Murphy's Law for Quilters

Did you know there was a real Murphy? Murphy's Law ("If anything can go wrong, it will") was born at Edwards Air Force Base in 1949 at North Base.  Capt. Edward A. Murphy, an engineer working on Air Force Project MX981 found a transducer wired wrong and commented about the technician who installed it, “If there is any way to do it wrong, he’ll find it.”  The contractor’s project manager kept a list of “laws” and added this one, which he called Murphy’s Law. 

Here is a "Murphy's Law for Quilters" by Judy Grow that is fun:

  • Every quilt will take twice as long as you expect and be ½ as beautiful (we are never satisfied)
  • There are only 2 kinds of masking tape: that which won’t stay on and that which won’t come off.
  • In cutting an intricate multi-piece block, your ruler will slip on the last side of the last patch.
  • When there is no time to do something right, there will always be time to do it over.
  • The value of any piece of fabric is directly proportional to the speed and ease with which you will ruin it.
  • In any mail-order shipment the item you need the most will be back-ordered.
  • The pattern in a special fabric will never repeat when or where you want it to.
  • Accidental destruction of a fabric will only occur to an expensive imported cotton, never to muslin bought at 50% off.
  • Fabric dyes will never run until the quilt has been completed
  • A block with flawlessly straight sides, precision corners and perfect color placement will always be the wrong size.
  • A quilt that has to be completed for a birthday in two months will take two years to finish.  And its corollary:  A quilt that has no due date will take only two months to complete.
  • When you finally have your sewing space in the empty bedroom exactly the way you want it your son will move back home.
  • You will find the perfect fabric for your quilt only after it has been discontinued by the manufacturer.
  • A quilt judge will give you a bad critique only when the area is full of other people.
  • That same quilt judge will give praise only when no one else is around.
  • The busier you are on any given day the greater the number of quilting inspirations you will want to try.
  • Your quilting thread will break at the needle only when the last stitch has been taken in the line.
  • If a novice quilter decides to watch you use your rotary cutter, you will always ruin the fabric and cut yourself.
  • Your bobbin thread will only run out in the middle of a long line of stitching.
  • That perfect striped fabric you want to use in your sashing has been printed off-grain.
  • The top must be completed and basted to the backing before you notice the one block that has a mistake in it.
  • The quilt-marking pencil that you tested on every fabric before you marked your quilt top won’t disappear after you have completed the quilt.
  • You finally get a great idea for your Guild’s challenge one week before the quilts are due.
  • No matter how much fabric you have bought, you are not going to have enough for the quilt you want to make.

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