In Pennsylvania I have a group of quilting friends who enjoy working on quilt projects together – projects that inspire, challenge, and yes, sometimes frustrate. Block swaps, row quilts, puzzle quilts – there have been many over the years but our current project is a different sort of project – it’s a UFO challenge. It’s time for some of those long neglected projects, the Un-Finished-Projects, the ones cluttering up the closet.
UFO (Un-Finished-Projects), WIP (Work in Progress), PHD (Project Half Done), whatever you call it, we all have them. Some have more than others (who, me?) We love them and we hate them (who me?) Most of all, we dream of finishing them.
The rules are simple – make a list of 6 projects, number the list. Turn in one fat quarter as an entry ticket. Every other month a number will be drawn. Whichever project on your list matches the selected number; it’s the one that gets your attention for the next two months. Can you finish it? If so, your name gets entered in a drawing for the whole basket of fat quarters. If not, pay a one fat quarter penalty.
I can do this!
I selected 6 of my most charming UFOs. I numbered my list and sent a note with my entry ticket fat quarter. My note was a wish of sorts: “Don’t choose # 3 first!”
A text message came: “We drew #6 . Good luck!”
Whew! It isn’t #3! Thank goodness!
I consulted my list. What did I write down for #6 ? “Appliqued border on Scrappy Spools quilt.” Oh darn, I should have made my wish specify not #3 or #6.
I went immediately, on the very first day of the challenge, to the closet and got out UFO #6. Yes, I did. I pulled it from its 6 year holding place on the closet shelf, unfolded it, and admired the piecework. Tucked among the folds I found the borders – already cut to size. “This should be easy. Besides I have two months!”
Awaiting appliqued borders
Two months came and went. It was time to send proof to Pennsylvania, evidence that I had indeed completed my UFO #6.
There was just one problem. Although I had gotten it out, unfolded it, and confirmed that the borders were cut, I didn’t touch it again for two solid months. Oh, there are excuses for sure, some are actually legit. Suffice to say, I failed in round one. So, I cut a fat quarter of an interesting wood grain fabric, folded it and sent it to the penalty box.
I got a new message, “We drew #2, Good luck!”
A quick look at my UFO list confirms my fear, “Not number two!” I moan to no-one. I should have updated my wish list. I should have enclosed a note that said, “I hope you don’t pull #2 OR #3.”
UFO #2, due is Oct 7. There it was, in my own handwriting: Grandma’s Album Quilt in Pastels. Complete the last four blocks, set together, and complete the top. Was I nuts? Even without a contest I don’t think I could get that much done in two months, after all I have been working on this project off and on for 14 years. I sigh. What’s done is done. They drew #2. I might as well get to work.
So, today my design wall is full of pastel blocks.
Last night I finished appliqueing the oak leaves.
There are three blocks remaining. As of right now I have them drawn out as full size patterns.
And I’ve started joining sections. All that I and I still have 7 weeks to go! Can I do it?
Is this the year I will finally be able to mark this project off my list?
Check back next Monday for a progress report.
In the meantime, let’s hop on over to Patchwork Times to see what others have on their design walls. Click here to go to Design Wall Monday.
To read an earlier post about the pastel quilt click here.