Mad Quilter’s Ball revisited, before we start singing carols . . .

Hello people! Yes, I have been oddly silent. I am still trying to track down some errant swappers, and getting regular emails about that, and frankly I need a break from that mini-nightmare. So, because Christmas is a week away, I am pulling some fun oldies and sharing them with you! Happy holidays, and enjoy . . .

Quilter’s nightmare, or The Mad Quilter’s Ball: from November 201o
Quiltblogdom, I think we have a problem. (There’s a song or something in there! wink wink)

Holiday countdownIn November 2010 I had asked readers to name some items they are trying to finish in the weeks before the holidays passed. Being The Curious Quilter, I sat down and quantified, categorized, and analyzed the lists you shared. I had to use some judgement, and define a few terms for counting purposes. For instance, if you said “a couple of mug rugs,” I figured that was two of them. When a reader said “finish some ornaments,” I decided to assume that some was three. Those who bravely (or foolishly) said, “make a bunch of aprons,” well, a bunch became five in my counting. I suspect these estimates are leaning severly to the conservative side.

So just what nerve-racking quantity of crafted giftiness do the 192 quilters who shared lists actually have on their to-do lists for the next 39 days? It totals over 660 items, broken down as follows:


    Go Super Quilters All!!!

  • 58 bed or lap quilts
  • 26 baby quilts
  • 21 wall hangings
  • 41 aprons
  • 82 table runners or placemat sets
  • 32 napkins
  • 18 stockings or tree skirts
  • 75 mug rugs (see tutorial)
  • 31 pillowcases
  • 35+ ornaments
  • 62 totes, bags, or purses
  • 16 clothing items
  • over 200 stray items like pot holders, soft books, lots more…

I headed to bed after reviewing the list, my mind boggled by its sheer magnitude. I hadn’t even included my own items in the madness, and of course no one mentioned all the other things they will be doing—the food, cleaning, partying, and daily living that needs to happen in those same 39 days. Apparently, I could not get it out of my mind, as my dream shows…

The Dream of the Mad Quilter’s Ball

Piles fo thread for piles of quilts.‘Twas a month before Christmas, and all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The fabric was set by the iron with care
In hopes that some quilting time soon would be there.

My children were grown and all moved away,
Which left lots of time for their mama to play;
But then, in my dreamland, I heard a loud call,
Inviting me out to the Mad Quilter’s Ball!

two hundred quilters in a dreamHigh up above me I heard such a clatter,
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
Into the attic I flew like a bird,
Worried about all the noises I heard.

The dust and the cobwebs were scattered about,
And a light through the crawlspace was just leaking out.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a room where some quilters were starting to cheer!

How many pins to make 58 quilts?Two hundred strong, they were poised by their lists,
Ready to cut, sew, and quilt up their gifts.
They’d saved me a spot, I went straight to my chair,
And soon many voices were filling the air!

“Now, Singer! now, Brother! now, Janome and Elna!
On, Kenmore, Bernina, on Pfaff and Gammill!
Each machine in its place, Though we know it’s still Fall!
Just stitch away! stitch away! stitch away all!”

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
Soon up to the ceiling the threads, how they flew!
Each sewer turned out a wall hanging or two.

We cut, stitched and pressed as we all made mug rugs,
Thinking of friends who would soon give us hugs.
Mittens and bags began piling up high,
Dozens of baby quilts made us all sigh!

Our lists were still long, and our thoughts were less cheery.
We kept quilting on, but our eyelids were weary.
While stitching up aprons, some fingers got pricked,
For starting so late, all our rear ends we kicked!

“I can’t do it all,” someone cried in despair!
“I made this block wrong, I may pull out my hair!”
“Hush!” said another, “Just make something scrappy,
Your family won’t know, and will all be quite happy!”

Some stitched log cabins, and some made nine patches.
A few made some star quilts, with neat corner matches.
The quilt pile grew, but to all it was clear,
Fifty-eight quilts was a number to fear!

The thread piles rose and they started to shake.
They rolled up together and made us all quake!
Like little thread soldiers held tightly with lint,
They sorted themselves out by color and tint.

And what to our dry, tired eyes did take shape,
But a woman all clad in a thread and lint cape!
She laughed at us all as she looked through our lists,
Then she said, “Super Quilters are such optimists!”

She sprang to the roof, to us all gave a whistle,
And then flew away like the down of a thistle.
But I heard her exclaim, as she flew out of sight,
“Happy quilting to all, but don’t stay up all night.”

Needle and thread line copyright The Curious Quilter at WordPress dot com Signature© 2010, 2013 by The Curious Quilter,, All rights reserved.


About thecuriousquilter

Quilter, sewer, writer, gardener, mother, sister, friend, always learning, always curious.
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7 Responses to Mad Quilter’s Ball revisited, before we start singing carols . . .

  1. steve cramer says:

    So creative–loved it–got a good chuckle!! Merry Christmas!

    On Fri, 20 Dec 2013 03:52:14 +0000

  2. And a Merry Christmas to you–try to get a LITTLE sleep before the big day.

  3. jfruehwirth says:

    Merry Christmas and a happy sewing new year!

  4. Dorothy Schreyer says:

    Love the’superquilter”!

  5. treadlemusic says:

    Christmas Blessings to you and prayers for a joy-filled New Year!!!!!!!! Hugs, Doreen

  6. djmat says:

    Sweet dreams are made of those lines! Finally finished Ella’s fairy quilt, shipped it & they got it, whew! Christmas lunch menu is finished but dread grocery shopping. Wonder if the elves out back would be willing to just take over, they have elfin magic.

    I hope the Good Lord blesses us all with the things we need whether peace, friendship, family harmony, time, the desires of our hearts & His Will Be Done!

    Prayers go out for (not in any particular order): the infirm, America & this world, veterans, falsely imprisoned souls, orphaned children, the aged, homeless, poor, students & teachers, downtrodden, holiday workers, all those who have gone to meet their maker, and our precious newborns. Happy Birthday Baby Jesus!

  7. Pingback: Mad Quilter’s Ball revisited, before we start singing carols . . . | The Curious Quilter | Christmas Everyday of the Year

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