Monday, February 20, 2012

A Quilt Project Long-Deferred

I've been in a tizzy the last few days, mostly a positive sort of tizzy, because some gainful employment has come my way. It involves quite a bit of advance preparation, so I'm frantically developing reading lists, lectures, and assignments for courses that should have started a few weeks ago.

This means that some of my other projects are moved to the back burner. The wool quilt top is completely assembled now, and I've pieced a backing from orange, gray, and blue fleece scraps. My next free afternoon will find me safety-pinning the top to the backing. I hope the wool/polar fleece combo won't be so heavy and bulky that I can't use the sewing machine to tie the layers together, but if it is, I can always tie it the slow way with a needle and thread.

While I see a way to finish that project sometime soon, I may have to put the next quilt project aside for a while. That's happened before. I think it was 2000 or 2001 when I dyed these muslin pieces. A couple of years later, I made half-square triangles of them. In 2005 I started assembling these for window quilts, but soon discovered I didn't have enough fabric to cover the windows. That was when I put the hand-dyed muslin away again and took up fabric scraps unsuitable for quilting to make curtains. The scrap curtain project took about six weeks of steady sewing, but the results did please me, and helped keep the old house a little warmer in the winter. I'm still using them in the new house, one pair in the bedroom, the other in the living room.

Last summer, I hauled out the slow-developing project once more, and finished sewing the half-square triangles into blocks (finished size eight inches by eight inches). I discovered I had 56 complete blocks (and a few odd bits left over). I could make a seven by eight block rectangle, but I started thinking I could instead make curtains for my sewing room. When faced with indecision, sometimes it's best to wait for inspiration. Just last month, I decided I needed a cloth to cover my dining room table (which is where the computer sits in the living room), and these hand-dyed colors would be just the ticket to brighten up the place. I hauled out the blocks, and some flannel scraps for backing, and that's when I got the phone call that sent me into a textbook-seeking, reading-list making tizzy.

Tizzy-wise, I also got some bad news about one of my other occasional teaching jobs--"Nursing program shut down." It looks like there will be far fewer teaching occasions for me there for the foreseeable future.

No comments: