Monday, November 1, 2021

November OMMG, Lightning Round: One Million Monthly Goals for Rebecca

 Hello, friends -- I've missed you!  Happy November!  

The longer it's been since writing a blog post, the more I have to share, the longer it would take to write about everything I'm working on, and the less time to get anything finished.  I have a folder on my computer desktop where I keep photos of things I want to post about and if it was a REAL folder, it would be splitting at the seams and pictures would be falling off the desk and onto the floor.  I've been working on so many different quilts for clients lately that I'm dying to share with you, but since it's a brandy-new month I've decided to keep it personal and just share my own projects and plans with you today.  I'll be linking up today's post with One Monthly Goal (as if) and To-Do On Tuesday linky parties in addition to my other favorite parties. 

Deco Quilt-Along: Behind Schedule Already

The Deco Quilt QAL hosted by pattern designer Brittany Lloyd of Lo & Behold Stitchery is running from October 18th through November 29th, and I was hoping to keep up with the QAL schedule to prevent this project from turning into yet another languishing UFO (UnFinished Object) hanging around my studio.  I had a delay with the fabrics I'd ordered online, then when they got here I didn't love some of the colors with the Anna Maria Horner backing print I'd fallen in love with while waiting for the solid quilt top fabrics to show up.  But I finally made it out to a bricks-and-mortar quilt shop about 40 minutes away from me a few days ago, and now I'm happy with my "fabric pull."  (Side note: Pulling Fabric (out of quilt shops) is MUCH MORE FUN than Puling Teeth (out of your face).

My Deco Bed Quilt Fabrics, Revised to Coordinate with Anna Maria Horner Backing Print

Obviously I could have saved myself a lot of aggravation and time if I'd chosen the backing print FIRST and THEN pulled solid fabrics to match colors in the print.  I'll still be using these fabrics more or less as shown below in my original color plan, with that inky dark Kona Solids Indigo as my background fabric.  I love bright colors with dark background fabrics!  

Deco Bed Quilt Will Finish at 102" x 102"

According to the Quilt Along schedule, I was supposed to be Planning the first week, then Cutting and Organizing ALL the fabric for the whole quilt last week, and this coming week is supposed to be making all of the Block One blocks (those are the ones that are like log cabin blocks -- in my version, they will have large dark or medium blue squares and logs of Indigo alternating with either purple or green).  In order to get back on schedule somewhat, and because of my track record in the past when cutting EVERYTHING out first, I think I'm going to just cut and piece as I go along.  

I bought plenty of extra fabric, so I should be fine.  I've skimmed through the pattern directions and will probably not be following all of them.  Brittany's directions instruct you to press seams open for this quilt, which does make it easier for beginner quilters to get their blocks to finish the correct size.  A lot of my quilting clients press their seams open and I have no problem with it, especially if we're doing edge-to-edge quilting designs because those pressed-open seams lay so nice and flat!  But I want MY seams pressed to the side instead for three reasons: 

  1. I want to be able to nest those seams when joining units and blocks together so that my seam intersections will be spot-on. Piecing imperfections are so much more obvious when working in solids than when working with print fabrics, and if you press your seams open it's much more difficult to prevent your seams from shifting away from one another under the presser foot of your sewing machine.  
  2. Second, I MAY decide to custom quilt this one, and in that case I would want to stitch in the ditch -- but there's no ditch to stitch in if the seams were pressed open rather than to the side.  
  3. Third, quilts with seams pressed open don't hold up as well over time as quilts with seam seams pressed to the side.  When pressed to the side, there is a 1/4" overlap of fabric at every patchwork seam that helps to prevent batting from migrating out of the middle of your quilt onto the surface, an unpleasant phenomenon known as "bearding."  It's especially likely with inexpensive wool and inexpensive poly or poly blend battings (the lower price point reflects manufacturing cost savings from not doing any kind of resin bonding or needlepunching to the batting fibers to keep the batting from breaking down and working its way out of the quilt over time).  

Baa Baa Black Sheep, Have You Any BATTING???

