Saturday, October 12, 2013

How many of you are like me?

I would really like to know!  I think it is a disease - I know I've had it since early on in my quilt life.  How many of the rest of you are infected?  (You can skip to the bottom of the post now for the questions if you don't want to read the rest.)

A few days ago I was adding still another "ongoing project" to the list on my left sidebar.  Currently it looks like this:

 1.  Girl Gang Feathered Star Quilt(2003)
 2.  Mid-century Album (2007) 
 3.  Civil War Diary Quilt (2008)
 4.  Civil War Applique (2008)
 5.  Civil War Love Letters (2008)
 6.  Afternoon Delight (2013)
 7.  30's Basket blocks (2013)
 8.  Sweet Memories (2013)
 9.  Baltimore Autumn (2013)
10. Turn of the Century Revisited (2013)

These are large, time consuming projects that are slowly becoming complete quilt tops.  I don't call them UFO's because they are all being worked on as their turn comes up.  They are not projects I've abandoned.

Notice the dates - these are the dates the projects got started.  Between  2003 and 2008 I really focused on shrinking the list - I had over 80 when I started.  I'm pleased with how I've whittled that list down by either finishing the quilt tops or abandoning (and giving away) the project.
Looking at the list now it appears that it is once again growing.  I don't think I've taken a single project off the list this year, and I've added 5!  There is only one project listed that is anywhere close to being a finished top, and it is one I've not touched since I started quilting again in February.

There are so many quilts I want to make, and every so often one refuses to be put away and demands that I start working on it.  And thus it gets added to the list.

Now for the questions:

How many of you have several complex (defined in this case as taking a considerable length of time to finish) projects going on at the same time?

How many of you stick to one or at the most two complex (same definition) projects at once, and refuse to allow yourself to start another until you finish one?

(The above question presumes you slip several (or many) quick-to-finish projects in between sessions of working on long-term project(s).)

How many of you stick to only one project at a time, whether it be simple (quickly finished) or complex (same definition as above) before you allow yourself to start another.

When it comes to your quilting, how successful are you at disciplining yourself?  (I've decided I'm a total failure!)

(These questions refer to finishing the quilt top only.  Having a giant list of finished tops needed to be quilted is an entirely different issue!)


Jo C. said...

I have 2 complex projets going now. Amish Circle and Sylvia's Bridal Sampler. Those will take months. Then i have a Quilt along thats been going for 16 months, a BOM (Amish With a Twist II) and 3 easier tops going. I'm pretty good about finishing the tops but i never work on one project at a time. My problem is that i hate the quilting part! I have 15 tops waiting to be quilted.

JoAnne said...

I am the sort of quilter who has only one or two complex projects going at one time BUT works on numerous small/easy projects in between. Even with the small projects, I can't stand to have more than a few projects going on at the same time. I worry that I will mislay pieces, use something important to one project in another, etc. That is just the way my brain works!

regan said...

Right now.....I think I have at least a dozen (maybe 2 dozen!) tops in the works! They seem to get worked on when I force myself to start opening project boxes. Otherwise, I'd just as soon start a new one! LOL

And I'm so glad you added that last line.....cuz yeah, quilt tops needing to be quilted really IS an entirely different issue! HA! And there are dozens of those, too! Sheesh!

And yeah.....discipline? Total failure here, too! :o)

The Calico Cat said...

While I still contend that I don't do complex, I am a failure at discipline.

I will add a new project at the drop of a hat!

I haven't done so this week, because I have been in the mood to sew. (If I am not at work, i want to use my time well & to have something to show for it, so I have pieced - or finished piecing - 3 king size tops & a baby sized charity quilt.)

Next week may be a cutting week, or just a piling of fabrics to become a quilt week.

I don't know next week hasn't started yet. :o)

julieQ said...

I have a Dear Jane and a Civil War Bride's quilt in the unfinished pile. I do love those fast and wonderful scrap quilts, though...they feed my soul! Discipline? What's that? Seriously, I really try to get quilts done, at least to the top stage. But I have many, many, many UFO's too!! How is that for a mixed answer, LOL!!

Kelly said...

Gosh, your responses make me feel dull! When I first began quilting, I promised myself I would not start a new quilt until I finished one. That worked...for the first quilt! I still only have a few projects in progress at a time, and no real UFOs. (I do have one wall hanging that I started in a class. I decided my color choices were horrible, with no real way to fix it, so I stuck everything in the "orphan" pile and called it done.) I find that if I have too much going on, I can't decide what to work on, and that indecision stymies me. So instead of a list of UFOs, I have a To Do list. Plus, I enjoy finishing quilts and either using them or seeing the happiness on someone's face when they get a quilt gift. That inspires me to finish!

