Flosstube Episode 23: Starting Fresh


Thank you so much for tuning in to the Cozyegg flosstube/podcast!  In this episode I share my New Year’s Day start, progress on my Year of WIPs pieces, and Dark13Stitching.

SALs:

  • Join Emily (eclecticpossessions) and I on Instagram for #dark13stitching where we stitch on something dark and creepy on the 13th of every month
  • Melanie’s Soulful Stitching Facebook group also has monthly Darktober stitching SALs on the 13th of every month
  • Join the Hawk Run Hollow SAL hosted by Abi Bellastitch and I – on Instagram you can use the #hrhvillagesal if you’re stitching on Village and/or use the tag #letsallmovetohawkrunhollow for any Hawk Run pieces.  Abi set up a Facebook group called Let’s All Move to Hawk Run Hollow if you’d like to join!
  • Year of WIPs Challenge in Melanie’s Soulful Stitching Facebook group

Show notes:

Finishes:

  1. None

WIPs:

  1. New Year’s Day start – Williamsburg Remembered Sewing Case by Catherine Theron – silk on linen – workshop taken 3/14/2009
  2. Le Cuisine d’Ete by Echevette – DMC on 32ct Lemon Zest by Silkweaver – started 2/19/2008
  3. Mermaid Fraktur by Plum Street Samplers – stitched with Weeks and Classic Colorworks on 36ct Earthen by PTP, stitching 1 over 2
  4. Halloween Neighborhood Round Robin – working on the house from Brightneedle’s Ghoulies and Ghosties Etui for this block.  Using a mix of Weeks, DMC, SNC, and Dinky Dyes on 35ct Brandy by CountryStitch
  5. Weigh it Shawl 2 by Susan B. Anderson – size 9 Signature needles and Miss Babs Yowza in the Joan of Arc colorway

Stash:

  1. Color Delights – Rainbow needlepoint pattern by Needle Delights Originals (Kathy Rees)
  2. Thread Ring from Black Branch Needlework

Shout Outs:

  1. Mummula
  2. Stitcherista

Reading:

  1. Finished From Scratch by Rachel Goodman
  2. Reading Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Like my essential oils Facebook Page – Cozylife

Thanks so much for watching.  You can subscribe to my YouTube channel and you can also sign up for my newsletter to get an email notification of new posts.

Find me on Ravelry: cozyegg

I’m also on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Flickr as cozyegg.

Grateful for goals and plans.

Episode 9: Clearing the WIPs

 

 

Show notes:

Finishes:

  1. Hand-quilting with perle cotton on my Indulgence table topper quilt – finished 9/11/15
  2. Stealth quilt top pattern by Janet Kime from her book The Cat’s Meow – fabrics purchased and cutting done wayyyyy back in 2001/2002.  Began sewing 4/12/14 and top finished 9/26/15

WIPs:

  1. Ornament and guild nametag finishing.  The twisted cording tutorial I used is from Pinwheel Ponders
  2. Yowza Weigh It Shawl by Susan B. Anderson – using Miss Babs Yowza in the Zombie Prom colorway and size 8 Signature circulars
  3. Pansy Park BOM by Thimbleberries quilt
  4. New start: Black’d Skie by The Primitive Needle – stitching on 40ct Vintage Pear linen by Lakeside Linens with Pure Palette and Silk n Colors silks begun on 9/19/15

Find me on Ravelry: cozyegg

Stash Enhancement:

  1. None

Reading:

  1. Currently reading Kushiel’s Dart by Jacqueline Carey
  2. Book study continues on Sarah Robbins’ Rock Your Network Marketing Business

Plans for the rest of the year:

  1. MAGIC list: remaining items on my list to finish this year are His Eye is on the Sparrow and six Christmas ornaments
  2. Books: Goodreads Challenge for 2015 – 19 books to go to meet my goal of 25 books
  3. Quilting: finish Pansy Park quilt top, and possibly start hand quilting my blue &  white quilt, possibly start sewing on my leaders/enders quilt top

I am grateful for the comfort of my creative and crafty pursuits.

Knitting Envy

I have attempted knitting no less than four times now.  I first learned way back in 2007, when I took a beginning knitting class at my LYS.  I knit a garter stitch scarf and was extremely proud of myself.  I then launched into what is perhaps the downfall of most new knitters – attempting to knit with Homespun yarn.  Of course, trying to knit with curly yarn and not really having an understanding of how to read my knitting left me beyond frustrated.

