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Saturday, May 27, 2017

Reflections on values (and a link party)

Self-criticizim can be very difficult to handle, but maybe by sharing my little story below I could help someone else too :)

The Ongoing Project List:
  1. Growing Up QAL - June blocks ready, August blocks ready, started July ones :)
  2. Splendid Sampler - top FINISHED (and the self-criticism story)
  3. Charity quilts - no progress
  4. SK project - completed one block
  5. Molli Sparkle's "The Honey Pot Bee" - paused until June
  6. En Provence QAL - no progress
  7. Journaling into my new Jounral/Planner - loving the new format (more at the end of the month)!
  8. 70273 Project - 8 blocks done
  9. Book binding - no progress
  10. Twilters! Bee - waiting for June
  11. Face cleaning crochet cloths - 4 more done
  12. Zipper pencil case - done
  13. Draft stoppoer - done
At the beginning of May, I linked up at Elm Street Quilts, One Monthly Goal (link #37) that my goal was to assemble the Splendid Sampler top with my own setting design.

I designed the overall layout on my computer putting the postage stamps blocks as "sashing/dividers" so I didn't need more than 47 Splendid Sampler blocks and I could use up all those orphan blocks that were sent to me in a past swap.

I spent the entire month of April adding borders to the postage stamps blocks and I was excited to assemble the quilt top.

I laid out all the blocks on the floor and that's when the stress started!

The entire top looked too busy! Too crazy! Too many things to look at! The overall design that worked with empty squares on my computer was totally lost in the busyness of the actual blocks! Should I just start a new design? Should I just spend more months to make more blocks? Shoul I buy more fabric? ... And then I heard another voice in my brain say: STOP!

Me: Ok, don't yell at me... what? :)
Other voice: Why are you freaking out?
Me: Because I was ready to finish this project and now it looks terrible!
Other voice: Why does it look terrible?
Me: Because it's too busy! My eyes has not place to rest!
Other voice: Why do you think it's too busy?
Me: I just told you! There is no overall flow/design!
Other voice: No... that's not the answer to my question... Why do you think it's too busy?
Me: Well... that's my answer, do you have any other answer?
Other voice: Yes. You think it's too busy because you are looking at the entire quilt top.
Me: ????? yes... that's the point... ???
Other voice: No... that's not the point. You are looking at the entire quilt top like you look at a painting on a wall.
Me: ????? ok... so, what???
Other voice: Are you planning to put your quilt on the wall?
Me: ... no...
Other voice: Are you planning to show your quilt in a quilt show?
Me: ... no...
Other voice: What are you planning to do with your quilt?
Me: ... well... 90% of the time it will be folded into a 20''x20'' bunch and be on my couch... and 10% of the time I will be cuddling under the quilt, so I will actually be able to see not more that a 20''x20'' section of it...
Other voice: OK! so... by looking at 20''x20'' sections of the quilt top, what do you think?
Me: OH.... WELL... I think it's so interesting! There are words in the sashing used in each block! Colors that coordinate well to form scrappy and fun blocks! There are all kind of textures and prints that I can look at! Each block has it's own background and my eyes can rest there!
Other voice: So you see? No need to freak out!! Just put things in the right perspective!!

MORAL OF THE STORY: Do not use someone else's values to evalutate your work! Especially in these days of social media, we are all inclined to believe that some things are more important than others: for quilts, color balance, design flow, etc. But these may not be YOUR values for a specific project! This was not a quilt for a quilt show... it was not a quilt for a class on quilt design... it was a quilt I made because I wanted to be part of a fun community event... a quilt where I learned that I don't like samplers with small blocks... a quilt where I learned that I don't like samplers with too many blocks (and released too close together in time)... a quilt where I learned that playing with selvages and batiks is fun... a quilt that I want to use on my couch. So by reflecting on my own values for this specific quilt, I realized that the design was good enough and I could just go on with my life and enjoy this project instead of freaking out because it doesn't look like someone else's quilt!

So here it is! I actually added the horizonal pink sashing just to add an additional pop of color, because why not!!

The goal for June is to finish 2 more sections of my Stephen King Quilt.
How big these sections will be, I am not sure... but more or less like the first one I made (picture below)
I have several opening line quotes block, but not many book covers, so assembling 2 sections will take me the entire month, but I am up for the challenge!!

Two 3D objects that I needed: a draft stopper and a zipper pencil case for my new mini-happy planner
Super easy... just folded the fabric, made the channels and filled them with all the little scraps of fabric/thread and other things that other people throw away... I keep them because they are fantastic to fill these kind of objects that don't need to be soft or light... I pack them up very tight and it works amazing!!!


More blocks for the 70273 Project. If you are curious to see some of the beautiful quilts made with all these blocks check out this Pinterest board!
Last but not least, another of the Stephen King's book opening line

Opening line, Duma Key

How about you? What are YOU up to?
Link it here and share it with me!!


  1. Excellent post! We are all unique. One of us likes traditional Baltimore applique, another of us likes busy, colorful scrappy pieced quilts, while another likes modern minimalist quilts. Our uniqueness offers variety and makes us interesting. Celebrate the uniqueness! Create first for yourself! It is a pleasant and gift-giving bonus if our creativeness blesses others! We want that, but it will never happen if we aren't happy with our own creativity.

  2. Wonderful Splendid Sampler quilt! Thanks for linking up with Elm Street Quilts One Monthly Goal and congrats on your finish.

  3. I've gotta agree with you on all counts. I have a log cabin quilt that is blue, blue and more blue and resides in my travel trailer.
    I've never done a sampler quilt perhaps someday if it were part of a community event.

  4. A great post. I appreciate your sharing the conversation with the other voice in your brain. I think if a quilter does what they like they will move on to their next idea and the pleasure of quilting. (And that includes me, too!)

  5. Good choice with the horizontal sashing - looks great!

  6. Hi Alida, it seems that you've learned a lot this month. The horizontal sashing looks good and the blocks look interesting. I'm glad that you've come to appreciate your quilt :-) We can be our worse critics - it's great to get pass that.

  7. One of the first rules of writing is clarifying your audience. Shall we say the same goes with quilting? Who should this please? I think p*rf*ctionism stands in the way of a lot of enjoyment. I LIKE busy. I like quilts made with all prints jumbled and mixed together, and tough cookies if someone else thinks it's awful. There are loads of styles and fabrics and methods our there enough for all of us to find a point of comfort. Walk your walk, and do your own thing. Yes, this is a great post, and we should listen to both our head and our heart.

  8. Cool quilt. Thanks for linking up with Elm Street Quilts One Monthly Goal and good luck with your project.


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