Friday, November 9, 2012

Distracted by a Fun Opportunity

So, just as I posted yesterday about having too many quilt projects in the wings, my dad emailed me with another one. Thanks a lot, Dad.  (kidding; I really am excited about this mini-distraction)

Some years ago (I won't say, since that would give away info on my dad's age, which he might not appreciate....), my dad was one of several children to create a Storybook Tile for  a tile wall display at his then-local library. Children were asked to illustrate their favorite storybook, and the library turned these tiles into a permanent display.

Now, as the anniversary approaches in the not too far future, they are asking descendants of the original artists to do the same, but in fabric! The library is hoping to put together a storybook quilt, using illustrated blocks done by the children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, etc. of the original artists. Participants will make a quilt block and send it to the library, where someone there will put together the full quilt to be dedicated early next year.

My dad, rightly so, thought I might be interested in creating a block, and also thought maybe The Artist, who enjoys quilting as well, might like to do one. We readily agreed, and The Writer said he'd like to make one, too. We're awaiting our instructions and will get started soon. The Adventurer has declined, claiming not to have a favorite story.

Which leads me to my dilemma ---- I have to choose one single favorite story. If you recall my "Books" post when I described my "books" block for the diary quilt, you'll know that is no small feat. I really kind of can't pick one favorite book; it's like picking one favorite child, or one favorite relative, or one favorite kind of chocolate.....or, well, honestly, all of that would be easier than choosing one single favorite book of all time. How on earth am I going to do that????

On the other hand, a full fledged storybook quilt is one of my "to do someday" projects, an idea floating around, not really gelled yet, way way down on the list of projects because it's such a vague idea. Except now I have a good idea --- individual blocks, each one representing a beloved book. It can go with my songs blocks, and maybe fill out the border on the diary quilt, or maybe become it's own quilt, depending on how many books I wind up listing. But now I know how to proceed with that project, so this is good.

Except now I want to work on this right away (I don't even have the instructions yet, so I won't...) instead of keep working on the tree skirt, and the diary quilt, and the comic strip quilt, and all the other stuff waiting for my attention.

This is such a fun distraction, though, that I totally don't care. Most sincere thanks, Dad, for letting us in on the fun!

Now, what on earth is my favorite book????  Better yet, what's yours?

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Practically picture-less project update, and requesting your input...

I have an insanely long list of projects that I'm either working on, thinking about working on, planning to work on, or just plain dreaming about doing "One Day."  It gets overwhelming, to the point I've made a list and try to add dates of ideal completion so that I don't get overwhelmed with all I want to do. Which is silly, because most of what's on the list is put there by myself, as something I want to do, not something I'm being told or asked to do by someone else. Crazy. It should be a no-pressure thing, then, right?

The problem is I keep thinking up new ideas before the old ones are done. I can't be the only one with that problem, right??? Please tell me you do that too......

As I work through my current "what I really need to be working on soon" list, I thought I'd come to you for some help.  The current "actively being worked on" list includes:

  1. The Diary Quilt
  2. The Comic Strip Quilt
  3. The Christmas Tree Skirt
Plus I'm in the active-thinking stage of the Radiant Suns/Sun Moon Star Quilt(s). 

Here's where I need your help, quilter or not, please weigh in. Really. 

I showed you earlier the Radiant Suns quilt kit that I bought, and then a while later the Sun Moon Star fabric that The Chemist got me for my birthday and the quilt I designed to showcase the new fabric. I finally worked out a border idea for that quilt, with some help from some on-line friends, but now I'm rethinking the whole thing. 

For starters, the blocks I picked to use are pretty complicated. Then, it still requires buying a bit more fabric. And time. And is yet another quilt in my ever growing list. And I wondered, maybe the fabric will be good as the back of the Radiant Suns quilt instead? And I can use the blue-on-blue tonal fabric in that quilt, and just as a general blue to have around whenever I need touches of blue suns, moons & stars? Or maybe even as border or binding for the Radiant Suns quilt? 

Saves me one quilt off my list, easier piecing so will get done faster, still showcases my awesome fabric, and doesn't leave me with two celestial themed, similar (but yet very different) quilts in my house. What do you think; scrap the second Sun Moon Stars quilt and just use the new fabric for the already-planned Radiant Suns (which I'm making suns and moons and at least one or two stars anyway, remember....) Quilt? 

Or do both, and have two? Which means buying a different backing fabric for the Radiant Suns quilt, and other filler fabrics for the Sun Moon Stars quilt I drew up? Thoughts??? 

The second thing I need help with is the Diary Quilt. I have the squares done to make the top, I just need to add sashing strips, which have to just be cut and then I can sew them on and assemble the top. Then it needs a border, which is where I'm stumped. 

My original plan was just a plain border (or a few borders) so it can be on my bed. The top is, or will be, big enough to lay centered on my bed and the whole thing show, and the borders would be the part that hangs over the edges. 

current, plain borders idea

But I also have this sort of vague idea to make a wall hanging or lap quilt or something, depending on how many songs I decide to include, depicting particularly meaningful songs in fabric. I already made one, and gave it away, but will make another of that song for myself. And the water pitcher block I won represents another song. And I have a list of songs a mile or so long that I would love to include, if I can only figure out how to depict them in fabric. Which brings me to my idea ---- would it be crazy to make a border out of the songs blocks???? and use that as the border on the diary quilt??? Maybe interspersed with song lyrics somehow (printed? embroidered? stenciled with fabric pens?).....and probably some antique/family heritage blocks I have included as well...? 

Instead of a plain border, can you picture pieced blocks making up the border instead? 

The drawback is, it delays the completion of the Diary Quilt. The plus side is, I could probably do most of those blocks from my current stash and not have to buy yardage to use for a border. The alternative is, I'll do the songs blocks later as a lap quilt or something. What do you think??? Border, or separate project? 

While you guys figure out what I should do about those projects, I'll keep working on the Christmas Tree Skirt and the Comic Strip Quilt.......