The Importance of Percolation

I have a quilt on my board that’s been there for months. Okay, to be honest, I currently have six quilts on my boards in varying states of completion, but this one feels different. I sketched the design and selected the primary fabrics back in February, and cut out the background, backing, and key elements in March, but have made not a stitch of progress since then, and that’s getting to me. And it seems the longer I stare at it, the harder it is for me to figure out how to get it back on track.

One the one hand, it’s already a success. It served as inspiration for my 2013 SAQA donation quilt, Superpower: Flight! (see it and other auction quilts here). Still, though, I can’t seem to let it go, and not just because it’s a key piece in my November show. It begs to be finished. I just haven’t known how. Then, a couple of weeks ago I went with a two friends to the Museum of International Folk Art to see the “Plain Geometry: Amish Quilts” exhibit and while we were there we popped in to see another exhibit of Japanese kites.

I didn’t think too much more about it until a few days ago when I looked up at my board and saw the sad Flight fabric longing to live up to its name and new what had been missing. It didn’t want to be just another static rectangle. It wanted to soar.

Since then I’ve been arguing with myself. Do I really want to redesign it? Do I really want to start from scratch when the fabric is already cut out? Wouldn’t it just be easier to just finish what’s already up there? Yes, it would, but also, no, it wouldn’t. If it was that easy I would have been done in March when I started it. So now it’s back to the drawing board to re-imagine Flight as a kite.