For years I kept journals -- in composition, spiral bound, and French graph paper books. This blog is an attempt to get back to writing and documenting the world around me using photos, newspaper headlines, and other articles.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Boxes of fabric

One thing I realized as I organized our boxes from the move in the garage, was that I have boxes and boxes, and tubs of fabric. Stacked in the corner of the garage, all together, they form a mini mountain.  In Dover, I didn't have a place to put all the fabric I bought, so I tucked some away in a shelf in the linen closet; kept other yardage in bags under my bed; and had some boxed away in the laundry room.  In was a shock to see it all packed up and in one place.

This weekend I took a time out from errands and other shopping and decided to open up a few of the boxes and put the fabric where I can see it.  I had seen several fabric folding tutorials on various quilting blogs that suggested making small bolts of fabric using comic book backing boards.  The minimum yardage to wrap neatly is a 1/2 yard.  I bought 2 sets of 100 boards in two different widths, 6.75" and 7" wide.  Good thing.  I used the entire package of 7" on the first 3 boxes.  Considering some prints I have over the 1/2 yard minimum, I must have folded at least 50 yards yesterday.

On the day bed in the sewing room, I started bags for scraps, under a 1/2 yard cuts, and pieces that no longer speak to me and I can part ways.  I'll have to figure out a way to organize the scraps and small yardage later, but for now, I am so happy with the way the mini bolts look stacked in some shelves.

My plan is to use a regular book case, once the carpet goes down in the den and I can ditch the furniture that is blocking it.  For now, the shelving unit turned sideways and resting on the 1/2 wall in the room works just fine.  Although I don't have any more room left over for the pinks and reds.  And considering the boxes still remaining in the garage, even the regular bookcase that I have set aside for this project may not be big enough.

Today I left my guys at home and I drove up to Rochester to see the Cocheco Quilters annual show.  It was a nice size show held in the Community Center.  The quilts were in the middle of the space and vendors lined the perimeter.

The first quilt that struck my fancy was a map quilt, no surprise there.  It was part of a special exhibit lent by the New England Quilt Museum with a New England theme.  Many of the entries had map pieces, but I think this was the best conceptually.  You can't see the fine detail in this photo, which is too bad.

And this is the other quilt that I liked.  It reminded me of walking in the woods near the Ashram and fining pink lady slippers.  I stood in front of the quilt for a while and smiled at the memories it evoked.

I had the most fun browsing in the booth space of the shop Quiltessentials of Auburn, Maine.  They had beautiful quilts on display and lots of pre-cuts and kits.  As I fingered through a basket of batik pre-cuts, I started hearing a conversation between two patrons and the vendor that went something like this:

     "Can you believe she moved over 100 miles away from a quilt shop?"

     "That's not allowed.  If you quilt, you can't move that far away!"

     "May be in retirement I'll buy a kick-ass RV and fill it with bolts of fabric and drive around and sell fabric to folks that live out in the middle of nowhere."

     "Yeah.  You could send out messages telling folks that you are at a rest-stop on 95 and they should come see you."

     "That is sounding more and more like a really good idea."

I don't know if that is a totally realistic business model...but I've got a lot of fabric that I could hit the road with in about 20 years.  I left the booth after buying the Fall/Winter 2015 magazine that featured their shop on the cover and some hand quilting needles.  I refrained from buying any fabric.

So I didn't get any sewing done this weekend, but I got a start on organized the room and my supplies.  I found my sewing machine, but not the remaining blocks for my birdbaths at sunset quilt that I need to finish.  I think that resuming my quilting creative life will help my disposition.  I packed away all my projects around Memorial weekend and have felt bereft and itchy.

Before going up to Thousand Islands in July, I broke down and bought some fat quarters and began a hand sewing hexagon project.  I'm not sure where I am going with that and while I got satisfaction from seeing my stacks of hexagons grow, it wasn't my birdbath quilt.  So now I have two hand projects that I can work on when the mood strikes -- my landscape piecing that I began after a class in 2013 and the hexagons.

I can gaze at fabric forever.  Before I start my next project, I need to find inspiration from my own stash and "shop" at Bethany's Home Fabric Shoppe.  If I talk about heading out to a real store, tie me down and take away my keys.

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