Show Me Your Sewing UFOs and PHDs

phd

Source:  PhD Decal

An article from Threads Magazine got me thinking about Sewing UFOs (Unfinished Objects) and PHDs (Projects Half Done).  l recently reorganized my sewing studio and came upon a bunch of sewing projects I didn’t finish for one reason or another.ufocart

I had to decide which UFOs and PhDs might actually get completed.  I had a pile of over 30 different projects.  There was absolutely no way I would ever tackle them all.  So I sorted them into 3 piles:

1.  FINISH – These projects would be my sewing projects for the next few months.  Most of these were either important or nearly completed.

2.  REUSE – Most of these projects were barely started.  The fabrics for these could be put back in my fabric stash and used for another project.

3.  DUMP – These projects were ones that went terribly wrong or no longer held any interest.  Out in the garbage they went.

Once I sorted through my pile, I evaluated each of the 13 projects that made the cut.  Here’s what I ended up with:

ufo1 

UFO #1

Project:  My Godchild’s Bedding which includes a Queen Size Quilt, 2 Pillow Shams, Dust Ruffle, Throw Pillows and Doll Bedding.  This is a massive project that I started at least 2 years ago.

Problem:  This project was first delayed, because the fabric had been discontinued and it took me more than 3 months to locate enough yardage.  But that was only part of the problem.  See, I don’t know how to quilt, nor do I really want to learn.  And then there’s the Queen Dust Ruffle:  ‎630 inches aka 52.5 feet aka 17.5 yards = panel of fabric I had to sew together to make the Queen Dust Ruffle. Did I mention it’s a one-way directional print?  That’s 14 sections. And honestly, the thought of having to gather 630 inches is a bit overwhelming to me.  Lastly, I have to find some oversized sheeting material for the Dust Ruffle deck (base) that is at least 80 inches wide.

Progress:  So far, I’ve only completed two throw pillows (a ruffled one and a print one) and some doll bedding.  This week, I managed to cut, serge and sew all 14 sections of the fabric together for the Queen Dust Ruffle.  I smartened up and solved the oversized sheeting problem by purchasing a Queen Dust Ruffle for $13 to use for the base.  I ripped off the tailored bed skirt and serged the raw edges of the base.

0417-duvet_measuring_full_queen_6

Plan:  Once I gather the 630 inches of fabric, I’ll attach it to the base for the Dust Ruffle.  For the Queen Quilt, I found a great tutorial on Sew4Home for a Queen Duvet.  I’m going to use the diagram to make the quilt top.  Then I’ll send it out to be quilted and bound (because if I don’t, it will never get done).

Probability:  High.  Serious Guilt Factor.

ufo2 

UFO #2

Project:  Four Embroidered Bath Towels and 4 Embroidered Hand Towels for my Sister-in-Law.  This project started 5 years ago when my Sister-in-Law asked me to make her some embroidered towels for her bathroom.  I finally purchased the blank towels this past Christmas.  Gave her them all gift-wrapped and then took them from her.

Problem:  My son busted my dongle (necessary key) for my embroidery software, so I had to order a new one from Husqvarna Viking (which took about 3 months to receive).

Progress:  Washed towels to shrink before embroidering.  No other progress.

Plan:  Need to design a monogram in my embroidery software, test it and then stitch it out on the towels.

Probability:  Medium.  Will become a high priority as we get closer to Christmas.

ufo3

UFO #3

Project:  Silk Curtains for the Bagel Store

Problem:  This project is stalled until my BFF decides what height she wants to hang her curtain rods.

Progress:  All that I need to do is sew the headers and bottom hems.

Plan:  I’ll sew the headers while I wait for her to hang the curtain rods.  That way all I have to do is sew the hems when she’s ready.

Probability:  High.

 ufo4

UFO #4

Project:  Baby Ruffle Pants, Baby Shirt and coordinating Burp Cloths.

Problem:  After spending time on this project, I find out the recipient is having had a BOY!  FML.

Progress:  I finished these Baby Ruffle Pants.

Plan:  To figure out what to make for the baby boy.  Something Blue.

Probability:  Pink – Low.  Blue – High.

ufo5

UFO #5

Project:  When my 9-year-old son outgrew his favorite Yankee shirt, I thought it would be perfect to make him a simple pillow out of the fabric.  That was more than a year ago.

Problem:  I could not bring myself to throw out my son’s $27 NY Yankees baseball shirt.  Only problem is I’m too lazy to just get it done.

Progress:  None.

Plan:  Cut out a square and sew it up next time I have Gray thread in my serger.

Probability:  Low.

ufo6

UFO #6

Project: In order to get my sizing perfect for this Christening Dress, I made two other silk bodices.

Problem:  I simply couldn’t throw the unused bodices out in the trash…so they need to become baby dresses.

Progress:  None.

Plan:  None at the moment.

Probability:  Very low.

ufo7

UFO #7

Project:  This turquoise silk was supposed to become a beautiful little girl’s dress.  I dyed the purchased entredeux and some vintage lace bright orange. 

Problem:  I was new to sewing entredeux, so it didn’t come out perfect like I had pictures.

Progress:  I recently purchased a beautiful soft orange netting to use as an underskirt for this dress.

Plan:  To daydream some more about this magnificent creation in my head.

Probability:  Someday I might finish this dress, but don’t count on it.

ufo8

UFO #8

Project:  I started this silk baby jacket back in September 2007…umm, that’s 4 years ago to match the silk baby bottoms.

Problem:  I got the pattern from the Baby Couture book (and no, I don’t recommend buying this book–it’s one of the worst I’ve seen for children’s garment construction).  The collar pattern was so wonky that I trashed it.

