Monday, July 7, 2008

On the Quilting Front . . .

A few weeks ago, I asked how you decide what quilting project you'll tackle next on your list of "want to dos," and many of you said you're motivated most by deadlines. I've tried to get away from that kind of pressure--after all, this is a hobby that we enjoy doing, not something we should feel we HAVE to do to meet some deadline. We ought to take at least as much joy in the process as we do in the finished project, right? At least that's my philosophy. And that's one of the reasons that this year's resolution is to make only quilts I really, really want to make.

Well, having said that, I am still pressured in some ways to get quilts finished. One case in point is my Thimbleberries Club. Each month when we meet, we "earn" a raffle ticket for each of several categories and those tickets are put into a drawing at the end of the night for door prizes. For instance, we get a ticket for showing up; we get a ticket if we bring a Thimbleberries show and tell; we get a ticket if we bring a non-Thimbleberries show and tell. You get the idea, right? For each "category," we get one ticket, and we can get a maximum of five tickets, I think. But besides that, we can also get a special ticket that goes into a drawing for a BIG prize at the end of the year. We can only earn one of those tickets each month, and in order to earn one, we have to complete--quilting, binding, and label--a quilt that's at least a certain size and is made using predominently Thimbleberries fabrics and/or made from a Thimbleberries pattern.

So why do I pressure myself to try to earn those raffle tickets? It's a mystery to me! Competitive nature, I suppose. So this past weekend, I've been feverishly quilting a large--king size--quilt. Yesterday I must have spent a total of at least 12 hours quilting. By the time I finally stopped, my feet and ankles were swollen (despite getting up and moving around every hour at least) and my neck and shoulders FELT like Quasimodo's neck and shoulders LOOK. Tonight I'll be back at it, and I hope to get the quilting finished and move onto the binding. My club meeting is Wednesday night. Crazy, huh? Here's a little peek at what I'm doing:


My online Thimbleberries group swapped these simple blocks a couple years ago, and I was part of a small group that swapped blocks made from "vintage" Thimbleberries fabrics. I wasn't too interested in making the quilt we were swapping the blocks for--it was too simple, and I always like to make things hard--obviously, right?! So one day it hit me--I'd make those blocks into hollyhocks! Silly me--I didn't realize how large those hollyhocks would be, made out of 6" blocks! So, one thing led to another, and before I knew it, I had a king size hollyhock quilt top.

At last month's Thimbleberries Club, I learned that sometime in August or September, they'll have a "class" and everyone will swap these very same blocks--but I think they're a little smaller; charm size, if I recall correctly. And I thought it would be a nice idea if I could bring my hollyhock quilt for July show and tell so I could show the other gals a different setting idea. And then, of course, I put off getting started. ARGH! So now I'm under pressure, just like everyone else who's motivated by deadlines. And just to make it harder for myself, here I sit, chatting with you instead of quilting!

Time for me to get off the computer and go quilt!

12 comments:

BusyLittleQuilter said...

I do that, too, Kim. I set deadlines, and I always make things a little harder than what they really need to be.

A few years ago I took the same philosophy as you about not making quilts you really didn't want to make. Every month we have workshops at quilt guild. Every month I would take these classes, and every month I would add to my UFO list. Now I only make quilts that I want. I still go to workshops, but I always bring a UFO. As a result, I have finished some things.

I think it's cute how you change the patterns to suit your style. Big hollyhocks on a king size quilt sounds pretty.

I wish that I could quilt as well as you. My Juki would be so proud of me.

Your Thimbleberries Club sounds like fun. I was in one when they first started them. I still have UFO's from those, too!

Carol said...

I love how those blocks turned into Hollyhocks...that will be a wonderful quilt on a king size bed...perfect show and tell...that will surely get them motivated.

Yvonne said...

Deadlines only seem to make me procrastinate even more than I usually do. :) Can't wait to see the whole quilt....it's looking awesome.

Teresa said...

From what I can see, it looks like it will be a great quilt. I would never have thought to arranged the blocks like that, but it looks great! Good luck on getting it done by your meeting.

Louise SS said...

What a good idea to make a hollyhock quilt...can't wait to see it finished!
I have to say that if I didn't have pressure every now and then I probably would never finish nything! A little pressure is a good thing!!!
Good luck on your quilting!

MichelleB said...

It looks great! And the quilting looks great too. Have you told us what kind of machine you quilt on? And how about thread, how much thread do you use to quilt a quilt? And what's your favorite kind of thread and where do you get it?

LMBO Okay, I haven't asked a question in a couple of days, and just wanted to ask one, but then they all came poring out! I'll still visit even if you don't answer ;)

Cheryl said...

Great Hollyhock quilt... and those deadlines are always chasing me!!

debijeanm said...

I'm so jealous of creative folk like you! I love that hollyhock setting - what a great idea - and I'm sure the other quilters will be inspired when they see it.

Someday I will make myself a sampler with this phrase, "If it weren't for the last minute I wouldn't get anything done." I admire people who complete a little a day until a project is finished, but that's not me. I have many fine qualities and do many things well, but do tend to accomplish a lot in a short amount of time just before a deadline (which is why about all I ever really finish are gifts for others).

Mad about Craft said...

I am trying very hard as a new quilter not to get sucked into deadlines for things but it can be quite hard!

Can't wait to see the finished quilt!

yellowfarmhouse said...

Can't wait to see the rest of the quilt. I always work the best with deadlines no matter how much I hate it that it's what makes me get things done, swearing I'll never wait until the last minute. You go girl :)

Hugs - Karen

Barbie Jo said...

I think you are amazing Kim and we all sure do enjoy your doing your own thing! You have to do what makes you happy and thats what its all about. Deadlines are not for everyone, sometimes they are neccesary and sometimes they are the root of all evil. Only you can decide what works for you. Happy sewing!

Crazy for Primitive Quilts & Gardens said...

Good luck and go grab that ticket this month! You are definitely earning it. I love the quilting... looks great!