I went into my studio today not knowing what I would be doing. It’s been over a year since I’ve done that and today it was intentional. I wanted to see what would happen without any specific plans to create.
I thought of sketching, but was thinking of color and pattern so I took my basket of scraps that I’ve been using for potholders and started randomly sewing them together. It was a mess and I let it be, thinking by letting go of how I usually work I would discover something new. I looked at it after I had sewn about 20 pieces together and really hated it. It was just a bunch of fabric thrown together. Nothing about was specific to me. It was ugly and messy. I thought about doing more. I thought about saving it and looking at it later, but in the end I realized I didn’t have to do either. I knew I didn’t like it and didn’t want to spend any more time on it. So I threw it away. I threw out all the scraps of fabric too. I realized I was tired of them and was just trying to get rid of them. I did not want to create out of obligation, I wanted to create from my heart.
Yesterday a friend emailed me in response to my desire to do something different with my work. She said that what we do well is a gift to be used. As I considered what to do next I found myself pulling out handkerchiefs from a b0x someone had given me. I laid them out and moved them around and ultimately selected four to work with. I laid out a few quilts using the four then two then one.
Starting with the one I built a quilt around it. Red and pink patterns with solid reds and printed blacks for accent. I was patient with it, waiting for the decisions to come, not from my head, but from another place inside of me. I put pieces of fabric down and waited until I knew if they were right or not. Some were quick, others took many tries before I knew they were right. When I was done I knew it. I loved looking at it although I couldn’t say why. It was like the places where trees and plants grow in nature, everything was where it should be.