I got the idea for this quilt months and months ago. I had all these smallish pieces of fabric, because I have a friend who likes to hang out in fabric stores. Being one of those people who is attracted to bright or shiny things, I invariably ended up buying a handful of “fat quarters” or other pieces less than a yard. They were always in some random kind of pattern or batik that suggested water, or clouds, or sedimentary rocks, or some other bizarre thing. But I didn’t know what I would ever do with them.
I found the picture on a site with other pictures of “Rocks under the microscope.” Gabbro is an igneous rock made up of chunks of different minerals — not always the same ones. It’s a hodge-podge. I like hodge-podges. I like the opportunity to use the word hodge-podge in a sentence, or three.
I thought “Ah ha!” That would make a cool quilt. (Now let me issue a disclaimer, here: I am not a quilter — have never read a book, even though I own one, or taken a class in how to make a quilt. I know how to use a sewing machine. That’s it.) With my typical “Damn the procedure and full steam ahead” mindset, I found a piece of fabric that I could use as the ground matrix — that’s the darker gray stuff — and started planning out how I would assemble the jigsaw puzzle of all the various fabric “minerals.” What held me up for all those months was how was I going to patch together a bunch of odd-shaped pieces and keep them from unraveling around the edges, and then attach them to the back?
Then I discovered a lovely product that you can iron onto a piece of fabric, turn it over and remove the paper backing, and iron the first piece to another. Oh, happy day. I was on my way. Everything else was all done off the cuff, on the fly, by feel, or by guesswork. In other words — standard operating procedure for me — I made it all up. The real miracle is that it all actually worked. Sometimes I amaze even myself! (All right. Maybe I amaze only myself, but as long as someone is amazed, I have accomplished something.)
Something else I recently finished, although I had begun to doubt I ever would, was a correspondence writing course. And this is old school correspondence, using paper and envelopes and going to the post office to have the thing weighed and paying postage. Yeah. And I started back in…well, maybe I don’t want to think about how long it took me. The point is, I sent in my last assignment yesterday, and I did learn a lot from taking the course. Not just about writing. I learned about my own thought processes, and to what lengths I would go to avoid interviewing another human being face-to-face. Gah. Need to get over that. Need to chant my mantra “People don’t bite. People don’t bite…” etc.
So, now that those things are no longer sitting on the back burner simmering down to unrecognizable sludge, I can work on some of the newer things that have spent less time on the back burner. Time to get out the paints.