Monday, September 22, 2008

Ricky Tims inspired weekend

The weekend loomed before me without major projects, scheduled work, or anything I really needed to get done. Yes, I could do laundry, cook, clean, the usual chores, but nothing pressed. That elusive thing called 'free time' stood invitingly before me.

With my favorite Outlander audio book playing, I settled into a comfy chair with a few quilt books, seeking inspiration. Something not too hard. Some new technique, but not overwhelming. Something I wouldn't need my left-brain to figure out. Math and me -- not a great combination.

The word 'convergence' jumped out at me. What was it doing on the front of a quilt book? What a great word. Especially when followed by the terms: mysterious, magical, EASY, and fun. My kind of quilt project for this lazy weekend. Thus I opened Ricky Tim's book: Convergence Quilts.

In truth I've been looking for something to hang on the bare walls, something not too wild, but a little modern, a little artsy, a little different. Since we're living within a no-frills budget at this time, something I could make with what I already own, seemed the way to go. Ricky seemed to think I could do a convergence quilt. He nudged, "In my experience," he wrote in the book, "the most successful way to learn is to move past idle curiosity to actual exploration and experimentation."

He further nudged by suggesting that these quilts go together quickly and take up little time. Somewhere along the way I sensed that ugly fabrics, those I don't know what to do with or are not favorites would be perfect for a convergence quilt project. So I dug through my stash, came up with some leftovers from other projects and one with a rather modern larger design, and one that made me wonder why I had ever purchased it. Ricky's examples were mostly made using hand dyed fabrics and his finished products had a delightful artsy feel to them. Modern, perfect for my house. I used none such fabrics.

I read, followed directions, probably messed up one step at least, and proceeded happily zipping my little rotary cutter along fabric after fabric, stitching, reading, ironing, and then imagining. What I had created looked like a background. I added borders. I knew I had some fusible interfacing so I cut out some silhouettes from black fabric and ironed them on. And suddenly I have something that makes me smile. Will it win awards?


Ricky addresses worries about making MY quilt verses one that looks like those made by award winners. He seems to stress just having fun with the project. Enjoying the process as well as the end product. I like this guy. I like the idea of making a quilt while wearing a cowboy hat. And I like the way he combines beautiful words, music, (harmonic convergence) and quilts.

It was a fun weekend and I will soon have something to hang on my wall. Although now I need to paint the wall to 'harmonize' with my new wall hanging. Modern? Artsy? Well, not exactly. But, well, it turned out better than I expected, so whatever style you want to call it, it will hang on the wall until I make something better. And each time I look at it I will remember this weekend spent with fabric and cats and my husband whooping in the background because America won the Ryder Cup.

Photos: (top) Quilt top with inspiring book and cat patterns. Center photo: Ricky Tims. Last photo: Quilt top with cat silhouettes pressed in place.

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