I've been trimming cut-aways into two inch squares for over ten years. I put them in neat little stacks in a shoebox that lives on my shelf. It's another mindless thing I really enjoy; cutting. I get my fabric fix, I get to play with color and if I ever use all those squares? All the better.
I recently decided to jump into a new project and started sewing those two inch squares into pairs of light and dark and then pairs of pairs. I have a pattern in mind, but I just sewed 'mindlessly' for *days*. It was great. In my mind I thought the strip of five ended with a light square on each end and I didn't have very many lights already cut in my shoebox stash... so I cut lights for over a week. The little stacks of light squares were adding up nicely. Then I looked at a picture of the pattern I had in mind and found the rows have a dark square on each end. :D Well back to the cutting table.
After several days and weeks of this mindless sewing and cutting I decided it was time to actually *plan* a little. How many strips were there in each column and how many columns were in the overall quilt? Well when I did the math I found I needed 1264 total squares. But by that time I had about 3200 squares stacked up in neat little rows in my shoebox. eek! Enough for two quilts!
So is this about the zen of cutting, mindless sewing or making this quilt? *shrug* I don't know... I don't really care. :D
When people give me a hard time about what I do, which seems to happen on a pretty regular basis, I smile and say: "Hey, I'm not hurting anyone and it keeps me off the streets at night." That almost always gets a laugh. My co-workers love to see my work, but many of them say, "Are you insane?" or, "You have way too much TIME on your hands!" or, "How did you ever get into this hobby?" Does anyone ask tole painters that question? Does anyone look askance at an artist in fine oils and say, "How lonnng did THAT take you?" What is it about patchwork quilts that doesn't garner the respect of other hobbies? Is it because it's considered a 'craft' and not an 'art'?
Whatever. As Bonnie said. "I love making traditional scrap quilts and I don't apologize." I *like* it!