When does a UFO become a UFO? This is not just a rhetorical question. Thanks to my pledge to reduce my UFOs this year, I actually need to define it for myself to know just which projects get priority. Now some projects are obviously UFOs.
But, the question still stands. At what stage of a project does it become a UFO? Does it start when you've actually cut some of the fabric? If so, does this count? These are a bunch of 2 1/2" strips of fabrics I have used in other projects in the past year. I found a cute scrappy pattern in Quilter's Home that uses a technique I've been wanting to try. So, I have the collection of print strips I need, just need to cut a ton of background strips. And, while I did cut these strips to this size with the pattern in mind, they were scraps in the first place. I simply cut them down as I was either putting away scraps for later use and/or as I was finishing the projects they came from. So, while the fabric has been "cut" does it count as a UFO -- or is this simply gathering materials?
And while I'll even accept that a project may be a UFO if anything has been cut (and I'm tempted to believe that) where does that leave this one? These (not the cut squares in the background but the folded batiks and prints towards the front) are for a quilt for my mil. They will be her Christmas present. (No, I'm not worried about her seeing them, she already has -- my theory on this one is that if I am going to make this for her, I want to be sure she is going to love what I make so she knows about the quilt). I haven't cut anything, but I have begun to prepare the freezer paper templates and all of the fabric has been purchased and pulled from the stash. So, minimal work in, but ready to begin the work at any time. This one is the most troublesome for me because I have anywhere from 15 - 20 projects like this. The fabric is purchased, patterns selected or settings designed, everything is kept together in project bins and/or drawers, but nothing has been done with them. Do these also count as UFOs? Or are they simply projects that may or may not ever be begun and the fabric is simply hanging out in a special part of the stash? Except that I won't use it as part of my stash since it is meant for another project?
I really don't know -- and I suppose that the only reason I'm having angst about the subject is because I started a new project this week. The angst is because it is none of the projects mentioned above -- instead it is an entirely new project that wasn't even on my radar until this weekend. I was trying to decide what was next after my little bags and came across another pattern from a recent (I think) issue of Fons and Porter's Love of Quilting (hmmn -- a lot of magazine patterns cropping up here, then again, by actually doing some of these patterns I can justify purchasing them in the first place). I had thought the pattern looked interesting when I first saw it, and when I looked at it again I realized I had a grouping of fabrics I had collected with vague ideas of doing something with them that would work. A quick trip down to my stash to check -- and yep, I could do it, and better than that I could do it all from my stash with only the possibility of some thread being purchased for the entire project.
So, instead of finishing one of my UFOs or one of the other projects that I have all of the materials for -- I started something else entirely. I really will get to the UFOs and the other projects. Eventually. Probably. I hope? In the meantime, a little tease of the stash fabrics I'm now playing with. Really, how could I resist? So, all of the fabrics ironed, cut down if necessary and cut to assembly dimensions -- and now to piece the blocks!