I've always loved making resolutions for the new year. It's such a hopeful thing to do. I rarely (never?) keep them (except for the one that says, "Don't be anal about keeping resolutions") but just the process of thinking about the coming year and what I would like to accomplish is positive.
One of my favorite holiday pastimes is going through my stash of projects to see what to focus on in the coming year. I have so many wonderful patterns in the Pattern Museum, so many beautiful fabrics in the Fabric Museum, and so many partially completed projects in the WIP Museum that I'm always surprised to find things that I'd forgotten about.
Here is my list of New Year's Resolutions for project progress.
First is this little lap quilt for my Mom. It's a sweet little panel in a Joan Walsh Anglund style. All I'm doing is hand quilting around the design, and all I have left is to finish the border and bind it. I think she will love it, especially since the carpet in her large sewing room is that dark teal that is used in the panel. Mom's birthday is in March and one of my resolutions is to finish this quilt to give to her for her birthday.
I am crazy for hollyhocks and fell in love with this fabulous design by Nancy Davis Murty. It didn't take me long to finish the top, and it's been sitting in a basket for three years waiting for binding. My second resolution is to bind this quilt. The bear quilt is another Nancy Davis Murty design that I'd like to finish this year. It will have to fit into the "good enough" category as there are some mistakes that, of course, my OCD eye shoots right to whenever I look at it. But, short of starting over, there's no way to correct them so I will live with them. There's a lot to love about this quilt, though, so I'm looking forward to finishing it. One of the reasons I got stuck on it is that I used too stiff a fusing material and my old machine couldn't handle the applique (and my aching fingers couldn't handle doing it by hand, either.) My new machine will handle it just fine, so it's on this year's list.
In stitchery, I'm currently transferring the embroidery patterns for this quilt based on a Bareroots design called "What Color is Spring?" I say based on because I'm making the quilt larger and putting a sampler by Crabapple Hill in the center. I also added a row of orange fabric that was not in the original design and will add a row of embroidery from Bareroots' book of borders in that row. Because the quilt is larger, I've had to alter the borders that came in the pattern to make them larger, but this has been an easy thing to do.
Last but not least is my best love, counted cross stitch. So many charts, so little time. Here are three I hope to progress on this year.
First is this Santa from the 1992 issue of Treasures in Needlework by Better Homes & Gardens/Cross Stitch and Country Crafts. I started out using 11-count, ivory Aida and two strands of floss. After several hours of work (I'd finished his sack of toys and part of the border, I realized I was going to hate the finished product so decided (sigh) to start over. Now I'm working on 14-count fiddler and am much happier with the result. I've pulled him out again and would like to make some real progress this year.
I'm also resolving to make significant progress on "Firefly Faeries" by Marilyn Leavitt-Imblum. I had some eyesight challenges to overcome to work on this piece but I finally got there this spring. If the light is just right and I have my 325 power reading glasses I can work on this piece. It's probably not realistic to expect to finish it this year, but I would like to finish at least two faeries.
The third piece I will focus on this year is one I just started. "Hummingbird Flowers" by Dyan Allaire from artwork by Catherine McClung stole my breath when I first saw it. I had just purchased a hummingbird print by an amazing watercolorist named Kory Fluckiger from Ogden, Utah. I am planning to use the print as the focal point in the guest bedroom in the house we are designing for our retirement, and when I saw this chart I realized it would go beautifully in the same room. Today I realized that the hollyhock quilt will also go well with these two pieces. I'm really excited to get this one done before we move into the house (fall of 2008) so I need to really hustle!
I have lots of other ideas for this year. We are hoping to visit family over the summer and I have cross stitch and quilting ideas I'd love to do to take as gifts. A friend just moved into a new home in a different state and I hope to visit her this summer; I have a wallhanging started for her. And, although I've made lots of quilt blocks using foundation piecing, I've never designed a foundation-pieced quilt of my own. I want to do one of the Sleeping Beauty castle at Disneyland, then use it to mount my pins from Disneyland.
The real key to success in all of this is to NOT sit in front of the TV and veg. I MUST always have something in my hands in the evening. Surely once this becomes a habit, the time wasting will be overcome!