Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Manic Phase Quilt

I have to be on a manic phase.  It's the only thing that it could possibly be right now.

For those of you not familiar with the manic phase of manic-depression, the closest description I can give is to imagine yourself on an inflated high with a false hightened ability to do anything at the expense of everything and everyone else.

Mania is the most wonderful part of being manic-depressive.  Your creativity soars.  You believe you can do anything and no one is going to stand in your way.  You don't need sleep.  You don't need to eat or take time out for daily things as your mind becomes obsessed with whatever you are focused on.  It's the most amazing feeling until your body gives out because of exhaustion and you spiral out of control.

In this case, the focus has been on this quilt.  Normally I crash and burn after a couple of weeks, stuff the project into a bag and forget it until I have the courage to get back to it.  Not with this quilt.

I have been non-stop 12+ hours a day for several months now with no sign of exhaustion.  It's totally consumed me and it's impossible to stop for food and other important daily activities.  I've been obsessed over finding purple fabric when I wasn't able to sew.  I've burned through a 5 pack of rotary blades in two weeks.  I've gone through 6 yards of white fabric over the past couple of months.  I've been obsessed with perfection on this quilt.  I'm carefully drawing 1/4 inch lines on each white square and squaring up every block with precision.   I want each row to not have any of the same fabric and it's taken forever to get very far with this quilt.  Even while sleeping, I'm making this quilt.

Here's my progress so far on the design wall:

In my search for perfection I've gone down and across making sure I don't have the same fabric.  Then with the left edge of the quilt, I've put the same fabric squares across so that each vertical row will have that same fabric.  Later, I'll move the squares up/down within that row.  It keeps everything organized and I know how many squares of each fabric I have.  Maybe it's not about perfection and more about organization.

I had to force myself to quit tonight because I can feel the exhaustion coming.  If I force myself now, it won't be so bad later.  I have to remind myself that I have plenty of time for this quilt and that it's okay to stop working on it.

I know I bought the Janome 7700 out of a manic high.  I hope I don't regret the purchase later on.  I do love the machine and SO glad to get rid of my 6600, but buying something on a manic high isn't the same as making a calculated informed purchase.



Anita - aka Granny Patches said...

I have a suggestion for your design wall.... could you perhaps thumbtack a cotton batting to the wall to put your blocks onto? Thumbtacks wouldn't damage the wall too much.

Cotton fabrics usually stick to cotton batting but if the blocks don't stay in place on the batting you could spray it with some spray baste. This might relieve some of the stress of worrying the tape will come off.

Desi said...

wow all those tiny squares...bless you lol

beautiful though!!!