January Monthly Report

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Happy February! It's time for the January monthly report. See past reports here.

My sewing this month wasn't anything super exciting, but I did finish some projects that I know will get a lot of use. First up I made more placemats. As I mentioned last month, we've been eating dinner at our dining room table most days since the pandemic started. I have a great stash of vintage tablecloths, but only had one style of placemats. Over the last two months I've made a few sets of placemats from my stash of home dec fabrics. It feels good to use up these types of fabrics, and I'll get to enjoy them on our table instead of tucked away in the fabric cabinet. They're super simple, just two pieces of fabric right sides together and sew around the sides. Turn, press and topstitch. They get the job done, and have been a great stash buster. I cut my rectangles 15"x17" and used 1/2" seam allowances for 14"x16" finished placemats.

My other big project this month was sewing up a set of four new pillowcases. I cut and washed the fabrics for these sometime in 2019 (I think, could have been 2018.). I've pulled them out and ironed them a few times and then put them away without cutting them. Finally in January I cut the pieces and stitched them up. I used some of my voile prints from Geometric Bliss, so they're super soft and silky feeling. I'm glad to have these to add into our rotation of cases. I use the burrito method for making mine, outlined here. Using the serger when doing the French seams really speeds these up.

I made a new cover for one of our long heating pads. This one is a little older and it runs pretty hot, so it needed a more substantial cover. I used some fat quarters of Nani Iro brushed cotton (flannel). I added a layer of fusible fleece to give it some extra padding. I'm happy to report it's back in use already and much improved by the new cover. It closes with a single snap.

My last sewing finish for the month was a pincushion from my scraps. I just barely squeezed this project in before the month ended, so I kept it simple. I decided to use all Minny Muu scraps, which are perfect for small projects since the scale of the prints is so tiny. I followed my own Scrappy Nine-Patch Pincushion Tutorial to make it. I did a pretty dense crosshatch quilting on the top, I like the resulting texture.

To keep myself accountable for my stash goals, I track my yardage for fabric and yarn each month. Read more about how I track here. Here is how I did in January:

January Fabric
Used up: 7.625 yards
Brought in: 0 yards
Net: -7.625 yards
Year to date: -7.625 yards

January Yarn
Used up: 393 yards
Brought in: 0 yards
Net: -393 yards
Year to date: -393 yards

I feel good about my stash results for this month. I wasn't tempted to buy any fabric or yarn, and I finished a decent amount! I'll take it.

I knit more this month than I did in the entirety of 2020! Michael has been working hard on writing and submitting a grant, so I've been spending time keeping him company while he works on the computer. It was the perfect excuse to get back into the swing of knitting. I knit two hats, plus a cowl. You can see the details for all three on my Ravelry page. I'm loving the small projects, and the finishes are keeping me motivated to continue on. Hoping it sticks, I haven't knit regularly in quite a while and it is relaxing. Hats are definitely my favorite!

My baking adventure in January was making chocolate chip bagels! When we lived in Madison, I loved the chocolate chip bagels from Bagels Forever. Getting one toasted with butter was one of my favorite treats after running errands. I've been pining for one ever since we moved away, so I finally took the plunge and tried making them. I was afraid the chocolate would disturb the rise, but it didn't at all. If anything, the dough rose more! I used my go-to bagel recipe (Water Bagels by King Arthur Baking) and I added mini chocolate chips to the dough during the knead. They turned out awesome! Next time I plan to add the chips directly to the flour.

Sleepy George Bunny.

Have a Great Month!


  1. A really productive month for you. I especially enjoyed seeing your placemats - good idea!

  2. I really like the back of your unfinished quilt-a lot of times we only see the finished product in everyone's social media--I will have try your bagel recipe (your stuff always works) and you look great with your knit hats and so, does mr. george.❤️

  3. thank you for a sweet post jeni. stay warm and enjoy your home life and accomplishments. (-:

  4. This post was so inspiring; what a great way to start out the year with such creative progress!
    I would have loved to see more pictures showing off your full creations too, like of the pillowcases, placemats, and heating pad cover - and is that a quilt at the top? The closeup detail shots above were good teasers, ha. I've been considering making some placemats myself, and 'would love to see how that size looks on an actual table! : ) And now I'm curious what the burrito method for pillowcases are too (I think the link didn't transfer, but I'm going to go look it up myself anyway).
    It was also fun to see your other knitting projects on the revelry page you shared too. I don't knit yet but, my, some of your projects are so beautiful! Definitely inspiring to perhaps finally try to learn that new craft.

    Anyway, I don't comment much, but I really enjoy following along on your creative projects that are similar to things I like to work on, and it's fun getting your updates in my inbox. Thought I'd stop in and comment about all the neat stuff you have me motivated to get working on now too, after a good start in January!

    Best wishes on all your WIPs and things to come! : )

    1. Whoops, I forgot to add the link in for the pillowcase method, here it is: http://millionpillowcases.allpeoplequilt.com/images/millionpillowcases/2015/pdfs/Roll-It-Up-2015.pdf

  5. How heavy is the fabric you use for placemats?

    1. Not super heavy, most are cotton/linen blends.

  6. Lots of lovely things happening. I have made that neck warmer too! Jo x

  7. I just found your postings and I love them. will check back to see more eye candy and inspiration


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