Progress:  The base of the jacket is sewn.

Plan:  Hem the sleeves and the bottom of the jacket.  Then draft a new collar pattern and finally finish this jacket. 

Probability:  Yeah right.

ufo9

UFO #9

Project:  Started these two pairs of girl’s capris probably more than 5 years ago.

Problem:  Took so long for me to get them half-done that they no longer fit my daughter.

Progress:  Solid black pair needs waistband casing, elastic and bottom hem.  Polka dot pair only needs elastic in the waist.

Plan:  Complete them for another recipient.

Probability:  Medium.

ufo10

UFO #10

Project:  Started this peasant top for my Godchild when she was a size 2T.  She’s now a size 6x/7.

Problem:  The arm elastic was too tight for her.

Progress:  All I needed to do was gather the ruffle, attach it to the bottom and topstitch it. Complete!

Plan:  To give this top to another little girl.

Probability:  DONE!

ufo11

UFO #11

Project:  Three pair of boys pants done with the exception of the inseam and bottom hem.

Problem:  Too many projects.  Easily distracted.

Progress:  Inseams done on two pair now.

Plan:  Finish 3rd pair of inseam and hem all 3 pants.

Probability:  Medium.

ufo12

UFO #12

Project:  I started this boy’s beach shirt in May 2007.

Problem:   It’s done…only need to add 5 snaps.  Talk about lazy!

Progress:  None.

Plan:  To attach the 5 snaps.

Probability:  Low.

dressd

UFO #13

Project:  Silk Christmas dress for my Godchild.

Problem:  She didn’t like it.  That and I hate doing buttonholes.

Progress:  Need to make buttonholes and attach rhinestone buttons.

Plan:  To wait to find the right recipient before attaching buttons (to ensure perfect fit).

Probability:  Medium.

Ok…so there you have…my shameful UFOs and PhDs.  So tell me, how bad is your pile?  What keeps you from finishing yours?

lisasiggie

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Comments

  1. well- I have to FIND the UFO’s and Ph D’s first before I can talk about them!!! Oh wait, there is a EASY pillow just waiting to have some trim tacked down…..it was a gift two Christmas’ ago…..hummmm maybe by this Christmas? Possibly, unless I find other new fabric that screams buy me buy me….actually there is, I am just waiting for it to go on a ‘good’ sale, none of this 30%off tease…

  2. LOL Sara!

  3. This post is very timely for me. My workroom is hiding many UFOs and PHDs. Your analysis of your own projects gives me a template for determining how to deal with mine. I’ll be doing a similar post… um… soon? See, I have to FIND all these projects first.

  4. LOL! Glad I could inspire you! Happy Hunting!

  5. Hi, Diva! You don’t know me, but I “know of” you via Lady M. I have suggestions for a couple of your UFOs. The queen quilt – I use a fantastic quilter in Utah (I’m in Texas). Natalia’s really reasonably priced and does a great job. Check her out at http://piecenquilt.blogspot.com/ . The Neptune quilt on her blog today is mine (squeee!). For the t-shirt into pillow, I did two of these for my boys with mens XL shirts they received at a hockey game. I just top stitched the front/pack of the shirt the size I wanted it (left an opening for the pillow form, then top stitched it closed with the form inside) and then trimmed the excess off. The jersey curls nicely at the edges and you hardly see the stitching. Good luck with the rest of your UFOs/PHDs! I also have a stack of them I’m focusing on finishing by the end of August – king quilt top/back/shams, two lap quilts top/back (1 top done), baby quilt top/back, tunic I bought the fabric for a year ago, and then I’ll probably start something else new! It’s never-ending.

  6. Hey Jamie…nice to meet you! Thanks for the quilter suggestion! I will definitely check her out when I get the quilt pieced together! Sounds like you have a UFO pile a mile long, too! LOL! Happy Sewing!

  7. Thanks for inspiration. I just posted in my blog my home ufos and my biz ufos.
    Erika

  8. Glad I could help insire you to take an inventory of your UFOs and PHDs…LOL! Great job!

  9. Lisa-thanks so much for this post. I finished up 12 of 17 UFOs in my biz and finished 1 of the 5 home/mine/for me projects. I’ve actually made myself a goal of finishing all biz projects before starting any new ones(except for orders). As for the home projects-the only hold back on those are the 2 belly dance costumes. I don’t have the drive to finish those this year. I do plan to finish the others either for Xmas(presents)or by the end of this year.
    Thanks again and I hope you update your UFOs and PHDs progress too.

  10. Wow Erika!!! Sounds like you’ve been busy! In a week or so, I’ll do a UFO/PhD update! I have made “some” progress…LOL!

  11. I have soooo many UFO’s!!! I try to tackle one a week so I don’t look at the pile and feel overwhelmed or feel like a failure. LOL It is hard enough to finish all my orders and still be the mom/wife/daughter/friend I want/need to be, but then to sit and finish the things I didn’t want to or couldn’t the first time… I’m trying to find the motivation. ;)

  12. Kara…I hear ya! I must say, since this post, I’ve only finished 3 of my UFOs. They are staring at me everytime I enter my sewing room…LOL! Hopefully, I’ll make some more progress soon. Hang in there!

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Another UFO crossed off my list!  Next up…two matching pillow shams.  But that will have to wait until next week.  [...]

  2. [...] And yes, I’m selfish like that.  Although I love my friends, I need my solitude.  I need to spend time inside my brain.  There’s so many projects in my head that it becomes overwhelming at times.  Not like crazy.  But more like frustrated that I can’t do MY OWN stuff. [...]

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