It's that time again! 2013 has come to a close, and I always like to sit down and think about what I'd like to quilt and sew in the next year. It's been a year of changes for me - a new job and a move to a new city. It's been hard to find the time to sew, so my goals this year are going to be fewer, but that doesn't mean I will be any less excited about them!

Looking back, apparently I never made goals for the 2013 year (whoops!). Going back to my 2012 goals, some of them I accomplished, and many of them I did not. Working from that list as a base, here are my sewing goals for the 2014 year.

Quilts

Sewing

Cross-stitch

Embroidery

Community

Okay, this clearly is not a small list. I guess I'll just see how it goes! What are your plans for the upcoming year!

Floss

Some say that too much of a good thing is bad.

Floss

While in many cases this may be true,

Floss

when it comes to floss,

Floss

I beg to differ.

Hoop Travel Bag by jenniferworthen
I'm still doing some reorganizing of my sewing space, and I came across a few projects that needed better storage than sitting on the floor (haha). For my flower embroidery, I sewed up my fourth hoop travel bag (pattern by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery). Super cute, right? I don't know what the bottom fabric is, but I knew right away this was the perfect project for it. The top (and the interior) is from Sugar Snap by Melissa Averinos.
Drawstring Bag by jenniferworthen
All of my little hexies needed a bag to go in as well, so I made up a drawstring bag (pattern by In Color Order). I like my little safety pin fabric. Maybe this will inspire me to finish my hexies!
TAST Weeks 9-10 by jenniferworthen
I've been a little slow on pictures, but I'm all caught up on my TAST stitching! Week 9 was couching, which turned out a lot more fun than it looked. It's a really easy way to get a big impact! Week 10 was the running stitch, which of course I always love. Simple and clean.
TAST Weeks 11-12 by jenniferworthen
Week 11 was the whipped wheel, which I had never heard of before. It's pretty fun to make, and they look like starfish! Week 12 was the alternating barred chain stitch, which is a variation on the regular chain stitch we did in week 8.
TAST Weeks 1-12 by jenniferworthen
And here are weeks 1 through 12 all together. The colors of the color wheel will get lighter as I move away from the center, which should create a pretty cool effect.
TAST Weeks 7-8 by jenniferworthen
Weeks 7 and 8 of TAST were a little difficult for me. Week 7 was the lazy daisy stitch, and apparently my lazy daisies look like deformed starfish.  Haha! The conclusion of that experiment was to not make the center of the daisy one single point, but to separate is out a bit. Also, I had to use more than two threads to give it enough weight to lay down correctly. Any fewer led to even more deformity, if that's even possible. Week 8, the chain stitch, was easier. I tried doing a triangle, but due to the method of construction, this stitch lends itself towards slight changes in direction more than severe changes.
TAST Weeks 1-8 by jenniferworthen
Here are weeks 1-8 all together. The first ring of the color wheel is done! I'm liking it a lot. (P.S. This sampler is going to be huge!)
 
Also, a few weeks ago Diane asked about the marker I used and if it would come out of Aida fabric. Of course, I hadn't tested it, so I was a little scared to, but good news - it came right out with water like it was supposed to! I removed the ink around the inside diameter of weeks 1-3, which you can see in the picture. The pen used is a Dritz double-sided water soluble pen that I got at either Joann's or Wal-Mart for much cheaper than I see online.
I got a little behind on my TAST stitching, so here are three weeks worth at once!
TAST, Weeks 4-6 by jenniferworthen
Week 4 was the Cretan stitch, shown on the left. It's very similar to the feather stitch of week 3. Week 5 was the herringbone stitch, which I really loved. I can see this being a great border stitch. Week 6 was the chevron stitch, which was also fun to stitch.
TAST Progress by jenniferworthen
Here's my progress from the last six weeks. Two more and I'll have the first circle done!

Hoop Travel Bags by jenniferworthen
Hoop Travel Bags, a photo by jenniferworthen on Flickr.

I have a lot of cross-stitch and embroidery on my goal list for this year. A few of them are monthly stitch-alongs, so I decided I needed something to keep my projects in long-term as I'm switching between them frequently. So, as I often do, I copied Amanda's awesome idea of making some hoop travel bags. The pattern is from The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery, who also happens to be the creator of the Dessert of the Month Club stitch-along that I'm also doing. The bags are the perfect size for your hoop and stitching accessories. Plus I got to use some cool colored zippers, so that was definitely exciting!

Hoop Travel Bag by jenniferworthen
Hoop Travel Bag, a photo by jenniferworthen on Flickr.

My first, and probably favorite, bag is made from some Michael Miller's Citron Grey and Amy Butler's Lark. I'm usually not good at pairing together fabrics from different lines, but this was an easy match, and I love how well they go together.

Hoop Travel Bag by jenniferworthen
Hoop Travel Bag, a photo by jenniferworthen on Flickr.

My second bag is made from two prints from Liz Scott's Sugar Pop.

Hoop Travel Bag by jenniferworthen
Hoop Travel Bag, a photo by jenniferworthen on Flickr.

My third bag is made from Robert Kaufman's Metro Living and a flannel print I bought at Joann's a very long time ago. I held on to it because I loved it SO much, but I could never find the right use for it. This bag turned out to be its perfect project!

I still have a few other hoop travel bag ideas that involve hexagons and cross-stitch on the actual bag, but those are going to take me longer to get to. These are perfect for using right now, and I love them!

What do you use to carry your hand-sewing projects in?

TAST Week 3

The stitch for week 3 of TAST is the feather stitch. This stitch is very similar to the buttonhole stitch, and is a whole lot of fun to do! This section of the color wheel is red and red-orange. Go color wheels!

TAST Week 2

The stitch for week 2 of TAST was the buttonhole stitch. I used three threads on the smaller stitch and two on the larger one. The three-thread stitch isn't quite straight on the bottom, so I think using only two threads is better for the buttonhole stitch on this fabric.

And as for what these stitches are going to become? Everyone was right - it's a color wheel! I can't wait to see it progress. It's going to be awesome!

One of my sewing adventures for 2012 is the Take A Stitch Tuesday (TAST) stitch-along. I'm still pretty new to the world of embroidery, so this is going to be a great way to learn 52 new stitches. I'm going to turn these practice stitches into something totally cool as well that I am SO excited about.

TAST Week 1

Last week's stitch was the fly stitch. It's very easy to make and looks neat as well.

TAST Hint

And here's a hint as to what I'm going to turn all of these practice stitches into. Any guesses?