Archive for Ideas

New Year – New Goals

It is always great to have a fresh start!  A new year is a perfect time is look at what needs to be better in the months to come.  It is a perfect time to think about changes personally and professionally.

I have gradually started going through my attic and am clearing out space.  Items I no longer want to keep, I am listing on Facebook and have started a travel fund for this year.  Goal # 1 – Travel more!  See more sites!  Go places I love. Go places I have never been before.

Goal # 2 – Work smarter, not harder!  I need more playtime with my friends and family, as well as me time.  I want to enjoy each day, smiling and laughing.  That being said, I plan on setting aside time for my own projects.  I love quilting for others, but I have projects of my own that I hope to begin, work on, and hopefully complete.

Goal #3 – I hope to have a vendor booth at a few shows this year.  I am not sure which places I will be yet, I am working on that the next couple of weeks.  I will keep you updated as I know more.

This quilt is called Cabin at the Lake.  It is a block of the month class I will be teaching at Cindy’s Quilt Shop, in Caldwell, Idaho, this year.

This quilt is called Atlantis.  It is also a block of the month class I will be teaching at Cindy’s Quilt Shop in Caldwell, Idaho.

Goal #4 – Teach again!  It has been a few years since I was actively teaching quilting classes. I am diving in, starting in February, to teach two block of the month classes, one advanced quilting class and a series of strip mystery quilts.  I will be teaching these classes at Cindy’s Quilt Shop in Caldwell, Idaho.  If you are interested in any of these classes, go to Cindy’s website to get more information on the classes, as well as sign up.  I hope I get to connect with old friends and new ones in these classes.

Goal #5 – Photos and Videos

I have tried to take photos of all the quilts I have made and all the quilts I have worked on for clients.  Most photos have been taken on the floor in my living room.  Many photos show the tips of my shoes at the bottom of the photo.  Some photos have been better than others, none have been the best.  I have been doing some studying on ways to improve photos of quilts.  I hope that the photos I take in the future will be better than they have been.

i am also looking at doing some YouTube videos this year as well.  I think this is related to my desire to teach more now.  I have been a teacher all my life and I am really missing it now, so stay tuned!

So here is the last photo of the tips of my shoes that I hope to share with you.  I took this after a long day that had started very, very early.  I am not a morning person and this photo clearly shows this.  I spent the entire day with two different shoes.  (Ha, ha, ha! Ya gotta laugh at yourself sometimes!)

Listened to a great music duo tonight (Blaze and Kelly).  They were so GOOD!  Great crowd – hey helped me move into this new year with fabulous music!  Enjoy this new year, enjoy the music, and definitely remember to be grateful for the blessings you have!

sue

Beginning of August – Upcoming Classes

Time marches on and I am beginning to see it even more in the birthdays of my children.  Hard to believe that these darling children have their own lives and are wonderful inside and out.  I only hope that time begins to slow just a bit.  I want to cherish each day and truly be grateful for the time I have with them.  It is hard that they are living in different places, so I am not able to be there for their birthdays but thank goodness for Facetime on my IPad!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am so fortunate that my family has always been supportive with my love of All Things Quilting!  Quilt shops, quilt shows, projects completed, projects in process, looking at fabric, choosing fabric: I am supported with my quilting!  How wonderful to share what I do and feel the support!

 

Quilts and quilting is an art and craft that has definitely changed over the last couple of decades.  Moving from an era of hand quilting to an era of machine quilting was not anticipated by most of us, I would guess. Even the world of machine quilting has changed in the last few years.  Regardless of the changes, the basic joy of what quilts and quilting bring to each of us has not changed.

 

As the years pass, my scrap collection has also grown by leaps and bounds.  I have looked at many ways of trying to contain this collection from using baskets, bins, tubs, etc.  I used to dig through the tub looking for the size and colors I needed and it seemed to take forever.  In fact, it took far longer than I wanted to spend, but I felt that I needed to use the scraps first, before I make a trip to the quilt store.

