At least a dozen reasons why


Seems I have a bit of a problem.
Time for true confessions and since this blog is mainly my online journal,
today I'm setting down in black and white [sort of]
what I intend to do about it.

You see, the issue is, I never seem to actually
any of my textile pieces ...
it's a mystery really ... all these piles of un-dones, everywhere.
I'm not sure why I keep putting them down & skip off to something else
before I can say, "Finito"
and pass them along.

Friends have asked to buy, and trade ... I have even wished for one or two pieces on hand
for special gifts.  
The whole sorry subject has been bugging me for quite some time.
Can I blame it on being a Gemini?
How about the little issue of not having a  "proper"  studio/work space?
Yeah right.  Those sound like excuses to me, too.

Truth is
I'd dearly love to see them completed and then
go away

out into the world so that I can
my shelf space,
and venture forward, unencumbered.

I ask ya, have you ever seen so many pins?  Once, I called these cloth components
"landscapes for beads"
but most are either partially beaded
or have become pin holders instead ...

So I've pulled out twelve of these unfinished stories - twelve favorites
that I'd love to see completed
[please don't ask
how many more are lurking about] 
because I am going to do again what I did two years ago
[which helped me  focus  in the very best way]
and that is
I am going to choose 
a word
for this year.

An ever-present reminder of intention.

I know the whole word thing has fallen out of favor for many
but I'm game to stick with any thought process
that culminates in fruitful results ...

isn't any positive movement forward better than
all this un-doneness begging for a turned edge,
or a bead,
or a dye pot to dive into?!

So there you have it ...
my twelve good reasons
why I need to


what I started.

You are all welcome to hold me accountable.

And as a small treat for embarking on This Road to Completion,
I signed up for a year of advertisement-free Pandora ...
have been enjoying the most glorious - uninterrupted - listening pleasures.
The best part
has been discovering musicians I'd not heard of before
 like this splendid pianist, Ludovico Einaudi.
I was learning to play the piano once but didn't finish that either.  Nevermind.
If I still played, I would want to play this.
[tis splendid with the volume turned way up ...]

Dietro Casa  =  Back Home


  1. I am fairly new to following your blog and creative journey. These works of art I see are beautiful in all of their textural bliss. Fabrics, laces, beads, stitching are all my favorites. Your work is Joyful. I too select a word to help me grow through the year. "Finish" will help you achieve what you wish with these gems. I adore your work. Thank you for sharing. Creative Stitching Bliss...

  2. I am delighted to learn that you also listen to Einaudi! I love Pandora, which is where I ran into him. I will be looking forward to seeing some of this finishing later in the year when F and I come visit.
    Best wishes, Christi!

  3. some beautiful work pictured here. you are not alone with unfinished pieces. i have loads. i went through some of them last year and got rid of the ones i knew i would never finish. my problem is when working on a piece, i get lots of new ideas that i want to develop and i lose interest in what i'm working on...but i do sometimes go back to them and finish. i'm getting better at finishing things...but there are still lots of things hanging around. it's all ok...

  4. Enjoy the process of creating ..... finish is good, but it doesn't matter if you are only nearly finished!!! I really think your work is amazing in all it's stages.

  5. Well finished or not, I think these pieces are wonderful, beautiful snapshots of you're working practice, but I do recognise the problem, I seem to enjoy the journey far more than the finishing, which often feels like a chore. Good luck with your word.

  6. You couldn't see me, but I sat here smiling and nodding "Yes! Yes!" all through your post. You see, I am right there with you. At times, it seems I get lost in the process and start and start and play and experiment and get sidetracked and then stop to look at all in the studio and well...all is not finished. My two words for this year are focus and finish. Shall we keep tabs on each other and send encouragement along when one of us stumbles and strays? Wishing you lots of finished pieces to send out into the whirled. Enjoy!

  7. I am right there with you on UFO's. My daughter teases me about it, which i don't appreciate, because it is such a sore spot for me. I don't know what it is, but I get started and then another idea pops into my head and I'm off trying that. I thought i might be ADHD, but I am glad to find out other creative people have the same issues. I don't know what the solution is, I have tried many things.
    I'm beginning to wonder wherre I got the idea that everything has to be finished. Is it a crime or a sin to not finish? i would love to have things to sell or give as gifts too. I wonder if the great masters had work left unfinished.

  8. HA!! My word is EXECUTE which essentially is FINISH. One of my blog friends has a monthly challenge..4th Friday. The idea is to post a finish on the 4th Friday. It IS a challenge. I'd love to see that shirt when its done. It looks wonderful.
    xx, Carol

  9. My heart is racing at the sight of the piece with the bands of white seed beads. Please finish that first :-) At least you actually get started on all these pieces. Not having a studio certainly effects my progress.
    Choosing a word definitely helped me last year. I think the word has to feel right for it to work.

  10. OH
    These are all so beautiful.
    They all deserve to be finished.

    I did a big cull a year ago, probably in January , of the works that I did NOT want to be bothered with in my last good 20 years of art making.
    That left about 24 that I do.
    But there is nothing like starting a new piece.

    It's a balance - finishing the old, but still leaving some space and time to just follow that new path around the corner.

    This post resonates.

  11. what a glorious 12 to work with this year, love this quote from an interview by Kiki Smith
    "...the good thing about being an artist is the work has to go away!"

    thank you for sharing your process and as always your photography is brilliant!

