As promised, I've been thinking about what I'd like to accomplish this year in terms of my quilting/crafting. Here is what I've come up with so far, knowing that in March my life is going to change quite dramatically and I may not be able to finish as many things as I'd like to.
1. Conquer my fear of zippers
I know this isn't a quilt goal, but for a long time, any time I see a project with zippers I pass on it. I have a zipper foot, so I know that I have the tools needed. I just need to do it!!! I know that a few years ago I just had to practice free motion quilting, and now I do it all the time.
2. More projects, less quilts
While I realize this is a quilt blog, there are lots of projects I'd like to do, especially with a baby on the way. I also feel like given the amount of time I'll have in the next year, smaller projects might be more manageable. A few things on my list: a Christmas tree skirt, a table runner for a friend, baby booties, a baby sleep sack, a diaper bag for me, a diaper bag for DH (that looks more manly), bibs, etc. I think that doing more projects will really expand my skills. I haven't worked much with bias tape, zippers, interfacing, or velcro, but all the projects on my list are going to force me to work with those, which will be really good for me to learn. Who knows? I may even make more clothes for myself or baby.
3. Make at least one project involving handwork.
This could be hand applique, paper piecing hexagons, sashiko, embroidery, hand piecing, etc. I've seen some beautiful applique with the Joseph's coat quilt along, lots of hexagons people do, and some gorgeous sashiko projects. I don't have good handwork skills, other than the cross-stitch I did when I was a little girl, or the binding I put on quilts. I have a lot of learning to do in this area. I haven't yet decided which type of handwork, but I'm sure I can find something--there are so many choices! If you have recommendations or tutorials to recommend, please pass them along!
4. Use more of my scraps.
I have a lot of scrap bins, yet I don't make much with them. I made one baby quilt last year almost entirely with scraps, so that was a start, but I haven't made much impact in that area. I think if I get into applique or hexagons then I can use a lot of scraps. If I make a string quilt then I can use a lot of strips as well. We'll see what comes of that. A lot of "scrap" patterns call for strips, and my scrap bin is overflowing with non-strip scraps. If I make more improv quilts than I can probably use a lot of scraps as well. Please send along suggestions for using scraps (tutorials, books, patterns, general ideas, etc)
5. Finish 8 quilts.
I feel like my quilt goals keep going down! Mostly I know that I need to finish 4 before April for various babies, plus one baby due in June. So I added two for whatever else might come my way (there is a wedding in May I'd like to make a quilt for as well). One of my quilts is "at the quilter" as part of Ebony's free quilting initiative. So I'll get that one back by the end of the year and it will count as a finish too. I realize that after March I might have a lot less time on my hands, so I want to be realistic.
6. Make a "seasonal" quilt.
At my parent's house, there is a wall in the dining room which has one wall for seasonal quilts. Depending on the season, there are different quilts up (4th of July, Fall, Christmas, Easter, etc). I have an idea for what I want to be the winter one. There is a beautiful "White Birches" quilt in an issue of Quilters World I have. It is white and grey with little red birds, so that might be the one.