Tuesday, May 26, 2015

WIP week

Well, my kids have exactly one week of school left. I am feeling the pressure to get something, anything, done. I've got so many WIPs (works in progress) that I find myself wasting all kinds of time trying to figure out what to work on rather than working on anything at all. It's quite frustrating, let me tell you! (Please tell me that I'm not the only one who experiences this?!?!)
In an effort to combat this annoying phenomenon, I'm trying an experiment this week. I am going to pick one WIP per day and see how much I can get done in that 24 hour time period. If I can't decide what to work on that day, I'll pick a slip of paper out of a hat. I hope it doesn't come to that! :)
Today's project is to work on my doe quilt. I basted it already (hurray for progress!) and I plan to quilt it a la Carolyn Friedlander. (If you are looking for a basting tutorial, I have one here.)
I had the chance to pick Carolyn's brain about how she quilts her quilts while I was at market. She said that she adds the hand quilting first, then she adds the free-form grid quilting afterwards. I was surprised by the order, but she explained that the hand quilting knots are easier to hide before the machine quilting is added. She also explained that the hand stitching always rises to the top. Makes sense! She encouraged me to think of the quilt as a blank canvas and have fun with it. So, that's what I'm going to do! I'll let you know how it goes!

What are you working on today? Anything fun? If you'd like to join me as I work on my WIPs this week, I'd love to have you join me!

31 comments:

Emily Camfield said...

I have that frozen-with-indecision thing sometimes, too! It happens when I'm in the middle of a bunch of projects, and also when I've finished a lot of things around the same time and can't decide what to start next.

Judy said...

Yup, story of my life, too many projects and I become paralyzed with indecision. So I try very hard not to have more than 1 knitting project and I quilting project started at a time. Housework adds to the paralyzes cause I despise it. I think it's the fact it is never finished like a quilt.

Emily, I have never experienced, the what should I start next problem. My brain is a raging torrent of mush. I actually have about a half dozen quilts built in my brain at any one time. Moving them to fabric is the hold-up, I don't sew fast enough!

Caroline said...

You're not alone! You should see my UFO/WIPs basket...I'm quite good at finishing my tops, then I blank out when it comes to quilting. Anyway, with Finals week, I won't do much in term of sewing, but I should manage a few knitting rows now and then while waiting in the car pool...

Ruthann Grace said...

I notice in this post you have the pins going a different direction on one end of the border. Is this because your quilting design will be different there and the pins are going a different direction to aid in quilting?

tbear said...

I had to re-name my WIP'S to Someday Things...it takes the pressure off
having to finish.. I grab from my pile for birthdays, new babies and gifts
And somedays, they get done

Little Black Cat Quilting said...

I did this during my Christmas sewing last year! I would work on a different project every time I sewed so that I wouldn't get burnt out. Good luck with all of your progress this week!

Penny Olive said...

No, you are not alone! Sometimes I feel like I turn in circles getting nothing done. I'm trying to focus as well: one project per day.

Carole @ From My Carolina Home said...

I tend to finish quilted projects, but I have so many handwork things going at once - including a cross stitch from years ago. Working on a wool applique over a quilted base now. I have to fit quilting time around work.

Anja @ Anja Quilts said...

Good luck!! I love piecing the top, but not so much the quilting. So I end up with lots of WIP's because I don't know (or want) to finish them.

house on hill road said...

I love this and cannot wait to see it quilted! Go, go, go!

Dolores said...

Shoot, am I glad I'm not the only one. Is it the season that has given us brain fog?
I really need to start something new and bright that's quick to complete (or spend money to get some new fabric that I don't need.) Or else I need to finish something. Right now I'm doing repairs. I'm in a slump. I procrastinate and it just adds to the problem.

minnesota nice said...

I've numbered 6 works in progress at a time and then shake dice to decide what order to finish them. Have been working like a job to get 5 quilts quilted for a quilt show June 19th. 3 down, 2 to go :)

Carley Biblin said...

I have the same problem of not knowing what to work on. There are so many constraints (time, available tools, etc) that the list of projects I am able to work on changes constantly. Late night and no noise? I guess it's time to make cards. Daytime with an awake toddler who happens to be playing happily? Perhaps a little embroidery. Luckily I have enough wips to fill almost any moment, though actual productive time trends to be very limited. My next big wip to complete? A hand embroidered felt needle book for all my needles. Here's to the next big finish!

Jenny said...

No, you are not alone - I'm quite a procrastinator myself. I like the idea of
"minnesota nice" above who lists 6 WIPs and then chooses on the roll of a dice. Might have to try that myself!

Happy stitching

Jenny from New Zealand

charlotte said...