Bearding looks especially awful when white batting fibers migrate to the surface of dark fabric quilts, which is why I love Hobbs 80/20 Black batting and Quilter's Dream Black Poly batting for dark colored quilts.  But what I REALLY want is  a high quality Black WOOL batting; something I could layer over top of an 80/20 blend or use alone and get that fabulous quilting definition and lightweight,  breathable warmth that you can only get from wool.  I've asked both of my favorite batting manufacturers about this, both Hobbs and Quilters Dream, and they both told me that there "isn't enough demand" for black wool batting.  One of them told me they would have to DYE their regular wool batting black, which is ridiculous -- thanks to nursery rhymes, we all know that sheep come in black, so why can't we get a Baa Baa Black Sheep Batting?  Yes, ma'am, yes ma'am, three bags full...  Everyone reading this, I beg you to call or email Hobbs and Quilters Dream and tell them you cannot live another day without black quilt batting!  If you do this for me, I will love you forever.  Thank you.

So, yes -- my Weekly Goal is to cut and sew 54 Block One log cabin blocks for my Deco Bed Quilt, and my OMG (One Monthly Goal) for this quilt is to complete the entire quilt top!  Not likely, but if we shoot for the moon and miss, at least we stand a chance of landing among the stars!

Alex's Lazy Day Quilt: Blocks Completed

Lazy Day Quilt from Quilts! Quilts! Quilts!, 3rd Ed. (affiliate link)

I made all of the blocks for my nephew's Lazy Day bed quilt, but the next step is laying them out before joining them together and my stalled-out Retro '80s Building Block sampler is still hogging my design wall.  

I really want to get this quilt to him by Christmas at the latest, so it's even higher priority than the Deco Bed Quilt that is just for me.  Before I take a rotary cutter to any of my Deco Quilt fabric, I really need to get this top together.  So that's going to be another weekly and monthly goal for me in November.  This week, the unfinished sampler on the design wall comes DOWN, the Lazy Day blocks go UP, and I start sewing them together!  

[UPDATE Tuesday, November 2nd: I got the sampler down yesterday, laid out the Lazy Day Blocks, and started sewing them together yesterday afternoon when my friend MaryBeth came over to sew with me.  I'm on my way now!]

My 90 x 93 Lazy Day Quilt for Alex In Progress On the Design Wall

I would like to have this top finished, backing fabric in hand, and ready for quilting by the end of November for sure.  And yes, this one would also be a great quilt for the black wool batting that doesn't (yet) exist.

Still Binding My Pineapple Log Cabin Quilt

Binding Takes Forever...

Hand stitching the binding on my Pineapple Log Cabin quilt is taking an eternity, not only because it is huge (120" x 120") but because I am not working on it every day.  I don't do any hand stitching upstairs in my studio -- that's Evening TV Time work, but I have been working late in the studio on clients' quilts instead of relaxing downstairs while working on my own!  I used Quilters Dream Wool in the natural off-white color for this quilt, by the way.  How wonderful would it be to finish the binding and get this quilt ON MY BED by the end of the week?!  A girl can dream...

And so, to recap, here are my November Monthly Goals and my Tuesday To-Do List Goals for the first week of November:

November Goals:

  • 8 clients' quilts, including two vintage repair jobs
  • Assemble Alex's Lazy Day Quilt Top & Select Backing Fabric
  • Finish hand stitching the binding of my Pineapple quilt so I can put it on my bed
  • Pester Batting Manufacturers Relentlessly About Wanting Black Wool
  • In my free time, Cut, Piece & Assemble Entire Bed-Size Deco Quilt (I hear you laughing at me!  Stop it!)😂

This Week's Goals:

  • 3 clients' quilts, including one that is already quilted and just needs binding
  • Clear off design wall, lay out Alex's Lazy Day blocks & begin sewing blocks into rows
  • Finish hand stitching the binding of my Pineapple quilt so I can put it on my bed
  • Pester Batting Manufacturers Relentlessly About Wanting Black Wool
  • Cut and piece at least some of the Deco Quilt Log Cabin blocks to get back on track for the QAL!

PSST!!  I'd Love to Quilt for YOU!

By the way, if you or any of your quilty friends has a quilt top or two that needs quilting, I'd be delighted to quilt for you!  I am currently accepting quilts for January & February of 2022.  Click here to learn how easy it is to book a quilt with me!

Alright, folks; that's all from me for today!  I'm linking up today's post with the following linky parties:


Design Wall Monday at Small Quilts and Doll Quilts  

Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt

BOMs Away at What a Hoot Quilts

One Monthly Goal at Elm Street Quilts


To-Do Tuesday at Texas Quilt Gal


Midweek Makers at Quilt Fabrication

Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter


Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation  


Whoop Whoop Fridays at Confessions of a Fabric Addict

Peacock Party at Wendy’s Quilts and More

Finished or Not Friday at Alycia Quilts

Off the Wall Friday at Nina Marie Sayre


Frédérique at Quilting Patchwork Appliqué

Oh Scrap! at Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

Slow Stitching Sunday at Kathy's Quilts


Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

looks like you have a very busy schedule! no wonder the binding isn't done on the pineapple quilt - it does take time. I'm not sure how you have time to get done with all that you do - I'm so glad I just quilt for me!

