Thursday, October 30, 2014

Time flies

I played around a little today with a handful of scraps and my two favorite machines - my trusty Bernina and his best friend, my 20 year old Black-n-Decker iron (just don't tell my blender and 'the Duke' I said that).

Toyed with creating those earthy, not-so-perfect, free-form, cut-and-pieced circles.  It was fun, in a torturous sort of way.  Somehow, I managed to cut the first quarter-circle set and piece them without any issue, but when I went to cut and piece the second quarter - issue, i-s-s-u-e, ISSUE.  What the heck?  I think my mojo is on vacation.

Anyway, I will try it again tomorrow, and hopefully find my path back to happiness and ease.  But if I continue to misstep, is there anyone who can loan me a cup of breadcrumbs so that I can find my way back?

No...seriously.  Anyone?

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Peeling another month off the calender

I have been ready to return to work on VGS, and even last month I stated I wanted to jump back in.
Eagerly and wholeheartedly.
Both feet.
Get back to the cutting and searching and finding and fussing and all -
....but I have still been mired in household stuff.  Mostly just lots of tasks needing doing to be 100% ready for the arrival of my mom for our early Thanksgiving dinner....mostly.  Also, to be ready for the inevitable hunkering down during winter.  You know what I mean.

But, here I am, no closer to having touched it and made any further progress since, what?  July?

What!?!?!  Is that even possible?

I have been seriously bent on finding a job, so lots of lost hours upon hours every day to that.  Then house stuff...just - ick.  By the time evening rolls around, I am either too spent to muster the initiative to turn on all the lights in my sewing corner and look for possible pieces to complete the yellowest portion, or I am just plain ready for bed.  And...I have been trying to finish a load of stockings for a craft show that is now 'just around the corner.'

My cornucopia is full, so I am promising myself to make up for lost time once 'turkey day' has come and gone.

Scout's honor.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Caron, ever the stateswoman

I am a member of your hand quilting group, thank you.
: )

You graciously admitted me when the numbers were in the mid- to upper-hundreds!  Before Janet became your assisting admin, even.  But thanks all the same for the invitation to join.  I will remain in the group, if it's alright to do so, even though I do the bulk of my quilting on my lovely old Bernina 1530 (despite my love - and practice - of crazy quilting BY HAND, and my new-found enjoyment of making quilts via the hand applique, needle-turned route).

My ultimate spew a couple of weeks ago (resulting in "Dumbfounded"), was out of complete frustration with a relatively small - but v e r y vocal - faction of the membership in the Celebrate Hand Quilting group.  It doesn't merit re-hashing, for now you have been made aware of the misdeeds, if not privy to the actual four (or five) nasty threads I read, politely countered, and finally teared up over.  It's not worth the anger I felt, nor the abuse (as a pretty darned fine FMQ-er) some staunch hand quilters seem to feel needs vocalizing at every turn.  I am certain there are far more vitriolic timeline 'conversations' I have never seen...and that's fine.

I love to see the craftsmanship applied to the quilts visible at your Fb page, and I admire the skills so many hand quilters possess.  Not to mention the hours upon hours of dedication given over to perfecting a uniform stitch.  The gumption to continue stitching through pain and blisters and all.  My great grandmother quilted by hand.  In her late eighties she finally gave way to piecing using a machine - she figured if her worsening arthritis was going to steal some of the time in which she could be making a quilt, she may as well do the most visible portion by hand for as long as she could.  It broke her heart, but she was quilting up to the end of her life, at 97 years old.  Bless her.

Any more, when threads turn anti-FMQ, I ignore them by simply removing myself for a few days.  It's sad, though, that people gifted with a needle - such a seemingly passive and lovely art - can be so negative and hateful towards other 'artists'.  Some of us take great pains to practice and acquire a skill set equal to the task of quilting with our domestic machines so that it is as attractive to the eye as it is to the body.  Some of my works are stitched with a purpose to overindulge...but those quilts are to hang on walls and tell a story.  The stitching is integral to the quilt.  However, I have also cuddled up under each one of my more heavily machine-quilted wonders just to hear it speak to me in my dreams.  They are just as cozy and pliable as any quilt my great gran ever hand quilted.  Gram would have approved wholeheartedly, because I was making a quilt!

What's not necessary are all of the derogatory comments.  If a hand quilter doesn't FMQ, that's fine, but why dip into the well of ranting and insults?  Not all FMQ work is "stiff," "soulless," "ugly," "unusable as a blanket," "overdone," "sub-standard," "low quality," and on and on.  

Can't those quilters agree to disagree and simply move on?  Can't we all just quilt together?

P.S. Before I move on, I really must thank you, Caron, for caring enough to ask.  Also, for your apology on behalf of those rather rabid hand quilters.  I thank you for being you and for sharing your time and knowledge and for being an effective emissary for the love of a beautiful art.