Slow Quilt Monday--Fabric, and a New Friend

 Remember this guy?

Well, Pam of "Hip to Be a Square" turned him into this guy.

Want to put him on your own blog to remind yourself...and tell your bloggie followers...about slow quilting? Just go here to grab him! When you do, post a blog note about the Slow Quilt Movement! If you'd like, you can link to my original post about it as well.

Thanks, Pam! And we shall call him, "Squim." Squim the Slow Quilt Movement Snail. 

And now, onto today's Slow Quilting. 

I've been thinking a lot about fabric lately. Not so much in regards to colors or prints but, rather, in regards to feel. I'm in the process of picking out fabrics for a small project and find myself moving the fabrics I'm auditioning back and forth, back and forth. First I pile them up this way, then I pile them up this other way; then I lay them out side-by-side, then in pairs.... Certainly, some of that is because I'm considering color and value. But if truth be told, it's mostly because I love the way they feel. I can't keep my hands off them.

When I'm auditioning fabrics, they live on my cutting table. I have to walk by my cutting table in order to get to my desk where I work. I walk by that cutting table many times a day. When there's fabric sitting out on it, I find myself reach out, touching, brushing my fingers over it as I walk by. 

When I'm under stress, what am I likely to do? Walk to my shelves of fabric and pet the stacks of half yards and yards. Just run my hands over them. Quilting is very tactile. But sometimes in our concern for color and value and matching points, I think we may occasionally forget about just how wonderful it feels. 

Part of my intensely negative reaction to those donation quilts I was working on was because they just didn't feel pretty. The textures were off. There was uncomfortable roughness, or creepy slipperiness. 

Here's what I think we all ought to do this week: Pull three fabrics at random out of your stash, and sit down with them on your lap. Close your eyes and just feel each of the fabrics. Do they feel different? Could you tell which one was which if someone mixed them up and handed them back to you while your eyes were still closed? Which one would you most love to use in a quilt, simply judging by the way it feels?

Think about your favorite quilts--those you had when you were little, or those you have been given more recently, or those you have made yourself. Close your eyes again and imagine yourself touching that quilt. Do you remember what it feels like? What fabrics do you own today that would evoke that same sense of touch?

Next time you're working on a quilt, just stop for a moment and lay hands on it, as it were. Close your eyes and feel the quilt. With your eyes closed, you can't see where the points don't quite come together, or your quilting line skipped over a couple of threads, or that color you've never been entirely convinced actually works. Nope--you can just feel. What do your hands tell you about your quilt?