Monday, June 11, 2012

My Days Off

When I posted on Saturday I said I was taking Sunday off, and it is true that I haven't sewn since Saturday, but boy, have I been busy. What have I been doing? Let's just say a little soul searching.

 I have had some time to think things over lately, and I have realized a few things about myself. I used to consider myself a crafter, and I have gone through several crafts through the years. When we were newly married and broke, the only way we could afford for me to craft at all, was for me to make gifts we needed for people, so my craft budget was the gift budget, and I think I made some pretty nice things. I went through a ceramics phase, and a long-lived cross-stitch phase, and some needlepoint, both on tapestry and plastic canvas. I've made a few baskets (the only craft classes I have ever taken), and I have always sewn various things. I tried scrapbooking, but never did get into that.

I started sewing when I couldn't find maternity clothes in larger sizes, and I've been sewing ever since. There were seasons I made all of the clothes my five kids had, and almost every curtain I've ever hung has been made by me. DH has a closet full of scrub tops, all made by me. I always wanted to quilt, I've always loved quilts, and I was a typical blanket-loving child, I had a yellow one I really loved, and when I was sick, I wanted it. My mom even sent it to me, after we were married. 

I made my first quilts years ago, I think the very first was a wall hanging for DD#1, with horses on it. I made quilts for DD#2 and 3 when we re-decorated their rooms on a shoestring budget, and those were made from old jeans, backed with sheets from the clearance section. Eventually I made another quilt for DD#1, again for a room redo. All of those quilts were tied. 

When I stopped homeschooling, I actually had a bit of time to do what I wanted to do, and that was quilt. I started with a wedding quilt for DD#1, then I had to make both my boys quilts, because I had never made them any, and then I started making LOTS of quilts.

I have tried to play around with doing other crafts since I started quilting, and I occasionally get something done. More and more often though, I just want to quilt. I started a set of plastic canvas blocks for the twins before they were born. There are six blocks in the set, one is finished. They turn 17 months old tomorrow. On the other hand, they have two crib quilts a piece from me, one lightweight, one winter, and I have already started quilts for them for when they move into twin sized beds. 

Hmmm, you know, I think I am over everything else. I don't want to do ceramics, I don't want to cross-stitch, I don't want to do plastic canvas, and I definitely don't want to scrapbook. I still plan on making the occasional garment, and I'm sure I will making curtains for years to come, but what I want to do is QUILT! I have dozens of my own designs saved in EQ, just waiting their turn to be made. When I am stressed, I plan quilts, when I am getting an MRI, I plan quilts, when I doodle, it is quilt patterns. 

So what did all this soul searching lead to? It resulted in two days of sorting, packing and flinging. I am passing on all of the stuff from the crafts that no longer interest me. I am not panicked about the "what if I decide to do another ________ project?" If I really want to make something, supplies are easy enough to come by. I even got rid of some of my sewing supplies, since I am not garment making frequently. I didn't get rid of all of anything for sewing, but I did weed out some things I have lots of, some trims I will likely not use, some zippers I had multiples of, some cheap thread.

Here are some of the the things on their way out:

These are being passed to one of my sisters. There is also one more box for her not in this pic. DH and I are meeting her tomorrow for lunch and a craft supply hand-off ;-)

These things are being donated, some of these are not craft related. While I was sorting I packed up the computer games no one plays, and the last of the VHS tapes, along with a few misc. things.

There are also three other boxes that will be moving on that I didn't take pics of. Now in my sewing room I have two empty containers, and four empty drawers, as well as some empty space on shelves. Where my craft books once took up four shelves, they now fit on two with enough extra room for my quilting DVD's! I was merciless going through books. I looked through every one, and if a pattern didn't jump out at me, the book went. I did keep an assortment of quilting books, some on scrap quilts (my favorite), some on paper piecing (not my favorite), curved piecing, books on borders, books on settings, basic blocks, free motion quilting books, and a couple on design. One craft besides quilting made the cut. I kept two books on basket-making. You know what is really funny about that? I have no basket making supplies! I only ever purchased enough to make one basket at a time!

I still need to go through my quilting magazines, though they are all sorted now. I have had subscriptions to seven different quilting magazines over the past few years, trying different ones and seeing how well they fit my interests in quilting. I think I know which one fits me best, but it will be interesting when I go through the magazines with the same criteria I used on the books. Whichever company I keep the most of, I would suppose will really be the best magazine for me to keep receiving. My quilting magazines take up one shelf with some empty space on that shelf. I am only willing to give them one shelf., so for now they may all stay, but when they don't fit on that shelf anymore, the purging will commence. I think I am getting three different magazines currently, but it may only be two. I have never gotten seven magazines at once, I just try one for a year, and see how I like it.

I have already started reorganizing a few things with my newly found space. I have a drawer to put all my Sewing machine feet into now! The Bernina BSR and the walking foot come in tins and now they actually have a home! No longer are they on top of things in my way. It's a good thing. I learned a lot while I went through so many things. I found out I used a lot more of some things than I thought. There were several things I thought I had a bunch of, but when I actually went through it, I had used most of it up. I learned if I had consolidated a few things as I used them, I would have had one empty drawer long ago.

You know what else? I FOUND MY MISSING CAMERA! I have been looking for it for weeks, and I had correctly assumed it had fallen off my workbench in the sewing room. I had looked all around on the floor and couldn't find it. I had moved the set of plastic drawers next to the workbench and it wasn't under there. So where was it? It had fallen into one of the plastic drawers from the backside. I only found it, because I had decided to get rid of all my felt, and when I was taking it out of that drawer, I found it.

I did take two days off from sewing. I worked hard on those two days. I found extra space, I found out what I use and what I don't, I found my camera, and I found out I am a quilter.


Kristie said...

I hear ya!! As I read your story, I kept thinking this is MY life! :) My mom always sewed and made a few quilts so I was apt to pick it up sometime. Then after I was married to my first husband, (jerk) I got into making wood crafts. I did them for two reasons, working on them helped take my mind off my bad marriage and also I sold them to survive. He was a deadbeat and for a long time, my wood crafts were my only income. Now....I hate the thoughts of making wood crafts!! :) After we divorced and I moved back in with mom, she was quilting and I picked it up then! It was a great stress reliever for me and I have been hooked ever since.

Katie M. said...

Oh, I can relate.... I think if a craft included needle and thread of some sort, I've probably tried it. I think I would scare myself if I started going through 'stuff'.... Even quilting 'supplies', I probably have boxes of those that I will never use (and I'm including fabric there) Kudos to you for moving forward....

Shirley said...

I'm sending you a pat on the back for your work. WTG Now we just have to keep it that way. You will get so much more done now. Shirley