Here we are at the end of another calendar year. I always enjoy looking back at the end of the year to see the big picture of what really happened. Sometimes when I’m in the weeds of daily living, it’s hard to realize – and appreciate – all that was accomplished. The cumulative effect is always something that surprises me and gives a nice sense of accomplishment.
Here are some of the projects and favorite quilts completed this year. (Please – in case should anyone judge and/or feel themselves lacking in comparison – keep in mind that making quilts is my job, not just a pastime or hobby. This is by no means normal quilt for most people. I definitely qualify for abnormal in more ways than one.)
Click on the bold link underneath the pictures for more details on patterns, fabric, etc for any of these projects.
Blue and White Quilts
Blue Quilts seemed to be a trend for me this year – especially quilts made with chambray and indigo wovens. Here are a few: This Chambray Blues baby quilt (click here) was made from a combination of said indigo chambray wovens and a pattern from a new book by Jessica Dayon.
This modern blue/gray/taupe star quilt (click here) is made from my own Palace Court Pattern.
And I finished the year this winter with a blue and white solids two-tone quilt. You can find the pattern info and quilt details on the Sentimental Stars quilt here.
Red, White, and Blue Quilts
I also added a little red for another combination on the blue + white quilt variation, making multiple red, white, and blue quilts.
One of my favorite new quilt patterns this year is the Americana inspired Fly the Flag – it’s a quick US Flag quilt with the option of using a variety of traditional star quilt blocks.
Another Patriotic quilt is this pennant quilt made with my Summer Bunting pattern + Riley Blake chambray in Indigo + Riley Blake patriotic prints.
Another really fun red, white, and blue quilt was my finished 2021 Riley Blake Block Sampler quilt. This was a free pattern from Riley Blake Designs. I used a navy Oxford Confetti Cotton as my background and a variety of Notting Hill prints for the scrappy blocks (details here).
Notting Hill Quilts
Speaking of Notting Hill – Notting Hill was my latest fabric collection for Riley Blake Designs released in 2021.
I also made a variety of quilts using Notting Hill fabric including an updated version of my Lattice Quilt Pattern.
Another variation on the Palace Court Pattern made with Notting Hill pastels (and more blues!)
and a Union Jack Quilt – pattern called Regent Street – also made with Notting Hill Fat Quarters.
More Union Jack Quilts
As you can see, I have a ‘thing’ for flag quilts – both US and GB flags. In fact, I made multiple Union Jack quilts besides the Notting Hill version above.
This pastel Union Jack crib-quilt was made for a special new baby whose mom was one of my flatmates when I lived in London as a college student. Made with a mix of Notting Hill and Liberty floral prints. It was so much fun to make, for so many happy reasons.
I also made another (giant) variation on the Union Jack quilt block in this super-size version. This was another quilt that was so satisfying and sentimental to make. Made with the Liberty of London Carnaby collection. (This quilt is like the center of the Ven diagram with overlapping Red, White, and Blue/Chambray wovens/Union Jack/flag quilt categories in on quilt!
Vintage Sheets Quilt
The award for oldest project to finally come out of the WIP (Work In Progress) pile goes to the Vintage Sheets Patchwork Quilt that I started over a decade ago. The simple patchwork squares were cut and pieced together ages ago – it was only waiting for a backing and a trip to the quilter. Why I waited so long to finish this one is a mystery – because it’s one of the softest, cuddliest quilts ever.
Best Reboot of an older pattern goes to this Gingham Foundry version of my Bushel and a Peck Quilt. These updated muted navy, gold, and gray prints were so much fun to work with. I love how this one turned out.
Favorite Scrap Quilts
Speaking of playing with colors and scraps – the new version of my Gratitude Plus Quilt that I made this fall was so much fun and therapeutic.
Ongoing WIPS (works in progress):
Ahh, there are always TOO many WIPs. One that I’m still actively working on is my Winki Stars blocks from Jen Kingwell’s Quilt Recipes book. I’m up to 6 blocks and I’ve been hand-piecing them which I’ve really enjoyed. They’re my current hand-work project.
Another project that I need to resurrect and finish are my Round We Go blocks. Looking back at this calendar year, they were very neglected! I think I’ve pieced enough blocks – it’s time to start appliqueing them to backing blocks and then sewing the blocks together should go quickly.
And the ongoing Orange Peel applique quilt. That one has been going for a decade. It really needs to get finished once and for all.
Christmas Sewing this year: zilch. I had high hopes for getting some piecing done on a Christmas quilt I started a few years ago, but nothing got done. Nada.
Other fun milestones:
It was so much fun to be able to participate in the Garden of Quilts Event held locally here in Utah again this year. Another highlight was a trip to London. Hallelujah – I feel so lucky that I was able to safely do that – in spite of a bunch of extra hoops to jump through! Here’s hoping for more traveling opportunities opening up again for all of us.
Looking back and looking forward
I also like looking back at goals and plans that I set at the beginning of 2021 to see how I did. Coming into 2021 after such an emotionally draining year previously, I’m definitely feeling grateful for a little more predictability this year – both big picture and in our home. But, gosh it was still a weird year in many ways.
So what were my goals and plans for 2021 (in a nutshell):
“Make less plans. My motto this year is the lesson I’ve learned most from the past year: Come what may and love it.
More concretely: I think I’ll stick with a lot of those same goals as before: declutter, simplify, slow down, be purposeful etc. Those are probably lifelong goals.”
Yeah – I think I’m going to stick with those same goals again this year. Some of those things I made some good progress on – including slowing down, de-cluttering my house (I still have a ways to go in my fabric/sewing room though – so that goal definitely stays on the list), being more purposeful. Also learning to better go with the flow, let go of frustration and disappointment. I think I’m getting better at those two because I’ve had a lot more practice these past two years. lol.
Other thoughts and goals on my list:
Continue making time to get outside and walk and breathe.
Practicing gratitude – writing in a gratitude journal
Being present with people – especially with my kids, who seem to keep growing up.
I’ll probably continue to streamline a little of what you see from me here in this space. I’m planning some updates to this site where you can hopefully find past tutorials and free projects and patterns more easily. I’m excited about that – not the work to get there, but the finished product. Stay tuned!
I don’t have any new fabric collections coming out this year. I just needed to cut back in some areas and that was one of them. But I’m not ruling out a new collection in 2023. I’ve got some new ideas (plus inspiration from my trip this fall) and we’ll see where that goes!
As far as quilt-making goes:
I really want to make more scrappy quilts inspired by quilts from decades past.
Less using just one fabric collection, more using colors and prints that I’ve been holding onto forever and putting them to good use.
Making more scrappy projects.
Also, making more challenging ‘heirloom’ pieces – slow sewing, bucket-list challenging quilts like a Pickle Dish or other applique.
I’ll probably keep working on quick fixes too – because I like fast finishes.
Continue learning about and using my Embroidery Machine
More giving quilts away too.
What about you? What are your goals for 2022?
What would you like to learn more about this year? Or see more of in this space? I’d love to hear what you think.
Thank you again for stopping by to visit. I’m glad we’re all in this journey of life (and loving quilts at the same time) together. Happy New Year!