Sunday, April 20, 2008

Chain piecing


0804 chain-pieced quilt blocks
Originally uploaded by rooruu.
See, you design a modest, simple quilt, and of course you don't count up the number of seams. Until you sit chain-piecing at the sewing machine and it seems to be all whirring, whirring, pressing, more whirring and, on the one hand, you're happy to see the work coming together. On the other hand - and this happens with lots of quilts, or other big projects - there's always that point somewhere in the middle where it seems rather endless, as you cut more fabric, seat yourself at the sewing machine, plod back to the iron...

Maybe that's the point where some projects lose their energy and focus, get put aside and maybe don't ever get finished.

This one will. I took a break from it, read some more of Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister (rich prose, a plum pudding of prose with the sharp acid catch of lemon peel - Maguire has great imagination, the way he's playing with Cinderella and other stuff to make something new).

And I guess this quilt has some of those qualities, combining old and new. I'm a bit over those seams. But when I get them finished, I can play with a cornucopia of blocks on a design wall, and feel the energy of the next step in construction. And it's also how you look at it, without process there is no product, it's the effort and time that make something happen.

Mostly, I enjoy process, the rhythm of it, the zone in which you can find yourself. And I am happy with how this quilt is coming together.

3 comments:

Quiltycat said...

Am I seeing cockatoos in that photo?

Is this the quilt you mentioned a few days ago or a different one? C

candyschultz said...

I absolutely adore the process of qulting. Quilters, however, are fortunate to have a beautiful keepsake at the end of the process. There are many avocations where you don't get that.

rooruu said...

Carmel, I did mention this one, it's the one where I thought I might play with pencils. Not sure now - think I might need to refine/explore my technique, so I'll keep it for another quilt, as this one has a bit of a deadline. Yes, those are cockatoos...

Candy, you're right about having a wonderful product at the end. And I have now finished piecing the blocks, so playing with them is the next step.