  12. First of all I Love You……for being so honest about this……I love the 'word' thing. Mine has been 'Clarity' for the last two years. A wise friend once told me as I was lamenting about how Life always kept presenting huge challenges that took me away from my work…only to for me to start again….never where I left off….leaving piles of work unfinished, or not exhibited. She explained this as 'cycling'…not as stopping and starting (my words). This is a journey….and the path you are on is filled with beauty. I cherish your fragments…even unfinished

  13. Your UFOs are all so beautiful. I hope you do finish them. But if not, then so be it. If it helps at all, I have a bucket in my shed filled with already-stitched and pole-wrapped fabrics to be shibori dyed or discharged. They've been there for two years...

  14. I certainly know the *feeling* of holding onto something and not being able to let go.
    And I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy. (okay. who am I kidding?!? I'd wish that and a ten foot deep trench but I digress.)


    Don't assume that your unfinished pieces are ...well... unfinished.
    Maybe they aren't what you originally intended but maybe you learned what you needed to learn. And you've outgrown what it can teach you. maybe.

    And I think I may have come up with an idea for our collab ... I know!

  15. Thank you for sharing these beauties, I so love each one in each its own way! It has taken me awhile to find a word or it to find me. I had some great ones but none really fit. "Space" found me and I feel I've made a new friend, one I have known forever. I hope 'finish' becomes a loving companion and sees you through the year. Your beadwork and texture is sublime.

  16. i think sometimes i do not finish the piece because i do not want it to end . when jude had us do a wishing star it was really awesome to finish the piece . thank you for your honesty . we are not alone .

  17. Hmmm...that makes me think of my word and the "tension" between process and product. :) I feel like I might be aiming high, but there are a lot of things I want to finish this year as well.

  18. Beautiful piece of piano music. The creative mind shouldn't be harnessed too tightly. I have many unfinished works and I try not to let them worry me. Maybe by pulling those 12 beauties out it will be their time. Whatever the project, enjoy the journey.

  19. What a wonderful and thought provoking post. I'm sure you know that you would have many volunteers to help you finish if finishing was all you wanted to do. But 'finishing' has a whole spiritual side. Most of those meanings are hidden within us (its not good enough, if I finish it I'll then have to do something with it, I love the idea of it and it isn't necessary to actually finish). If it will satisfy something deep within you to finish then by all means dive in, enjoy the moment and smile at the end. If you really and truly, down deep, don't care if its finished or not - if it has given you joy and still does as an unfinished piece then throw caution to the wind, putter as it pleases and enjoy.

  20. some lovely stitching here you have been hiding.

  21. You do such incredible work.....I just love to look at it.

  22. Have found myself a bit overwhelmed with all of your heartfelt & moving responses to this post, so I hope you will
    forgive me as I write a collective Thank You instead of personal notes to each. Tis a truly wonderful thing for you
    to not only stop by here, but to leave your thoughts behind as well. You've given me so much to think about!

    For those of us who've chosen words, let's continue to talk about them. If we keep speaking the truth about
    what is actually going on then doesn't it seem certain - oh, and this is going to sound mighty corny - but doesn't it
    seem certain that the truth will [eventually] set us free?

    What I've realized from writing and then reading your comments on this "un-finished" subject, is
    my balance is utterly & completely askew - the balance between the old [finishing] and the new [starting].
    I find myself asking: why should starting something new feel more rewarding than finishing something I've started?
    To begin answering such an important question all *new* work is going on hold ... I'm going to first finish a piece or two
    while paying special attention to how it feels to do so. Perhaps an answer will appear sooner than I think
    and I can break out of this odd pattern, at last.

    Thank you for listening. Thanks again for stopping by & leaving your good words.

    on the Road to Completion,

  23. Hi Christi,
    I have Gemini ruling my art section in my horoscope, so I do get this.
    I need to have at least two projects going and orbit around them. Sometimes a piece has to "rest" a while before you know it's finished, Like knowing when to put the brush down as a painter.

    Otherwise, not finishing stuff is, for me, like self sabotage. If I dont finish it, then, I cant show it/blog it/sell it.
    Stilll working on that one!

  24. I do hope that you get at least some of these beautiful pieces and enjoy the journey along the way. A beautiful piece of music, just wish Pandora was available in the UK.

  25. Your needlework is so lovely - and these photos really draw me in - it would be a shame not to start finishing some of it! Good luck with your resolution.

  26. Your art is so beautiful… my word for the year is "courage"… right now it is being expressed as staying with uncomfortable emotions. "Finish" is such an interesting word… is anything ever finished? All is changing even if we imagine it is done, or declare it so… even "things" have a life of their own. Still it is good to set intentions and see where they will lead. I'm so glad I visited today… your work and words gave me much to ponder.

  27. When you talked about "finish", and about the piece where you stitched "patches" of beads to cover glitches between the woven strips, I knew I was gonna love this post, love seeing these pieces in process. In fact, I've been thinking a lot about the subject of finishing, wondering if for you, you especially, the process, the conversations between needle, cloth, beads, and you, is the only really significant reason to sit listening to Pandora and stitch, wondering if important conversations like this are never actually finished. If you were to frame a piece or make it into something, calling it finished, wouldn't it then be an end to your conversation? Although I understand the wish to have things to give, to feel more free about starting new pieces, it just feels like it might be OK to let them continue being in process. Speaking as one who most often finishes my beadwork and other projects, I look at these 12 works in progress with some longing, with a sense of peaceful meditation. I'll support you in "finishing" because you asked for it, but with some hesitation.