Monday, December 04, 2017
It almost has the sanctity of a tradition. Each year, in January, I promise myself that, this year, I'll make a big dent in the pile of half-made quilting projects. The clock is ticking louder these days and there's more sand in the bottom of the hourglass than in the top...and I shudder to think of the fate of my beloved UFOs in the event of my kicking the bucket too soon. Unceremonious transportation to the nearest charity shop? My bones rattle at the thought.
It lasts a month, two in a good year. Then I get sidetracked by life, books and other such distractions and, God help me, actually add a few to the pile because babies will be born without first enquiring if their timing fits with my quilting schedule. Because when a baby is born in the family I make a quilt. That's just the reality of it. Those babies are often toddling around by the time they get their quilt but, eventually they do. And usually before they leave for university.
2017 was a good year. Finished two on the list in two months and then pfft! The next nine months flew by and suddenly it was Thanksgiving.
That's a Christmas tree skirt up there made for our firstborn many decades ago. She had mentioned that she wished it was bigger. "No problem," I blithely said. That was a year ago, almost. And here I am, panicking in November when I could have been chipping away at it slowly and calmly throughout the year. But where's the adrenaline rush in that?
I started making stars. By chain piecing, components for eight stars were done in a blink.
Look at that sweet four patch in the seams on the back. No one will ever see it, but still it made me smile!
I figured 8 should be enough. Ohio Star is such an easy pattern (take note Pam!)
and so pretty, I was elated at my cleverness, even standing in mute admiration of this for at least 30 seconds....
before a snarky voice in my head broke my reverie with "Hey Genius! You'll be waiting light years to see a star like that in the heavens!"
What? I blinked. I groaned. I muttered furiously under my breath. I ripped. I re-sewed.
One - star - at - a - time.
If I was having such difficulties aligning star points, better not to compound the problem by chain piecing, an advantage only if done right.
It soon became apparent that eight stars would not a satisfactory firmament make, wider circumference and all.... I was loathe to tackle more stars after the pitfalls I had encountered. Maybe I could make something different, an easier, quicker block like Churn Dash. A nod is as good as a wink but
eight churn dashes later I knew it would have been better to stick with stars. No turning back now though. It was December already.
The original pattern long gone, I was flying by the seat of my britches.
And my head was starting to hurt.
I can do quilts. But round quilts? Without a pattern? Maybe not. A lesson in humility.
"You can do it!" the OC encouraged, simultaneously shaking his head at how I constantly get up to my neck in hot water. I soldiered doggedly on.
And then life interrupted. Spur of the moment plans to go north to keep sister-in-law company while she recovers from surgery.
A little bit of hand wringing, then soothing words from Daughter who knows me too well (the shame of it!) and wasn't expecting to see her tree skirt this year anyway, maybe not even in this lifetime.
(Now I have to be better next year.)
Here's a peek before I fold it all up.
It'll be at the top of the UFO list for 2018.
Feel free to yell at me month by month to make sure it makes it off the list by next December.