improv

first things first, if you ever work with silk let me tell you right now that it’ll end up everywhere. all over your machine. your table. other quilt projects. your dog. everywhere. oh, and it’ll never photograph right. you’ve been warned.

not feeling it

as part of pollen8, there’s a little swap involved so you get a little something extra before or after everyone works on your blocks. it makes the wait a little easier and who doesn’t love getting a surprise in the mail. I decided to make my partner a mini-quilt/wall-hanging since I thought it would be cool to send some art her way, but now I’m questioning myself. part of the problem is that I’ve been thinking about this quilt for months. I think I got the fabric back in may and have been sketching out ideas since then. too many ideas really, to where I’m not really sure what i want this quilt to look like.

a new approach

I chose the silk dupioni for its texture and picked out a few crossdyed colors to add some interest. my original idea was just to do some simple, randomly pieced and cut, stripes. but now I’m wondering if it came out boring or if there are too many colors battling out in such a small space. or maybe it’s the lack of negative space? I’m still not sure how I feel about it. this morning I moved on to one of my other sketches. this one has a little more order while still being improv. I mixed in some bamboo/cotton fabric to separate the silk and to make the texture really come out. it’s smaller and a little more contained, but now is it too plain?
does this happen to you? you get too many ideas for one project and you start second guessing yourself? I wonder if it’s because I’m making this for another crafter or if it’s just letting ideas marinate in my head for way too long. thoughts?

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  • mereann November 2, 2010 at 10:26 pm

    I totally do that~a lot, in fact. I think that always wanting to make the very “best” use of fabric in my stash is, perhaps, my #1 time monster in getting a project off the ground! Silly as it seems, I even have this “get the motor started, already!” problem even with FREE fabric from other crafters or homeless vintage scrap piles…I am in love with the potential of the materials, but reluctant to commit. I must admit, though, I rarely get so far as you in actually sketching out my ideas…I mostly just mix and match yardage with clothes patterns in tippy piles all over the sewing room…in the New Year, I am committed to embracing fearless crafting!

  • Virginia November 3, 2010 at 8:08 am

    An honest opinion? I think that you’re right, the first square is a little busy. What if you picked it apart and put white strips of fabric in between each square as you did on the second one? (or is that not an option?)
    I think that if you placed them into a larger piece, both squares will work beautifully, as they stand now.

  • Oiyi November 3, 2010 at 9:04 am

    The silk looks great. I am sure it wasn’t easy to deal with. I really like the colors you used. I think it would come together when pieced.

  • Sara November 3, 2010 at 10:29 am

    i like the second one better. the first looks like it has a bit too much going on. but then, i’m boring so i tend to like boring things. so who knows?
    and i hear you on the silk. it’s the same with silk spinning fiber. it sticks to everything.

  • Laura November 3, 2010 at 8:34 pm

    I totally know what you mean — it’s being crippled by choice. It’s almost easier if you have constraints or rules to abide by. If you have the whole world of fabric at your fingers, where do you begin?
    But, to put your fears to rest: these look fabulous. And I LOVE dupioni silk. Just keep going, your gut will keep you on the right track!

  • Lisa November 3, 2010 at 10:00 pm

    I’m being honest – I like your second version – I find it very elegant and restful – my 2 cents, for what it’s worth.

  • gale (she shoots sheep shots) November 4, 2010 at 10:02 am

    Second guessing is the bain of my existence. My ongoing goal is to remove shoulda thoughts.
    The secons one works for me, that larger tranquil blue balances the crisper red/white action. But I love all of it.

  • Amy in StL November 19, 2010 at 4:48 pm

    Apparently working with velvet is like that too. My mom made a quilt for me out of all the velvet skirts she saved as I outgrew them or didn’t want them. My dad said they both were on allergy meds until she was done with the sewing up.