Wednesday, February 06, 2008
Slaying the Perfect Dragon....
In the vein of self-disclosure, to answer the questions - it was the two applique blocks. The tree with the bird, and the drooping sunflower. I got confused over the many ways to do applique and needed a re-teaching.
Is anyone else good out of the starting gate, but then you lose speed (or enthusiasm) for a project if you let it sit awhile? I am. Whether it's decorating, dealing with paperwork, scrapbooks, sewing projects, eating healthy, taking better care of myself, or (maybe especially) exercising; it so easily seeps into most if not all areas of my life. I'm not a true 'dyed-in-the-wool' perfectionist, but I'm picky enough that sometimes it keeps me from keeping on keeping on.
Today I decided to slay the 'Perfect Dragon' and just finish a project. Not do a perfect job of it, not even a real bang-up one; just get it done. My quilting gang does group projects now and then, where we all work on the same project, but each of us our own. I've skipped the last two group projects from being busy with other stuff, and the one they started back in the summer of 2006 had been put aside in a box on a shelf, not finished. Of the sixteen blocks, I had two left to complete. Starting back into the project today was rough - I couldn't remember where I had left off. Had I cut out the block, chosen fabrics? The two blocks that were left to sew were a bit intimidating to me too- I couldn't remember how to do the technique required. So today instead of working on paperwork, or knitting, or anything else to avoid the unfinished project, I grabbed the box off the shelf, and proceeded to bug the daylights out of everyone in the group, asking for explanations, or reteachings of what they'd shown me forever ago. Like most unfinished things, 'once begun is half done'. (Is that how the saying goes?) Anyway, once I dragged it out, looked it over, and got busy with it, I finished both of the blocks, and sewed the whole thing together.
It's not perfect. There's actually a little lump somewhere in the middle, where things don't line up perfectly, that is going to bug me a bit, but if you stand five feet away it looks great! I still have the sides to put on it, but I know now that I've jumped in and finished the part that was holding me back, the rest is a piece of cake. About a week from now it should be hanging on the quilt rack in my dining room, ready to greet spring. Instead of in a box on a shelf in the basement.
It's going to be a nice reminder, every time I walk by it, of how good it feels to push past the tendency to strive for 'perfect' and let it be good enough, and that good friends, patient friends, are a blessing. Thank you Susan and Janice for helping me today.
Another bonus of slaying the perfect dragon - it's going to feel really nice to start something new, quilt free! P.S. That chicken still needs legs - I have to be sure to remember that!
posted at 7:00 PM