Darlene S said...

Too cute. You have great goals and it will be fun to see these pretty fabrics progress into a lovely quilt.

Jay said...

Like you, I love the way a lovely wool batting makes my quilts look and feel: both lightweight and warm, and the quilting shows up so beautifully. So I'm in: I've written to Hobbs, asking for a black/dark wool batting. Thanks for the information and the impetus to get the ball rolling with this effort! Fingers crossed there are enough of us to convince them there's a need and get busy making what we need. said...

You are making progress which is great. . . If it takes longer than you planned, it is part of the journey. The finishes will be great when they happen!

Sandy said...

Oh, I also love wool batting, so a black one for those darker quilts would be fantastic! I'll be writing to Quilter's Dream (my favorite!) to request that.
Your work is beautiful, as always, but I'm sort of out of breath just looking at all that's on your plate right now. LOL!

Mary said...

Your Deco Bed quilt is going to be stunning! Thanks for the info on bearding and batting. I definitely had to pin this post. Take care, Mary.

Nancy @ Grace and Peace Quilting said...

You're a regular tornado!!! Fun to read about all your quilting, Rebecca! You go, quilter girl!!!

The Joyful Quilter said...

Thanks for the update, Rebecca! I've missed hearing from you.

Kathleen said...

You are an Ever-ready bunny….you do sew sew sew! Glad to see your nephew’s quilt progressing and the new project for you….love your fabric choices. Good luck with your goals!

Linda Garcia said...

What about dyeing a wool batting yourself? It would certainly be an interesting experiment. Could be a lot of work, might do damage to the batting. But still, interesting. Just a thought.....

Barb N said...

When you have a lot on your plate (or in your head), it's a great idea to write it down! I do encourage you to get that Deco quilt started - I surely want to see it as it progresses. You've picked stunning colors!

Linda said...

Yes you could hear me laughing about "in my free time" - lol! I'm with you on the mystery of black sheep - where does their wool go? Your Deco fabrics are fabulous! Lazy Day is looking wonderful, glad you were able to get going on it.
Thank you for linking to To Do Tuesday!

Keysha said...

You have quite the number of projects to complete this month. Wow! I wrote to both manufacturers to ask them to consider black wool batting. The quilters will buy it if they produce it. Happy quilting!

Home Sewn By Us said...

Hi Rebecca! Yowza! You have a LOT on your plate for a month that holds Thanksgiving and all the shopping craze that follows. Your solids look lovely with the background in Deco. Woot woot for progress on Lazy Day - great job! Your nephew will appreciate all of your hard work. I wish I could take over your pineapple binding - I love doing that all the time but especially when its chilly outside. {{Hugs}} Take care! ~smile~ Roseanne

Marsha Cooper said...

yes, it's a good thing for the computer folders...LOL

Linda @ kokaquilts said...

Oh my, lots happening over at yours then! Love your 'deco' fabric selections!

Susan said...

Lazy Day is coming along nicely - I'm surprised at how big it is.

Kim said...

There is always such glorious, bright and happy colour to be seen at your place. You definitely need more hours in your day. LOVE the little "baa baa black sheep"! Your Pineapple Log Cabin quilt is a dream!

Marie said...

Oh my goodness, I LOVE your Pineapple Log Cabin. It's great to get to the binding stage, isn't it? But it also means that it's the last bit of time you'll get to spend on it so enjoy every stitch, even if it seems like forever.

Denise :) said...

Oooh! You need to get that pretty quilt finished and on your bed soon!! I expect to see a post about next by next Sunday! Happy slow stitching! :)

Jennifer Fulton Inquiring Quilter said...

You'll make good progress on Alex's quilt I'm sure, then onto the Deco quilt! Can't wait to see what you get done this week. Thanks for sharing on Wednesday Wait Loss.

Vivian said...

Not laughing at all, the Elephant list of projects gets done one bite at a time. I'm late to the party and you may already be done with it by now so this may not help but can you set up the Deco quilt block piecing as leader/ender to sewing together the blocks for Alex's top? Two for one helps gets the sewing done faster. That Horner backing is gorgeous!