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Finding time, finding space, finding inspiration

My older son and I share a room: his bedroom is also my sewing room. When he left for college in the fall, I rearranged the room a bit, as we both acknowledged that I would be the room's new primary occupant. It’s great – before, my table was on the dark side of the room; now I’m close to the window to take advantage of the natural light. I repurposed some of his cubbies to store fabric, so now I can see it and pet it whenever I want. I have more space, and I don't have to 'close up shop' every night to let him access his bed. Here you can see 'Before' and 'After' views of our space:

(To be fair, the "Before" picture is from 2016. In the intervening years, he had removed the party on the ceiling, switched Superman for the Earthquakes, and settled on a solid color duvet cover.)


Now we'll have to work out how to share when he is home for vacation. I loved having him home for the winter holidays, and didn’t really miss sewing during that busy time. However, the surge in cases due to omicron caused his school to delay students’ return to campus. As he stayed longer, I appreciated the extra time with him, but started to miss having access to my sewing space, both mentally and physically.


At the beginning of the pandemic, I lost some of my quilting mojo; the unsettled conditions were not fertile ground for sewing creativity. I wrote about some of the ways I kept going in this post. I think it has happened again: I’ve been feeling a bit unsettled by the latest twists and turns in the COVID saga, AND I haven’t had easy access to my sewing space.


So, for me, the question becomes, How do I continue to exercise my “quilting brain” even when I don’t feel creative?


In general, I can find and appreciate beauty, design, pattern, and color in the world even when I can’t create it myself. Recently, I’ve been enjoying some beautiful Bay Area sunsets.

(That's San Francisco at the horizon, just to the right of the sun.)


I feel so fortunate to live where I can walk a block or two and see some amazing vistas. Mother nature has been particularly adept at painting the sky in the past few weeks!


Sometimes it’s the combination of nature (the beautiful sky) and the interesting lines of our built environment (streets, power lines, buildings, cars) that catches my eye. This one even has a jaunty arrow pointing to the center:

Even if my photographs don’t always capture what I see, I have fun trying.


As I shared in a post last fall, I’m working on a quilt project focused on the relative value (light/dark) of the fabrics I’m using. Each of the pairs of blocks I've made for the project has been a value gradation of 4-5 fabrics in a single color. I think I was inspired by the “skybluepink” colors of sunset when I made my most recent pair of blocks, which ended up as a gradation of color AND value.


My son returned to school for in-person instruction last week, and I was finally able to finish these two blocks. I’m pretty sure they aren’t going to end up in the quilt I thought they were destined for, but I’m feeling inspired to take them as a starting point for a new project.


Now that I have my space back, I hope I can find my quilting mojo to go with it.

In the meantime, you can find me out in the neighborhood at sunset, enjoying the view.




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