New Year

Below is a paper/fabric collage that has been scanned onto canvas (fed through my inkjet printer).  A digital image of a village quilt (printed on paper) has been stitched to the center.  I haven’t been able to figure out what to do with this and a sister scan.

A New Year begins.  Can I cultivate faith? The faith that things will improve?  That we all are growing, and on some sort of path?  I spit so contemptuously at the pervasiveness of certain words like, “dream”, “believe”, and yes, “faith” that I am shocked to be sharing this work in progress.  Perhaps I don’t finish it because of that very word.  Perhaps a lack of faith keeps it (me?) undone.  I used to want to be a spiritual person.  Now I just want to be someone who gets things done.

Combining old and new yearnings, then, Number One Consecration for this New Year: I shall finish the two faith quilts on my board and let the exercise provoke an inquiry, maybe even a return to some sort of practice (I have learned that one does not need faith for a practice to have benefits).  The sister scan below was shaping up nicely, paired with some beautiful silks, until I drew on it with sharpie and ruined it.  But you know what they say — any quilt you hate is simply one that isn’t finished.  (Come to think of it, what is that but a statement of faith?!)

“Lettuce Pray”

Consecration Number Two:  I have decided to join the many quilters who make weekly journal quilts.  The Dec/Jan 2009 Quilting Arts Magazine features an article by Jeanne Williamson, who made weekly quilts from 1999 to 2005 (this past year, she made needle-felted quilts exclusively).  My rules will be as follows (rules in italics, commentary in regular font):

1.  One quilt a week, even if away. Structure is good.  Finishing things needs emphasis and commitment.

2. Once begun, no starting over.  Variations of the thing are soooooo tempting and to be avoided until the thing is finished (this is really just to underscore rule No. 1).

3.   Materials will always include scraps from the floor.  Here, I am trying to trick myself into clean up.  Regularize it.  Avoid making it a deal.  Mess follows me around.  We have a complicated relationship.

4.  Quilts must be quilted, but not bound.— Alright, I’ll semi-finish things.  No need to go overboard, here.  Until I work out a canvas-frame-mounting system that works for me (again, I refer you to Jeanne Williamson’s blog), I am not going to worry about the edges of these little things.  I loathe binding quilts.

5.  Sizes need not be uniform, but will not be squares. Uniformity is too much of a challenge for me, esp. when it involves measuring.  This I know and accept about my style.  Even right angles are challenging for this quilter.  I don’t want squares, because of their resemblance to potholders.

6.  Journal Quilts must have a home.  Yes, I would like to be able to find these creations at some point and I don’t want them littering my work space, annoying me.  This rule probably only needs to be followed at the outset (but who wants to place bets that the home doesn’t change?  Even I am willing to wager that at some point I will have no f@$%^ing clue where 1/2 dozen or more quilts are… Could I really circumvent this problem with a little proactive rule-following?!  THIS would be worth knowing).

7.  Monthly themes are optional.   I do well with assignments.  he goal is not simply to experiment.  It is also to cement things that I have learned.

Consecration Number Three — If using scraps off the floor and making a place for the Journal Quilts to live don’t produce an appreciable difference in the slobbery downstairs by the Vernal Equinox, I will barter a couple of quilts for organizational services.


This is AFTER a little clean up, so I’m not kidding about the mess.

1 thought on “New Year

  1. elspeththompson

    Dear Dee,
    Thanks for the nice comment you left on my Blog. I have enjoyed looking at yours, and will enjoy visiting in future. Indeed, I will forward your details to my mother, who is a great quilter, and loves Jane Brocket (she was thrilled to meet her when Jane came to my book launch) and also High Desert Home – I forget how I came across this lovely, thoughtful Blog, but you might like that, to (on my links). My ma makes loads of quits though I don’t know if she manages one a week! She gives a lot away, I know, to friends who are having babies or grandchildren. Good luck with your new Blog and Happy New Year!
    x Elspeth


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