And Finally…..”It’s Time”

Have you ever noticed how it seems like the only time you don’t “feel guilty” about working on something for yourself, is when you are completely done working on things for everyone else??

As long as someone else’s project is “in the works”, working on something for yourself always seems to take the furthest back burner in your agenda. That is okay – to a point. The bad thing is that you always seem to have something else that you need to/should be working on – and your item becomes a perpetual U.F.O. (an UnFinished Object in quilters terms).     😦    

I’ve been quilting for about 10 years now, and I have NEVER made a quilt for myself. Nope – not once!

I would start one – draw up the design, pick out fabrics (not always in that order), cut the fabric, and occasionally even get as far as starting to sew the pieces together…..and then, WHAMMO! I would think “So-and-so would really like/love this”. That was it – at that point, the quilt was no longer “mine”. It became “theirs”, and would be finished/gifted accordingly.

One of my “Goals” (read “Resolution” here – I don’t make “New Years Resolutions”, only “Goals” – they are more forgiving and don’t have a “Fail-Factor”) for 2010 was to FINALLY make (and finish) a quilt for myself.

I joined a Quilt-Along hosted by Bradie Sparrow (amazing, talented lady), picked out some fabrics (I decided I wanted a purple quilt), and made it all the way to the large center medallion block. Scott was my “helper” who critiqued/approved each finished block along the way – fascinated by all of the color combinations, techniques and emerging designs. My son laughed at us saying I was “corrupting” him (Scott).    🙂     

Then….. August 22 happened.

My world changed. Our world changed. Big time.

 I couldn’t even think about/look at that quilt for a long time after that. I emailed Bradie and let her know what had happened, and that “someday” I’d finish the quilt – just not then. She understood completely.

For months my sewing room sat “abandoned”. Closed for business. The now “abandoned” blocks for the quilt were left hanging on my design wall – I just couldn’t take them down, and I couldn’t bring myself to finish them. So, they just stayed there. A reminder (sometimes – okay, most of the time – painful) of the past several months of my life. 

Then, one morning, I got up (see previous post I Confess) and the “quilting bug” started nipping at me. Not about “my” quilt, but about another one that I had left unfinished for someone else.

Slowly (sometimes in only 5 minute intervals) – I started quilting again, finishing up the gift quilt just in time for Christmas. By the time I had finished piecing the top on that one, I was actually able to resume sewing again on 2 other half-finished quilts that were also due at Christmas. Once these were done, I actually felt like creating again – and 4 Tablerunners, 12 Placemats, 11 Rice Bags and 1 Pillowcase joined the ranks as Christmas gifts. I was even able to finish them all up by their “deadlines”!    😉   

Somehow, God’s Grace showed up and re-awoke my desire to make quilty-things again.

“Thank You” God. I feel better now.     🙂    

Now….enter the illustrious Pat Sloan into the picture. Miss Pat decided to have a New Years UFO Busting Party/Luau.

I only had 1 UFO left – that purple quilt still on my design wall…..

So…… I took a deep breath, asked God for help (LOTS of help), and said “Okay…this will be the UFO Party project”. I then posted a picture for Pat of what I would be “Busting” at the party.

You see, this quilt represents so much more than just “a quilt for me”.  It represents the very last of my creative projects that Scott helped with/was involved in from the beginning. It stirs up sadness, tears, pain, memories and happy moments in my mind (that I hold dear) which all come flooding back every time I look at those blocks.

But, it is time. It is time to finish it.

So, with God’s help, I am determined to finish that quilt. It will NOT be a gift for anyone else. Ever. It is mine. It could never hold the importance, significance, or memories for anyone else (with only the exception of my son who was there during this quilts journey) that it will forever hold for me.

Therefore, I have resumed work on it. I’ve pulled out the last of the pattern notes on the quilt, picked out the final fabric combinations to pull the whole thing together, and have started piecing all of the little parts that make up the final center medallion block. After that, it just leaves the sashing and borders to do. It is going slower than expected – but, it is going!    😉    

So, Miss Pat, “Thank You” for the UFO Busting Party kick-in-the-butt. I am not finished in time to meet the end of party deadline: but, I am “in progress”.     🙂    

I will keep you all posted on how it goes. If you would like to see photos of the blocks I am working with, you can click on my Flickr Feed over on the left column of this blog. Just look for all of the purple and green blocks.

🙂

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12 Responses to “And Finally…..”It’s Time””

  1. planejaner Says:

    Shady–
    I don’t know what August 22 held for you, but I do understand what it’s like to be traveling down a road you think is certain, and have everything change in a heartbeat.

    Good for you–for your spirit and psyche and soul–to pick your quilt back up, and reclaim a part of you–different than when you started…but you.
    blessings
    jane

  2. planejaner Says:

    p.s. I have always wanted a quilt or “me”–and am jealous of your talents! I made one, once, for my daughter’s crib…it was just blocks…you can tell by looking at it I am no quilter!
    now…the one of my dreams? Blues and greens…I can see it…but I’ve never found it. (Since I KNOW I will never make it!)
    blessings…again!
    jane

    • shadybrooks Says:

      Ooooohhh. Blues and greens would be pretty!! What do the blocks you imagine look like? Stars? 9 Patches? Appliqued shapes (like a Rose of Sharron quilt)? You never know – you just may decide to make it one day after all – esp. if you come across the fabrics you are looking for! 🙂

      • planejaner Says:

        Shady–
        I can see it clear as day–
        it’s a Tree of Life.
        🙂
        (and, even knowing what it looks like…I’d have to a. have talent b. no how to sew/quilt c. know where our fabric stores are…
        😉
        jane

      • shadybrooks Says:

        LOL Jane!!! Knowing where the fabric stores are is probably the most important part – the “talent” and “know how” can be disguised as the quilt being called an Art/Improvisational Quilt 🙂 hehehe
        It sounds beautiful – I now have this image in my mind of the Tree of Life by the River of Living Water 🙂 I think it would be especially beautiful done in Batiks/Bali fabrics (handpainted/dyed fabrics from India and Indonesia) 🙂
        Shady

  3. flyinggma Says:

    Good for you Shady. Most Mom’s tend to put everyone else first and quilters do the same. Have fun on your project! Can’t wait to see the finished project.

  4. Bren Says:

    Shady,
    This post brought tears to my eyes and a smile on my face with thoughts of you and Scott and the quilt in progress. Good for you for working on completing it. Scott would be happy and you have another memory to hold on to.
    Brenda

  5. planejaner Says:

    Shady–
    you’ve captured my image EXACTLY!
    🙂
    blessings on your day!
    jane


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