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Saturday, June 2, 2018

May recap

baby lambs

When I was looking over my list from the past month I was amazed at how much I managed to finish! That doesn't always happen, and I'm sure part of the reason it was so productive, was that April was less so. Productivity is definitely not a constant for me, but an ebb and flow.

I'm sure another reason is that now that I'm trying to keep myself accountable for fabric purchases, I have extra motivation to finish more when it counts!

I had two significant fabric purchases this month and needed to balance the scale with some used yardage.

My May stash update:

Fabric: -7.625 yards
Yarn: -1,185 yards

Fabric total 2018: -46.75 yards
Yarn total 2018: -5,511 yards

It feels exciting to be down nearly 50 yards of fabric this year! I'm going to try to keep that momentum through the summer.

So, this month, I finished one quilt and started a new one.

20180521_152531

I'm making Carolyn Friedlander's Tangelo quilt in Daisy Chain. Paper piecing can sometimes be just the right thing to sew. It requires a little bit of thinking, but not too much (once you have some experience, of course.), and I just love these fabrics!

I should have a new finished quilt top sometime this summer.

Additionally, I finished several garments this month.

FO: Gemma tank

20180514_145251

Three new Gemma tanks that were already cut got finished. I also made a new-to-me pattern, the Willamette. I ended up making two of them, as the first one was quite large on me. I will say that the garment has considerable ease built in (11 inches). I ended up making a size that would finish much closer to my actual bust than recommended. And I love it, so try it if you are interested! I'll try to get a photo of me wearing it soon to show you.

We also tried FIVE new recipes this month, and three of them were big wins. And by that, I mean we will definitely make them again. My favorite was Smitten Kitchen's Grilled Yogurt Flatbread (from her second book).

Charred corn succotash with lime and crispy shallots, recipe from Smitten Kitchen's second book

Additionally, I managed a photo of her Charred Corn Succotash with lime and crispy shallots. It was amazing as well, but those flatbreads! Let's just say we are making them again tomorrow. And finally, I finished two books this month. Here's to a great June!

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

FO: Plaid Big Log Cabin

You might remember this big log cabin that I finished last year (or maybe you don't. that's okay!). Well, soon after finishing, I wanted to make another version.

FO: Plaid &Solids Big Log Cabin

I had most of a Kona jelly roll and I just loved how the bright colors paired with this Denyse Schmidt plaid. Of course, said plaid was one of her exclusives at Joann, and was virtually impossible to find.

Luckily, Jenny came to the rescue and sent me some of her precious stash. It was so wonderful of her, especially since I only know her virtually (hi, Jenny!).

FO: Plaid &Solids Big Log Cabin

I used three favorite prints on the back (I especially love that Nordika print from Jeni!).

FO: Plaid &Solids Big Log Cabin

I quilted it very densely in a crosshatch and the texture is really amazing. Several times, I questioned my sanity as I was quilting. But I'm so glad I kept going. I bound the quilt in this, and I love that it softly frames the quilt without competing. Finishes at 54" square.

Monday, May 14, 2018

April recap, vacation photos

Yosemite, day 1

Well, let's be honest. I'm not doing so hot with my goal of one post a week. I'm going to try and get back on track with that, and today I'm going to share a quick recap of April finishes, fabric/yarn totals and a few photos from our anniversary trip to Yosemite and Monterey.

My April stash update:

Fabric: +5.75 yards
Yarn: -374 yards

Fabric total 2018: -39.125 yards
Yarn total 2018: -4,326 yards

This was my first month to net a gain in fabric, so I need to do better in May (which is made challenging since I've already got a few purchases under my belt!).

I only managed to try one new recipe in April, but it was a winner: Swirled Sesame Tea Cake. I've already tried one this month, so again, I'm hoping to do better. I finished a book, The Golden Compass, which I loved. I intend to read the second book of the trilogy soon.

So, Elliott and I just celebrated our sixth wedding anniversary, and we decided to go back to Yosemite and Monterey.

