My friend, my constant companion in the scrap boxes. Its hard to believe that we’ve been together this long – has it been 20 years? I purchased you when I first started my quilting journey, when all of the “quilting cottons” filled a whole row at the local fabric stores.
Now there are entire stores – hundreds of square feet of retail space – and so many online stores that it is impossible to imagine that offer dizzying arrays of quilting cotton and supplies – anything beyond my imagination at the time you came to join me.
You’re not the fancy-schmancy finely woven delicacies of today’s cottons. It’s obvious that you’re of a courser hand, one that doesn’t press complacently, but insists on defiantly standing up to the hottest of irons.
You knew I wasn’t your type, yet you patiently waited, year after year, biding your time, waiting for those rare instances where your periwinkle blue/ultramarine self could add just the right purple-y calm to screaming yellows and to energize lackluster blues.
Never did you play the star of the show – and it seems that wasn’t your “role.” Rather, bits and pieces, trimmed away year after year until all that’s left now is a sliver – a chunk, if you will – barely large enough to save.
You are parts of so many projects, I can’t even count. A star quilt for DS #1 when he was a toddler, a wonky log cabin that pads picture frames in the storage chest, a smidgeon here, a sliver there -I can still find you in so many places.
Most of your contemporaries didn’t end up like you. Given away or – horrors! – tossed away because of a stubborn refusal to press flat or hold color when washed. But you endured.
Your exotic grid pattern with micro-paisley designs confounded my earliest attempts to incorporate you into my life. More than once, I pulled you from the bin, only to put you back because you weren’t quite “right.”
And now, as I piece an improvisational quilt, I find that I wish there was more of you. Why did I whittle away over the years – decades – when now I find you’re the perfect complement to a wonderfully wonky confection? I’m so much more confident now, so much more appreciative of your quirks and imperfections!
Your grid doesn’t annoy me with it’s inability to stay straight on grain. The ultramarine that seems to jump to the front of my line of vision rather than playing nicely by staying in the background is what I need now!
I know that you didn’t want to end up in the Goodwill stash, that your purpose was to stay with me and endure. You have personality and are just enough “off” to be interesting but not weird – and I will miss you.
All the best -