Fast forward to 2010, when my friend Kim retaught me to knit.  Even bought me some beautiful yarn, a book, and some notions.  I knit and knit and knit.  I ripped out and practiced casting on. Somehow, I ended up laying it down when again frustration set in.  I kept doing something at the end of my rows where I was twisting my stitches or something weird.

Then, in 2014 after binge-watching knitting podcasts (specifically Suburban Stitcher), I again became obsessed about knitting.  When Sylvia and I were together in Arizona for the Attic’s Summer Soiree, she retaught me.  So I picked up that pretty turquoise yarn from Kim and started another scarf.  There was much knitting while watching podcasts, much knitting while listening to non-knitting podcasts…

…and in January I finished it.  I sort of followed the pattern for the You Go, Girl! scarf in the Chicks with Sticks book, minus the fringe.  I decided to make it into a cowl, so I sewed the ends together before I wove in my ends.

I knew that DFW Fiber Fest was happening in May and I really wanted to go and get to meet Dianne from Suburban Stitcher.  She has been such an inspiration to me with knitting, that I decided to set myself the goal of really becoming a knitter by the time Fiber Fest rolled around.  So, I figured the best thing I could do was to keep knitting.  I remembered I’d bought some cotton yarn “back in the day” to make washcloths/dishcloths with, so I dug some of that out.  There were a few washcloth patterns in my Chicks with Sticks book, so I decided to tackle the first one, which was basically to learn how to purl.  I enjoyed this one and really loved the colors in this colorway – Earth Ombre.

And here it is finished.  Nothing spectacular, but I was pretty proud of myself.

Next up, I decided to do another washcloth from the book, this time in the color Terra Firma.  This was a basketweave pattern, which really challenged me to actually follow a pattern.  And I messed it up more than once and had to figure out how to rip back.  I also learned that you have to slip a stitch on the edge to make a “finished” edge, which was a whole new concept to me, since everything I’d done before was just garter stitch on the edges.

And here is this one finished.

As you know from my podcast, I met my goal and felt like I’d really grasped knitting finally and went to DFW Fiber Fest as a knitter!  I am really finding that I enjoy knitting as an on-the-go project.  It is much easier to pick up and put down than stitching.  And it is a great way to keep my hands busy!  I can’t wait to share with you my experience with going to Fiber Fest for the first time and what I came home with.

And hey, please find me on Ravelry if you’re on there too.  I’m cozyegg (of course!).

I am grateful for my knitting and all of the inspirational knitting podcasts!

Episode 3: Reaching My Goal


Show Notes:

Finishes:

  1. Faith pincushion – ornament in the Just Cross-stitch Ornament 2014 issue by Nikyscreations.  Stitched with GAST threads (my own conversion and color changes) on 32 count Vintage Pearled Barley by Lakeside Linens.  Finished into a pillow with Juliana Horner’s ModBox fabric
  2. Hazel Hedgehog mini quilt: Hazel Hedgehog quilt pattern is by Elizabeth Hartman.  Fabrics used are Tula Pink Acacia, Tula Pink Moonshine, Carolyn Friedlander Architextures, Michael Miller Grand Bazaar.
  3. Garter stitch cowl – gifted yarn, believe I cast on 24 stitches and pretty much knit until I got close to the end of my skein of yarn.  I joined the two ends to make a cowl.

WIPs:

  1. And They Sinned – by Examplar Dames.  Stitching on 40ct Elegant Bean with the called for GAST threads.
  2. Colonial Garden – by Plum Street Samplers.  Stitching on 40ct Black Forest linen by Lakeside Linens with the called for NPI silks.
  3. “Willow Block” – from Village of Hawk Run Hollow by Carriage House Samplings.  Stitching on 40ct Flax with DMC
  4. Washcloth/Dishcloth – using of the Dirty-Girl Washcloths patterns from the book The Chicks with Sticks Guide to Knitting.  Knitting with Lily Sugar’n Cream Naturals (100% cotton, worsted, in the Earth Ombre colorway and US 7 needles.

