Tuesday, February 5, 2013

A bit of everything

There is something wonderful about having January behind us. The weather here has been miserable. It was so cold, and with the cold comes horrible pollution. We are surrounded by beautiful mountains that unfortunately trap the pollution when it gets really cold. It was so bad for a while, it was recomended that children not play outside (not that we were really tempted when it was 10 degrees). We were all going stir-crazy. To top that off I was sick the last two weeks of the month--so sick I didn't even want to sew for several days. I've been a bit disconnected for a while. It was nice having a few posts stored up to use when I'm not getting anything done. This post will be full of a bunch of randomness since I haven't been in this space much recently.

I feel like I'm trying to catch up on everything. I'm trying to get our lives a bit more organized. I'm so tired of clutter and stuff.   When I finally started feeling better toward the end of last week, I got it in my head to repaint the twins' room. They had literally destroyed the walls. I patched multiple spots that were more than a foot square. When she was younger, Miss A would bash her crib against the wall, and then pick at the the paint in the dents she created and peel it off. The walls were a mess. It's so nice to have freshly painted walls in there. I'm coming up with plans to decorate their room with vinyl (I still don't really dare hang anything on their walls yet). Pictures to come when I decide what to do.

I also shipped off these three quilts this morning.

They are headed to QuiltCon for the quilt show. All three quilts I entered were accepted. I was originally excited when I learned my quilts were accepted, but then started dragging my feet. I actually didn't get them ready to ship until just yesterday. I have very mixed feelings about quilt shows. I don't quilt to compete. I do it because I enjoy it. I don't really like the idea of my quilts being judged. They aren't perfect. The bindings and quilting aren't perfect. I struggle with knowing that someone who is "knowledgeable" about quilting will judge my quilts and decide if they are good or bad. How do you compare two quilts? How do you decide which is better? I like my quilts, and that's what matters. It really doesn't matter to me if others don't. I try very hard not to compare my work to the projects other people sew. I share my quilts because I love them. I get excited to share something new I've created. I follow other quilting blogs because I love seeing what others create. To me this whole hobby is about having fun and coming up with something unique, not making something for another person to pick apart and judge. Last week I had almost decided not to send my quilts at all. I talked it over with the hubs quite a bit and finally decided over the weekend to prep and ship them. I knew I would probably regret it if I just chickened out. I still didn't feel settled about the whole thing as I shipped them off this morning. It's not really about whether I win or not, I just don't like knowing that in a couple weeks someone will be holding my quilt next to another person's quilt and deciding which is better. Who really has the right to decide that? Beyond basic good construction, a "great" quilt is simply in the eye of the beholder. To me it's mostly opinion.

For some fun news, my darling friend Colleen from the Busy Bean used my Honeycomb pattern to sew up the warm quilt kit through Marmalade Fabrics. I admit that I love how it turned out. She did a great job. I love the bright colors together.
Source: The Busy Bean

Sometime in all the craziness, I did get this quilt finished. This is actually the back. The front is a remake of Crooked Cabins which I plan to release as a pdf pattern toward the end of the month. If you missed that issue of Modern Quilts Unlimited, you'll have another chance to get the pattern. I'm putting together directions for two different layouts, plus tips on designing your own layout.


Here's to a great, healthy February. As a side note, I don't plan to host any link-up parties this year including Slash the Stash and End of the Hallway that I did last year. Because of other things going on in my life, I'm trying to simplify things on the blog.

Sponsor News:




Pink Castle Fabrics still has 15% off all inventory. Also, US orders over $50 ship free. The code is MOVING15 and is good through Wednesday.


The Intrepid Thread is offering 10% off through February 13. Use the code SWEETHEART.


28 comments:

  1. Urgh, hope you're feeling much better now! I know what you mean about the quilt shows, I'd love to send something just to brighten up the super traditional (read very dull fabric colours) quilts that appear here, but I don't really want to be judged, just brighten the place up!

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  2. For sure, quilt judging is in the eye of the beholder - completely subjective. I'm glad you decided to send your quilts in so that people can see them and enjoy your work. Even though I can't go to the show, that's the real magic - a viewer walking in the door and pulling in that first big breath of excitement and awe at all the quilts people have made and are willing to share. You should feel great satisfaction knowing your quilts contribute to that magic. :D

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  3. At our local quilt show, there is a place on the form to mark if you want your quilt judged or not. So, the pressure is off for those that just want to share. I'm with you; I quilt for no other reason than the pure pleasure it brings.