Yosemite, day 1

Yosemite, day 1

Yosemite day 2Yosemite, day 1

I know some people may not enjoy returning to a vacation spot. But when we visited Yosemite two years ago, it was a brief visit, and we left already wanting to return. I'm so glad we did, and we explored further into Yosemite Valley, as well as the Hetch Hetchy area. We hiked a ton, saw countless waterfalls and just enjoyed being together.

Monterey Peninsula

We finished with a couple of days on the Monterey peninsula. There are a few more photos on flickr, if you're interested.

I've got a few finished quilts to share, so I'll be back with some FO posts soon!

Thursday, April 5, 2018

FO: Bird's Eye 2 x 4 (13/52)

FO: 2x4 Bird's Eye

I really, really love this quilt.

Bird's Eye View bundle

It all started with the fabric, most of which is Bird's Eye View by Sarah Watson of Cloud 9. Sarah's illustrative artwork has always had my heart, and this is definitely one of my favorite collections ever. After buying (most of) this line, I pulled a few coordinating fabrics from the stash to make this bundle.

Then, after seeing amazing 2X4 quilts from Anna and Holly, I knew I wanted to make my own. The tutorial is here by Film in the Fridge and is a perfect way to highlight a fabric bundle like this. It really doesn't need much help, so no need to complicate things!

WIP: 2 x 4 quilt

WIP: 2 x 4 quilt

After letting the finished top sit for six months, I finally made a back and got it quilted last month.

FO: 2x4 Bird's Eye

The binding went quickly, and I am so pleased with the finish! I would definitely make another 2 x 4. The sewing is simple and enjoyable, and I love how the fabrics shine!

Finished size is 60" x 79".

FO: 2x4 Bird's Eye

I'm going to let this post serve as my March wrap up, too. here are my March yarn and fabric totals.
Third stash update:

Fabric: -13.625 yards
Yarn: -825 yards

Fabric total 2018: -44.875 yards
Yarn total 2018: -3,952 yards

Sunday, March 25, 2018

12/52

Over the past week, several older projects got a little attention.

WIP: Glitter

I started making Glitter blocks back in 2015, from Jen Kingwell's book.

WIP: Glitter blocks

I quickly made a very scrappy pile of blocks, but then put them away and kind of forgot about them. This week, I pulled out the blocks (and finished three that were partially pieced) and debated whether to continue. After some mulling, I pieced them together into three rows, and added a couple of borders. This is where I'm at currently, and it measures 45" x 54".

WIP: Glitter

I am still trying to decide how to proceed, but I'd like it to be at least 60" square. My heart is telling me to add a little more scrappiness, so we will see!

WIP: Liberty Spools

I also worked on my spools quilt, which I don't think I have shared here. I made more spool blocks, and decided to include some economy blocks as well. I've got another pile cut to sew, and then I'll assess where I'm at. This one is a gift, and I expect to finish it before the end of May.

WIP: Liberty Spools

The spool pattern is from Liberty Love.

Finally, the three recipes we tried this month are all from Bon Appetit. Chicken Khao Soi, Miso Slaw (EPIC, we omitted the sugar and I would use less mayo next time) and a roasted chicken with lemon and garlic. Also, FYI, the current issue of Bon Appetit has a Houston feature, which I think is awesome (similarly, if you haven't watched Ugly Delicious on Netflix, do!-episode 4 is Houston/New Orleans based)! I'll be back shortly with an FO post.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

(9, 10 and) 11/52

I didn't intend to take a break, but it happens sometimes! I have fluctuated between being very focused on finishing projects and flittering between random craftiness. Lots to share, because of this!

First, I want to make note of my February yarn and fabric totals.
Here is my second stash update:
Fabric: -2.5 yards
Yarn: -221 yards

Fabric total 2018: -31.25 yards
Yarn total 2018: -3,127 yards

Even though I didn't do as well in February, I still feel good about my progress this year!

FO: Red & white strings

So, the red and white string quilt is done (although I haven't taken full photos yet). I plan to gift this quilt next weekend, so I will definitely have photos to share soon.

Early in the month, I cut a pile of new garments and have finished about half of them so far.