#sewmystash2015:

  1. Tula Pink Anchors Aweigh quilt in Tula Pink Salt Water fabric
  2. Five Yard quilt in Tula Pink Birds & the Bees and Denyse Schmidt Chicopee fabrics

Stash Enhancement:

  1. Tula Pink Apothecary Jars in the Vapor colorway of her Nightshade line
  2. Tula Pink Tortoiseshell in the Coral colorway of her Salt Water line
  3. Cotton & Steel Sarah Watts Mystery Food in the Navy colorway of her Tokyo Train Ride line; cotton lawn
  4. CrowsToes nail polish – Bifrost from the 9 Realms Collection“The Bifrost is the rainbow bridge that connects Asgard and Midgard”.

Reading:

  1. Finished Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  2. Currently reading The Fallen Angel by Daniel Silva

If you’re going to DFW Fiber Fest this weekend, let me know!

I am grateful for things blooming and birds chirping – it must be spring!

Episode 2: Herding Cats


Show Notes:

Finishes:

  1. Hazel Hedgehog Tote – Hazel Hedgehog quilt pattern is by Elizabeth Hartman.  Fabrics used are Tula Pink Acacia, Carolyn Friedlander Architextures, Michael Miller Grand Bazaar.  I modified Jeni Baker’s Lined Drawstring Bag tutorial for the tote.
  2. Hazel Hedgehog mini quilt: same fabrics and pattern as used in the tote.  Also used Tula Pink Moonshine for the one spine as well as the binding.
  3. Infinity Scarf – actually finished some time ago, but haven’t shared before on the blog.  Made with Anna Maria Horner Innocent Crush velveteen and Field Study voile.  Using Anna Maria’s tutorial for the infinity scarf by modified with Kelbysews’ measurements.
  4. Faith pincushion – ornament in the Just Cross-stitch Ornament 2014 issue by Nikyscreations.  Stitched with GAST threads (my own conversion and color changes) on 32 count Vintage Pearled Barley by Lakeside Linens.

WIPs:

  1. Garter stitch scarf – still in progress
  2. His Eye is on the Sparrow – by Heartstring Samplery.  Stitching on 48ct hand-dyed Gander linen with called for Weeks and GAST threads.

#sewmystash2015:

  1. Tula Pink Anchors Aweigh quilt in Tula Pink Salt Water fabric
  2. Five Yard quilt in Tula Pink Birds & the Bees and Denyse Schmidt Chicopee fabrics

Reading:

  1. Bible study using She Reads Truth app.

I am grateful for time to sew.

Finding the Joy in Creating

Hello-January-2

 

I hope the new year finds you happy and well.  It has been cold here the past few days, although true to Texas weather it looks like that will change in a few days.  As is often true of December, I’ve spent some time thinking about what I finished in 2014 and what I wanted to set as a goal for 2015.  I feel like at the end of each year I seem to feel that I didn’t accomplish “enough” and I vow to do better in the coming months.  But maybe the issue isn’t that I am lacking, but rather I need to reevaluate my perspective.  One of the people I most enjoy following on Instagram and Bloglovin’ is Amanda from Ms. McPorkchop Quilts (@heyporkchop).  In September she did a blog post about quietly creating and what she’s learned about what she enjoys about creating and why she creates and it really got me thinking.

My December was really a lesson in what isn’t working for me.  In the first week of the month I had a number of deadlines I was trying to make – finishing up a handmade swap, making some gifts for the guild board, and finishing two stitched ornaments.  Add on top of that the realization that I had not finished any of the pieces I’d put on my MAGIC (My Annual Good Intentions Contract) list to finish in 2014.  So, because I’m a glutton for punishment I made the executive decision that I would finish And They Sinned by the end of the year (or technically by January 6th when the guild meeting is).  So, I broke up the remaining area I had to stitch into equal parts so that I could see what I needed to get done each week in order to finish.  Of course, I didn’t really take into account all that other stuff I had to get done, or the fact that I was trying to finish the most densely stitched part of the entire piece in one month – a piece that thus far had taken me like three years.  But hey, hope springs eternal, right?  So, I did manage to get the swap, the ornaments, and the board gifts done and mostly by their deadline – but I was an absolute wreck doing it.  Add in the normal stress of the holidays and I was wound so tight no amount of eggnog was going to help.  As for And They Sinned, obviously you would know if I’d finished it because there would be fireworks and a band.  And possibly the Goodyear blimp.

