Saturday, January 12, 2008

Teacher, the cat ate my homework!

Imagine this exact conversation happening.

Teacher - Why did you not get your quilt finished.
Me - Because my cat ate my pattern and I couldn't finish it.
Teacher - That is a likely story. Go write 100 times on the blackboard that you will never use that excuse again.
Me - But really, she did and that is why I didn't get it done.

As part of my new years resolutions, I have been trying to finish some of the projects that are unfinished. Of course, this is a perfect resolution for me because that means I can fill up the space with more projects but feel justified in doing so. This morning I found one that I really wanted to get done and out of the way. The house quilt. I took a quilting class form April 2006 - 2007. Each month was a different block and by the time it was over you should have a finished quilt. Me - I had four blocks. Now my cat really did eat my quilt pattern but that is not my excuse for not having this quilt finished a year or two ago. My excuse is that I hated this pattern to start with and I hated the class. There was no motivation and so nothing got done. And after quilting today for a few hours, I remember why I hated this quilt and why it never got finished.

I have learned a few things from this quilt though. And I think they are valuable lessons.

First - NEVER take a quilt class from that teacher again. She was never prepared. Her patterns were usually wrong. More than once, I had to figure out the pattern myself before attempting to make the block. And I only made four blocks! She told us that the quilt colors would be navy, maroon, and pink. We only had one pink fabric in the whole set and the rest of the colors were greens, tans, blues, and reds. So now I have one block that doesn't match at all. And I didn't learn anything new (like techniques) like she told us we would be learning.

Second - Cheap fabric will result in a cheap quilt. The fabric was provided each month with the pattern. It is cheap fabric. I know that fabric can be expensive but why would you want to cut corners on something that takes a long time to make and you hopefully will want it to be around for a long time. Cheap fabric does not result in a quilt that will be around for generations. This fabric pulls, stretches, doesn't match (that is another story in itself), and as a result produces blocks that are not even in size or color. Yuck!

Third - I will never make a miniature quilt. There were so many small pieces that were required to make these blocks. This just means there are more seams, more cutting, more sewing, etc. Not fun.

Fourth - If you don't like a pattern to begin with, don't attempt to make it. I hated this pattern from the beginning. Now all I can think about when I work on it is that I hate the pattern and hate making this. And who am I going to give it to because I definitely don't want to keep it.
With all my ranting and raving, it is a wonder I am still in it to finish this thing. I think that I want to know that even though I hated this whole process, something good can come of it. These are a few of my favorite squares. The red and gold one I even have plans to make a Christmas quilt using that pattern. That project is on the back burner though, because I have so many others. But this is what the blocks looks like, and then you are supposed to put log cabin blocks in between them, but that is not likely to happen.


Christina said...

I'm sorry to hear your quilt class wasn't so great, but your blocks look really good. Quilting is one of the reasons I want to learn to sew. Maybe you can find anothjer use for the blocks?

Its too funny that your cat ate your pattern!

Laurah said...

I know what you mean about working on a project that you don't like. Even if you didn't like the pattern, choosing the fabrics would have made it a tad more exciting. The blocks looks well made anyway. It's hard to make all the little corners meet on some of those motifs. You're doing a great job and every quilt you make you're getting more experience. It's just too bad that you're not enjoying this one.

Rebekah said...

bummer that the class didn't work out for you! It looks like you have a good start on the quilt though. I've always wanted to make a house block quilt like that.

I've learned my lesson the hard way and try not to take classes, especially when I can use class money for more stuff and figure it out online. It saves me time, money and frustration!

Anonymous said...

Ha,ha,ha, the cats where just trying to help you out. You'll finish it, you're driven. Besides I think it's cute. Mom