When I was in college (many decades ago) I bought a jug of apple cider from a roadside stand, drank some of it, stowed the jug under my bed and promptly forgot about it. Months later I found it, opened it cautiously, and decided to taste it. It had turned into a lovely beverage with some kick. Of course, it could just as easily have turned to vinegar.
I was in a similar situation last week when I found some forgotten abandoned projects tucked away in my fabric closet. One, a heart done using the storm at sea pattern, was left unfinished because I couldn’t figure out how to finish it. The other, an improv piece, was one I had planned to do up using stupendous stitching techniques. I had even backed it with fusible fleece and fused some organza to it. But there it sat in a recycled plastic container for a year and a half.
In the time since I abandoned these two I’ve learned different techniques and ways to look at my work. So, inspiration struck and I finished them. Hopefully the results aren’t vinegar. Once I added the photos to this post I was amused to realize the two pieces have remarkably similar color schemes.
Making Tracks benefited tremendously from Jean Wells’ books, especially ways to insert curved pieces and mount little quilted pieces. I used a hand dyed gradient done by Vicki Welsh for the framing piece.
Heart in Gold reflects my awareness that sometimes a work can get too fussed at. Originally I planned to do a checkerboard border, but I came to see that would take away from the main focus – the heart. I think the muted gold border helps tone it down while the white dots give it some frivolity. And Gwen Marston’s advocacy of different sizes and colors of border strips helped, too.
My question to you is, what’s in your closet?
6 responses to “It Came From the Back of the Closet”
Terrific use of older pieces. I’m not sure which I like better, but perhaps it’s Making Tracks. Either one would look good in my home. 🙂
My closet doesn’t have a lot in it, but most of it is stuff I got stopped on because I didn’t know what to do next, rather than because I didn’t like what was going on. Besides 3 “active” projects and a bunch of placemats to bind, there are only 3 waiting for full fermentation. Probably 2 of them will get action in the next few months.
Thanks for the story and for sharing your new work. I enjoyed it.
I like the idea of “fermenting” projects. We will finish no project before its time…
Earlier this year I found a large tub full of old half-finished projects. I blogged then back then, and as I’ve finished some of them as well. Now I have to pack my current stuff for a move and I wonder how many will become “buried treasure.” Your Storm At Sea heart looks very much like one I’d started in a class with Doreen Speckman 20 years ago!
Perhaps a time capsule of buried treasure would work. A friend recently told me she had finally figured out what to do with some old hand appliqued blocks – she plans to cut them up and insert strips in a recombination effect. I assure you this wouldn’t have occurred to her when she first made those blocks.
Sometimes a project just has to wait for the right time. Both of these turned out great!
I’m hoping they’re the last of my forgotten past. But I still have to figure out how to deal with the all too present in my mind past projects.