WIP: Driftess cardigan

I'm almost done with my first Driftless Cardigan (I just need to stitch on the buttonband now!), and I hope it will be a very wearable garment. Additionally, I finished a Lark tee and two more Lindens (one in this awesome weird vacation purchase!).

WIP: Crystal Brickless

I also started a new shawl, using a favorite Moonrover yarn.

WIP: 2 x 4 quilt

WIP: 2 x 4 quiltFinally, I am sewing the binding onto my 2x4 quilt (tutorial by Film in the Fridge here). in the last week, I made a back for it, basted and quilted. After letting the finished top linger for six(!) months, that feels really good! I love the quilt so much, and I hope to have photos soon. In my next update, I'll share the recipes we have tried this month. Additionally, I would like to share some of the random small things I've been sewing the past few days.

Monday, February 26, 2018

8/52

Last week, I refocused on finishing a WIP, which I hope to gift next month.

WIP: Red & White strings

I finished the quilt top and I'm nearly done with the scrappy back. I plan to baste and start quilting it this week. I always love sewing with strings!

I also focused on hand quilting my String Diamonds project over the weekend, and finally see some progress!

WIP: String Diamonds handquilting progress

I decided to spend at least 15 minutes a day on the quilting. It is fun to see the texture start forming on the back!

This week, I tried three new recipes as well. Talk about down to the wire, but they were all winners. Two were from Good to the Grain, which I have owned for several years. I tried the Banana Walnut Cake (although I subbed pecans). This was a great cake/bread, made so much better by the ground nuts that you mix into to the batter. Also from this book, the focaccia. omg. It was incredible, and I'm grateful that we only baked part of it last night because it means there is more in my belly's immediate future.
We also tried this Smitten Kitchen recipe, and will be enjoying the leftovers tonight. The chickpeas and pistachios add so much!

I also finished a weaving project this week, although I need to figure out what to do with it. It was supposed to be a scarf, but it is woefully short! I'm either going to finish it as a cowl or some small pouches.
And finally, I traced a new garment pattern. More on that soon!

Friday, February 16, 2018

7/52

WIP: Scrappy Cogs

More scrappy cog blocks! Since I was traveling over the weekend, this week has consisted mainly of catching up on household tasks and errands, but I have sewn another set of cog blocks. I have 20 blocks done, with another five that are at the HST trimming stage. Not bad for something I started last week.

WIP: Scrappy Cogs

I'm really loving the scrappiness, and planning each block is fun.

I am behind on recipes for the month, but I have plans for two next week.

Monday, February 12, 2018

6/52 (a little late)

I intended to post before I left for another quick trip, but it didn't work out that way. I have more to share, since I waited, though. First off, I finished this scarf last month, but just gifted it this weekend.

FO: Marled grey garter

Using about 900 yards of fingering weight yarn, held double I knit this lovely marled scarf for a friend.

FO: Marled grey garter

It is made from leftovers and mini skeins on US 5 needles, and I just love how it turned out. I may make another in different colors someday.

New fabric

Also, in Portland this weekend, I scored a few new fabrics, including this sweatshirt knit (so soft and squishy!).

New stash - Portland

It is always hard to show restraint on vacation, but I don't feel too bad about my new stash.

I have been working on my string diamond hand quilting, but it is slow. I am enjoying the process, and I am going to try to work on it a few times a week for the rest of the month.

WIP: Scrappy Cogs

Additionally, I've started a new project, working strictly from scraps (with the exception of the neutral squares).

WIP: Scrappy Cogs

They are cog blocks, and I am choosing fabrics for each one individually. This is a traditional block, and I am using the instructions in Make Your Own Medallion.

I'll be back later in the week!

Friday, February 2, 2018

5/52

Well, there wasn't much crafting in the last week or so. Elliott and I went on a little vacation to Boston and New Haven.

Lighthouse Point Park
Lighthouse Point Park, New Haven

It was a wonderful break for both of us, and we got to spend a little time with great friends as well.

Boston
It snowed the morning we left, just enough for this lovely scene.

