Here is the short version of this post: Use the Good Stuff! 😉
The other day I posted about the Enchanted Plume panels I bought and SherriD commented that she had a panel she was “saving.” This comment made me think about my fabric, what I have to use and what pieces I love. As I have also mentioned, there is no shortage.
If you use your favorite fabrics, you will see your favorite fabrics more regularly. The yardage won’t be folded up in a cupboard or closet waiting for the perfect project.
If you use your favorite fabrics you will enjoy and use the quilt more.
If you use your favorite fabrics, it will be easier to take pride in your quilt and show it off.
If you use your favorite fabrics, you will want to make more quilts.
Win-win for everyone.
One issue I have run into is needing more of a fabric I love when I want to make a slight variation on the project. This happens a lot with bags, particularly bag linings. Generally, I am out of luck. I do make the FOTY quilts so I can try and figure out if I like a fabric enough to get more before it goes out of print, but, still, generally, I am out of luck.
In 2007 or 2008, I made a quilt called Thoughts on Dots. This is a quilt made from all dot fabrics. I had some beiges that I thought “would be fine” for the back. The quilt lives on my bed and now I have to live with beige. I love the dots on the front, but I don’t like the beige. The beige isn’t even depressing beige, but it is still beige and I would have much rather put a color or one of my Philip Jacobs fabrics on the back. If I had, I would be much happier.
Scrapitude Carnavale, on the other hand, is a masterpiece**. I love the quilt, because I used fabrics I love throughout the quilt. It makes me happy every time I look at it. The back has fabrics I love on it, too, so I don’t mind if the back is showing.
Fabrics get Dated
The sad part of saving fabrics you love is that they will get old and dated and you won’t love them any more. I feel bad about this because I used to love these fabrics so much and now they just inspire a Meh kind of reaction when I see them. I should have used them right away. Live and learn.
There is always more fabric
The good part of using fabrics that you love is that fabric companies are churning out new designs every day and they are bound to have a new design you also love!
What is the Good Stuff?
What the good stuff is depends on you. What do you like? What do you like today? Some weeks ago, I bought a FQ pack of Alison Glass fabric. This pack was not in my normal colors. I thought I had better use it right away in case the colors and designs lost their appeal. Already the love is waning, but the quilt is in process and will be done soon. No problem.
I think “The Good Stuff” changes depending on our mood and influences, though the underlying favorite colors (e.g. turquoise and red for me) or motifs (e.g Dots) will remain consistent. I think we all, at certain points, expand our horizons or veer off in a new direction like I did with the Alison Glass fabrics, but will veer back when push comes to shove.
I have decided that the perfect project never comes along. Projects come along that are more perfect than the last, but I have not yet come across THE perfect project. I think we find projects that are perfect for us at the time. In order to make each new project the best project we can, we need to use our best fabric.
The good news is that there is always more fabric.
**Ok, ‘masterpiece’ is in the eye of the beholder. This quilt will not win best of show anywhere except at my house. I love the colors, the fabric and the quilting, so, for me, this is a masterpiece.