UFOvember and the Martian Supervisor
My name is Amy. Most people call me Amy. Or you could call me The Scrappy Camper. First name, Scrappy. Last name, Camper. Henceforth, however, I would like to be known as the Martian Supervisor. In other words, the Boss of the UFOs. See what I did there? Because UFOs are from Mars. Haha.
Okay, that was a little corny but we ARE here to discuss UFOs, just not the Martian variety. This month during UFOvember hosted by Bobbie of The Geeky Bobbin, I have gotten some great tips for dealing with my 30+ UFOs, and I’ll provide the links for all those helpful posts below. As much as I want and need to finish my UFOs, though, I have an even more thrilling topic for today - strangers’ UFOs. That’s where the real fun is - at least for me, and I know I can’t be the only one.
For me, it all began at a yard sale in Colorado, with a garbage bag full of scraps. I love vintage fabric and I love scraps, so I purchase quite a bit of it at thrift stores and rummage sales. When I got home and emptied this particular bag, I found amongst the bits and bobs, several strips of Chinese coins. More than half a quilts’ worth. It made me a little sad. I mean, someone had put a great deal of time and effort into those colorful strands, only for them to end up in a trash bag of scrap material at a yard sale.
I threw them up on my design wall and let them percolate in my brain for several months. What had been the original quilter’s design plan? What size quilt was she making? For whom was she making it? Was she even a she? Maybe she was a he. I’ll never know the answers to those questions so I moved on to ones I could answer. How would I lay out those strips? What would I pair with them to make them into a full-size quilt? What would I use for the backing and binding?
It became an exciting design challenge - my favorite part of the process. I decided to space out the coin strips evenly and to use some low-volume fabrics in between. Instead of stacking more coins, however, I used a jelly-roll-race type of piecing to impart some contrast and movement.
The final result isn’t going to win any quilt show awards but I’m quite pleased with it. It lives on one of my guest beds and makes me smile every time I walk into that room. I call it Found Treasure.
Since that time, I have rescued several UFOs. They are in various stages of completion in my studio. They almost always spark my imagination and send me on a creative journey that is as exciting as it is unexpected.
For example, I found a stack of mystery blocks on the swap table at a quilt retreat last year. I don’t even know the name of the pattern, but I liked them so I brought them home, found some similar fabric in my stash and recreated the block. Then I just sewed until I felt I had enough for a quilt.
I decided to set them on point so the heart shape of the red fabric is prominent. The quilt top is theoretically complete but I am currently deciding if I want to add some borders. I think this will make a great wedding gift once I finish it.
Before this project, I had never set anything on point, so it was a nice learning exercise for me. It was a color combination I probably wouldn’t have used if left to my own devices, but I like it. Also, I have some fun ideas for the quilting, and I didn’t invest a lot of time in the quilt top so I don’t have any fears of screwing it up. So many wins!
I hope I’ve convinced you that UFOs can be a lot of fun. You know what would be super-fun? A UFO swap. Hmmm… I might need to make that happen soon… I mean, I really want to earn that title of Martian Supervisor.
Until next time, keep it scrappy my friends!
Amy aka The Scrappy Camper aka The Martian Supervisor
Links to My UFOvember Partners