Over the past week or so though, I’ve had a good bit of time to think about all of the above and what I could do to alleviate some of the pressure and not end the year feeling like a big failure.  So here’s what I know –

  • I don’t like deadline stitching/quilting – I work full time (sometimes more than full time) so I have limited amount of time to spend on crafty pursuits.  I’m also a slow stitcher/quilter so hitting a deadline is tough for me.
  • Swaps/Exchanges stress me out – I love the idea of swaps, I don’t like the pressure of worrying about if what I’m making is good enough/my partner will like it.  Plus, deadline.
  • I tend to toss a project to the side if I make a mistake or come to some creative decision fork in the road.  This is a big reason why I have so many WIPs.
  • I do better focusing on one project at a time rather than attempting to work in a rotation or jumping from thing to thing.
  • There is a lot of guilt/pressure associated with my stash – there are things I loved when I bought but years later I’ve yet to get to them, some I still love but some I no longer have any interest in.  But the sheer size of what is essentially a ginormous to do list weighs on me.
  • Blogs and Instagram are great sources of inspiration for me, but can also make me feel like I’m not good enough, not creating enough, etc.

For 2015, I’m going to try to keep all of the above in mind as I set my intentions for the year.  I did have my customary New Year’s Day start, because that’s a fun way to kick off the year.  I then went back to ATS though.  Once I let go of the self-imposed deadline, I was able to actually enjoy stitching on it.  I am making good progress on it, mostly because I’ve had some time off work and no place I needed to be.  It feels good to just focus on one thing and not worry about all the other stuff waiting in the wings.  I am going to focus my attention this year on working on some of my WIPs – one at a time.  The other thing I’ve already started, that I intend to continue, is whittling down my stash.  All those charts, projects, fabrics that don’t speak to me anymore are going – some I’m selling, some I’m donating, some I’m giving away to good homes.  I want to enjoy my time creating and know that the stuff I have taking up space in my closet are things I’m truly excited about and love.  I already know I have some deadlines for a few projects this year, so I’m going to spend some time in January to determine when those deadlines are and plan/kit what I’m going to do for those deadlines.  99% of what runs me right up on a deadline is trying to figure out what I’m going to do and gathering the supplies to start it.  I know I’ll be in a better position to make those deadlines if I go ahead and get the planning done.

One other thing I intend to focus on this year is my blog.  You may have noticed that the blog looks different.  I’ve been planning to move my blog over to my own domain for some time now, and it is finally moved.  If you go to the old blogger address you’ll be automatically redirected to the new location, so no worries there.  You may want to update your feed if you’re following me through Bloglovin’ or Feedly, etc.  The new address is here.  I’ve still got some tweaking to do, so everything’s in a bit of a mess right now, but I’m really excited to finally have everything in one place.  You can go to my home page and then from there you can get to either this blog (Cozy Egg) or my lifestyle blog (Cozystyle).  And since I have a nice shiny new space to blog in, it only makes sense that I should, you know, blog.  I really and truly do love Instagram – it’s quick, it’s easy, it’s fun.  But, the reason I started a blog, and the main reason I keep a blog is that I like to tell the story of what I’m creating.  So, I hope you’ll continue to join me here and check in on what I’m working on and how I’m doing with my 2015 plan.  I still have several things from 2014 that I want to share with you too, so more fun things to come.

Wishing you a wonderful start to 2015 and igniting that creative spark.

I am grateful for Pitbull, stitching grass, and twinkle lights. 

