Monday, August 15, 2011

Pieceful easy feeling...

I finally got to sit down and continue my chain-piecing binge Sunday afternoon (I was chain-piecing, my new little machine was practically chain-SMOKIN', it was working so hard!).  Remember these from my last post?
I was able to add 14 more completed ones, so now I am up to 39 finished out of my goal of 120 of these 9.5 inch little gems.  Ya-hoo!  This anniversary present for my husband is beginning to materialize.
(I also have another 48 about half-way done...)

I really need to improve the lighting down in the quilt cave...nothing is photographing very well these days.  It's all darker and muddier than reality. 

Usually when I crop strips in anticipation of a log cabin quilt, I get all my strips ready before I start piecing.  This time, I was so excited about driving my new machine, I started prematurely.  I am experiencing "piecus interruptus," which is annoying.  So I am still cropping strips as I go...not as efficient!  I probably would have been finished chain-piecing the 120 blocks by now if I weren't stopping to cut and count all the time.

I'm still adding to the piles in the project box...I am completely out of a few sizes...
Mr. Fabric Therapy was away in Chicago all week for work, so I decided to clean out the basement while he was gone. The quilt cave area of the basement is pretty neat and organized, but I share the cave with the other two people in my house...for now (evil laugh inserted here...).  Every time my husband and daughter are gone for any length of time, they come back and ALMOST think they notice a change...the key to taking over other people's space is to do it very slowly...over time...almost enough to notice, but not quite.  LOL

I can't do anything about some of the stuff down there...the laundry, the furnace, the hot water heater, the sump pump, the kitty litter box, 2 of the 3 household computers, exercise equipment, a recliner, and some general storage.  I'm ALWAYS trying to make more room in the general storage category...part of my OCD, I guess.

What started all this basement attention was a quick trip to U of M property disposition looking for used 2-drawer filing cabinets for pattern storage under my quilt book shelves.  They are only $10 and I usually strike gold when I go (I also look for nice second hand office chairs...).  This time they only had one filing cabinet of the short variety.  I thought, no problem.  I'd take it home and shove it under my current arrangement...I love being organized, but on a very tiny budget.  Some day, it would be fun to have unlimited funds to spend on a space and nice fixtures, but for now I am a cave dweller.

Anyway (from the bottom up), I start with 2-drawer filing cabinets, place sturdy used doors across them as a table, then add my IKEA storage units on top to hold my quilt books.  It sounds like a bit of a house of cards, but it is really quite sturdy.  I do it this way to protect my quilt library from the possibility of a wet basement, and NOTHING is ever on a low shelf.

The filing cabinets contain hanging files that hold patterns and projects from magazines and such.  The sheet pocket protectors can also hold templates, etc.  This system really works for me.
Because I've grown this storage system over time, none of my short filing cabinets are the SAME HEIGHT.  I was certain this new one would just shove under the existing set up.

Wrong.  It was the tallest so far, which meant EVERYTHING had to be taken apart and the "tables" had to be leveled (made the same height) all over again...all the books had to come out of cubicles...EVERYTHING!  Oy!  What a job!  I should have taken a picture of THAT, but I was too annoyed at the time to see how hilarious the situation really was.  But it is almost all back together now, thank GOD!

I took a break from the basement and the log cabins to add to my Positive/Negative project box as well.  I have about 180 of these 4.5 inch blocks finished and squared up now.  I have enough to start piecing them together in quartets to make 9-inch blocks (finished).  These are such a satisfying scrap buster!

My daughter starts school tomorrow, so maybe the crazy summer is finally over.  I want to wrap up the scrap busting and get back into some intense hand applique projects.  Christmas is coming (gulp) and it is time to "get 'er done!"

In stitches,
Teresa  :o)


  1. Wow!! You are so organized. WOW!!

    Love those log cabin blocks!

  2. dear teresa,you really get things done,i am not as organized as you,but if i search for something special in my sewing room,i find it!happy stitching,susi

  3. i sew wanna be you when i grow up, problem is I'M ALL GROWN UP!!!! my sewing cave is so envious of your sewing cave. :>) p.s. and your blocks are divine too!!!

