Friday, January 23, 2015

Solstice in January

My plan hatched this morning. I have started making Winter Solstice gifts so that I am not rushed during the last months of the year to come up with ideas, have the resources to buy materials and the time to make them.

The first project was the pet beds. I started saving the fabric bits and scraps and was very surprised that they filled a basket before the month was out. I cut the yard of fleece in half for two of the pillow forms. At the suggestion of a Missouri Star Quilt Co. video, I added a scrap of batting to one side to help avoid lumpiness.

And then, I thought about joining smaller batting scraps, even using up end-of-the-spool thread, making this project a real scrappy one. First one long seam joining batting strips, then as luck would have it, there was enough to cut it in half, to sew up yet another seam, giving a perfect fit for the second pillow.

All that was left was to trim to the edges and put those scraps inside the first pillow. In less than an hour, two forms were made and sat inside a box ready to hold the fabric scraps. If I remember, dogs tend to walk around on their pillows to make them comfy, so filling them to capacity is probably a final goal. Thing is, its just made from scraps so is completely disposable in my thinking.

Then, the floor needed vacumning. Why is it that dust collects everywhere all the time? Then of course, I dusted the corner shelf where my childhood dolls sit and had to dust down the five shelves under them. And while I was at it, dusted all the picture frames, door frames and window frames in the room. Good goddess, clean one spot and the dust shows up worse on the next place so it cannot be left.

And where is my house elf? 

After some grumbling about what to do next for Winter Solstice, I decided to make use of a tutorial I found for a Double Oven-Mitt. This first one is going to be a test and is planned for my kitchen. My kitchen is has one lime green wall with the rest white. My dishes are black with a purple Iris, and my favorite all time Spring flower is the lilac. This finished Oven Mitt hangs over the oven door bar and will be a nice addition to the kitchen. Making a test mitt, I could see if it needs adjustments either for the pattern or the method. I was not completely prepared for the project, which reminds me of what happens when I wait til the end of the year.

Everything is finally cut (except for binding) and the pattern makes sense to me. However, it will be the first thing I work on for "Solstice in February". I am ok with setting it aside as it is, and can see that I need to plan ahead more for each month. While I had my focus fabric & the correct Isulbrite batting, the mitt part, its lining fabric and the back had been undecided, so it took me time to go through my stash and pull what would work.

My furnace is back on and there is heat in the house. It surprised me how exhausted I felt after the tech left. That whole event took time from my day. He did the work, but my emotions were raw. 

I decided that it was simply ok to let this project rest too. I did finish the two forms for the pet beds, and this one for the double oven mitt is cut and ready to go next month. I would like to gather fabric for a second one, however, will wait to cut anything until this one finishes to see about the sizing and method. 

In one way, I am really glad for this break in my quilting routine. So many quilters joke about not being organized or cleaning their homes, and its not really funny for any of us. We don't have house elves or maids or anyone who comes in and does that work for us. I was serious about how shocking the dust collection dolls were coated so much that it was obscene. And I breathe this air!

If cleaning happens once a month in here, it will also be a good thing...a Happy Solstice event!