What’s on my Sewing Table

One nice outcome of all of this extra time at home: I have definitely had more time to sew. Which I’ll take. It’s my favorite form of therapy. And true to form, I keep starting new projects, even though I already have enough UFO’s/WIP’s (UnFinished Objects/Works In Progress) to make anyone cringe. 

But, as I’m starting new projects, I’m also trying to pull out and make progress on some of these long-languishing projects from yesteryear as well.

Here’s a peek of my table and what’s going on. (Disclaimer, I actually cleaned up the table before I took the picture. It was even more cluttered before.)

As you can see, set to the side but still accessible, my steam punk blocks. Even thought they’ve been put aside slightly, but I’m keeping them out so that I keep working on a block or two a week as I committed. I’m still really enjoying working on those blocks and it would be fun to get that UFO done.

Also on my table – my cutting and prep station for another batch of Round We Go English paper piecing blocks. I always have to have a handwork project on hand for couch, car, or other sitting time and these have been so fun to work on.

Probably my favorite part of making these is the chance to play with different fabric and color combinations. It’s like making a mini quilt with each block. These have been my ongoing handwork project for almost 2 years. (Which is actually relatively short compared to other ongoing handwork projects that I’ve started…lol)

I recently counted all of the blocks that I’ve finished so far and was surprised to discover I’m up to 47! I was originally shooting for 60 blocks, but I’m rethinking the size quilt I want to make with these and 48 might be the better number. I’m not sure I’m ready to stop making them though…

These templates are out of production, so they’re harder to find these days, but I have seen a few Round We Go EPP sets available on Etsy.

Here’s another longtime WIP. I started the classic patchwork blocks as part of a free quilt along hosted by the Fat Quarter Shop in 2017. (!) About a year and a half ago I started finally piecing all of the blocks together. And then it sat folded in a box for 18 months. As you can see, it has the wrinkles to prove it.

The fabric for the blocks consist of Bonnie and Camille basics that were provided by the Fat Quarter Shop. I hoarded this B&C yardage for a quilt back years ago, so here is the perfect project for putting it to use!  Over the past couple of weeks I pulled out what I have and finally picked borders from their current Early Bird collection. Now I just need to add those borders and get this off to the quilter!

Also pulled out of the box of pieced UFO’s – this patchwork quilt made with Vintage Sheets. (I think this one was pieced in 2015. 😲) It’s only been waiting for me to finally piece a back. That’s it! That has now been accomplished and it’s ready to go to the quilter as well!

I’m so excited to get this one back for summer!

My weekend goal is to get these delivered to the quilter on Monday!

Finally, I’ve continued to sew PPE masks each week for Project Protect – a partnership in Utah between the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and Intermountain/University of Utah Health Care networks.

If you live here in Utah and want to participate, log in to Just Serve to sign up. As part of this project all materials are pre-cut and provided by the hospital network in kits of 100 masks. This next round extends the turnaround deadline to 11 days, so if it’s felt too overwhelming to help before, now is a good opportunity with a longer window of time. Or divide the kit with a friend. I’ve taken that route too in previous weeks.

Even if you’re not in Utah, you can check out JustServe.org, put in your Zip Code, and find projects and needs in your own community. If you are looking to make Project Protect to make ours.

Last weekend we showed our kids the classic comedy, The Three Amigos. As I watched I suddenly had a realization. While I don’t have medical life saving skills (I’m sure grateful for those who do!!), there is still something I can do to help. Like the good people of Santa Poco, when facing their own El Guapo (who also happened to be the actual El Guapo): “I can sew!”

As I’m getting more efficient making these masks, I now find the process both therapeutic and enjoyable. I’m just a drop in the bucket as thousands of others sewists in their homes are making *1 million* masks a week as part of this specific project – not to mention the thousands of other mask makers all over the world out there! – but glad I can do something I like to help the cause.

And remember – no guilt on this one. If corralling a bunch of home-schooling kids, holding down a job, or doing whatever else you need to do to stay functional is what you have to offer right now, then that is helping the cause just as meaningfully!

And finally, you may have noticed my latest new project hanging out on my design wall above. That one is my latest distraction. More on that next week!

(Sorry to be a tease. 😉 )

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  • Reply
    Robby H.
    May 14, 2020 at 6:37 pm

    I’m all about that design wall, so staying tuned for that. Thank you for your graciousness towards people who already have many things on their plate without worrying about charity sewing. I spoke with someone recently who expressed huge guilt about not sewing masks while simultaneously helping two children with school, holding down her own job and helping her husband keep his business afloat. It’s like some new version of the FOMO problem from social media for some people. Your gentle take on that was refreshing.