  4. Piecus interruptus - LOL!

    Love the log cabin blocks, makes me want to sew but I have a room to prep for painting. Sigh.

  5. Bonnie at Quiltville stated once that she has pinned 10 pieces/blocks/strips/etc together as she goes, easier to count that way...maybe you could do the same????

  6. Piecus interruptus.....I instantly pictured Wyle Coyote holding up a sign....LOL!

    All of your projects look so good! Sorry you had to take time out to reorganize the stacks! Nice filing system, though! I love it!

  7. I LOVE that Log Cabin!!!! He is going to really enjoy it I'm sure!!!
    Maybe that is my problem...that Piecus interruptus, I always start sewing prematurely and then I have to stop and cut cut cut some more!!

    I sure like the filing cabinet i-dee! I have one!

  8. Oh my Gosh! WHy do the simplest of plans become major projects??? Love the log cabin quilt - coming nicely. Geez - you made me think - I have a positive'neg. quilt top done somewhere - that needs to be finished. I use the "pin-up groups of 10" method too - I could count a hundred times and get a hundred different answers - so this works for me.

  9. Your blocks look so nice in all greens and lights. I've culled my green stash, and now I'm seeing green quilts everywhere! If you need more, write to me!
    Love your organization, and your frugalness. I try to skate by making things work myself!

  10. I used to think that I wanted a fancy custom designed studio, but over time I have realized that I work best with thrift store and other free furnishings. It allows me to change my mind about my needs any time I want. I love your log cabin blocks. That's going to be a stunning quilt!

  11. Love you log cabin blocks, soooooo pretty!!!!You are so organize, hope my sewing room turn out organize like that when i get it done!!

  12. You are such an inspiration with all of your organizing! I love Ikea! That place has helped a lot of quilters out :D

    Your log cabin is moving right along and looking splendid!

  13. I LOVE your quilt cave and I want to visit you before I die :o) I can tell by your stash busting that you're really loving that new machine. Keep it smokin'!

  14. Very sneaky to be inching into the unused bits of the common areas ROFL. Maybe if they were as neat and tidy as you they would notice the encroachment :0)


  15. Teresa, this quilt is awesome, the colors are excellent.

    Would you be so kind to leave a comment on my BLOG ONLY (no emails), for the Miracle Makeover fund drive. Charlie, 8 yr. old, & his story are fabulous. Every comment brings us a $1 for the next person that will be sponsored. Please share this with your freinds.

    Have a beautiful week.
    TTFN ~

  16. your log cabin blocks look perfect - I love them!
    How funny that you creep, creep creep. I did the same thing here in the sitting room between my sewing room and our bedroom - lol. It's mine, all mine...
    I like the pos/neg blocks too - very fun

  17. Teresa saw your all areoun the twon, and I fell in love, I have finished in my blog
    the absence of quilting.
    Thanks again for your tutorial applies.

    Muchisimas gracias y un beso muy grande!!!!!

  18. Your log cabin is looking wonderful! Great way to break in your new's a work horse!
    Your sewing room is beyond amazing...will you come and get me organized? I love taking over little bits at a time...they'll never know...teehee! Your positive/negative quilt is going to be wonderful too!

  19. You have been basement in this house so the cave is the old kids bedrooms. Love the way your quilt books look.... wondering what my quilt books would look like all line up together.... rather than all over the house????

  20. Great storage ideas. I love the green Log Cabin blocks! I bundle pieces in 10's too. My Grandma Lillard would stack her pieces; then run a threaded needle thru the center,a knot on one end, leaving a 3" tail to keep her pieces organized. It works great if you're traveling with a project so they don't get all mixed up. Sometimes I pick all the pieces for individual blocks and string them like this, then I don't forget what fabrics I thought should go together in a block.

  21. Thanks for sharing your organization ideas/pictures. They are great!! I love your idea of using short file cabinets as the base...and the way you organized the pages inside!!

    Deb (who is STILL a cluttered quilter...but maybe, someday!!)


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