Monday, September 17, 2012

getting on with it

Well thankfully by this afternoon I was out from behind my dark glasses and resuming some semblance of normality, albeit after I'd had a power nap admittedly.

Whilst trying to find things that Needed Doing that weren't overly taxing I got on to ironing some patchwork squares ready to sew them together to make a quilt top. Once ironed I figured there wasn't much point putting them back in the bag and set to laying them out on the sitting room floor working on the final layout (most of my patchwork works on a 'start with a general plan and then make it up as you go' basis). I had it all laid out, the intertwined koru of kiwiana fabrics and of autumnal colours, and went to get my camera.

I learned early on in my quilting days to take a photo once I'd got the layout sorted so that should something happen I didn't have to figure it all out again from scratch. This was after I had discovered that my cat Banjo had decided that his new hobby was quilt design too, ie after I had it all beautifully laid out he'd go and reorganise it as soon as I turned my back! Banjo stayed in Scotland when I emigrated, but the habit of photographing it all 'just in case' has stayed with me and I've had cause to be grateful for it a few times.

Great, I'll just email the photo off to... oh. In more recent years these photos have been shared with Natalie as we've encouraged each other along with our various quilting projects, helped make decisions on which fabric looked best for a sashing or a border, was the layout ok or did it need something in to break up the intensity a bit more, is it me or do those patterns just not look quite right next to each other? At Natalie's memorial her friend and quilting mentor spoke of how she'd post a quilting related photo on facebook and then find herself disappointed that Natalie hadn't commented yet before the reality of the fact that she wouldn't any more would register. This is the first quilt I've worked on in ages, so this is the first time I've had that 'oh' moment which left me wondering 'but who can I send it to instead?'

I know Jane will be popping in on Thursday, so that is okay - she and I often talk quilting at length, although her skills are far superior to mine - she makes works of fine art complete with exquisite embroidery. I really felt the loss of having someone whose skill level was comparable, and whose practical approach of 'I'm making it to be used, not hung on a wall and admired,  no-one will notice once it is on the bed/floor/cot/etc' fitted so perfectly with mine!

So I sat and thought, what would Natalie do? To which the obvious answer was - just get on with it. So I sewed, trimmed, ironed and sewed some more. By teatime I was knackered and more than ready to stop but I had the quilt top done. All it needs now is some sashing/framing and I need to go shopping to get material for that. Later on I even managed to sort some of the backing material out, that'll be tomorrow's project then.

I might not have her here any more to give me encouragement and ask later 'so how's it going?' when progress reports have dried up but I'm pretty sure that one way or another Natalie will remain part of my quilt making for many more quilts to come, as inspiration and motivation to just go for it, after all, it's only a quilt.

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