Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Power of Ten

I know perfectly well that lots of you out there have multiple UFOs, WIPs, WISPs, and PIGs stashed away in your closets and under your beds. We've all talked about it before on our blogs, and lots of us are currently participating in the One Project a Month challenge created by Kris from Tag Along Teddies and May Britt from Abyquilt. Although I have managed to meet the challenge every month except one, it hasn't really solved my main problem, which is the stack of UFOs in MY closet and my penchant for creating new ones. I simply love starting new projects.

I read about The Power of Ten a month ago on Barb's blog over at Pleasant Pond Studio. Barb evidently got it from a friend of a friend from somebody in Texas. I suppose this concept has been around in some form for years, but none of them has really worked very well for me.

You can see Barb's post and the complete list of "rules" here, but essentially The Power of Ten is nothing more than a methodical approach to completing quilt projects. You choose 10 (and no more than 10) projects you'd like to complete. According to the author, a quilter's interest is usually spent after 3 hours on the same project; so begin working on one of the projects, spend 3 hours working on it, then move on to a different project, and so on. As one project gets completed, find another and add it to the list, so you always have a rotating list of 10 projects.

This is precisely the way I like to work. So I found 10 plastic baskets, one for each project, and after 3 hours it will easy to scoop up the project parts, throw them back in their basket, and bring out the next basket.

The author recommends that you keep a list of the projects and the hours you worked on each project. I also added columns on my chart for start and finish dates. For me, the start date will be the date I added it to the list, and I'll be able to easily recognize which projects have been on the list the longest so I can redirect my focus to complete them.

I suppose the original intent of The Power of Ten was targeted towards UFOs, but I'll be adding some new projects to my list as well. After giving it some thought, here's what I came up with for my list of 10 projects:

1. Strippies x 2--two that have been hanging around for a while. The Butterfly strippie I mentioned a couple weeks ago is now complete, and the second is waiting for quilting.

2. Springtime Stars (Star BOM)--needs binding, two sides done.

3. Under the Stars (the Snowman quilt)-- still needs quilting and binding.

4. Stars and Stripes Forever mini tablerunner--the one we worked on at the Tacoma Lakes group. I finished the top last night, needs quilting and binding.

5. Log Cabin mini--an offshoot of the mini tablerunner, only scrappy. I have exactly one block made.

6. Neapolitan--my brown and pink quilt I started at the end of May.

7. Rag quilt--I mentioned this one about three weeks ago too. I finally got my Bernina back from the repair man and can get back to this again.

8. Bonnie Hunter's Mystery Quilt--it's in the latest issue of Quiltmaker. Anyone else doing this? I'd love to share progress reports. I've cut out the green and black pieces and started working on the four-patch units.

9. Pinwheel Party--not my oldest UFO, but one of the oldest from 2008. Way past time to finish it.

10. September Sun--the new quilt I just started with the reds and blues. I've done more than half the cutting for the quilt and have started working on the star blocks.

We'll see how it goes!

Mother Nature has finally decided to grace us with some sunshine, and it is a lovely, breezy, sunny day. Rain is back in the forecast again for the next three days, so I'm off to get some yard work done!


Vicki W said...

that is a terrific concept and probably pretty much the way I work without actually keeping track. Well, that, and the fact that my 10 is probably 20!

You can have your rain back now. It's been raining all day here.

Purple Pam said...

The Power of 10 seems like a sound idea, but I wonder if I could stick to it. I am so excited (and lose focus on what I am doing) when I see new things I want to do. I think that idea of working on a project for 3 hours, then going on to another one is (for me) a good thing. I do lose interest in a project after a few hours of sewing on it. Maybe it could work for me. It's worth a try.

Judy S. said...

Sounds like a great idea to me, one to tackle when we get back home.
Happy Gardening!

Margo in Maine said...

I love the idea....somehow I missed Barb 's post....but I also know of people who cut things out and have them ready to go...whatever works....sounds good to me...I do not think any of us lacks UFO's etc.

Quilter Kathy said...

Great idea! Good luck with your ten!

Stephanie D. said...

Sounds like a good plan. I'll have to mull that one over a bit....

Barb D said...

YAY SUE!! You and Koleen are right on track! Now for me and Sherry to get on the bandwagon! And to think, I started this!! LOL