Thursday, July 10, 2014

Sweet, Sweet Progress on the Geese Tracks Quilt

Implementation is often the very hardest step for me. Seriously. I get this idea in my head that seems fabulous, but the details are a little fuzzy. Okay, lets be honest-- a lot fuzzy. Way back when this project was just a great stack of fabric, I knew I wanted black shadow appliqued flowers, especially in and around the border.
The last border, promise....
Then the project progressed. I somehow ended up with a basket border. The baskets wanted to show off my black flowers that had suddenly appeared in the centerpiece. (Huh? how did that happen?) It seemed like a good idea so I went with it. But what about my black flower border? Hmmm.. Got to make sure the center ties in with the outside of the quilt. Which was not done yet, so yeah, a bit difficult.... The details of my quilt were starting to meld and morph and even play a little hide and seek with me. This is the stage that makes me want to chew my fingernails off I if let it get to me.
The bias vine before I fussed with it a hundred more times.
But I persevered. I made another border and then yet another. Some people didn't understand what I was doing or where I was headed because they thought it looked 'really wonderful' at the basket border. Stop! You are ruining your beautiful quilt! {You really can't ignore the elephant in the room comments.} People just want to, ahem, be helpful and stave off what is obviously the equivalent of a normal person driving their car off a cliff on purpose.
The bias vine just before I fussed with it for the very LAST time.
You can see the major improvement from before.*wink
Even I winced as the last border was added. Those super light gray/whites--so drab and plebeian. What was I thinking!!!! What if I was destroying the best part of my quilt?!!! Ahh.... the angst. I made myself cut out and sew together the bias vine and then I folded it all up and put it away. There! I am so. done. with this quilt.
Starting to place the flowers and leaves
Yeah, about that. I didn't put it too far away. That would be quilt project murder. It was in plain sight all the time. Every single time I went into my quilt room there it was. It even had to be moved a time or two to get to the quilt projects around it, but I kept it out where it could taunt me. Haunt me a litte. Beg for mercy. Anything to be put out of its quilty misery. 

So finally, yesterday I hauled it down to the living room and laid it right smack in the middle of the floor. I fixed myself a tall glass of iced tea and threw the bias vine on the border, fussed with it a bit and griped to myself about not planning the border better. You know, so the applique could be put on one border at a time instead of this big unwieldy quilt monster. My husband came home early for work, wafting concrete dust all the way back to the bathroom. Reprieve! Lets put it up and work on it another day. But nope. Just taking a shower and leaving again for a couple hours.
Starting to hack the flowers and leaves into bits....
Hmm... So I visited for a few minutes and went back to work. Pinned the bias vine. Fiddled and fussed. Then I took a break. Fixed some strawberry lemonade. Fussed with the bias vine some more. Started cutting out flowers and leaves. Made Took a few phone calls. Decided to put it all away for a better day when my head was clearer.
All that drama for this?
Oh I was so tired of this quilt. It was draining all my energy away and I couldn't SEE it. You know, that brilliant light bulb map of where to go next? It was eluding me. I still had a couple hours until my house filled up with people tromping around my living room so I told myself to quit being a coward and get on with it. But then I promptly went into the kitchen to do some dishes. lol Good to get the priorities figured out! Uh huh, got distracted by the idea of making a yummy lemon jello, cottage cheese, pineapple, and blueberry salad--never did the dishes. (You can see that the inside of my mind is a very scary place indeed......)

Okay, enough avoidance. Even I was tired of all the wasted time, angst and drama. So I went back to work with a vengeance (haha too much sugar for that) and actually got the last flower in place just before it was time to make dinner. Good thing my husband had called and said he'd be late! I pulled all the flowers and leaves off the quilt and quickly pinned the stems into place for sewing. That part is for later. 

Whew! Can you believe what it takes for me to finally settle down and concentrate on what is basically just a simple little design element? Some quilts. If I didn't know better, I'd think they were a lot more trouble than they're worth.*wink


  1. Your process sounds a lot like mine. If Im unsure about what to do I just avoid any decision making. BUT you pushed on and I really like where this is heading !

  2. You are a good creative writer when you are working through things.

  3. Deseo ver este final !!!
    sera impresionante, muy guapo....

  4. I am happy that you kept going. I very much like this quilt.

  5. Love the sneak peek of those flowers on the vine. I think you're over the hump!

  6. Good thing you are the one driving the car because you seem to know where you are going even if you take a couple detours!

  7. I never doubt what you are doing! Love the black flowers.

  8. Great post, Audrey, fantastic writing, I love this pondering on the creative process, and I love your quilt!

  9. I am definitely liking what I am seeing in these photos!! Even if you feel you are struggling through the design process your end results are always worth it! This will be another beautiful quilt!

  10. I love that you share your thoughts on your quilt designing journey....also it makes me feel better that I have had a project pinned to a makeshift 'design wall' for months, whilst I dither with which colours and pattern should be used next. In the end I get so annoyed with myself, I just tell myself to do something/anything to get the process of sewing on the go again.
    I think if there was a rule that I couldn't work on another project until this one was finished then maybe I would be making my decisions faster!

  11. You have always wonderful ideas I would your work XXX

  12. Designing a quilt sometimes takes a lot of walking away from it and getting back to it, with a fresh mind preferably. But it seems to be turning out very well indeed.

  13. It's going to be gorgeous just like all of your other ones :)

  14. I would have never thought of the black bias to go onto the lighter border--brillliant~~ I actually find that stupid jobs like washing dishes, brings me time to contemplate what is spinning around in my mind. I have also found it hard to concentrate, when people need things like dinner---or clean underwear~~breaks the whole creative mood!!

  15. I am just saying that at the end of the day, if this is not the quilt you had in your head, it can come to live at my house and be loved LOL!! I think it's going to be so fabulous.

  16. This one is certainly not more trouble than it is worth. It’s just perfect with the black vine.
    You need to publish patterns for some of your terrific ideas.
    And by the way would you consider writing my blog post for me?

  17. I just LOVE that quilt!!
    Best wishes!

  18. Oh my Gosh!!! - I know that feeling of quilt design angst!!!!! Good luck.. you will figure it out and you will know when it is right.

  19. Hang in there kiddo - knowing your work, it's going to be fab!

  20. You always get it right Audrey, but thats because you think through all the options and the you listen to what the quilt wants, not others comments. This is looking amazing!!

  21. Thanks for letting us in on your creative process and what sense of humor about it all! Those pinks and greens take my breath away but the addition of the black is fantastic! Take care, Pam


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