I worked on my sock during the flights, but I haven't taken a picture of it yet. I am way behind, but making slow progress.
Also, we made time to visit Gather Here, and I found a few new garment fabrics!

New fabric!

Speaking of fabric, here is my first stash update:
Fabric: -28.75 yards
: Yarn: -2,906 yards

I feel really good about this start! I have tried to be mindful of my stashing for a few years now but seeing these numbers is really motivating!

Thursday, January 25, 2018

4/52

So, I promised myself I wouldn't start a new quilty project until at least March, so I could focus on WIPs. But then I bought Erin Harris' new Make Your Own Medallion book, and I couldn't get a block out of my head.

WIP: Box Canyon block

I kept thinking about fabric combinations for it, and eventually succumbed to the pressure.

WIP: Box Canyon block

So, here is my Box Canyon block! And I don't know what it will be yet. Maybe I'll make three more for a nice throw quilt (the block finishes at 30")?

WIP: Box Canyon block

Maybe it will be a pillow, or maybe it will be the start of a medallion quilt as it was supposed to be. Who knows? But it was fun!

Also, this week, we tried a third recipe of the month for Smitten Kitchen's crispy tofu and broccoli with peanut sauce. It was delicious, and we will definitely make it again!

I started a new knitting project, Knottygnome's mystery lovefool sock KAL.

FO: Imbue Explorer Tote

And finally, I made my first Explorer Tote (this is the small size) using my friend Kim's new Imbue fabric line.

FO: Imbue Explorer Tote

I think it is a really striking bag in these fabrics!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

3/52

It's been sort of a weird week, and I've felt scatter-brained as a result. I have been fighting the sinus issues, and we got some snow/ice, which basically shut down the city. Obviously, it's nothing like Northern winters here, but Houston isn't really equipped for any kind of ice or snow. But of course, we will be back in the 60 degree Fahrenheit range by the weekend!

A post shared by Jacey (@jaceynotjc) on

I made my first Linden sweatshirt (pattern by Grainline Studio yesterday. I've made many Lark Tees (pattern also by Grainline) (I've made countless Larks, but have not documented them well!). For some reason, I couldn't imagine myself wearing the Linden, but I love it so much!
I used a Charley Harper knit, and a striped accent (the striped knit was a gift from my friend Brianne).

This is the first garment that I sewed completely on my new serger.

A post shared by Jacey (@jaceynotjc) on

I received it last month (a gift from Elliott), and I've been learning the basics. My friend Jenn recommended this craftsy class, and it has been very helpful.

I've also been slowly hand quilting my string diamonds quilt.

Additionally, I've been working on a weaving project that I started last month. Finally, I have added a few sections to a long-term WIP that I never shared here. The last photos I have before today are from October, but I can't recall when I started this.

WIP: Red & White strings

You know I love a good string project, and it has been fun to work on the past few days. This is a gift, and I'd like to finish it before May. Although I didn't use the pattern, I was definitely inspired by Amanda Jean's cover quilt from Sunday Morning Quilts (I didn't use the exact same colors, but tweaked it for the recipient).

See you next week!

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

2/52

Thanks for the feedback on my new posting idea. It has been a great motivation so far.
This week, with continuing sinus issues, I made another new soup. I highly recommend the Red Lentil Stew (link is a blogged version) from Slow Cooker Revolution. I used fresh tomatoes (added them in the last ten minutes, before the peas; I also added Penzey's Now Curry in addition to the other spices listed).

I've still been working on that Marled scarf, and I think I'll be finished pretty quickly.

Pure eye candy

The most exciting news this week is that I basted my String Diamonds quilt, and started the quilting.

I outlined the largest diamonds on the machine, but I think the really amazing way to keep going is by hand, and so I'm going to!

You can see the diamonds best on the back.

Pure eye candy

As soon as I finish that scarf, this quilt will become my couch project. I took a hand quilting class from Chawne over the summer in Maine (AMAZING), and I'm excited to practice again!

I finished my book last night, and I'm trying to figure out which book to read next.

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