The problem of dealing with scraps needed a solution.  I began to research ways that many quilters organize their scraps.  There must be as many ways as there are quilters! (Ha, ha!).  So . . . . . . . I believe that the scraps must have certain rules to be functioning the best way for their use.

One:  The scrap fabric must be easily accessible.

Two:  It must be organized in a fashion that would be used most often.

Three:  Standard sizes make it easier to use for a variety of projects.

Four:  It does take time to get a handle on your scraps.

One:  I decided that the standby rubbermaid containers would work the best for me.  They come in different sizes, I can see what is inside, I can easily stack them, and I can easily label them.

Two:  I thought about color coordinating the scraps.  I make many scrap quilts and projects and decided that I did not need to color coordinate the scraps.  I can sort through the sizes and pull the colors I needed fairly easily.

Three:  Cutting my scraps into some standard sizes makes it easier to a) find the size in the color I need, b) organize them in containers based on size, c) have many scraps of the same size used in a variety of projects.  I rarely use scraps smaller than 2 1/2″.  I would rather use strips for projects needing that size.  My cut sizes are 3″, 4″, 5″, 6″, 8″, 10″ for squares,  and 2 1/2″, 3 1/2″ strips, and I do not cut everything into smaller pieces.  Sometimes, I keep larger pieces depending on the size.

Four:  I devoted time every day in my sewing room (about 20 minutes) to work on my scrap system.  As I began to cut the pieces and organize them in my bins, I found that the stacks took up far less room than the bunched up scraps.

I will always have scrap fabric, but I do not feel quite so overwhelmed with it. I am also able to use quite a bit of it in my current projects.  I still go to the quilt shop though!

Classes:  I am going to be teaching some classes at Cindy’s Quilt Shop in Caldwell, Idaho this fall.  Keep your eyes open for them.

Cabin by the Lake will be a twelve month BOM using scraps for most of the quilt.

Mystery Stash Buster Strip Quilt Series will be a five month, five quilt series using 2 1/2″ strips.

Advanced Quilting is a class that builds on beginning quilting.

I will post more about these classes as I get them ready to schedule this fall.

 

I do have a couple of longarm quilting spots in September, October, and the first part of November.  Let me know if you would like one of these spots.  (I fill up fast).

Remember to count your blessings!

Sue

 

 

 

How To Decide What To Quilt On a Quilt Top

I am so excited to be asked to write a guest blog for APQS. It took me a little while to really think about what I wanted to share with you today. I know that I am going to talk about how I decide what I will quilt on a client’s quilt, but it is an involved process.
There are some basic things I go through with the quilt maker before I can begin to generate ideas for the quilt. I thought it would be easier to video my talking about those basics and give you a direction to think about for your own quilts. I hope you enjoy the video.

I have never done a video for my own blog: CrystalVisionQuilting.com but think that I will try it again in the future. I had a great time spending time shooting the video and do hope it gives you great ideas.

I have been involved in quilting since 1972, even though I do not see myself as old. All aspects of quilting from beginning, teaching, having a store with my sister, Trinity, to having my own business that does: longarm quilting, custom quilts, t-shirt quilts, and memory quilts, has given me a huge background in the industry. I am always learning and I hope that I have been able to give you some help in deciding how to quilt your own quilts or quilts for your clients.

For information on the Precise Pantograph System, contact Trinity at 2SistersQuilting.com or check out the 2Sisters Quilting.com website. For information on apps, look at what is available on your phone or tablet.
I hope that you have enjoyed this guest blog. Please let me know what additional ideas you may have or just if it was helpful to you. Keep quilting! Sue

Spring Brings Out the Colors

I love spring as the flowers are beginning to have green shoots and the grass is coming alive and not so brown. It certainly is a season to look forward to when it comes to quilting as well.

I have been working on another T-Shirt quilt that turned out very well.

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The sashing and border on this quilt really set off the blocks and helped the logos to shine. Two of the center blocks were added from printing pictures and words on fabric. This is a great way to add to the number of logos or to add special sayings or photos.

