Friday, November 21, 2014

Miss me? :)

Crickets. . . there loud over in this little corner of the internets lately aren't they?? I decided I was going to put the pedal to the metal and get the MM Challenge quilt finished and hand sew that binding onto Off Course. In the process, I have been skimming blog posts of all of you wonderful quilters out there on my phone. Which means I'm not commenting much. . . And it also meant that I was insanely green with jealousy of all of the beautiful eye candy being finished out there and me sitting here. . . with this (I don't even know that I can come up with the right adjective right at the moment and most of them I am coming up with are probably not appropriate) quilt that I really intensely I'm going to give you my conclusion in case you get tired of reading this post half way through ;) I have decided this quilt is not going to be submitted for the challenge. It has stymied me for a month in terms of how to quilt it (and of course I thought I had that all figured out prior to finishing the top but NONE of what I had thought was 'perfect' came even close) and then when I had quilted the negative space, all of it had to be ripped out (4 days of ripping). It would.not.lay.flat. I might have it finished by the deadline, but I don't think it is going to rise to the level of being a quilt that should be submitted to a challenge. Honestly, I feel like a great burden has been lifted and I am now going to contemplate what I am going to make next. What I have learned so far in making this supposed 'challenge' quilt (Unlike AZ, it is cold and cloudy today - pictures are just not possible but I'll share updated pictures soon. . . it can't stay cloudy for long right??):

1. I need to think longer than 2 minutes before jumping into a challenge. . . It seems that I am not one that can take fabrics (more specifically colors - MM Cotton Couture fabrics are really fabulous to work with . . . just not these colors. . . I really and turn them into something 'spectacular.' I have made a couple of other quilts in which I used fabrics with which I was not happy. I hated the entire process of making those quilts. It seems to turn the entire process into a job. I don't have a job. There's a reason for that! haha 

2. I had not realized before (and maybe because my process is changing) that I start the process of making a quilt long before the fabric is purchased and the first cuts are made. I need to have a picture in my head. A plan of action. Even if it is going to be an improv quilt, I need some order to the chaos. Perfect examples are Spin and Off Course. The designs for both of those quilts came to me pretty much at the same time. I played around with blocks, techniques and colors (for almost a month) before I committed to making either of them. I think my days of seeing a new Jenny Doan video and running to the LQS for fabric to make it are likely going to be few and far between. And that is how I quilted for the first 9 months of my quilting journey. The tides seem to be turning. . . 

3. Putting pressure on myself to finish a quilt that has to be 'quilt show quality' does absolutely nothing for me but completely squash, stomp out, bury, completely destroy my sewing mojo. Pretty sure I'm not going to put myself through that again (any time soon... I admit, I'm impulsive it might happen again but if it does - could you please send me an email with a link to this post in it? lol)

4. When I don't sew. . . I find other ways to get my need to make things met :) I'll show you some of my crocheting makes at the end of this post. Oh, and lest you think that crochet might save you some money over quilting. . . I have officially found that this is NOT the case LOL 

Those are the biggest lessons so far with this nightmare challenge quilt. I am currently contemplating where this quilt will call home. . . in the mean time, I'm going to straight line quilt those stars, put a scrappy binding made up of the left over solids and call it good.enough.

OK, just so you have some pretty pictures to look at :) Here is what I have finished and started with my hook(s) :) 
This is a Minni Mouse beanie I made for a little girl's first birthday :) The ears and bows need to be repositioned. . . that will happen on Monday when I see her and mark the correct placement. I used this WONDERFUL basic beanie pattern for the beanie and this pattern for the ears and bow (with my own little changes thrown in ;)

Remember this mitten (go to bottom of post) I didn't like... so I ripped it out and made these - LOVE!!! :D Easy peasy made with this pattern. My only change was that I did not do back loop only, I used both loops - I wanted these babies to be dense :)

And last but certainly not least. . . LOVE this!! These are all of the colors, I'll do two rows of each color (as seen with the start of the second blue strip), then do three rows of each color, back to two rows and then one row. . . I might even add a border. . . I have never done a border in crochet before... we'll see :) The plan is for it to end up a very large throw. . . yes, I need to go back to the yarn store for more of the yarn. . . I am using this absolutely FABULOUS (and mindless - good for I'm too tired to sew times!) pattern. There is a link in the pattern to the tutorial - it is also awesome, highly recommend!
Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish it Up Friday.

Until next time, keep on quilting!!
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  1. Thank you for writing this post. Love how you put into words what often happens to me. Wish I could crochet like you, beautiful way for taking a successful break from quilting, when needed!

  2. Judy, I have been there and done that. I don't want to ever try to force myself through a project where I didn't like the fabric in there first place. Sometimes ya just gotta let yourself off the hook!
    That Minnie beanie is so adorable and the other things you made look great too!

  3. Lovely finishes! You are so talented!

  4. Quilting to me is like stages and times in our lives. We need to find what makes us (ourselves) happy, calm and enjoy. A few years ago I would rather been shot than pursue a judged challenge, quilt for a customer (fear if their expectations) or try knitting! But the tides have changed---so I wonder what is in store in a few more years! Sounds to me like you have discovered a few things for now and you have used this time to do something you enjoy! You Go Girl--the crocheting is Beautiful! Glad you are back--missed ya!

  5. I adore that hat! (Too bad I don't have a girl.) and I appreciated reading your thoughts. I am currently procrastinating a table runner which is not me. I need to finish it soon, because it is for my sister for Christmas. But it does feel more like a job. I understand and will be happy to email you the link to this post in future. ;)

  6. I have to say that when I saw the fabrics for this challenge, I knew right away it wasn't meant to be for me! You are certainly not the only one in the blog-o-sphere that has had a hard time being inspired and having fun quilting with those fabrics. I admire you for jumping in and giving it a go, and I see no problem with deciding it isn't meant to be entered; I worry I say "no" too much. Anyway, hang in their, and I know you'll be back to lots of quilting fun soon. The crocheting projects you have finished are great; I tend to crochet a line or two and then let it sit for a decade or so. ;)

  7. I know exactly what you mean about quilting mojo being squashed by trying to make it "quilt show quality"! I tried once and it was a disaster. Good for you for have the courage to do it your way and move on.


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