I realize I am in a minority of quilters in this way, but it's the only way I can manage my time. When I have more time to quilt, things may change, but until I retire, I hope to maintain this pace!

Barbara said...

I'm very good at starting projects but not very good at finishing. Several years ago my guild had a finish your projects challenge. I won for having the most projects started. My list filled both sides of the paper and that was just the ones I remembered off the top of my head. I'm getting a little better at finishing now but the older projects are still languishing. Right now, I'm working on finishing a BOM from the late '90s. Despite all the projects waiting to be finished, I'll still start new ones.

Barbara in MD

Laurel Keith said...

Let me add yet another quilting mode to the mix. I always have MANY quilts in process. I don't know how many because I would never consider keeping a list. I like to keep several 'ready' to work on at a time so my favorites are in project totes with everything I need to be able to work on them. Usually one sits by my sewing machine, one near my evening chair, one in the camper. If a project loses it's appeal I will either finish it off (smaller than planned) and donate it or give the whole thing away. Life is too short to spend time working on anything that isn't a joy, mind you, I enjoy a challenge. I think it's great that we all have different ways of doing things, there is so much to learn from each other. Happy Quilting!.,

cityquilter grace said...

add my name to the failure pile i'm afraid....i love to start new projects, motivated by my stash of course. i want to use it up PLUS there are oodles of patterns i want to make...don't necessarily have to be complicated patterns, just ones that inspire me or kick my quilty mojo into high gear...

Sharon Hughson said...

Failure at this also. Right along with you. Shall we weep together? I think not. I have a calendar page that says "Too much of a good thing is WONDERFUL!" That's my new motto.

Kay said...

I'm a failure also. I know I'm not going to have enough time in this lifetime to make all the quilts I want but I won't give up trying. I love to make complex quilts that take time but I also need the instant gratification of slipping in finishing smaller projects. I just can't imagine doing anything else!

At the corner of Scrap and Quilts said...

Oh boy! I am the marginal one yet again. I have but one UFO! Please don't hate me! I will say that this UFO is 25 years old and it is an applique snowflake!!! I was too young and inexperienced to start something so huge. I haven't gave up on it ... I just gave it a vacation LOL! One day, after retirement, I will tackle it again. My others quilts are either done or WIP. (Sorry!) I always start two quilts as one is a Leader/Ender quilt. I have an Ohio Star Quilt started in 2008 that awaits the right fabrics. Thru the years I bought some fabrics that might work and this summer I decided to get it out and check if I could finish it. It's not a UFO per se cause I always look for fabric to finish it. Right? Only 10 more blocks to do. The other WIPs are of this year. One is waiting for some fabrics and the other is waiting for some inspiration on which border and/or sashing to make.
Now discipline. What's that? I didn't know you need discipline to quilt. I need discipline to do my chores before hitting the sewing room but NEVER to quilt. I have a Hexies that I handpiece during my lunch break at work, or at the dentist, the hairdresser, etc. At home, there is always a quilt on the frame, slowly being handquilted. I need my daily fix of sewing, even if it's only for 10 minutes, is what keep me sane. I do, I will admit, have the habit of making one block of a quilt I want to do next and then put it away. It's like I don't want to forget that I want to do this quilt (because I don't keep lists) and sometimes, I will even pull out the fabric I need for it. That's so quirky. LOL! Does that count as a UFO? I believe I have 4 of those. Maybe 5.
Now about flimsies that await quilting. Oh boy! that is Entirely another story... LOL.

Teresa said...

I have several projects going all the time, as I guess most people do. I do have several large bed quilts in varying stages, and have been working on reducing those. It's just so hard cause I keep seeing quilts on blogs that inspire me to try a new technique. I have tried to limit myself to only starting smaller new projects before starting another bed quilt. I often wonder..will be able to make quilts in heaven? I need an eternity to do what I want to make.

Maureen said...

I have way too many projects going at one time. Each takes their turn, and eventually they get done. Most are large or complex quilts, with a few small or simple quilts thrown in between.
Retreat is this coming weekend and I will be working on at least three of them.
I think it is just in our quilting minds to have so many.

Zenia Rene said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Zenia Rene said...

I've got it too! I've named it M.P.D. Multiple Project Disorder!


Julierose said...

I really (really!) try to have only one complex piece going at one time or I get overwhelmed and just....shut down and put everything away. I know there are projects hiding in my UFO box on the top shelf, but try not to think of them all at one time. Am taking out one UFO/month and trying to get it finished--how successful, not very--there are 4 almost done projects laid out on my spare bed crying out to me each time I lie down on my yoga mat in there...hugs, Julierose

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