Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Hello 2014!

I have to admit, 2013 was just a blur.  Every day seemed to fly by...

Balancing maintaining a home, running a very successful at home business (I am a longarm quilter) and starting new endeavors like blogging and quilt design left me quite busy and very overwhelmed at times.

I spent this morning preparing for the new year by updating business spreadsheets, taking a physical inventory for my accountant and reviewing my business plan.  This will be my 8th year quilting for others.  It is hard to believe it has been that long!

Looking back at my records, I have quilted well over 1000 quilts for others.  That is miles and miles of thread! 

I have a wonderfully loyal customer base and consider many of them close friends.

One of the great things about quilting for others is I get to be a part of so many wonderful quilts.  Many I would never piece myself but from each I am always inspired.

Many of my customers are such talented piecers. 

Thanks to some of them, I always get to see the newest lines of fabric.

The fabric and color combinations in some of these quilts make it difficult to not want to make one for myself.

(This hopefully explains why I start so many quilts!)

I usually only share customer quilts on my Facebook page but I felt they were just as important to my success in 2013 as the quilts I made myself.

...and speaking of my own quilts.  There were lots of those too!

I started 2013 with a list of 42 projects in the works.  This sounds like a lot but some are long term quilts like hand quilting, EPP and applique.

I'm starting out 2014 with 47...sigh.  Guess what I will be focusing on this year!

I did finish 60 quilts in 2013.  And 6 of them were projects I started many years ago so that was good.  Most of these victories were due to joining in some Finish-A-Longs, so I will be doing that again in 2014. 

Do you think I can finish out 2014 with less than 35 WIPs?


Of the 60 quilts, 21 were made from scraps and 27 were made from my existing stash.  Those numbers make me happy as I really didn't spend a lot of money on fabric.  You would think I would have run out of fabric, but I am always amazed at how little fabric you need to make a quilt with.

I think this quilt was my favorite scrap quilt made in 2013.  It seemed to have a life of its own and I really enjoyed watching it evolve.

I only made about half a dozen quilts that I actually purchased at least some fabric for.

My favorite quilt of the year was the Star Surround quilt.  I rarely get attached to quilts but this one is a keeper.

I plan on joining in to this year's Quilt-A-Long with Melissa.  I haven't firmed up the colors yet but I know navy will be among them.

2013 was also the year I had my first publication of an original design.  Over the year, there were a total of three quilts published.

You will be seeing more publications in 2014 and if I can find the time, maybe some patterns available for purchase.

What I am most excited about for 2014 is the scrap series I am putting together. As I make my scrap quilts, I will be sharing my process on what inspires me, how I choose patterns and layouts, tutorials on the blocks and even ideas for quilting.  The posts will be written in such a way as to guide readers who want to work through their own scraps to sew along and make their own quilt based on their personal style of quilting.  I am hoping with each new quilt, more quilters decide to join in.

Quilting is more fun than Housework
<a href="" target="_blank"><img src="" alt="Quilting is more fun than Houseowrk" width="125" height="125" /></a>

The best part of 2013 was getting to know so many of you.  I am so inspired by what I see in so many of your blogs and encouraged by my readers support and comments. I truly do appreciate all of you and look forward to seeing what 2014 brings.  Cheers!

Linking up with Lily's Quilts Fresh Sewing Day, Confessions of a Fabric Addict for 2014 Goals and Sarah Quilts for the Year in Review.  Be sure and check out what others are planning for the new year!


Elise Lea said...

Lovely to see some of your long arm work! It is incredible and I hope to see more of it on here in the future! Great job on your finishes too.

Jan Baker said...

I love your long arm work. Maybe you can give us some ideas for quilting on our sewing machines.

Melissa at My Fabric Relish said...

Wow....truly amazing! You were one busy lady and still had time to cheer lots of other bloggers along including myself. Thanks for that! Happy New Year!!

Paula@TheSassyQuilter said...

It has been a great year! Love your work Cynthia and have loved getting to know you. Love seeing you in those quilt magazines too! Can't wait to see what you have up your sleeve for 2014:)

{ HeatherK @ AReformedHeath'n } said...

Your quilting is beautiful! I look forward to seeing your projects this year.

Anne said...

Sixty...quilts.. :O AND quilting for others! You are remarkable! Your long-arm work is so beautiful, thank you so much for sharing the photos. I love how thoughtfully you place the designs to go with the quilt tops.
Happy New Year, and best of luck getting that WIP number down!

Suze said...

When I see your quilting, it not surprising that you have a loyal customer base - your quilting is beautiful and amazing! I can hardly believe that you finished 60 quilts in a year. I don't think I could even bind 60 quilts in a year. That is an amazing finish - that's over 1 a week. I was able to finish one table runner in the entire year. Of course, I found out that I've been battling double vision for years and had reached a point that I could no longer handle it on my own. After several specialists, I finally had surgery on both my eyes in late November and I'm still recouping. I'll find out in a week if I have to have additional surgery or if I'll get a new Rx for glasses then and hopefully be back in the business of doing some stitching myself. It's hard to cut out fabric when you don't see the lines on the ruler properly and to thread a needle with double vision. So, I consider myself fortunate to have found a great Christian surgeon. He is awesome and so positive. The first thing he told me was that my breast cancer was not back in my brain and causing the problem. He put me at ease about that first. He just knew what my worst fear probably was. My best friend was with me and told him that I was afraid I was going blind and he said there was no evidence of that. He has a great sense of humor while still being very professional. I've never had a physician ask to pray with me at an appointment and before surgery. I don't think he would have been offended if I had said I didn't feel comfortable with that - I think he would have respected the difference of beliefs. Wishing you a very Peace filled and prosperous new year. I hope to see more publications of your work. I love the Tangerine Dream. (Of course, I might call it Orange Dream - for Oklahoma State Cowboys - lol).

Jayne said...

Quilters are so amazingly busy! You never realize what you accomplish until the end of the year and you go back to review it! I wish I still lived in Oregon...I so need a Long Arm Quilter and you do beautiful work!
I'm very excited about your Scrap series. One of my favorite things is using scraps! I'll be watching!
Have a great year!

Anonymous said...

Your quilting is so beautiful! Congrats on finishing so many projects last year. I need to put together my 2014 list (which should include attempting my first very scrappy looking quilt!) and submitting another quilt to the Sisters Outdoor QS.

Barb and Sharon said...

It is nice to read blogs of other people who longarm quilt. I have had my machine for just over a year and I am working on finishing my quilts (and some of my mothers). Then I think I'll be ready to try taking on other people's. Thanks for inspiration!

Needle little Balance said...

Oh you starsquilt is just so pretty!

Kathy Kinsella said...

Beautiful work . . . and to have completed so many quilts is fantastic!

RobinSue said...

Your work is beautiful. The Star Surround quilt is luscious!

Rachel said...

Your quilting is fabulous. I love the churn dash quilt. Beauty in simplicity.

thebutterflyquilter said...

You do wonderful work! Love your designs that you have quilted on some of these quilts that you have shown. To make a quilt special it has to be quilted special and it looks like you have achieved that ten fold. Here's hoping for another successful business for you this year!

Beth said...

Beautiful quilts and quilting. I want to see more on the scrap series! I am on a quest to use up stash!

Sarah @ said...

I laughed when I read that you started with 42 and went out with 47, but then I read that you finished 60!! Woah!! That is absolutely incredible. Beautiful work and I'll definitely be following your scrap series.

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