Saturday, February 26, 2011

My best birthday ever (or almost)

What an odd selection of fabrics for a quilt wouldn't you say?  I would.  Do I love them each for very special reasons?  I do.  Did they all go in the same quilt?  They did (except the bundle of homespuns).  So, a reasonable question for any quilter with any taste at all might ask -- what gives?
I turned 60 last year and didn't want a big "to-do" -- didn't want a surprise party -- didn't want more stuff.  So I asked my family (which is very small) for one fat quarter that reminded them of me in some way and a handwritten note that explains their fabric choice.  It was marvelous.  People put a lot of time into selection  -- some went in with a plan of what they wanted to represent and others wandered until they saw the perfect piece (their words -- not mine) that triggered something special.  They have all gone into one quilt top that I need to quilt.  I adore it because every block tells a story about how I have had some influence on people I love. 

I highly recommend this if you're a fabric lover, have too much stuff as it is, and want something that you can pull out and reflect on when you need a pick me up.  I snipped a piece from each fabric, stapled it to the notes, and have put them away.  I'll post a picture of the finished quilt whenever it gets finished (my goal is by my 61st birthday in April -- a year is long enough, don't you think?).

Keep piecing, Jan

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Before and after

Look familiar?  How do we let this wonderful fabric that we love so much end up in such a mess?  Or -- better said -- how did "I" let my fabric end up wadded up, hidden, crumpled, and sometimes forgotten?

About 2 years ago, I decided I needed to stop buying fabric and start using what I had.  By the time I threw it all in the floor, ironed some of it because it was such a mess, and folded any yardage around an 8" ruler, I had used less space (seriously) and could see how many blues or reds or greens I had. Conversely, I realized my oranges, pinks, and purples were woefully inadequate.  Some fabrics get to play together and others are isolated (Kaffe, batiks, 30's, solids). 

The particularly good news is that I still get pleasure from folding yardage around that ruler and putting in on the shelf and I certainly get pleasure from just standing and admiring the colors, remembering where/why I purchased something, and being surprised by what I see on my shelves.  I will never have the stash that many of you have -- but I'm pleased to see what I do have and pull it for projects.

Keep piecing (and folding!),  Jan

Friday, February 11, 2011

Be loving!

What better way to be loving than give someone you love a quilt you have made -- either especially for them or because you made it out of a pattern or fabric or technique you love.

Do you give away or keep most of your quilts?  I'm about 50-50 but always like to have what I call "inventory" quilts that I can give as the opportunity moves me.   I remember hearing in the last year or so about a quilter who kept 2-3 quilts in the trunk of her car and then would hand them out to someone that moved her.  Is that the epitome of a quilter who uses our art/craft for the better?  Can you imagine what the recipient thinks for years to come?  I have never given a quilt to someone I didn't know -- I have given them to people I didn't love. Definitely something to consider as we share our joy.

Keep piecing and loving!  jan

Friday, February 4, 2011

Snow, Snow. Go AWAY!

I don't know if you can read this or not -- but it's my sentiments exactly.  I grabbed this from a friend's Facebook post and it's a sign in front of a church that reads "Whoever is praying for snow, please stop".
Couldn't agree more.  What a wild weather week here in the US and for those us in Chicagoland, we now understand what "blizzard" really means -- or at least those of us who have never  been in one before.  One is enough, thank you very much!

I wish you good weather, good lite for stitching, and piece!  Jan