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  4. Hope you get to feeling back to normal soon, and the revolting-sounding air blows out of town.

    I think your quilts are amazing, and obviously my opinion is right up there with the big wigs xxx

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  5. I say look at it like this-I love going to the local quilt show and find it very inspirational. Since you don't care if you win or not just think of the inspiration people viewing the show will find in your quilts. I mean we have all seen them here on the blog but seeing them in person is even better. I wish I could go to quiltcon for that reason alone. To see the inspiration that is going to fill the room. And then if you happen to win, well that will just be an added bonus :)

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  6. I'm glad you sent your quilts. I feel the same way about mine, very anxious that people judge their imperfections when I only made them because it was fun. I even did a bunch of google searches after two of my quilts were at Houston, sure that there were going to be nasty comments from "real" quilters who saw them and thought they were crap. Crazy, right? I have three going to QuiltCon too, and this time I'm not so worried. I think the majority of people going through there are looking at their design and beauty, not their technical features. And the judges are awesome! Rashida and Joelle will be great. I won't lie, I'd love to win one of those cash prizes, but at the same time I have no expectations of having the best quilts as that was not my intention. I'm rambling on and on. ;) Anyway, I'm excited to see your quilts in person!!!

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  7. I fully agree with Krista - I'm glad you sent your quilts, but I felt very much the same way as I prepared and packed my quilts to send them off. I know a few "competitive" quilters, who quilt strictly to enter them in shows and things, and I absolutely cannot relate to that mentality, because like you, I do it for the joy of it. I feel really sure, though, that your quilts are going to be appreciated for the joy that went into them and the beauty that you created, so I'm glad you sent them in the end. And I love your Crooked Cabins quilt! I'm a sucker for a scrappy rainbow quilt :) Glad to hear you're feeling better, and I hope you stay that way!

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  8. I so know how you feel. Anything I've ever entered has never even been accepted. But they're still my favorites. It's hard to feel rejected, like my work isn't good enough. It was hard for me to even send in the application because just the thought of being judged scares me. So it was a big step for me, and then the rejection letter came and that was not a fun feeling. Though I knew there was a huge likelihood of rejection, it still felt crummy. I definitely sew (and blog) for fun though, and not business or competition, so in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't really matter so much. But the feeling was bad enough that I will be thinking really really hard in the future before entering any other competitions. I'm not really sure why I entered in the first place, I guess I just thought it'd be fun. Oh well! Hope you're feeling much much better now!

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  9. I was so out of the loop I didn't even think to enter anything, but I agree with your commentary on the subject. :)
    "Beyond basic good construction, a "great" quilt is simply in the eye of the beholder. To me it's mostly opinion." <-- so true.
    Hope you're all feeling better! I have a bunch of house projects I want to get to too, and need to get them done before Spring work starts! gah!

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  10. Think of it as an exhibit rather than a competition. Those of us going to QuiltCon will be so pleased to see your beautiful quilts, and I bet most of us don't care if there's a ribbon on them or not.

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  11. Quilting is like art, subjective. A show wouldn't be much of a show if only the winners were on show! I'm glad you bit the bullet, your work is great and meant to be shared. Being scared is better than being sorry you didn't enter them.

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  12. Thankfully they won't be judging them in front of people and will only have tags on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd places not "2nd to last place." ;) I just knew going into it that mine wasn't perfect enough to place. I would have to question the judges judgement if it did. :)

    I think that when you get so many great quilts together the judges have to get picky - how else are you going to decide which of a group of amazing quilts are best? You have to look for a flaw or perfect technique that put the quilt in or out of the competition.

    I am glad you sent yours because I am so excited to see all of the quilts in person. Thank you for sending them!!! I think the show will be amazing and inspiring and it would just be boring if there were only a few quilts.

    At least all of yours were accepted. Only one of mine is going and I plan on not standing near it in case I accidentally overhear something like, "why did she quilt it like that?" A perfectly valid question, but it would make me feel weird. Anyway,...

    Is this comment long enough? :)

    Hope you are all feeling better soon. We are painting our house too and it sure is a nice feeling!