I hope that as the yard begins to call to you with gardening tasks, you remember to set aside time for quilting. The quilt shows will be coming up and always needs pieces. Also, do not wait to the last minute for those Holiday gifts. Time passes quickly and being rushed to finish things can be very stressful.

Enjoy the spring time……..
Sue

Tax Season Always Interrupts My Quilting

It is unbelievable how fast this year is moving. Seems like only yesterday . . . . It also seems that I say that more and more frequently as I age.

I have been very busy during the month of February. Seems like, when it rains, it pours. So I just have to take deep breaths and move forward as best as I can.

As tax season approaches, I am buried in paperwork. I keep thinking that I am more organized this year than last, but I am buried and it needs to be done ASAP. Wish I could just quilt and not be interrupted by such stuff. I am going to try and be even more organized this year. I think I said that last year and here I am once again, complaining. Well, on to the quilting stuff:

My Flying M piece was auctioned and brought a very nice price for a great charity. I am so thankful for the buyer. I loved the piece so much that I think I am going to create something similar for me.

I have been working on this TShirt recently and finished it up for the customer.

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It seems to be the season of the TShirt quilt. I am finishing up on the one from last blog post. It is quilted and just waiting for the binding. I hope to have pictures of it for you in the next couple of days.

With the tax season, it seems that everything is happening at once. My vintage trailer, Traveling Trixie is coming along on her renovation. Check out my blog: GlampingWithTrixie.wordpress.com to see what is going on with her.

I am also having my furniture repaired (dining table base, and regluing a couple of chairs), my sofa and chair reupholstered, packing and moving everything out of my foyer, dining room, living room and hallways (including pictures on the walls) as carpeting is going to be installed.

The bulbs are coming up outside and I already have blooming crocus. The garden is calling for cool weather crops to be planted. Of course, there is prep work to do before this happens.

I also have several quilting projects for clients that are scheduled and keeping me very busy. If you have a quilt that you need made, or a top to be quilted,be sure to get on the schedule soon. I do not like being out more than a couple of months.

Well, wish me luck on the upcoming projects and look for more photos to come in the next couple of days.

Sue

Happy Holidays

It is difficult to think that another year is passing. Thinking back over this last year, I have realized the many blessings I have.
Christmas always helps with the feeling of blessings as family and friends connect. Despite all the rushing around and full schedules, the holidays arrive whether we are ready or not. The most common question I hear is: “Are you ready for Christmas?” The question should be: “Are you ready to share your love and realize your blessings?” Everyone says it is not the gifts and yet we spend how much time and money for gifts?? I am so a part of this. I think I will try to rethink this for next year.
I know this blog is supposed to be about my quilting world so I thank you for your patience when I get off track. Thank you to all my clients for the opportunity to share my part in great quilts this year. Be sure to connect with me for a place on next years’ schedule. Remember, January is just in a couple of days.
Aspen and I wish you a merry Christmas, eh.

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November Was A Month!

I feel terrible that I have not posted more than once during the month of November. I do know that many of you are so busy that having another email at this time of year can be just the thing that toppled the stack of fabric in your to do pile. Since that pile can be huge, whenever possible, do not let it topple. It can be a huge mess stacking it back up. (Ha,ha.)

I usually hate excuses, but I think this month was a bit unusual for the things that kept me from posting. The biggest reason was that I have been in a black, hole cavern as far as technology is concerned.

After two new routers, many tech support calls to my service provider, and two printers biting the dust, I finally had internet service. However, my IPhone decided that it would randomly choose which photos it liked (regardless of the ones I had taken) and would only send certain photos to the ICloud. Apple support and ICloud support keep telling me that the phone can not choose which photos it likes and which ones it does not like, but the problem remains that only some photos go to “the cloud”.

It is extremely difficult to write a post when photos are not available. So I have been holding off until the problem is fixed. After fifteen days of three to four hours with tech support, my problem remains: only some photos go to the cloud. It is very difficult to write a post with no photos available.