Gosh you use a lot more pins than I do. I like your plan of how to get through those WIPs. Good luck.

Sophie Zaugg said...

I have the same problem ! I really need to start when I have a new idea ... So I have to work on several projects. One of my WIPs at the moment is a quilt I made with Carolyn Friedlander fabrics. I've been inspired by her "Totem" quilt and I'm now quilting mine in the same way.

Marla's Crafts said...

I went to your tutorial on basting. I used to do mine that way but always ended up with a very sore back. A friend of mine showed me how to do it on the table. Using clamps. It works really well and is a lot easier on the back. I bought these plastic clamps at a hardware store that doesn't mark the table. I use 3 on each side. I table a safety pin to the center of the table and mark the center of the backing. Then fold the quilt back length ways and then width ways to get the center and the same for the top. It works really well and I get less wrinkles on the back.

Rene' said...

You're preaching to the choir here! I like your method this week of working on one WIP per day. May need to try that. I was also surprised to hear Carolyn say (last night on her Webinar) that she does the hand stitching before the machine quilting. Thanks for sharing her explanation. Makes sense.

Alycia said...

Love your idea of one WIP a day. I recently went on my first quilt retreat and a veteran retreater told me to make a list = pack those items and get started. I was so surprised - I had a list of 7 items - finished 6 and made a big dent on 7.... so maybe lists are good???

Good luck!!!! You can do it!

Therese said...

I also get paralyzed, as to where to start, if there is no looming deadline. I do alterations and about the time I have those finished and can do something I have been planning for fun, someone calls and needs a favor. Sometimes it is a curse to be good at things! I find it hard to say no. I told myself the next call for a favor needed a no, yesterday I had to say it to my sisters mending! I still feel guilty.

Karen said...

I'm with you:( I've got all kinds of quilting I'd like to be doing, but I also promised my daughter I'd make her 5 Roman shades for her new home. (In February. . .) So I've made a mental list that begins with the shades and prohibits doing anything else till they're done. Those shades are beginning to haunt me (and I know I could knock them out in pretty good time). Uggh!

Laura said...

Yes, I do that too ... sigh ...

Jacque T said...

They say great minds think alike! :) I do the same thing! So much inspiration and things to create, but I seem to get easily distracted at times.

Kate Leder said...

I know the feeling! In fact, I dedicated a whole blog to cutting through my sewing/crafting projects via a lottery system. It worked pretty well until I was only working on one twin size quilt and felt consumed by nothing but that quilt! I ventured out and did lots of stuff that just HAD to get done and off my sewing table. Luckily, the quilt is almost done and I will be very happy when it is crossed off my to do list! You can read all about it at www.sewingbylottery.blogspot.com

Linda said...

Welcome to my WIP world, LOL. I have the WORST time deciding what to work on. Mine is so directed by my mood, though, that I don't think the pulling one out of a hat would work for me, LOL. I'd be just like "ehhh, I don't want to work on that one....".

And you already saw what I have been working on. I have 19 blocks done, I need 17 more to go to have enough for a 36x36 baby size quilt. I'm running out of purple and orange... apparently I don't sew much with those colors. Reds are a bit scarce, too but not as bad.

Enjoy your last week before kiddo chaos. :)

Kim said...

I have a project pile too and there are always so many activities, plays, ceremonies and tests at the end of the school year that even before the kids are cut loose for summer vacation, I am too busy to tackle anything. I hope you have better luck! ;-)

Live a Colorful Life said...

How fortunate that you got to talk to Carolyn about quilting. Her method sounds very interesting. I hope you get lots and LOTS done on those WIPs!

Terri Faust said...

I have felt paralyzed and depressed when thinking about my WIPs, and then unfortunately I start something new instead. My LQS is having a WIP challenge this year that I am participating in, and we had to make a list of all our projects. I find this to be a very good way to look at what I have to do, pick something I want to work on next, and then when it is done cross it off the list. Gives me more of a sense of order and a great feeling of accomplishment when I can cross it off the list and then see several things on the list that are finished.

donna said...

Have you ever basted with glue? I tried it with school glue to quilt a lap size quilt. It washes right out. You just have to be careful to make very skinny lines of the glue so as not to make a glob that makes it difficult to quilt through. I love your little squares!

quiltytherapy said...

I'm working on nothing. Some big projects were wrapped up this month and now it's time to relax and read blogs. Actually that is my WIP, catch up on blogs from the last few weeks.

Melanie said...

The same here: Too much on my mind and lists and I become incapable of finishing, doing anything. It may sound strange but I LOVE your paper in a hat idea - I will have to remember this for the next time this problem occurs.