My Quilt Lab

by Cynthia Concha

  • cynthia concha

Two days left in the daily blog challenge. I'm going a bit of script for the last two days. I hope you enjoy it! Check out the link at the bottom to read about the other quilters taking part in this challenge.

2020 has been a year... there's many adjectives that can be used to describe it. I don't want to get into the strangeness of the year, or despair and give in to entertaining the negative aspects, because there's enough of that going around. Looking back on my calendar, although certainly different from what I had anticipated this time last year, I can be proud of my accomplishments and growth.

I took more quilt classes this year than in the previous five years combined, and got to connect with a bunch of my quilty heroes. I tried several new techniques, and a few I unexpectedly truly enjoyed. I became a board member of a local guild. I expanded my artistic and technical skills on longarm sewing machines, thanks to a part time job at a local quilt shop. I became much more comfortable with technology and how to explain it to others who weren't a savvy as myself. And I made friends ...something that seemed impossible back in April.

And did I mention I made a BUNCH of quilts?!! Quilts for myself, quilts for family, quilts for friends, quilts for the shop. Old quilts, those haunted UFOs and new quilts. SO MANY QUILTS!!

In fact, I started 2020 with a UFO Resolution. American Patchworks & Quilting Magazine hosts an UFO Challenge every year, and I joined in for 2020. I picked twelve UFOs, they picked which month I worked on them. Now I must admit, I didn't always work on the quilt I was suppose to; in fact, there were a couple of months where new projects took precedence over my UFOs. But looking back at my list, I'm pretty happy with my results. Take a look!

Okay, so I added number 13 halfway thru the year; I got tired of making masks for charity and needed to make a quilt instead. Of the thirteen quilts on the list, I completed seven of them. And number twelve got split into two quilts, and half is done. That's over 50% which is more than I thought I'd get done. And the rest will go on the 2021 UFO Resolution list!

Does anyone use a quilt calendar or quilt organizer? I picked up "The Quilter's Planner" for 2020, and I love it! There's a project tab at the back that helps keep track of where you are in your quilt journey. Plus, there's something very satisfying about being able to check boxes. It really makes me feel like I'm making progress.

I completed 16 projects/quilts during 2020. And I made a handful of new projects... more UFOs. I'm pretty pleased with my work this year.

And I have more ideas for next year, but that'll be tomorrow's post! How does your year in review look? I hope you're finding lots of positive in this strange year.

I have one more label to attach, then I'm done in the quilt lab for this year!

See you tomorrow friends!


To find out more about the blog challenge, click here:

The pretty graphic/picture at the top was done by the talented, athree23 from Pixaby:

The Quilter's Planner - check out their website at:

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  • cynthia concha

Hello friends! The of the year is near, and so is the daily blog challenge. Check out the link below to see all the other amazing quilters who have been participating along with me! Today's prompt is: My Latest Project. And I'm in a mad-scramble to finish up a handful of projects. Take a look!

I've been trying to finish up three projects before the year ticks away. The farthest from completion is my scrappy diamond quilt. Above is close-up of the scrappy diamonds.

I have the small dark border added, and there's a larger light floral orange border still to add. (The top middle diamond is the fabric for the outer border, the backing and binding.) I'm pretty sure I can get the topped completed, and maybe even the backing prepped. Unfortunately, this lovely lady is being added to my 2021 UFO list. (More on this list in a future post.)

The fabric is Pat Sloan's Bonnie Lane fabric line. And I used Krista Moser's mini 60 degree diamond ruler as the template for this pattern.

Speaking of Krista Moser, I did a trial run on her Fanfaire pattern two years ago. I had no intention of doing anything with it; it was mostly a test to see if I could do and possibly teach the pattern for a shop. But a few weeks ago, my best friend called to ask if I had a wall hanging for her at-home office. It's the perfect size since I only did the center diamonds; and as a bonus it matches her profession as a cantor for a large synagogue in New Jersey.

I just finished the facing-binding for it. All that's left is a label! Then it's off to the post. This beauty is definitely getting checked off the list this year!

So I got my Christmas quilt on and off the longarm before Christmas, but I only just finished the binding for this beauty today. The pattern is called Pine Hollow by the talented Amy Smart.

Originally, I was suppose to make the top right corner area for a store sample. But I fell in love with this pattern and fabric that I decide to not only finish the quilt but keep it for myself. And now I have my very own Christmas quilt!

I backed in with an olive green flannel. Take a look at the close-up pictures. I'm really happy with how this quilt turned out.

Two days left in 2020... I better get back to the quilt lab and finish up these experiments!


Blog challenge:

Krista Moser - check out her website for pattern an ruler mentioned above.

Amy Smart - her website has the pattern and video on the technique

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  • cynthia concha

Welcome to day 27 of the 31 day December blog challenge. I think I've managed to average at least 5 posts a week, so I'm considering this a win since I usually only blog every other Sunday. (Check out the link below for more information about this challenge.)

Today's writing prompt is: Skills I want to try. Let's go!

I've already mentioned that I'm putting free-motion quilting on the list. I finally have a domestic sewing machine that will allow me this option, and I've only barely started. But there are a few other skills that I'm interested in exploring.

Custom Longarm Quilting

A few years ago I started rented a longarm, and I'm completely hooked! I love it. I work at a quilt shop part time that lets me help out with customer quilts from time to time. I usually only manage edge-to-edge work, but I'm eager to try of hand at some more advanced custom quilting; borders, corners, and ruler-work to name a few. Like this red Christmas quilt, I'd love to up my game in computerized and free-motion longarm quilting.

Conquering Circles

I've down a bit of curve work in the past, but I really want to be able to save I'm comfortable with curves and circles before the end of the year. The wishful modern quilter in me is always drawn to the intricate circles at quilt shows and online. I have my eye on a few teachers to take classes from, and I'm hoping the guilds I'm a part of will have a workshop or two on the topic.


I've done only a little applique work; the adhesive variety. But I'd like to learn the more traditional version of applique, needle-turned. Admittedly, I'm not a huge hand sewing fan, but this is such an iconic technique in the quilt world, plus it looks amazing when done properly, that this skill is also on my education list this year.

What do you think? Am I missing a skill to add for the new year? What are your needed skills? Let me know!

Until next time, gotta get back to the quilt lab!


2020 Blog Challenge:

All the pictures above are from Check out these talented photographers!

Purple Quilt by mching49:

Red Quilt by hudsoncrafted:

Circles by Davgood Kirshot:

Applique Quilt by bego eguia:

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