Time Management for Artists

I really love planning and I love planners even more. And I’m a huge fan of time management. This means that I own almost every time management book. Which made me realize that owning them and reading them and having all those beautiful, colorful planners doesn’t mean that you are managing your time. I am perfect in theoretical but not so in practical time management. But… whenever there is an incentive I’m ready to start anew.

So when I discovered this blogpost by Elizabeth Barton on “Time Management for Artists” I got out my planner and my pens and now I’m on my way to a perfectly organized life (I hope).

Head over to Elizabeth’s blog to read the article – there are a lot of good tips how to save time and get organized.

Time Management for Artists by Elizabeth Barton
Like everyone, I never seem to have enough time to do all the things I want to do. So I’ve come up with a Time Management checklist for myself to see if I can’t just squeeze a little more juice out of those 24 hours!! ………………………………….


Organization for Quilters

Are you spring cleaning?

Spring is really on its way here and some of us get the urge to clean their houses, their cars or their gardens. Well (fortunately) I don’t belong to this group of people but when the days get really long and the yellow sun is shining in the blue skies above green meadows I get the urge to start a new quilt with all these spring colors in it. And as I’m working my way through my stash in search for the right fabric I usually start to think that there must be a better solution to store my fabric and my thread (all in a tumble in a drawer at the moment), that the sewing table could look neater (cutting mat, fabric and sewing machine in one big heap), that the scissors and rotary cutters might be stored in a more organized way (thrown into a plastic container) and so on.

But I found the perfect book to get me and my sewing space more organized.

by Carolyn Wood

Carolyn Wood starts from scratch. In the first chapter she challenges the reader to analyze the reason for ones clutter and to decide what to keep and what to let go. Only then you are allowed to go out and purchase containers or shelfs.
This book covers every area of your quilting Wood talks about the storage of fabric, tools, Ufos, extra blocks, strips, scraps, and strings, thread and finished quilts and gives advice on furniture and lighting in the different areas of a quiltstudio. She tells how to organize your quilting books and patterns and even has a section on time management for quilters with a lot of different projects. And the best – Carolyn Wood even tells you how to maintain your new organization.
The book offers solutions for many different sized quilting spaces – from a space under a stairwell or in a closet to a whole room.
What I like most in this book is the feasibility of the projects. Carolyn Woods talks about giving yourself a timeframe (and not tackling everything at once) and reserving a budget for all the things you want (and sticking to it).
And then there are the pictures. Colorful, great pictures of organized sewing spaces – so inviting that you really want to start organizing your own space immediately.
So if you are thinking about spring cleaning why not tackle your sewing room first. This book is not brandnew but it still is a perfect guide.

Organizing solutions for every Quilter by Carolyn Wood
by C&T Publishing (ISBN 978-1-60705-196-1)
available at C&T Publishing as “print on demand” or as e-book (click here)
or at Amazon as paperback or for the Kindle (click here)


By coincidence I stumbled about some blogposts on how to organize your sewing space with many helpful tips:
Here a post about organizing a small sewing room
Lots of tips (not only) for small spaces (click here)
Collected from quilters around the world these tips cover everything from room layout and furniture to lighting and tools.


So get inspired by all the tips and pictures. Maybe you even find some perfect solutions for yourself. But most of all – don’t forget to quilt!


The taming of the scraps

When I made my New York City quilt I tried to make a smooth graduation from the very dark 9patches to the soft-colored ones. So I cut a lot more of the squares than I needed.

As I was about to toss the remaining patches into my scrap box I realised (not for the first time) that this box was a mess. That’s the reason I usually cut even small new pieces from my more organized stash than digging into my scrap box.

As our season is going into spring I just bought some new shoes and the boxes still lingered there. So I decided to make a start on organizing my scraps. I always envied quilters who cut their scaps into some useful size and when it hit them they just could grab the box and start to sew a great scrap quilt. That’s what I wanted to do as well.

So I cut my small scaps into squares 2½ inches (6,5 cm) which is a sewn square of 2 inches (5 cm) and seam allowance. They all went into one of my shoe boxes.

My larger scraps got cut into 5 inches (13 cm) squares. This is two times the small square plus seam allowances. So if needed I can cut the large squares into 4 small squares. They got a separate shoe box.

And finally I had some strips left over from jelly rolls. They got their own shoe box as well and will be joined by longer strips from the scrap box. As they all will be 2½ inches wide they too can be cut into small squares when needed. Of course they got their own box too.

And those boxes fit perfectly into my fabric closet. 6 of them. So I can choose 3 other dimensions for my scaps – we’ll see. But therefore I have to buy some more shoes first.

It’s just a start and it will take some time until all my scraps are cut and organized. But at the moment I feel clever, busy and organised. What more can you wish for.