Now children, are we all sitting comfortably ? good!
because your Aunt Catsmum is going to tell you a story, and as all such tales should, it begins with
Once Upon A Time
back when Microsoft was little more than a gleam in Bill Gates' eye, I read a magazine article about an Alaskan quilter Judy Hopkins and her idea for mystery quilt classes.
I was teaching maybe six or eight - or more - quilt classes a week, and this idea of creating a class project where only the teacher knew the end product ... well ... I just loved that whole concept.
I'm a control freak
so what's new?
I began working on some suitable designs:
they needed to have enough steps to keep up interest, no one step should drag on too long [ so no designs that needed 364 right angled triangles all made in one hit ] should not telegraph the result too early, and needed to be finishable within a set class timeframe - usually 12 hours spread over 2 days or nights.
I naively imagined that I could probably come up with about 6
In the end, the tally was more like 30
and so for quite a few years I taught these Mystery Quilt classes about 8 - 10 times a year
It was great fun
Of course, eventually the 'regulars' who did every class were churning out quilt tops faster than they could finish them, AND with the growth of the internet, suddenly there were vast numbers of mystery quilt designs readily available online.
So with these two factors, it seemed like a good time for the MQ Days to evolve into UFO [ unfinished objects ] Days ... and so they did
for several more years
and then I moved up here and they sort of petered out
so what's changed?
for one thing
my darling daughter has decided to finally bow to the inevitable, and embrace her destiny - or FATE - as a quilter.
So we decided [ well, she suggested and I agreed ] that we needed to reinstate some form of regular get-together, involving quilting of course ... but also knitting, spinning, crochet, embroidery, beading or what-ever-takes-the-fancy.
to be known henceforth and forever as WIP Days [ Works In Progress ]and, if nothing else, I figured it'd give Nadie and I yet another mother-daughter bonding activity
and so it came to pass that the word was spread and yesterday morning the cars began to arrive from all points of the compass
platters of food appeared in my kitchen
and wonderful projects were unveiled ... knitting, patchwork, applique, and beading all had their moment in the sun
many cups of tea were made and enjoyedgood food
a modicum of actual productivity
Sheepie was reunited with a long lost sibling
and Nadie was initiated into the mysterious sisterhood of Textile Mavens
and of course we're going to do it all again next month
** WOMBAT = waste of money, brains and time