Anyway, I also have been quilting, quilting on many projects for clients for Christmas gifts. I am hopeful I will be able to share these with you during the next couple of days. Please forgive me for not including photos in this post, but I am positive I will have great eye candy for you in the next post.

Remember that this time of year is for love, not rushing around. Breathe and love and be thankful for all your blessings.

Sue

Keeping Local Connections!

How many of you have a quilt group you meet with regularly? How often do you meet? The importance of having a small group of quilting friends provides many benefits to each of us.

Support is one of the number one reasons many of us join a quilting group. Being able to share ideas and stories with others who have the same passion of quilting keeps us involved in our projects. It is fabulous to be able to bounce ideas off others who may have suggestions for difficult things we encounter on our current quilt project.

Friendship is another reason to join a quilt group. The connection with others who share our same interests helps us build a network of friends. Many quilters have a connection to others that they would not have otherwise. The quilting world is a huge, diverse group. We can truly be enriched by our friendships.

Ideas abound as individuals share thought and ask questions about quilts they are making. Patterns, fabric, color combinations, gadgets and tools are all shared at various times in a group gathering.

I have more than one group that I attend. Seems that I have a passion when it comes to quilting. My life is truly enriched by these connections! Think about joining a group if you have not already done so. It will provide more benefits than you can count.

Last night I shared two client quilts that I have been working on lately. The first one is a T-Shirt quilt for a husband. He is currently looking for various shirts in his drawers and closets, but he will not find them as they are in a quilt at my house.

firefighter t-shirt quilt

It came out of the quilting frame late last night. I will show additional pictures as soon as I get the binding in place.

I also am getting ready to bind a king size memory quilt. It turned out simply beautiful. I will be sharing it in the next blog post.

May you connect with many other quilters and enrich your life.

Sue

Keeping Quilting As A Focus

I definitely am passionate about the quilting world, but sometimes lose focus as I see fabric, kits, and patterns that are such eye candy. I seem to get that fever of “isn’t that just too cute?”, or “that would be so easy or quick to make” or even “what a great present for (name of someone dear to my heart)”.

I am thinking that the problem is the lack of focus or as I like to call it, “my eyes are bigger than my time”. I probably really need to look at time management so I am more on task with daily activities. I might have more time to work on quilting projects just for me if I was a bit better at taking on fewer things. Unfortunately, at my age, I do not think there is much hope for change. I am not going to give up though. I would like to try and utilize this fall season as a time to get ready for a new year coming. Look out projects! I intend to finish most of you.
BBQ booth with Trinity
My sister and I decided to have a vendor booth at the Boise Basin Quilters’ annual quilt show. It was a lot of work for both of us for two days.
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It was great to be able to display examples of our work, see old friends, and meet new ones.
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Today was a return to work. Fortunately, I was focused and worked on two t-shirt quilts and a memory quilt. The rainy day helped, and the fact that my vehicle was in the shop, kept me home and inside quilting. Watch for new pictures of these projects as I get a little closer to completion.

Again, it was great to have spent the weekend around so many quilters and quilts. I truly am thankful.

Please continue to send prayers for the return of my sweet pea, Aspen. Aspen

Remember, time management can keep quilting as a focus if it is your passion. I just need to remember that I am supposed to have a focus.

Sue

Never Idle Hands

I can not believe that it is the middle of July already. I thought I had a lot more time to get the things done that are on my To Do List. It appears that I am moving much slower than I thought I was. Anyway, I have been working between the yard and quilting almost everyday. Yesterday I spent a huge amount of time in the yard, only to have a storm last night that brought down a lot of branches. It did not look like I had done much in the yard at all. Such is life. Here are a couple of Garden Room pictures.

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I am working on two client pieces this month. I am making a custom Levi quilt. It is turning out much nicer than you would think. I hope to have pictures soon. I also have this piece in the long arm.

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Well, as I have always heard, idle hands get you in trouble, so I am staying out of trouble, no chaos, just busy hands, clear mind, and loving what I do: gardening and quilting. Life is good. Keep busy and keep quilting. Sue