23 June, 2009

"Let's Talk" Tuesday...

With all the choices for quilt projects available it's hard sometimes, if not impossible, to choose what the next project will be. There's information and inspiration overload today; magazines, books, blogs and daily e-mail showing and describing what everyone else in the quilt world is doing, it's enough to overwhelm even the most energetic and dedicated quiltmaker.

How do you decide where to spend your quilting time?

For me, this question is becoming harder and harder to answer. I don't think that I suffer from any attention disorder but the distractions from all sources can be daunting. I know that I must limit myself or I will effectively murder all productivity on my own quilts. I have pared down my magazine subscriptions and I roll through reading a selected blog list in my "down" time. I pile up the new magazines that I do acquire for car trips and bedtime reading. I choose the project at hand for a specific purpose, or person, and channel my energy there for assigned blocks of time. This specific focus method works for me, but it doesn't come easily and requires constant vigilance on my part. We really do "have it all" at our fingertips, what we do with the resources available is up to us, they can be both blessing and a curse at the same time!

...and sew, let's talk...
Life is Good!

18 comments:

marilyn said...

I feel exactly the same way too many choices.
Usually I keep my quilts simple and mostly
traditional patterns. It's like when I
grocery shop I still can't believe how many
choices there are. Sometimes I want to
scream just give me plain laundry
detergent or soap etc. Guess I am
surely showing my age in that I don't
want my clothes or my body to smell
like green apples or pineapple. LOL
Marilyn

Quilt Memories said...

I have found that being in as many quilt shops as I have been over these past 4 years, I have lost a lot of interest in them, also I have purchased so many pretty fabrics that I am totally overwhelmed so I find myself just sitting in my sewing room looking around at what I have and trying to decide what to do next....I am also that way with books and mags, I have way too many choices. Last week when I was sewing, I just picked a bag ( I do keep all my projects bagged together) and decided whatever was inside was what I was making. I really didn't enjoy doing that, so I must PLAN my next project better. I must say I did finish a top that has been bothering me for a long while, made the backing also, so now I am ready to sandwich and quilt 3 quilts. But deciding what I want to piece next is still a mystery to me...LOL

Janet said...

I agree with you - sometimes there's just such an information overload that I become so overwhelmed. Blog reading has certainly been an inspiration but also can make me feel like I should be more productive. But I've been trying only to focus on the inspiration. My projects lately have been focused on items for grandbabies and gifts for others. Don't get me wrong, I certainly am happy to do that but I'm hoping to concentrate on a quilt just for me soon! Does that sound selfish? I hope not!

Salem Stitcher said...

This is definitely an area where I need a little control. Sometimes I will wake up and have the urge to cut up fabric...an another UFO is born. I will go trough basting frenzies and quilting frenzies and applique frenzies, and design frenzies. This is how my "studio" beocmes a big ol'mess. Then I make a list of all the projects laying out in the open and systematically work through them. That's where I am right now. I am cleaning the slate so to speak so I can begin the next big adventure. (That is, until something else shiny pops in front of me and I have to add it to the pile. --sigh--)

Salem Stitcher said...

oohhh...nice spelling there in that last post, Salem Stitcher. I could say that Shelby typed that up for me...but she is actually a much better speller than I am. Just try to get away with spelling b-a-t-h or w-a-l-k and see what happens.

Michelle said...

I feel as though we are on the same wavelength. I just posted something on my blog about this issue, right before I read your post. I have quite a few projects organized. Right now, my projects are usually organized by date. Someone is having a baby, someone's birthday, Christmas etc. Now I am just too far ahead with projects to be able to do any new ones that I see that I like. I tend to leave projects for my self to the side as well and never get to them. I am going to try to work through the projects I do have since my fall so far is free and clear so that I do have time to play and be inspired.

Nan said...

