Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Decisions, decisions

Have I covered this title already? Ah, well. Que serra if I have.

My love of scrappy quilts comes naturally from my great grandmother on my father's side. She was grandma's mother (and they were both diminutive women), and small as she was, she could move mountains, Grandma Biddle could!

Her entire life she was a go-getter, my great grandmother -- right up until the very end. And I am wholeheartedly convinced that she would still be around had she not been knocked down by a neighbor's dog and broken her hip! While she was bedridden she came down with pneumonia and died at the tender age of 96....and that was over nineteen years ago!

She was the one who instilled a love of quilts (and quilting) in me. Her treasures to us grand kids were lovely and lasting, and I believe I quilt today because I originally wanted to make a treasure for each of my sons (at least, I would hope they would be treasured), and to replace the quilt she made for me (which someone had stolen years back).

Where is she going with this? How does this have anything to do with decisions?

Fast forward many moons and you'll find me at any time sorting wistfully through a wonderful stash, attempting to pair just the right 100% cotton ingredients into a brilliantly colored scrappy-looking top. I think the beauty of those older gems is in the basic fact that the material assortment was not as varied and contrived as ours is today. Those quilters worked with what they had, or with what they could trade for - or scare up from discarded clothes and feed sacks. I admire that aspect of their creation process, and the lovely combinations they stitched together. Their decisions were limited to exactly what they had on hand - nothing more and nothing less.

When I plan a project I am always noticing that at some point in the accumulating process I inevitably veer into a scrappers mentality - without starting off that way or meaning to. I may have a great color scheme planned, and everything worked out around one or two basic materials, and all the material I need stacked up ready to go, and I will still begin to play with slipping in another dozen (or two) fabric pieces to widen the assortment and dazzle the eye!


I have no idea, but rarely do my quilts ever end up exactly the way I initially envision them, or plan them to look. They're usually better, but almost always different than the intended scheme.

And here I am, as usual, stymied for the moment trying to accommodate my hideous indecisiveness. I've made myself a pile of too many decisions, and now I need to pare it down. Waahhh!

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