Sunday, March 08, 2009

Arguably, It's Time to Get Organized

I've been a very different kind of quilter this year than I was in 2007-2008. Last year, I was all about putting quilts in shows and being part of the community, and I had this detailed work plan that I actually followed. This year, I haven't even been attending Guild meetings, let alone putting pieces in shows. I haven't been nearly as interested as creating my best work, but rather on just playing around with recycled materials. And although I've still been quilting, it has been sporadic and on random projects, sometimes new ideas that I just plunged halfway into as soon as I had them. All this has been to such an extent, in fact, that I had lost track of how many projects were even in the hopper.

I spent a half hour this afternoon doing a little project census, and the results are sobering. In addition to about 20 "regular" projects in progress, I've got a whopping seven (7) StormQuilts in some stage of assembly. Which is kind of crazy. But now at least I have a list of what I'm working on, and can maybe concentrate my efforts a little bit.

This beast over on the right is the face for SQ10, which I made about a month ago. It was jointly inspired by Quilty's success with using t-shirt fabric and a purge of my overflowing drawer of well-past-prime shirts. I had no interest in preserving the designs on the shirts as such, so just cut all of the useable fabric into 8 1/2" squares. I do like the way that the ghosts of the lettering and logos from the shirts creates a little extra visual interest, though.

As you'd expect from t-shirt fabric, there is some serious limpness going on here. I will need to back it with something relatively stiff, I think, to keep the end product from being a completely shapeless mass.

6 comments:

Rebel said...

Yeah I was a bit surprised to see a t-shirt quilt that didn't actually focus on the designs. But I like this one, you can play a little matching game trying to find the other half of each picture. I'm easily entertained by things like that.

Debra said...

Your t-shirt quilt is much more urban chic than currently popular t-shirt quilts. It might have helped to interface before cutting into the shirts or just go with a fluffy batting and tie it.

Libby said...

Love the floating designs -- I think that's a great look for t-shirts. I never thought of the stability issue - mine is backed with flannel, basted but still not quilted.

Elaine said...

Yeah, the T-shirt people use a fusible interfacing before cutting; otherwise you can never control the stretch of the knit. But here's my thought: some things are not worth recycling, esp not into quilts. (I cut old tees up for rags--they're absorbent, washable, soft, and long-lasting; not so once interfaced and forced to be in a quilt.) But, like every quilter, you gotta live and learn. Every damn day...

jovaliquilts said...

I'm always surprised by how arty your storm quilts look. Either you have a very good eye or I have a terrible one!

Michael5000 said...

@Reb: Makes it more impressionistic than representative. At least, that's the kind of thought that comes to you when you quilt while watching art history lectures on DVD.

@Debra: You are perhaps the only person who has ever, however indirectly, called me "chic." It makes me happy.

@Libster: We'll see what happens, stability-wise. From the photos, your shirts were probably higher quality and less thoroughly worn.

@Elaine: There, you stand upon the philosophical slippery slope of quilting. Is it EVER really "worth it" to cut up some cloth in order to stitch it back together as the surface of a blanket? Arguably, only if you are driven by some sort of vision of what those fabrics would look like recombined in a new configuration. And to that extent, since I got curious about what my stack of discard t-shirts might yield, it was worth doing. For me. At least this once. The surplus squares, though, went straight to the rag pile.

@jovali: Gosh, in order not to insult you I guess I have to say I have a very good eye! Thanks... : )