Where is the air traffic controller?

Scrappy Maple Leaves. All blocks completed, most assembled, time for takeoff! Or is it landing?

My project assortment reminds me of airports, with airplanes and passengers milling about. There are projects on the runway, waiting to get off the ground. There are projects in hangers, waiting for repair or service. Some are circling above, seeking clearance to land. And, like the masses of people being sorted through security and sent on to gates, there are fabrics yet to be assigned to projects all over the map.

I have read that some scientists believe there really is no such thing as multitasking, but remain on a personal quest to prove otherwise. Occassionally I envy quilters who stick tenaciously to one project from start to finish.

The volcano Mount Cotopaxi in Ecuador.

But my mind wanders, and I travel regularly between various exploits. I may seek variety, akin to a snowbird heading to warmer climates in the winter. More often, like an explorer heading off to scale Mount Cotopaxi or study the beehive tombs in Atreus, a compelling new idea sneaks in and I am driven to pursue it. If only these travels earned frequent flyer miles.

Perhaps I need an air traffic controller to help me sort through these endeavors and get them all safely launched or landed! I am having trouble deciding at what point a WIP (work in progress) becomes a UFO (unfinished object.) And if I start back to work on a UFO, is it once again a WIP? When does a glimmer of an idea actually become a WIP? With a drawing or plan, the purchase of fabric, actual cutting or sewing?

Is it a UFO? Is it a WIP? Will it ever be DONE?

Step up to the flight counter, all you readers, and declare your current UFO or WIP status! How do you decide when a WIP becomes grounded and delegated to UFO status? Is there a smooth operation at your quilting airport? And where can I find a good air traffic controller?


About thecuriousquilter

Quilter, sewer, writer, gardener, mother, sister, friend, always learning, always curious.
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13 Responses to Where is the air traffic controller?

  1. Donna says:

    I think my UFO’s have crashed!

  2. Auggie says:

    To me a WIP is out, gets touched and at least occassionally worked on even if between other things. Once I box it up or put it in a drawer, it is a UFO. I have never heard of beehive tombs, but I too get easily distracted when sewing. I switch between quilting projects and clothing projects on a daily basis.

  3. Carole Ann says:

    Just found your blog through a web ring, and I really like it! UFO’s abound in my life too, no WIP’s at the moment as I am recovering from wrist surgery. If you bury it, or do not look at it daily, I think it is a UFO. Keep writing please!

  4. gina says:

    If I’m working on it it’s a WIP. If it stays in my box for more than 2 weeks then it’s a UFO. As soon as it comes out again then it goes back to being a UFO. Then of course there’s the tops to be quilted list.
    A new project becomes a WIP as soon as the first piece of fabric is cut and for me it isn’t finished until it’s quilted, bound and labelled. That’s why my to be quilted list is longer than my done list.
    Love and hugs Gina xxx

  5. Martin says:

    OK, Curious Mary, I clicked on the maple leaf photo to get a closer look. Those are some of the wildest leaves I have ever seen! A traditional pattern, maybe, but traditional leaves NOT! Post the DONE picture in your gallery, please!

  6. Jill Harkins says:

    I am definitely a 1 project at a time person. I do have 1 UFO due to the fact that i have the quilt top all pieced but can’t decide how to quilt it off. Right now i am making a quilt needs to be done in two weeks. i have quilt kits in the drawer & when 1 project gets done & another is started.

  7. Sue says:

    I have 15 WISPS (works in slow progress) on the go, plus I work on other little projects as the inspiration/idea/need comes along. Even if I don’t work on something for a while, I know it will eventually be finished, even if it is not what I had originally planned for it!

  8. Meloney says:

    Well, I have over 100 UFOs, but in the past 3 years accomplished finishing over 80 other UFOs, so I feel good about that. I have my UFOs in the window seat cabinet and when I need a quilt, I go there first. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. So, that is just my starting point. Now, if I don’t have any projects I must get done, I will pull out one of the UFOs and just finish it. My main problem tends to be that I realize I don’t have a desire to finish a BIG quilt out of those UFOs and the pieces become 2 or 3 smaller quilts. So, the process and the the list is not going down as quickly as I’d like. Take a look at my site that I keep updated.
    Right now, I’m on vacation and working on a whole slew of hst that needed pressing — it is done — and now they need trimming to size. 😦

  9. Jennie Olson says:

    Well ya got me, I had to google “beehive tombs” cause ya made me curious!

  10. Sarah Schultte says:

    Love the maple leaves! I agree with Martin, nifty fabric choices. Keep letting your mind wander, some of us are enjoying the trip.

  11. Alice Hamilton says:

    Loved your post on Stash Manicure! You are still that creative girl I knew way back when. I think Erma B would be very proud of you. Celebrating the anniversary of my 1st year quilting. It’s been great therapy for me. A wonderful gift during a difficult time. I wish I could say I finished all 16 of the quilts I began. But since they are out and ready for the actual quilting and binding I’ll say that these remaining 4 are WIP’s–

    • Oh Alice, thank you! But SHHH on the “way back when part” because people might think we are old! High school was not THAT long ago, was it? LOL, thanks for your support. And congrats on 16 quilts in your first year of quilting, admirable! – Mary

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