Joyous

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Way back when, around two Thanksgivings ago, I had some charm packs and yardage of Kate Spain’s Flurry and 12 Days of Christmas fabrics.  After seeing the Synchronized Squares Quilt Along on P.S. I Quilt, I knew exactly what I wanted to use my fabric for.  I had to modify the pattern a bit, since I was using charm packs rather than layer cakes.  I also made mine with 30 blocks rather than 36 due to the amount of fabric I had on hand.  I used Kona white for the sashing.  What I fell in love with about the pattern was that it was a simple layout that allowed the fabrics to shine and I loved the use of white to give it a bright, cheery look.  
I started the quilt, like I said, two Thanksgivings ago.  I set it aside after getting all the blocks made.  This past Thanksgiving I got it back out to work on and managed to get the rows sewn together with their sashing strips.  And finally, yesterday I decided that it was time to get this one back out and finish it.  After a few hours sewing, I had a finished quilt top. 
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I absolutely love the way it turned out and I’m excited to have it quilted so that I can enjoy it when the holiday season comes this year. 
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I could hardly wait to take my quilt top outside this morning to get some proper photos of it.  And it is so pretty.  The colors and the fabrics just make me smile every time I look at it.  There is something so rewarding about seeing a quilt come together row by row.  Every time I moved from the ironing board to the sewing machine it was a little bit bigger.  
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And I think that the two fabric lines easily coordinate with each other, so you have a cohesive look, but with a little bit of variation.  I actually have some of her recent Joy line of fabrics, which I may incorporate into the back or the binding.  
One of my goals this year is to focus on my quilting projects.  Several of them have been hanging around in various stages of progress.  I’m so happy to have one completed!  Next up, I’ll be working on my Kiss Kiss quilt.  I’m anxious to finish cutting my fabric and get started on the sewing on that one.  
I am grateful for make up vacation days.

Epiphany

2012 Finishes
Happy New Year!  I can hardly believe it’s already the 10th of January!  I hope that you all had a wonderful holiday and spent some quality time with friends and family.  Before the new year gets away from me, I thought I’d do a little 2012 recap of some of the things I accomplished last year.  
2012 was not a banner year with regard to finishes.  But, I enjoyed what I did find time to stitch on, and a lot of it was little things that caught my fancy, rather than working on existing WIPs.  You may remember that after starting Margaret Cottam in November of 2011, I was enjoying her so much and was so close to a finish that I decided to stick with her rather than having a New Year’s Day start like I normally do.  And sure enough, I finished Margaret only a few days into 2012.  
Isabella Johnstone was the big star of my finishes this year.  I started her for my birthday in August of 2011, and when I picked her back up in April I continued to work on her steadily until she was finished at the beginning of August.  I really enjoyed stitching her and she’s a beauty!
I did work a little bit on quilting in 2012, I pulled my Kate Spain quilt back out at the end of the year and made some progress on it.  I also started my Kiss Kiss quilt for my birthday.  I also spent the first part of the year working on the Prince Charming hexie pincushions that were gifts for friends.  I made six of them, and still haven’t made one for myself.  I need to rectify that situation!  And in the fall I made some stitching wallets that I shared with you a couple of posts back.  
I also made one other little piece that I haven’t shared yet.  I made a knitting needle case for a friend’s birthday.  I love the way it turned out. 

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Here’s the inside.  I bought the fabric back at the beginning of the year knowing I wanted to use it for her gift. 
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I think she was happy with it, and I am head over heels about that fabric.  So fun!
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So, while I didn’t get a lot done this year, I did enjoy what I was working on.  
And my 2012 finishes were:
  • Margaret Cottam
  • Hexie Pincushions (6)
  • Bonus Block #1 (AOTH)
  • Happy Birthday (AOTH)
  • Rabbit Box
  • Isabella Johnstone 1854
  • Quaker Pincushion
  • Glory House
  • Stitching wallets (5)
  • Sugar Skull 5
  • Five Star Pinkeep
  • Knitting Needle Roll
  • Candy Cane Stocking

For 2013, I have three main stitching pieces I was to focus on – John Reed, Anniversaries of the Heart and And They Sinned.  All three of those are pretty big undertakings, but certainly not an unreasonable feat to finish them all this year.  I did also have a new start on New Year’s Day, but I chose a piece that’s a bit smaller.  In fact, I’m already half way finished with it.

Also this year I want to focus on my quilting.  I did so little sewing last year that I want to rectify that situation.  I bought a lot of fabric, but now I need to do something with it!  I definitely want to work on finishing some of the quilt WIPs I have in progress.  So these will be my focus this year:

Kate Spain
Kiss Kiss
Blue & White
Partridge
Log Cabin
Pansy Park

Plus I intend to get back on track with my niece and helping her with her first quilt.

I definitely think these are all reachable goals, and it will be nice to focus on some of the pieces I’d really like to finish.

What’s your plan for 2013?

I am grateful for refocusing.