilt tops ready to go, and I got 4 crib quilt tops done, including these two, that use my favorite pattern from KatyQuilts.  (Well, I say my favorite, but I have had so much fun working on permutations of it, that I have not ventured into all of her other patterns.)

Crib quilt tops — “Glow” on the left and “Ice” on the right.

Here is my husband holding up “Ice”. The architectural details in the background give me ideas for more quilts!

(I have made three other baby quilts from this pattern.)

And I completed four projects for the online art quilt group, The Endeavourers.


I hardly did any shopping in 2020, yet due to donations, I ended up with tons of lovely fabric, mostly all pre-cut!  I am making four I Spy quilts simultaneously — once I make the design choices for a row, I just sew it up four times.

The only interesting textile purchase I made was this Japanese doll.

vintage doll

Thrift store doll.


Things I Did Instead of Working On Textiles

The pandemic focused my attention on our family archives.  I scanned and transcribed hundreds of pictures and documents, and put 140 posts on the family history blog where I am able to organize it all.  I love the fact that we can just browse through to see what catches our interest, or we can search by person, place, or time.  What is most amazing to me is that I have hardly made a dent in all the cartons of materials we have — I got all this stuff three years ago, and with as much time as I have put in, I would have thought I’d be at least half way done by now.

Summing Up, Looking Ahead

It was an extremely scattered year, but we got through it as best we could.  It felt so good to finish things that have been on my to-do list since 2015! I have made a list of my Works In Progress, and it comes it at around 28 craft projects,  and 14 family history projects. My hope for 2021 is that I will work through those in a steady fashion, and have a lot more finishes to show next year.