Thursday, August 24, 2006

Progress and why I quilt

Just a note: Judy of Sunshine Quilts is back online, via a new, but hopefully not permanent blog.

Today I ripped out the boo-boo spot (and the power blinked and restarted my computer) and started to quilt again. Several inches later I ran out of bobbin thread! At least I had some prewound, so that was a quick change. A little later I wanted a few pins to help hold the edges flat... and I couldn't find my box of pins. Then it hit me "ohh! Is THAT what I knocked over in the dark yesterday?"... sure enough, most of the pins had fallen onto my thread rack. Onto my knees I went to pick them up and I promptly pricked a finger. I was starting to feel a little cursed... ;)

But afterwards it was pretty smooth sailing. I'm all done with meandering the blue thread. I got a little pink it in, and I'll finish that tomorrow. And hopefully start some of the binding. I'm pretty pleased with it. :)

Patti asked why do we quilt. Certainly a question to ponder on...

I quilt because I don't like to sew clothes. I have tried and they test my patience. And most of the time, the item doesn't fit me correctly in the end, and it's very frustrating for all the work to be for naught. With quilting, no matter how much or how little is done, it still can be used, one way or another. Where do you think all those "orphan" quilts came from? ;)

I quilt because I like the sewing machine. I remember being 5 years old and sitting at the kitchen table, sewing up and down two pieces of fabric and having so much fun. My mom was pretty brave to let me do that! And no, 18 years later I haven't sewn through any fingers yet. :P

I quilt because I love making blankets. My mom showed me how to crochet when I was 7 and knit when I was 8. I like crocheting much better! I still do it now and then because it's a great car trip item. My husband doesn't have to worry about being stabbed by me either. ;)

I quilt because I love to work with my hands. It just doesn't feel right not to have my hands do something. This extends far beyond quilting - cooking, bread making, gardening, sign language, some piano, typing, eating, writing in my diary and letters... I feel good and useful when I use my hands.

I quilt because it lets me play with lots of colors... and not worry so much about matching or having the right color play. I live by "in scrappy, anything goes!" Sure, you'll see two or three fabric quilts, and yes, they're pretty and attractive, but most of the time these quilts are testing out a pattern more than trying to be creative and random. No matter the colors, I love having a quilt top done and feeling a sense of accomplishment. :)

I quilt because I enjoy the thought of the person receiving the quilt using it. It's important to me that people use the quilt I give them. I think scrappy helps people feel more free to use them. A new 2 color-quilt can look pristine and picture perfect and quite a few people will end up hanging it on the wall... which is NOT what I want. I want my quilts to be used and loved. I want people to wrap themselves up in the quilts. I don't worry if a baby has a spit up or worse, I intend for my quilts to be "abused" and they're always washable. :)

I quilt because I have weak artistic talent in other areas. Don't ask me to draw anything. Or paint! ;) I think I also quilt because quite a few crafty items aren't any "useful" - they can only be displayed on a shelf or a table or a wall. They add a nice visual, but they don't provide much usefulness. I like being useful. :) (And can you tell that I have very little knicknacks?)

I quilt because it (usually) relaxes me. It makes me smile. I think about it all the time. A new pattern, fabric I recently bought, thread colors, new free-motioning designs. It's a neverending hobby.

I quilt because I like math. :) I like math more than English. Math is never changing or adding new rules. 2 + 2 is always going to equal 4. This might make me a little weird, but I enjoy working out the math in my head. I like to look at blocks and try to figure out the measurement of the pieces. It gives me a nice satisfaction when I get it right. And this is why I'll never write a book, I'd get stressed out trying to make sure I have the proper grammar. :P

Leah Posted by Picasa


Hedgehog said...

I love the math aspect, too! Although I teach English, I'm really a math person underneath. I like the challenge of adapting patterns or traditional blocks. Although I want to stretch myself and try some 'wonky' things in the near future, too!

Sweet P said...

I agree with hedgehog - the math part of quilting is fun. I trly enjoy taking a pattern, grabbing my paper and pencil and a cup of coffee and drafting my own pattern.

Shelina said...

This is a great list Leah. I like math too, but I really hadn't thought about liking math of quilting. I usually avoid quilting math whenever I can.

Dawn said...

Your quilt looks great! Remember when I told you I do that sometimes? Well I did something even dumber tonight. I was quilting my gold geese quilt and when I went to trim the thread on the back I had sewn baby crumbs into the quilting! The baby crumbs were on my table from my Gwen blocks I'm working on. Duhhhh And darn, I forgot to take a picture.