I am the queen of unfinished projects. I finally gave away a needlepoint project that I had been “working on” for almost 20 years. My crafting area is a monument to good ideas that have never seen fruition. The problem- I am a goal oriented crafter. I need to have a deadline and a schedule to make it work. Most of the projects, either in progress or waiting to be started, are quilting related.
I picked up the quilting bug when I was a pre-school teacher. We would make a quilt each year as part of a school auction project. My only role was making sure that the kids made it to the office to work with the project organizers. I was intrigued and wanted the kids to see the process from start to finish, so we started our own quilt project. The students stamped muslin squares with their initials and them learned how to embroider around the letters. It was truly adorable to see the little boys sitting around the table with embroidery hoops. My very talented co-teacher then assembled the quilt and presented it to me at the end of the year. It remains one of my favorite things.
The next year we repeated the project, but documented it and upped our game. I had a new co-teacher and had to tackle the assembly myself. Up to that point my only sewing experience was a class with Winky Cherry (yes that is her real name!) back when I was eight. I didn’t have a sewing machine, so I picked up one at Walgreens for $20. That sturdy little machine is still around and has made 3 quilts! The project inspired me and I became a little quilt crazy. My limitation- cutting. I am a terrible fabric cutter. Enter ebay!
Ebay has a number of listings for pre-cut quilting kits and I jumped right in. I picked up an Irish Rose Garden kit, a Jacob’s Ladder Kit and a Double Wedding Kit. I was too ignorant to know what was within my skill level and quickly grew frustrated, but I kept buying. Pinwheels, stars and fat quarters were soon in my stash. I joined the Keepsake Quilting Medley of the month club and my fabric stash grew, but nothing happened with the projects.
I moved to my first “on my own” apartment a few years ago and found a lot of time on my hands so I started to sew. I found that I enjoyed hand-sewing more than machine sewing and would spend hours watching TV while slogging away on my first big project- the pinwheel quilt (it’s still not finished).
I have since picked up a number of books and many more kits. I even invested in an AccuQuilt Go Baby so that I can cut with accuracy. I have all the tools needed to try English Paper Piecing and I have discovered two fabulous Joann Fabrics products- the Learn to Quilt Series and Block of the Month Series. They easily fit into my “need to be scheduled” neurosis.
I sat down last night and organized all of my quilt projects. There are a whopping 17 of them. I have narrowed them down to 12 that need to be done this year and have set myself a goal. I will finish 12 quilts in 12 months. During this year I will also, go through the Learn to Quilt Series to help refine some of the skills I am trying to hone.
Here’s to the year of tackling my unfinished addiction!