Friday, December 31, 2021

Best of 2021!!!

 Hello, quilting friends!!  If you are new to The Joyful Quilter, welcome.  If you have visited before, welcome back!  Cheryl @ Meadow Mist Designs is continuing her Best of... link party tradition.  Follow THIS LINK to see all of the wonderful bloggers who have joined in the fun.  Here is her lovely button:

To take part in the link party, participants were asked to write a blog post highlighting our "best" 5 posts from 2021 and join the linkup.  Cheryl suggested the following examples of posts to be included:

  • Posts with the most views
  • Posts with the most comments
  • Posts that provoked the best discussions
  • Posts showing your favorite finishes
  • Posts of your best tutorials
  • Posts that are simply your favorites
She said that this post is not only a great way to find new readers, it is also wonderful to be able to highlight some of your best posts for those readers who have joined your blog throughout the year."

The link party will open the day after Christmas, Sunday December 26th and will be open for one week ending on Sunday, January 2nd.

This will be my 3rd (consecutive) year of participation.  Those of you who have been following me for a while know that this year has been a doozy for our family.  Buying a new home and selling our old one has been the main focus in Joyful Quilterland  during the last half of 2021.  It made the first half of the year pale in comparison.  That being said, I have still managed to make a few things and write quite a number of posts.  (I'm a wordy girl. What can I say? LOL!)

Here is an overview of my productivity:

I completed 4 table toppers, 5 mini quilts, 7 quilted pin cushions, 3 table runners, 5 larger quilts of varying sizes, 1 quilted hot pad, 5 quilted mug rugs, 4 wall hangings, 1 quilted thread catcher, and finished 4 donation quilts from tops pieced by others .  All of these were made from my ever-growing stash of fabric scraps!  I also quilted 21 quilts on my APQS longarm quilting machine for my quilting friends, which screeched to a halt not long before the move and STILL has not resumed, as The Beast is in need of attention.  Unfortunately, I missed my window of opportunity for getting it repaired over the summer, but have an appointment the first week of the new year.

Items made per month...1 

January - 5
February - 5
March - 5
April - 6
May - 10
June - 2
July - 0
August - 0
September - 2
October - 2
November - 1
December - 1

I made a total of 39 quilted items in 2021.  (16 of those were made as a result of Angela's Rainbow Scrap Challenge.)  Not my most productive year (that was last year), but still a respectable number of finishes.  If not for packing, the move and the disaster area that my studio has remained, I might have been on target to tie 2020's totals.  No worries!!!  2022 is on the way and it's filled with the promise of more opportunities for quilting.  :o))

But my BEST posts??

I took a long and hard at the posts written in 2021, but choosing the BEST was quite a challenge...

... Mine include...

Not technically done yet, as I couldn't decide on a finishing technique.

Favorite (and first) finish in the new house - The Birthday Quilt

LOVE that I can now do porch swing photos!

Most artistic finish, too.

It was a pleasure to see how excited one friend could be over such a small quilted gift.

The longarm used to earn its keep... SEW hoping that it will soon be back in working order!

Thanks for joining me in this review.  I'm glad that Cheryl organized a Link Party dedicated to reminding us to take another look at the blog posts we've written during the year.  Oh! Don't forget to check out my new 2022 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge!  You can find the condensed version of that information HERE.

Sharing with Alycia

Until next time...
Quilt the year away!!!

Sunday, December 26, 2021

2021 Rainbow Scrap Challenge - The Year in Review

2021 Rainbow Scrap Challenge - The Year in Review

It's the final week of the year and this is where I break my RSC progress down to a monthly review of scrap use.  If you saw my 2020 Rainbow Scrap Challenge - Year in Review post, you might be surprised about what will follow.  I changed everything this year and all but stopped quilting for half the year!  We moved house and studio.

First, I would like to thank Angela for her continued offering of the RSC by hosting the 2021 Rainbow Scrap Challenge this year, even though she was having a really tough year at work.

I'm sharing this post
Angela @ So Scrappy

I appreciate her determination in offering the RSC21 Full Stop Sampler.  I worked on an abbreviated version, but fell behind because of all the packing and unpacking that I had to do during the second half of the year. Once I settle into my new studio, I hope to focus on working through more of the fabric scraps that I missed.

Now, take a look at my progress for the year...


Two scrappy pin cushions:

My entry for the January 2021 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge:


My February 2021 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge entry:

MARCH - Dark/Bright GREEN

I came up with a mug rug for March's TABLE SCRAPS Challenge:

LOVE that spiral quilting!

APRIL - Light/Bright BLUE

My Small Seascape Series included the Color of the Month...

Kitchen Stitchin' Blog Hop make:

The Sewing Mat made for my TABLE SCRAPS entry:


Hands2Help Hometown Hero table runner:

InspiRED was my DrEAMI moment for the month:

Reeling in Red, a new Gallery Wire mini:


This little mug rug spent many months on my bedside table:

JULY - Black or Dark BLUE

Another month, another TABLE SCRAPS Challenge entry:

Not finished.  :o((


Another look at July's same (undone) TABLE SCRAPS mini mat:

The scrap of binding would have brought in the Color of the Month.