  • Reply
    Sharon @ Laurelhurstcraftsman
    May 14, 2020 at 7:11 pm

    I love those Round We Go blocks. You do beautiful work.

    • Reply
      May 15, 2020 at 3:40 pm

      Thank you!

  • Reply
    Joana Simmers
    May 15, 2020 at 6:50 am

    Thank you so much for sharing what his going on in your sewing room! You can imagine how excited I was to see in your vintage sheet quilt the sheets I slept on for much of my childhood. Does that make me vintage too?

  • Reply
    charlotte m.
    May 15, 2020 at 8:10 am

    I am also looking forward to the design wall reveal. I have long wanted to make one of those. And thanks for reminding me I can have as many WIPs as I want. I am a big starter, but a reluctant finisher.

    • Reply
      May 15, 2020 at 3:41 pm

      You are not alone!!

  • Reply
    May 15, 2020 at 10:52 am

    Can you recommend a quilter? My quilter moved to Europe several months ago. Not a great time to go there. Bummer. I don’t mind shipping if you know of someone who has the expertise. Thanks.

  • Reply
    May 15, 2020 at 3:56 pm

    Bravo to finishing some projects. I finally pieced together the back for my Y2K quilt the guild did in 1999! Now off to the quilter we go.

    • Reply
      May 15, 2020 at 11:09 pm

      Way to go!!

  • Reply
    May 15, 2020 at 6:14 pm

    I am also finishing up my 2017 Fat Quarter Shop BOM quilt! I love what you did with your blocks. If I wasn’t in process of sewing on my sashing for the original pattern, I think I would be a great big copycat and do one like yours. I’m kind of over this quilt as it has taken me forever (though I did have 2 babies–one which had a heart transplant since I started it). I will shout hurrah when it is done!

  • Reply
    May 15, 2020 at 8:11 pm

    I just love your Quilts and the color designs your use are amazing. Your work is so Beautiful!!! Thank you for sharing. I sew, but have never tried quilting, really enjoy your labors of love.

    • Reply
      May 15, 2020 at 11:09 pm

      Thank you so much, Sherri!

  • Reply
    MaryBeth Baker
    May 16, 2020 at 10:50 am

    Hi Amy,
    I hope your son is growing stronger. I am thinking of starting an orange peel quilt. Do you mind sharing what size block or square is each individual piece?
    Thank you. Hoping you and your family are staying healthy

    • Reply
      May 16, 2020 at 6:48 pm

      Hi MaryBeth! I am still planning to put together a tutorial for my orange peel quilt, but since I can’t guarantee when that will happen here are the basics: I cut my background squares 5″ x 5″. I’m still trying to find the graphic for the original peel shape that I used, but so far haven’t found it. I do know that Missouri Star Quilt Co sells orange peel templates for precuts – their’s may work?

  • Reply
    May 17, 2020 at 5:14 am

    Beautiful round blocks!

  • Reply
    May 17, 2020 at 3:45 pm

    What about using your Cricut Maker to make those EPP templates you need?

  • Reply
    May 18, 2020 at 9:07 am

    Congrats on all you are getting done. I’m glad I’m not the only one with a stack of WIPs and UFOs in the closet. I’ve been working through mine, too. My goal is to get it to a finished quilt top and get all the parts and pieces out of the bins. I’ll worry about the quilting later. Can’t wait to see the surprise.

  • Reply
    May 18, 2020 at 6:33 pm

    Whoo hoo for you!! I have been sewing masks for the reopening of the preschool I direct (with an awesome staff!). I have been working from home and the office for two months. (I’m not sure the parents realize how much work goes into running a program and teaching, but strangely this may be a wakeup call.) I am managing to find time to finish projects and start new ones, including some ufos. I think I have the pattern on your design wall…. How’s your finger? My recent cancer surgery follow up was great!

    • Reply
      May 21, 2020 at 11:39 am

      Woohoo! So glad for good news on your surgery follow-up. My finger is much improved and I’m so grateful. It’s a little flat on one side and still kind of numb/tingly, but it’s there and it works, so I’ll take it! 🙂

  • Reply
    MaryBeth Baker
    June 2, 2020 at 3:42 pm

    Thank you so much. The 5″ size helps tremendously. Hoping you are staying well. Your son is in my prayers. I have a dear friend who lives with POTS and it is challenging. Apparently there are support groups for sharing information on Facebook. Blessings to you and your family….and our country with all this craziness. Peace

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