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Does Inspiration have an Expiration Date?

December 6, 2012

I worked from home today, which means when it came time to stop working and write an entry for Holidailies, I had the hard drive of my personal laptop to troll through for ideas. I came across a folder with some scans I’d made in 2009 of a plastic souvenir cup from the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa. I can remember the trip on which Mr. Karen and I got that cup; I just don’t remember which year that was. No later than 2002, because that’s when the Buccaneers last played in the NFC Central, and it was their games against the Vikings that drew us to Tampa. The point is the cup was old when I made those scans, old enough that the colors were fading and starting to wear off in spots, and I wanted to preserve a record of the design because I had the idea that I’d make an applique quilt based on it someday. I briefly considered using it for the tv cover quilt I made but the dimensions weren’t right or I was being lazy or something.

Possible applique quilt design

Looking at the animal graphics reminded me of another piece of inspiration I’ve been holding onto for way more years than the cup or the scans, from way before I ever thought of making quilts. It’s a page torn from a booklet given out by the Martin Senour Paints company, with a gridded design to paint a zebra on one’s wall. The back is stamped with the name and address of a hardware store in the town my mom still lives in, a place I haven’t been in since the early 1980s, maybe even longer than that. I know that’s what’s on the back because when I started thinking about it, because I was at home, I could just roll over to the filing cabinet and look for it. It was in the third folder I tried (Diversions; I’d first looked in House and Decorating).

From the files

Maybe someday I’ll do something with those scans of the cup and/or the zebra grid. Is it likely? No, I have to admit it’s not. But as of now, I’m not willing to let go of the possibility. Does keeping these old ideas around prevent me from getting newer and better ones? I don’t think so, but maybe if I tossed all my files into the recycling bin and let the big noisy truck take them away (or the empty command in the case of the computer files) I’d be surprised what popped up in the now empty space. I’m not that brave yet, though. Maybe someday. Or maybe someday when I’m retired I’ll paint a giant zebra on my wall and pull out all my green and brown and purple and blue and white fabrics and make the most fabulous animal applique quilt ever.


On this date in 2011: It’s That Time of Year
2010: Holidailies Redux
2009: No entry.
2008: Crafty Doldrums
2007: No entry.
2006: Amazing but True
2005: Sounds of the Season
2004: No entry.
2003: Piling Off
2002: No entry.

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