Pumpkin colored table topper:

OCTOBER - LIME or Light GREEN or Light Neutrals

My Guild Challenge began with the Color of the Month:

My entry for the Masala Box (Informal) Blog Hop:

NOVEMBER - Assembly of Blocks

My entry for the Mini Maker Baggie Challenge:

With no blocks ready to assemble, I used up another handful of scraps.

DECEMBER - Finishing and Quilting

My final entry for the 2021 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge:

A rainbow finish to finish out the year!  :o))

As you saw above, I sewed with the Color of the Month.  (Almost) EVERY month!  My RSC productivity was severely diminished, but participating in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge remained my focus for scrap sewing!!  During 2021, I found that it was a great way to preserve my sanity in the wake of the craziness of moving house in a world continuing to experience a global pandemic.

Whooping it up with Sarah


Sharing with Cynthia

I enjoyed my TABLE SCRAPS Challenge.  I'm SEW glad that Judy @ Busy Hands are Happy Hands, Deb @  Happy to be Scrappy and LeeAnna @ Not Afraid of Color encouraged me to offer it in conjunction with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2021!  Next year, I am offering an updated version.  Will YOU play along, too?

Are YOU up for a TABLE SCRAPS Challenge???

Check out THIS TAB to find out the particulars for 2022.

Until next time...
Quilt SO scrappy!!! 

Saturday, December 25, 2021

ScrapHappy Saturday - RSC21 - Week 52

Welcome to Week 52 of the 2021 Rainbow Scrap Challenge!!  This week was spent trying to keep ahead of my scheduled year-end blog posts.  Believe it or not, I just MIGHT have sewed, again.  :o))

Read on to "hear" all the news...

SUNDAY - Today, Knittingsuek and I tried something new:

MONDAY - Late yesterday afternoon, I was able to catch up with LeeAnna @ Not Afraid of Color for our weekly Zoom call:

TUESDAY - My officemate will be on vacation for the rest of the year, so she encouraged me to take the afternoon off.  Our supervisor approved and off I went!  :o))

I ran some errands and...

Wait for it.  Wait for it!

... Did some SEWING (that I'll share later in the week) which just happened to use the colors from this gorgeous hand painted card that arrived in today's mail from Linda @ Art in Search:

Thank you, Linda!!  I feel SEW honored to be on your mailing list.

Also, Ann @ Fiber Designs by Ann asked me to let you know that she is hosting a Fabric GIVEAWAY!!  Stop by HERE for a chance to win.  P.S. Be sure to tell her that Joy sent you.  :o))

WEDNESDAY - It was the LONGEST day EVER!!!  Between my officemate being away and call volume being significantly decreased, the hours really dragged by.  :o((

The longest day was followed by the BEST leftovers EVER!!  Seriously.  DS2 said so!  I felt like a professional chef, even though all I did was slice the chicken and make more of the sauce the recipe had called for when I made it the a couple of nights ago.   :o))

THURSDAY - Wait, WHAT???  I just got the following comment on last Saturday's post:

Sherry has left a new comment on the post "ScrapHappy Saturday - RSC21 - Week 51":

I enjoy your blog. I think we may be very close neighbors as I also live right at the church where they have the drive through nativity.

Thanks, Sherry!  I tried to respond to you via email, but you are a "No Reply" commenter.  Do you live in South Meadow or Little Creek?  I would love to meet you!  Please send me a email.  You can link to it from my profile page.

FRIDAY - Late last night/early this morning, I released the December 2021 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge/LINK PARTY.

Worked for a few hours then went to pick up the Christmas Beast.  Once it was safely in the fridge, I went up to Zoom with LeeAnna @ Not Afraid of Color for a little while, since I was actually HOME on a weekday afternoon:

Speaking of home...

DS1 is "home" for the holiday.  Too bad he feels like guest in our new house!  I keep telling him that he needs to spend more than one night at a time so that he might begin to feel comfortable here.

The evening was filled with baking, visiting, and a little bit of...

Ho! Ho! Humbug!!  We FINALLY decorated.  Inside...

Cards from friends and family

Rudolph and a festive snowman bucket

DS1's twisted paper snowflake

... And out:

SATURDAY - It's LINK PARTY day for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge!  I hope you will join me in visiting Angela @ So Scrappy to see what wonderful projects the RSC Quilters have finished this week.

We even found the perfect place for the smaller of our two trees

Check back tomorrow for my Year in Review post.

Until next time...
SCRAPPY holidays!!

Friday, December 24, 2021

December 2021 - TABLE SCRAPS Runner/Topper Challenge - LINK PARTY!!

Welcome to the December 2021 TABLE SCRAPS Runner/Topper Challenge!!  Before I say anything else, I want to say a big THANK YOU you to all who participated in this hair brained scheme of mine this year.  I absolutely love making things with my fabric scraps and I am SEW pleased that many of you joined in my scrappy quest!  Keep reading to find out about our 2022 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge.  I appreciate that YOU were asking for another year of scrap sewing fun!

