Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Plenty of Quilting UFO, But No Knitting UFOs

I have realized the past few months that while I may pick up and put down quilting projects on a whim, that I just can't do that with knitting.  In knitting I am monogamous, but promiscuous when it comes to quilting projects.

I started knitting the red wrap and got distracted on Ravelry with a sock knit-along.  I started a new pair of socks and would generally alternate evenings of knitting on the socks with evenings of knitting on the wrap.  I found that I just couldn't do it.  It made both projects suffer because I just couldn't get into a rhythm of the pattern on either.  I abandoned the wrap while I finished the socks.  Once the socks were done, I've happily picked up the wrap again and am working on completing that.

But I don't do that with quilting.  I usually have two or more projects on which I am 'actively' working, along with a variety of completed tops waiting their turn to be quilted, and other UFOs that are hiding the the closet hoping I will find a glimmer of excitement in them to bring them back into the light and the rotation of 'active' projects.

On reading the forums on Ravelry, I find it hard to imagine why anybody would have knitting UFOs.  Or a knitting stash, for that matter.  (OK, I do have enough yarn to make another 10 pairs of socks, but I know what they are all going to be.  I never buy yarn just because I love it.  Not yet, anyway.)  I KNOW this is entirely hypocritical.  I have absolutely no problem with buying some fabric just because I like it, thinking it will make its way into a project some day.  I have no problem letting a quilt top 'rest' for a while before I take the time to quilt it.  I have no problem putting a project aside because I have lost inspiration, or have no clue or are too afraid to attempt the next step.  But I just can't imagine buying some quantity of yarn because it speaks to me without having a clue as to how I will use it.

I guess this means that I'm a much more experienced and comfortable quilter than I am knitter.  If I had been knitting for 30 years I would have a clue as to how much of what weight yarn I should buy to make a sweater or an afghan or a baby blanket or some other project.  And most of my knitting projects have been small (socks, mostly). I like that because I can play with new stitches and textures without committing to a large project.  Yet I can still knit something useful and pretty.

So, I'll continue to knit projects serially and jump to wherever inspiration takes me in my quilting world.

(Just a bit of eye candy ... ) Goat Island Lighthouse, Kennebunkport, ME at Cape Porpoise - view from the restaurant where we enjoyed lunch on our anniversary.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Where Do They Go

I spend many of my evenings watching TV with my husband and stitching.  I either do some hand piecing, hand applique, hand quilting, knitting or, occasionally, cross stitch or other embroidery.  I like to keep my hands busy.  It makes me feel (perhaps delusionally) like I'm being productive while being a couch slug.

While hand piecing or doing applique, I use short applique pins.  And I usually use size 11 betweens for quilting.  I do have occasions where I drop one of those short pins while trying to move it to or from the fabric and its storage box.  And, on occasion, while starting the next needle-full of quilting stitches, the needle will launch itself off the thread and land somewhere.  I rarely find these pins and needles.  My question is - Where Do They Go?

I have turned that recliner on its back, upside down, and sideways in the fruitless search for the missing sharp object.  I have run my hands over the arms, the seat, the backs, the surrounding carpet, between the cushions and have never had so much as a prick form the apparently vanished metal sliver.  I have tried sort of bouncing the front of the chair up and down to try to dislodge any missing pins into falling to the floor below.  I've even resorted to a rare earth magnet to try to coax the missing sharp object out of it's hiding place.   ...  All to no avail.

So my question stands - Where Do They Go???

I've pondered this for quite some time and I think this is one of those un-answerable questions like "How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?" or "Why is it if I eat a pound of fudge that I gain 5 pounds?" .  The answer to all is "We can never know".