If you haven't seen this, you should check it out at TECHknitting blog. Techknitter, in this post, puts into words better than I ever could why I feel such satisfaction in hand crafting. Even if you aren't a knitter, I think the two theories she discusses apply to any hand craft.
Below, you see the latest sock I've been working on. This is a simple (free!) pattern called Primavera. It's just 5 rib rows, then one easy pattern row. But look at the effect! Techknitter calls it "work to glory ratio." I've always thought of it in my head as "bang for a buck," much less elegant a term, but it's still the same idea. The simple pattern turns an ordinary sock into something a lot more special.
I knit with KnitPicks Essential yarn, fingering weight, Wine Kettle Hand-Dyed. I love the feel of this yarn as I knit with it, and how the pattern is so well-defined. It's for a gift, so I hope it holds up well.
I also love Techknitter's discussion of product and process in crafting. I think it applies equally well to quilting or any other craft that requires long hours of work. When I look at one of my finished quilts, I see the quilt itself, but I also "see" how and when and where I made it. I remember the choices I made as I was constructing it. I remember matching the bits of fabric, pinning them together, and the lovely feeling of things going together the way I wanted them to.
And, ta-da! Some actual sewing has taken place here. A couple of years ago I won a jelly roll at a quilting retreat and I had been looking for the perfect project for it. Well, by way of Gudrun and Bonnie at Quiltville, I found a great pattern called Sister's Choice. All of the blocks can be made with 2 1/2 inch strips, and I had more than enough to make 20 blocks (although I did have to supplement some of the background cream). Now I just need to get some border fabric and some more cream for setting triangles and I'll be able to put it together.
You can check out what others around blogland are working on this week by checking in at Judy's Patchwork Times blog.