Please scroll down to the bottom of the page to enter your table runner/topper, mug rug, etc. in the Link Party by MONDAY, January 3rd @ 11:59 PM (EST.)  

That's right...

My gift to you is an extended deadline, as posted above, because the last FULL weekend of December fell on Christmas weekend.  We all know how busy the holiday season can be and I wanted to make sure that YOU had enough time to join in the fun! 

Here is the color inspiration photo for this month's TABLE SCRAPS Challenge:

Image by Isabella and Zsa Fischer on Unsplash

I absolutely LOVE a good RAINBOW project and thought that might be a fun way to finish up the year.  As usual, any and all color combinations are welcome.  Stay tuned for information about the 2022 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge (at the end of this post.)  The team and I are making some minor adjustments.  Nothing too limiting, just adding to the inspiration and fun factor, if you are "stuck" as to what to make.  For the most part, I'll be using Angela's color selections for the 2022 Rainbow Scrap Challenge in my entries.

And remember...

No blog?  No problem, you will be able to have your scrappy table runners/toppers, etc. hosted here on The Joyful Quilter.  Just pop me an email with your name, a photo of your completed project, a blurb about it and I will add it to a follow-up post.

Where's the table covering, Joyful???

This is my entry for the December TABLE SCRAPS Challenge:

Here is how the process went...

Choose a rainbow of scraps:

Stitch pairs of scraps:

With most of the rainbow assembled, I needed to choose a layout...

More square-ular, as shown above, or the skinny runner below:

My Design Assistant (DS2) selected the skinny rectangle below...

... While I found that scrap of coordinating binding, along with a near-perfect piece of batting:

Next came the (minimal) quilting:

That quilting was followed by binding:

There you have it!  My freshly finished fun rainbow mini table mat:

The back is a scrap of dreamy night sky print that's just right for my bedside:

It measures approximately 5" x 10" and there was only about 3" of binding leftover, which I can add back to the scrap bin for the win:

Linking up with Alycia
Finished (Or Not) Friday


Sharing (on Sunday) with Cynthia
Oh Scrap!

NEW "RULES" for the New Year...

1.  For 2022, I will be offering a MONTHLY THEME OR TECHNIQUE to help inspire/inform your work.  Prompt will be released with the prior month's Link Party (Example, Dec.21 for Jan.22's prompt, as well as listed in the 2022 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge tab in the header at the top of my blog.)

2.  We will continue WORKING WITH SCRAPS from our cutting table (hence the name of the challenge.)

3.  Your ENTRIES MAY INCLUDE other small items such as basket, bags, pillows, and pin cushions (in addition to the runners/toppers/ mug rugs, etc. included in the 2021 Challenge.)

4.  While Angela offers color suggestions through her Rainbow Scrap Challenge, you are always welcome to sew with whatever scraps you choose.

January's theme:    SNOWMEN

Thank goodness for quilting friends!  (Even ones that I have never met in person.)  They were first in line to participate with me when I discussed starting the 2021 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge and then encouraged me to continue on with a challenge for 2022.  

Many thanks to The Team:


Finished or not, join the link-up here on the blog.  Tag me on IG, if you participate that way.  Use the following:  @thejoyfulquilter and #2022tablescrapschallenge

And, with that...

It's time to add your own projects to the Table Scraps Link Party below!!  Here's hoping you had fun with a RAINBOW of scraps this month, as I'm fairly certain that it's impossible to use up ALL of our scraps, even if we participated in this year's Rainbow Scrap Challenge!

Until next time...
It's a Cover Up!!!

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

The Guest Blogger(s) - Vol. 26 - Jane from Australia

Welcome to another edition of The Guest Blogger(s)!!  This is the final month for the 2021 TABLE SCRAPS Challenge.  Jane didn't let me down!

Here she is with this month's report...

Hi Joy,
Here are my December runners- yes plural!
I wanted a festive-ish runner which could be used in the run up to Christmas (pardon the pun) and I also managed to use up some previously finished cross stitch pieces and made fabric trees. (The Holy Night embroidery was just now made to even up the  trees🌲 .)

And other side..

Then I wanted a runner with more depth of colour to carry my bling tree on Christmas Day. My sister and I made a bling tree each from old jewellery, the most bling ever in my house at one time..

And the other side

The P made from “pearls” was made for my mum, Pearl, when I was very young, and it came back to me some years ago when she died, so it is a lovely reminder of her love for me in keeping it her whole life.
And to complete the bling the little mirrored base does actually turn.

Best wishes to you and your family, and all your blog readers, for a wonderful Christmas and a safe holiday, Jane 

Give Jane some quilty love in the comments below.  I know that you enjoyed seeing her holiday runners (and special trees) as much as I did!  Thank you for sending photos for the blog, Jane.  I'm thrilled to post your projects.  They serve to inspire others to USE their scraps that we quilters seem to accumulate!

Link Party REMINDER...

The December 2021 TABLE SCRAPS Link Party will be opening on  Friday, December 24th @ 12:01 AM and I'm hope that YOU join in the scrappy fun!

Until next time...
Run(ner) off those empty tables!!!