Thursday, February 27, 2014

On Finishing Projects

First of all, thank you for all the good wishes for Ashley. She didn't win the competition, but she has made some great connections and the experience has been wonderful. She spent yesterday and this morning touring a bit of Montreal (and was hoping to visit a Sugar Shack), and is flying home this afternoon. 

Above - a few succulents and moss from my yard brighten up my kitchen windowsill.

About 19 or 20 years ago I started this quilt for our son Travis. I got bogged down on the hand quilting because of the poly batt thickness. It's been through several moves, packed into boxes and bags, and gave me a guilty feeling every time I looked at it.

Then I found out that Katie was thinking of doing Mister F's room in an airplane theme. 

"Aha," thought I, "a great excuse to get it out and start quilting again."

However, sometimes there are good reasons why a project should NOT be finished. This quilt is a case in point. The solid fabrics are quilting cotton. The starred fabric is mostly cotton. The striped fabric is less cotton. The backing is something unknown. The fill is polyester. All but the airplanes and star fabrics were purchased in Ecuador. It was just about impossible to find quality cottons there. It puckered. It pulled.

The original quilt was intended for a twin bed. I tore it apart, preserving the hand quilting I had done (outlining the airplanes) and then put it back together in a crib size. I machine quilted the squares. It's not a project I'm very proud of, but I am glad I finished it. And I hope that Mister F will feel cuddled in love by it. 

How long do you store your unfinished projects? Or are you one of those rare people who never begin a new project without finishing the previous one? 


  1. adly I am one of those who has a number of unfinished projects lurking.
    I think your quilt is lovely, so bright and just right for a little boy.

  2. I still have the mostly-finished quilt top that I started before I got married, that is, 42 years ago. My plan was that it would be our first bedspread. It is made of very small hexagons. After 20 years or so I decided to finish it as a twin coverlet for one of the children, but they are all gone now and I never have put a backing on it. Some of the hand-sewn seams between the pieces are falling out, and I don't even like it anymore. But I showed it to a friend last month and she liked it. Maybe I will give it to her. :-)

  3. I think it looks great actually! That's a good question about storing projects. I have a counted cross stitch of the castle at Wmsbg that is more than 20 years old. I think I should consider it a failed project. But you have wondrously redeemed this one!

  4. I'm not the best role model for getting things done. Yesterday, I started going through boxes in a closet and sorting very old photos into general categories. Today, some have made it into albums, but more sorting remains. Your idea for a crib quilt was inspired.


  5. I'm sorry, but that would have been long gone if it were my project. Not that it doesn't look charming, and I'm sure it will be perfect in its new (resurrected?) life. . . but there's a point where I give myself permission to let go . . . ;-)

  6. Mister F will cherish this. Well done, Lorrie.
    I've finished most of the projects I've started but there were a few sitting around that I just couldn't get back to, ever, no never...... so I tossed them. What a relief. Now though, after reading this, I'm wondering.
    Isn't this sunshine marvellous!

  7. I don't have that many projects stashed, not because I finish things but because I don't have a lot of storage space. A few things have definitely been given the old heave ho. Example: Clearing out a closet recently I came across a slip cover that I started for a chair that we don't even have any more.

  8. I'm afraid I'm one of those people who have to choose projects that can get done in one sitting or might never ever get done. How fun that you could rework this project for the next in line...

  9. I think it's very nice that this project came to new life again for your new grandson. He'll treasure it. When our son was in kindergarten the class each did little wall hangings that they made their own drawings on. They were sent home to be quilted by the parents. Well, guess what? That never got done! I still have it in my sewing cabinet all pinned together waiting. If he and his finance ever have a child I will make sure it gets completed and given to them. That was 28 years ago!! Pretty bad eh? I love your bowl of succulents. It looks so fresh and bright. Have a wonderful weekend.

  10. Anonymous4:45 PM

    All the best to Ashley.
    I am terrible about unfinished projects! I love that you have completed this and how perfect for your grandson!

  11. Such a cute quilt design - love the bold colors! I have many UFOs and I have long since felt guilty about not finishing them. The enjoyment is in the "doing" and if I'm not enjoying it, then why continue? Life is short!

  12. It is really sweet and it is a completed project! i have so many unfinished projects.

  13. Oh Lorrie, Ashley is such a gorgeous looking your lady -to be a finalist in such an important competition was an achievement in itself. Best wishes to her.
    I love your aeroplane quilt for Mister F - well done on a womderful finish! UFO's are a specialty of mine too!
    I've been at work all week so it's a quiet relaxing weekend for me with a little gardening and maybe a film on Sunday!

  14. Oh I am the world's WORST about this. I had a desk that I stripped way back in the 80s and only finished a few years ago. It sat, hiding and ashamed in the attic for 20 years. That's bad.

    I am trying to get better. Generally speaking what happens is that I encounter a snaffoo. (sp? Is that a word?) that I don't have the stamina to handle at the time. Then, it gets forgotten. There is a forgotten afghan up in the attic that needs to stay forgotten.

    Your quilt turned crib quilt is wonderful in my opinion, and you SHOULD be proud of it. I could never do something like that.

  15. I like your little planter and the quilt is cute too. You just reminded me that I still have a 1/2 finished latch hook (remember those) rug that I've had since I got married nearly 22 years ago unfinished and boxed up in our closet.

  16. What a darling quilt - and a great connection. I used to be a finisher before staring something new - but I got a head of myself and have 9 quilt tops to be quilted - some will be sent out to be machine quilted - at least three I will hand quilt. My machine quilter will machine baste the tops for me and then I can sit and hand quilt - I have two machine basted - haven't had time to pull them out and start the hand quilting - soon, I say soon. LOL

  17. Love the bright airplanes! : ) I didn't sew / quilt for about 10 + years then started again November 2012 and so the projects that I worked on at that time were about 13 years old ! : )


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