It is difficult for me to settle on a project. There's so much input available these days! I hate to say TOO MUCH, but I almost think that's true. I too choose my projects with a certain person or holiday in mind, and go from there. Sometimes I go through my (abundant) stash and find a kit that I always wanted to make, and away I go!
I find myself influenced by other bloggers, and I want to make whatever they are creating. If I don't focus, I definitely get overwhelmed by the list of projects I would LOVE to make! One project at a time is what I strive for, but don't always manage. At times it's too easy to let the whims of creativity get the best of me, and then I'm a quilting mess!

Quilting4U said...

BOy, that is a loaded question! I find myself chasing myself in circles! Too many projects going at one time and pulling me into pieces! I vowed some years ago to get caught up and have only 2 going at a time, well, I have yet to be able to accomplish that. So, for me, I am still searching for an answer for that.

Marianne Penner Design said...

Too true. I have cancelled all magazine subscriptions and am just relying on my bloglist and things I see in nature to inspire me. I too have found that I am bored with a lot of the quilt shops around my area. I've been trying to be good, and only use up fabrics from my stash and if I require a specific piece of fabric, usually I can find it on Etsy.

Karen Newman Fridy said...

My choices usually revolve around exhibit deadlines, though once in a while I'll just decide to play and see what happens. Sometimes those are the best pieces, the ones that I don't overthink...they just sort of make themselves

Quiltdivajulie said...

No "good" answer, except to say that I have dabbled with this and dabbled with that and come home to the fact that what I love the most are the colors and the fabrics themselves.

My response to what I actually work on next (as opposed to what I think about working on) comes from deep within me ~ there's a wise quilty guardian angel in there somewhere, guiding my journey . . . and I'm trying to listen to that voice instead of the magazine editors.

I love being able to log on and see what others are doing ~ there are bits and pieces of so many others in my work ~ but I also have to log off to give myself mental space to understand what it is that NEEDS to be worked on next.

GREAT question!

Sharon said...

Overload is right. When I'm out in quilt shops I start thinking about what I could be accomplishing if I was at home sewing, and I have to remind myself there is more to quilting than the task of piecing. Some times it's great to get out of the studio and let other things inspire us and this keeps me motivated. I do have too much fabric and too many projects and I just got a kit and 2 new books in the mail yesterday.......Oh well!
Sharon

Marti said...

Oh my I feel the pain....so many projects, and so little time. I, too, have cancelled a number of quilt magazines. In fact, now I go through past magazines, scan the patterns I want to save and the rest goes into the recycling bin. As for my projects, since I'm a hand quilter and love hand piecing as well, I keep myself focused on the task at hand. Sometimes it's difficult, but well worth the effort, seeing one more project from start to finish.
Miss Marti (frequent lurker)

Shasta said...

I do let time get away from me - spending time looking at books and magazines and blogs, at quilt shows, when I already have enough ideas and supplies as it is. I am trying to spend more time actually doing, but it is hard with small snippets of time.

*karendianne. said...

This was a hard question that took some time for me but it became obvious. I choose based on how I'm feeling (physically). The Dresden Plate because I'm feeling up to it, I'm in the game. The Nine Patches are close to done and represent a break. Those two magazines on my cutting table represent something about to manifest. When I return to the same magazine again and again, I know it will happen. When the same pattern ("Indian Paintbrush" by Patchalot) returns to my mind again and again, I know it too will manifest in good time. So, I think I maybe contributed an answer that makes sense?

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Teresa said...

I try very hard not to have more than three or more projects in process, but since I started blogging and I see all these free stitchery patterns, I am finding it difficult to just say no. I love desiging in EQ6 and then making the quilt. So as soon as I finish three projects that I have to have done by October, I am going to dig my KScope back out and work on that. Then I have a new grandbaby on the way, so have to make a quilt for her, and my grandson has requested a dog theme quilt, and my daughter want......

Bonnie said...

lately it's been deadlines that have made the decision for me. If someone has a special event, like a birthday, retirement, graduation, baptism, something like that....that can push me into gear too.

Other than that I just putter on whatever suits my fancy!

Bonnie