When projects go on hold

What does a quilter do when a project goes on hold?  Move on to another project! 

It was oppressively humid here this weekend.  The heat was bad, but the humidity was a killer.  And, then it would rain and be okay for about an hour.  And, then it was humid and ready to rain again.  So, not much yard work.  I cleaned out some dead growth from the neighbor across the street's bed, but that knocked me out.  An hours work and I was ready for the shower.  And, I must have looked pretty bad because Rob came to help. 

I ran out of apple green silk thread, so that project is on hold.  I'll order more thread today and in a couple days, I'll be able to switch back.  I was so close to being done with that analogous green quilt. 

On Saturday, I rearranged the sewing room.  There's a line in Torch Song Trilogy where Harvey says that it's easier to re-decorate than to clean.  I'm a believer in that.  So, when it's time to really get down to some dusting and cleaning, I just rearrange the furniture.  I move the sewing machines from one side to the other, a couple times a year.  Rob encourages it because it means I'm not trying to  rearrange the furniture in the rest of the house.  I'd show you pictures, but it still looks pretty crowded in there.  I'm still trying to create "a space for everything" and that means cleaning out the closet, too.  And, I just can't get excited about that.  I also picked all the borders off a quilt and re-pieced it, correcting a proportion error, but that's a blog for another day. 

Then, on Sunday, I quilted this little quilt and made an angel food cake.  I don't make many angel food cakes.  I should make more.  It's not nearly as hard as it usually seems. 

My guild is doing a "mini" quilt exhibit at our next show.  The theme is world of color.  This is my colorful contribution.  Maybe.  I have another one to quilt up and who knows, maybe that one will be my entry.  Or maybe both.  This was a set of Christmas ornaments or coasters from the 80's and instead of making a half dozen little quilts, I added some stash and some other block patterns and made one larger one.  The blocks are 3" and I think it quilted up nicely.  Just needs a binding. 

And, on Monday, I tried to clean out that sewing room closet and I got part way before I lost interest.  I just couldn't get into it.  But, I'm pretty sure I figured out why.  I have so many fabrics in there that I'm not interested in quilting with, but am saving for Linus quilts.  And, while I pull in a Linus quilt now and then (3-6 per year), I'm never going to use up all these fabrics for Linus.  At least not these two stacks and my scraps, which I've also devoted to Linus.  So, I feel some hard decisions coming on.  And, I'll be looking for simple quilt patterns that are good for large scale prints.  And, the free table at guild, because they've stopped throwing things away and started using the leftover scraps for dog bedding, so I don't feel bad about putting stuff there anymore. 

Since I couldn't motivate myself to move forward with the closet, I pulled out my new bag of batting and pin basted the Simply Delicious quilt.  It took a long time to iron the top and the backing but only about an hour to do the actual basting.  And, then I did some stability quilting and started the first block. 

That one is going to take a lot of quilting.  And, I haven't given any thought to what I'll do in the backgrounds.  As I was quilting yesterday, I was thinking about how to fill that in.  It will need to be filled in to make the applique pop the way I want it to.

The other thing that weighed heavy on me was my UFO's.  I'm doing my best to keep that in perspective.  Everything you're seeing is from the UFO pile.  I think I only started two new projects all of last year, except some Linus quilts.  And, this year, I expect to do the same.  There's only one Linus top in there right now, so maybe I'll pull down some of those Linus fabrics and let myself go wild.

Or maybe I'll just keep quilting up UFOs.

Everybody have a great Tuesday!  Lane


Rebecca Grace said...

Wow, Lane -- is there anything you CAN'T do?! Your applique looks AMAZING! I wish I could wave a magic wand and make all of the Quilt Guilt in the world disappear: guilt over too many UFOs, guilt over too much fabric in the stash, guilt over not finishing projects as quickly as other quilters on the Internet finish theirs... I like to use a golf analogy, because like quilting, golf is a hobby for most enthusiasts that is supposed to be fun and relaxing. My dad was a golfer. So I know that he was always reading the golf magazines, seeing some new putter or driver, and buying new clubs, different golf balls, bags to carry everything around... And spending money on golf club memberships, greens fees, little fake grass putting practice contraptions so he could practice putting in our living room -- while watching golf on TV. I am sure my dad's golf hobby was as expensive as my quilting hobby, and he definitely spent as much time working on it. And do you know how many quilts he finished in an entire lifetime of golfing? Zero! So when I start feeling the Quilt Guilt coming on about projects unfinished and my growing stash, I just remind myself that this is my hobby for relaxation and fun. I enjoyed buying those fabrics, and I enjoy taking them out and looking at them when I "shop my stash" for a new project. I am working on a bunch of different projects and it's been ages since I finished anything, but I'm enjoying the process. When I get bored, I switch to something different. Am I having fun? YES! Am I relaxing? YES! So, by the Golf Standard, I am doing this hobby thing right even if I never finished a single quilt ever. And so are you. :-)

For those large scale prints, what about oversize clamshells? I am waiting on a 9 1/2" finished clamshell template that I ordered from an Etsy seller in Australia and planning to use that to showcase large scale prints in a clam shell quilt. The curved seams will make it just challenging enough not to bore me, and it should come together "relatively" quickly since the bigger the pieces, the fewer you need to make a quilt with them!

Anyway, good luck with your sewing room reorganization and purge. I just finished doing that in my own studio and although it was a dreadful chore, I'm really glad I did it now that I'm done. I feel reinvigorated creatively and much more motivated to go in there and sew something.

Have a great day!

Anonymous said...

Busy! Busy! Busy!

Anonymous said...

The mini quilt is great! Some pretty small pieces. Thanks for sharing. Mary