A few months ago I went curtain-making crazy! This was the only sewing, other than a pillowcase for my husband, that I had done outside of quilting, and I truly enjoyed it, even if the conditions were somewhat primitive, compared to my grotto. I used a patio table as my straight edge, a wobbly ironing board for pressing, with no rotary cutter or mat in sight. Yet I decorated several windows, happily even. When we came home, the hubby suggested curtains for our son’s room, as those mini blinds are wonky. Immediately I smiled, bought some fabric, then spent most of the summer on the road, making a few quilts in between.
Last week, hubby pressed me on this issue, and I replied that I needed the curtain rod installed, to properly size up said curtains. He nodded, installed the hardware, and I got to work. But it’s funny how a project changes, depending on the surroundings. And the size; the biggest curtains I made previously were, granted for a sliding glass door, but they were unlined. The ones for my son’s room were two panels each at eighty-three inches long, thirty-seven inches wide, and they are lined. And now I’m ready to jump right back into quilting, leaving my curtain call behind.
Maybe it was the fabric; not 100% cotton, but a poly-cotton blend. Maybe it was the size, plus the lining. Maybe it’s the stacks of vibrant squares, aching for me to sew them together. Or maybe it’s the reading; I’ve been trying to get through as much of The Hawk as possible, so I can start writing, but the weekend flew past, and out of 381 pages, I’m up to…number 132. Yeah, I have a LOT of reading to accomplish before I can write, but the husband flies out today, and doesn’t return until next week. I have groceries, clean clothes, and who cares about baseball when one’s team can’t manage to even take one game from Kansas City? (Thank goodness the Dodgers found similar issues with Milwaukee, although Clayton Kershaw continues to mystifies batters no matter where he pitches.)
Anyways… A lovely writer/(he)artist friend noted that the next several days are sort of a retreat for me, a much better manner in which to consider my husband’s impending absence. Laura succinctly hit the nail on the head with that one, for I have reading (which leads to writing) and sewing up the wazoo lined up for the next week and a half. Or the rest of summer, or all of autumn, depending on how long-ranging I want to look at things. The days move so fast, that suddenly my husband will have returned, and August will be gone, football season upon us, baseball season… Um, no, I don’t want to dwell on baseball season very much right now, thank you all the same. But autumn is one of my favourite times of the year, because of sport, and weather, well, the possibility of weather here in California, and that finally (FINALLY!!!) it will seem like the proper season to sew quilts! Ahem, well, sewing can happen all year round, but during what has been one of the hottest summers in recent memory, I’ve been pining for cooler days to savour the fruits of my fabric labours. Or at least to not feel so weird in tacking flannel backings to batting when it’s pushing 100 degrees Fahrenheit outside.
I will say my brother-in-law loves his quilt, noting that incredible softness. One of these days he’ll reap the benefits of the warmth factor, although not quite yet. And as for the curtains…
The curtains are hanging in their appropriated space, nicely doing their job. I managed to eke out a little quilt back of the remnants, not sure when I’ll use it, probably sooner than later. Even though the fabrics weren’t all cotton, the pieces went so well together, I couldn’t resist. Friday was a day spent behind my sewing machine, long straight lines after more long straight lines, which was the best part of the curtain endeavor. Making sure the lengths matched up properly was the dregs.
Which is sort of like watching one’s beloved team fall from grace in the standings, an eight and a half game lead a faded memory when San Francisco now sits four and a half games behind Los Angeles. It’s not just curtains for my foray into curtains, let me tell you.
But from the ashes, new projects emerge. I wasn’t sure I was ever going to get around to completing The Hawk, and while I won’t count chickens (or hawks) before they hatch, I’m closer than I’ve been in months. And that alone feels fantastic, for if you know a writer, who isn’t writing, well, there you go.
It’s like a batter whose average has fallen from .312 to .192. It’s like making curtains that feel like ripping one’s guts through one’s nostrils. Well, not that bad, but the magic has been lost. Yet, when that magic returns….
It’s like a cute little quilt back, waiting to be used. It’s like a story, dying to be finished. It’s like stacks of squares, screaming to be made into quilt tops. Then fashioned into proper quilts for lovely people.
It’s like curtains for one thing, a new dawn for others. It’s cyclical, it’s life. It’s time for me to take the husband to the airport. Let the artist’s retreat begin!