Monday, May 18, 2009

on a roll

I don't know if it is the spring weather, or the fact that we desperately need more space but can't afford to move right now, but I am super motivated these days. I am doing some serious decluttering/completing projects/organizing around the house.

Josh and I both have this amazing skill to overlook things that are lying around the house and leave them there for months. Case in point, the aerobed and pillows and comforter that my parents used when they were here in JANUARY are still sitting on the floor of our office. No more, though! I carried them upstairs and then lugged them into the attic and stored them, all by my lonesome, and then I sat around and marveled at the fact that they'd been sitting there for 5 months and it took me 10 minutes to do it.

There is also a coffee cup that has been sitting on the counter for a week because his mom used it from the top shelf of the cabinet and neither one of us was capable of pulling the chair over to stand on it to reach the shelf and put it away. Today I did it, and I was able to stop being bitter about the fact that she used the top shelf cup in the first place. Our laziness honestly has no bounds.

There is a bug in my nonexistent bonnet these days, and for whatever reason, I am Getting Stuff Done.

Remember the monkeys? Seriously, go look at those adorable monkeys. They are pretty cute. Well, I am ecstatic to announce that after one 8-week class, almost 2 years, and a whole additional child added to our family, I have COMPLETED THE FREAKING QUILT. Do you feel the excitement?

The pattern is called "Lucky Stars", and it was a bit of a pain because it was a lot of cutting of little pieces, but for my first quilt ever, I think it turned out pretty well.

I made the twin size, which in retrospect was too big. Lesson learned for next time, I guess.

The quilt is also MUCH busier and brighter than what I'd hoped for, so another lesson learned there. I like the colors, but all of the fabrics were equally busy (read: very much so) and it makes for a very, very, very bright quilt.

For that reason, I picked a simpler fabric for the backing, and I love it. Can you see the actual quilting? It is loops and stars, although I didn't do that part of the quilt. I left that to the professionals with the long arm sewing machine.

Can you see the cute monkeys riding scooters and pogo sticks and hula-hooping?

Best of all, though, there is a very happy boy who thinks the quilt is the coolest thing ever. Somehow, he seems to know this blanket is special. I don't know whether he can really understand that I made it with my own two hands, but he oohs and aahs over each fabric, each little star, each little monkey. He's already told me multiple times that his favorite is the red band aid fabric because the "monkeys have boo-boos". He is so cute, I could swallow him whole.

I do love the binding also- it's made with this brown fabric that looks like a knit but isn't. It is really cute, and considering my hatred for hand sewing (because you have to hand sew the binding), I'm proud that I actually finished it. I'm especially glad it didn't come out looking terrible.

I'm so relieved this is done. I was emotionally unable to tackle other sewing projects because I kept seeing my poor innocent quilt squares sitting in my sewing box and I felt too guilty to try anything else. Now that the quilt is finished, I am free to do whatever I want again.

It isn't perfect, by any means, but I've learned some lessons. First, next time I will do a simpler pattern. I knew when I first saw the pattern that it wasn't quite my cup of tea because it looked a little too "country" for my tastes. Everyone else in the class was completing that pattern, though, so I went along with it, and I thought stars would be cute for a kids quilt. Next time, I know I prefer something simpler- more streamlined. Second, the fabrics. I will definitely pick one main fabric and several simpler ones for my next quilt (i.e. Josie's quilt). Perhaps the colors will be no less bright, but I will stick with one patterned one and the rest in stripes or plaids or something like that. Lastly, I will just DO IT. I will make the quilt and finish it, because the finishing process took so little time that it was ridiculous for the quilt top to have sat in my box for over a year. Now that I know, I'll just take one afternoon and get it done.

I have finished several more sewing projects in the last week and a half since I finished the quilt, but I have to get some sleep so the suspense will have to continue. Da dum da dum da dum (cue Jaws theme music). I'm sure you'll be on the edge of your seats, right?


Swistle said...

OMG, that is your FIRST EVER quilt?? It's GLORIOUS! Now _I_ want to make a quilt! I would be interesting in ANYTHING ELSE you wanted to say about making quilts, learning to make quilts, and the expense of making quilts.

Rev Dr Mom said...

Nice quilt!

Anonymous said...

So much better than a baby book! That's awesome!

Knit and Purl Mama said...

That quilt is gorgeous girl!

mikraas said...

That quilt rules! I am working on one right now (cutting out the squares: the worst part), and i have to know where you got that material with the sock monkeys on scooters and pogo sticks?? it's totally fabulous!!