Sunday, October 28, 2012

Owl Quilt; Proof it's Okay to Buy More Fabric

 Did I ever tell you about my Owl Quilt? If I didn't, then now would be an especially  good time.

"Why?" you ask?

Well yesterday I went with my friend H to help her buy fabric for a baby quilt she's planning.
A noble mission, right? Except that the very last thing on earth I need to be buying is more fabric. Especially as my sister-in-law decided I should take her considerable fabric stash before she returned to the North. So, in the last few weeks my fabric stash has doubled! My father-in-law's recent death brought home to me the absolute folly of buying anything in these later years that I don't absolutely need. All that will happen is that my children and husband, should he outlast me, will have to deal with it all when I'm gone. Just imagine for a moment what they might do to the contents of my sewing room........

The memorial service is over, the tears have dried up   [Gee, that didn't take long!] and now, in great trepidation,  they are opening the door to my sewing room.....Listen in.....

"Good Lord! What did mom need so much fabric for?"

"Maybe she was planning to make a special quilt for each of us?" 

[Oh dear! That must mean that I kicked the bucket before achieving that goal. What a shame.]

"So, what are we supposed to do with all this crap?"

{Oh, go gently my lovelies....It is not crap. It is beautiful fabric waiting to be made into heirloom quilts. Speak softly and with compassion. While I was alive it knew it was loved. I never referred to it in such disrespectful tones. Have a heart!]

"Well, EB, you're the crafty one. Don't you want to take up quilting?"

"Oh no! Don't be looking at me. I knit. I crochet. I read and I run..I do not quilt."

"Cali Girl then, you own a sewing machine. Don't you want to give a good home to all this lovely fabric and expand your creativity? Come on, you know you want to!"

"No, not really. This is all light-weight cotton. I don't think it would make very good horse blankets. However, Nat is very artistic and crafty....maybe she'd like to have it?"

So now they ruminate on this awhile, standing there in my sewing room, surrounded by all the lovely trappings of the quilting craft. Slight glitch in this latest idea being that Nat, as artistic and creative and crafty as she is,  is on the other side of the Atlantic.....and all these tools and fabric would probably sink the boat getting it to her. Hmmm

"Why don't we give it to charity?"

This is where their mother sits up in her grave, hissing, spitting and choking......

So, you get the idea. I need to work with what I have so that my children and grandchildren each have a quilt made for them by me, and not just leave shelves of fabric, the disposal of which would be one more headache for them to deal with when I hang up my rotary cutter.

Enough of listening to imaginary conversations. Back to the present. We headed south to "Quilts on Plum Lane." Even the name gets my mouth watering. And it had to be this particular quilt shop since I had a gift certificate burning a hole in my pocket for months. It was becoming seriously dog-eared in my purse. Time to use it before it disintegrated.

Naturally, when we got there, there was much oohing and aahing, and of course we found fabric we had to take home with us. The gift certificate served to assuage any guilt I might have felt [Irish upbringing.]

Bless me father for I have sinned, again. But in my defense I present my owl quilt [as proof that I do, occasionally, finish something, thereby somehow justifying the acquisition of more fabric----as long as what comes in is less than what went out----sounds reasonable?]


SmitoniusAndSonata said...

Oh , that owl is worth all the silks of Samarkand !
Anyway , it's not a problem . Quilters are immortal .

Relatively Retiring said...

I love the idea of making a special quilt for each member of the family. I have (hardly) done any quilting, and I'm 72 and three-quarters. Am I too old to start? (You really don't have to answer this!)

Secret Agent Woman said...

It's an adorable quilt.

After having dealt with the masses of stuff my grandmother had acquired and kept after she died, I often purge things just so my kids own't have to deal with it.

Ali Honey said...

Dear molly, what you need is a "Quilter's Will."
Type it up on the computer and frame it or laminate it ( so it looks presentable ) and hang it in a prominent place or on your sewing room door or in my case my sewing cupboard door.
It should include names and phone numbers of quilter friends; guilds or WHOEVER you wish your fabric and notions and tools(& machine ) to go to. They then can be called to come and collect fabric etc. Sign it so it looks OFFICIAL.
Apparently this really works well. I have been meaning to make one for my cupboard door.
Blokes should do this for their shed too!
PS cute little owl!

Lee said...

Oh...thanks for the laugh, Molly! I'm sure similar will be said about me after my passing! But I've promised/threatened everyone that they'll never get rid of me! They can get rid of all my "stuff", but I'm hanging in there with a firm grip!! ;)

I love the quilt! And your post is wonderful! Thanks!

persiflage said...

Goodness, how much guilt there is in the world about stashes of materials for handicrafts. I am as guilty as anyone, having peeked recently into my wool and fabric stashes. They have to be used up, they can't just be thrown out...I have two crocheted quilts waiting for good homes, with more in progeass.
I like Ali Honey's suggestion. You could make a quilt incorporating some of her ideas.
Your owl quilt is charming.

dianne said...

snort ... snarfle ... choke ... ha ha ha!!!

my oldest three don't call my stuff crap, they call it effing $#!t ... it's true, i've heard them talking amongst themselves...

but my youngest (the darling, gorgeous, loving Auntia) quilts, too ... she has already told me that she will purge the stuff that isn't "her" and will send it on to others who might have more appreciation for the things that are "me" ... so i guess i really shouldn't buy one more thing that doesn't have the Auntia stamp of approval, huh?!?

p.s. - i love your owl, and i think that you are being QUITE reasonable!

Elephant's Child said...

The quilter's will is a brilliant idea. And could be extended to all of us with pack rat (collector) mentality in whatever field. I myself have too much fabric. And waay too many books.
And I love the owl quilt with all of my heart. Thank you.

molly said...

S&S--Oh thank you for such good news! Why am I always the last to know??

RR---No, you're not too old to start. I've seen your sketches. That kind of talent combined with the ability to sew a straight line could produce a beautiful quilt for that upcoming grandchild....and after you get started, the sky's the limit!

SAW---My new mantra is "Less is More!"

Ali---What an excellent idea!

Lee---I need to hang in there too. I like Smitonius' theory that quilters are immortal....

Persi---It's nice sometimes to just go in to the sewing room and breathe the serenity----though there'd be more serenity if the stash were better organized! But on the other hand, how creative can you be if you're preoccupied with keeping everything neat and tidy?

Dianne----I recognize a kindred spirit when I read one.....

EC---Aha! A closet fabric collector! Do elaborate...

Birdydownunder said...

couldn't help but notice the Owl Quilt .... is it new how long did it take .... hahahaha
I keep asking myself why I should feel guilty about the stash. No real reason. Do you think we could do a deal to take it with us. How about the Angelic Quilters share and stitch group.

MindfulMeanderings said...

Beautiful quilt, Ma! Did you know that the owl is a symbol for the Goddess Athena?? Oh, I miss Greece...

Quiltsmiles said...

Mollie- love - Love ~ LOVE this entry. I too salivated over shopping at Quilts on Plum Lane. Mom and I shopped there at the end of January while I was visiting her in Florida.
Where do you live now? She lives in The Villages and is actually making more quilts to use up her stash. So your post resonates volumes. Jane