Some time ago I did a blogpost about a quilt top that I hadn't yet quilted and had been sitting in my closet for several years. It wasn't quilted as I wasn't ready to quilt it - I didn't have the skill or the knowledge to do the quilt justice. My point was that it was okay to not complete a project if you didn't know how you wanted to finish it or didn't have the skill level to finish it the way you would like to. In fact it was more than okay to leave it until you felt ready to finish it. I had interesting responses to this post with people feeling relieved that it was "okay" to not complete a project right away. This led me to think more about some of my thoughts and feelings about the world of quilting.
When I go to a quilt show I experience several emotions: awe at the artistry on display, envy at the skill of the quilters, a feeling of being overwhelmed at how long it must've taken to complete some of this art and frustration that I may never be able to create something so wonderful. While I would think that the craftsmanship exhibited in these quilts would inspire me, sometimes I leave the show feeling discouraged. I don't think that I'm the only one feeling this way.
There is a presumption that if you take a class or watch a video and follow the same steps, your quilt will turn out perfectly. It can be discouraging to find out that it is a lot harder to actually create the project than it appeared in the video or in class. Your project may not turn out to look as good as the instructor's quilt.
I'd like to hear someone talk about what the real quilting process is like for most people – the joys and the frustrations.
I decided to do something about it and am starting this series call “Real Quilting” where I will discuss and sometimes demonstrate the realities of quilting. The series is not about teaching (although I am sure the odd tip or technique will crop up) but more of a conversation about the ups and downs of quilting in real life. I will be discussing how the portrayal of quilting can affect you. I will be talking about:
· Why real life quilting seems harder than what is on TV or Youtube
· Creativity killers
· Things that can discourage you
· Real life quilting experiences
· Real life mistakes and how to fix them
I'm also going to talk about how you can make your own quilting experience more enjoyable by:
· Becoming comfortable with your own quilting experience
· Doing your own thing, not necessarily what others are doing
· Unleashing your creativity
I hope you join will me in this new series as we journey through the highs and the lows of Real Quilting. Leave me a comment below on your real life quilting experiences.