Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Prayer Flags From a Cat Lady

Its been said that each of us is a one-and-only. And that's true for me. I see the world differently and I move through it differently, often finding meaning in the casual, often over looked experience. And I operate on an entirely different plane than most people because of my psychic skills. I keep the deeper stuff to myself and try not to scare people around me.

I usually work on more than one project at a time, however, the paper piecing is something different. I am not sure I can pick up and put it down as readily as all the other quilting I do. There are so many things to remember. I keep saying it will get to be a body memory, however that hasn't happened for me. While I make up one cat block after another, I still don't feel comfortable saying that I know what I am doing.

B Blocks are the Black Cats with the batik background. There are 42 B Blocks with Black Cats, and 30 A Blocks with Batik Cats. 

I need to stop, sit this aside and work on another project. Its as though it is holding me hostage with the fear that when I do return to it, I will not know what I am doing.

Wait. I am working on it without much confidence to I know what I am doing, so whatever the difference is I thought might exist, I am stepping away from this project for a little while. A day maybe. Or two.

Jinny Beyer has measurements on each pattern piece or section, and that confused me at first. They are there in case a quilter wants to make it in the traditional manner. A quilting friend of mine says that seeing how much to cut for each paper piece gets easier with practice.

Now that I have cut larger pieces to fit, I am starting to understand. Working with the right side of the fabric on the back side of the pattern is still harder for me to grasp. Its not rocket science, and yet, my brain is fighting it.

This is Diamond's puppy pic. She followed Granddaughter #3 home one day and stayed. She's full grown now and, like most beloved animals who become part of a family, lays where she wants. Great dog. Her pillow is fast filling up with scraps from the Paper Piecing. I am surprised that there isn't more waste, and my scraps come more from trimming seams. 

I suppose filling the Pet Bed with scraps is like working on another project, yet, what I plan to do is put Amy's quilt in its bin, clean the sewing machine, dust the floor ---yet again--- 

The new next project was the February Prayer Flag. The group requirements are so simple is scary. This is my second flag for this month and is meant to fly with a more tattered look than the one I made myself. I really scrapped it out by cutting 1" strips at about 3.5" long from all my pinks & reds and then layered them on the required 6x9 flag. I also double faced longer strips for the ties and then zig-zagged down the center to hold them together and yet leave them unfinished.

On the back, I wrote a quote, "Every broken heart can heal," which is my prayer and intention for the flag. When the partners are assigned, I will include a few things inside the envelope that support my partner's profile. 

I envisioned the prayer flag as a devotional representation for anyone who has lost someone they love, either through death or separation of values. While our hearts break for many reasons, I know that healing comes when all the broken parts of how we feel, what we think and what is inside of us come together to give us courage to go on.

Prayer flags are meant to fly in the wind, fade, and almost shred as the prayers get answered. (You can see more by just doing a simple online search for prayer flag images.) Having all these strips of fabric in layers on this one provides many shreds, many strings that will get carried off in the winds. Its a good project, and I am happy to join in for the monthly swap.