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  13. I think Greta hit the nail on the head. I know it can be hard to ignore the idea that quilts are getting a 1, 2, 3 placement, but do try. What's really important is the inspiration you'll give all the folks who see your quilts! What an honor to have the opportunity to inspire someone else. Certainly I'm grateful for all that you share here, but it is true that seeing a quilt in person is a step up from seeing a picture :)

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  14. Boy do I relate. Both of the quilts I submitted were accepted as well but I was pretty surprised at even that. Then I had to get the quilts back from a 1000 miles North and South of me...and when they got here I thought "but I didn't make these for a show. I made them for the person" And I was a bit ashamed of them.

    I know that's ridiculous though because it's far more important for me to have them for the particular person. Still...I hesitated to send one in particular because the points aren't perfect and it's already washed etc. I figure at the very least my quilts are there to make the winners look REALLY good. ;)

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  15. The quilts are fabulous....it's wonderful that we'll get to see them.

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  16. I'm glad that you decided to send your quilts - I can't wait to see them hanging in Austin. :)
    But I also know what you mean about the judging. My fmq certainly isn't perfect and I'm a bit nervous about my quilts hanging for everyone to inspect, too. But it will be fun to see them! And I think you'll be surprised - your work is so great!!
    I love all three of your quilts - and I can't wait to get a copy Modern Quilts Unlimited. A friend has a copy, because one of her quilts is also in this issue, but I can't find it at a local store!

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  17. I can so relate to your thoughts about the quilt show. I posted something similar a while back, as I am in Canada my shipping date was much earlier. I am glad to get to see your quilts in person and I am so glad they will be hanging there, because they are stunning! I am glad you are feeling a bit better too, January seemed to be challenging this year.

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  18. I can't wait to see your quilts in person, but I completely understand what you're saying about the "judgement" part of it. I am sending mine off first thing tomorrow and went back and forth as well until the last minute. I just try not to get attached to what others think of my work. It's very personal to me and, like you said, 'what matters is that you like your quilt'!!
    Glad to hear you're feeling better. We are just getting/fighting it off here this last week!! Hope to be good and healthy for Quilt Con!!!

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  19. I am glad that your quilts will be there because I really want to see them! It is a little scary putting them out there to be judged, but I am trying to remember that 99% of the people who are looking at mine are just there to look at pretty quilts and not complain about bias/non-bias binding!

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  20. Being sick for two weeks is really unlucky. Must have been a strong virus. Are you going to decorate the kids room in vinyl so you can just hose it out? I'd like to do that sometimes with my kid's rooms! Now a geography question: Is the pollution in your mountain area caused by cities in that region? Or does it blow in from other regions and get trapped?

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  21. For me, it is all about the process, which includes sharing my work with others (NOT about being judged or about collecting ribbons).

    Glad you overcame your doubts and sent your quilts to "the party." May they travel safely, be enjoyed by the viewers, and return to you soon.

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  22. I feel the same way about January! Bring on spring!! I love Colleen's Honeycomb quilt! What would you say the difficulty level is of that one? Cause it looks kinda hard!

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  23. I'm have the same thoughts about my quilts. My husband wants me to enter my quilt in a show. I'm not sure this is what i want.

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  24. Your quilts are wonderful! I am so glad you decided to enter them into QuiltCon. I will be very pleased to see them in person!

    Just ignore the whole judging part and revel in the pride that someone out there thought they were good enough to share with hundreds (or thousands) of others :-)
    I hope you know that you will be inspiring a lot of people out there just by showing your work :-)

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  25. Gosh now I wish I were going to Quilt Con so I could see your work in person. I agree with everyone else, it's great that you are willing to exhibit your quilts! How did you prep them to be shipped? I have never shipped a quilt before and I have one for my Grandma that has about 3500 miles to go. Any suggestions for mailing?

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  26. Very nice quilt…I like your color selection and beautiful design in quilt making..Thank you’re your post. Next time I will get some ideas in making my quilt.
    Joint Replacement India

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  27. I couldn't have said it better about the quilts we make. I love to make quilts for gift giving to those I love and care about, they are far from perfect(I can see my mistakes).But I feel my quilts are reflective on the fact I'm not perfect either and I sew with my heart and soul, that is what makes them beautiful. You have great talent and I enjoy your work of arts.

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  28. I'm so glad you decided to share your quilts at Quiltcon because Unraveled and Broken Diamonds are now on my all-time favorite inspiration quilts list! Thank you. Beautiful inspiring work.

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