On The Road Again

MQX Has This Quilter On The Road Again

April 4th-9th in Manchester New Hampshire

Vending and Showcasing Quilters Groove Rulers!

I’m gearing up for “Vending Round 2”!  My first experience vending taught me so much that I hope the insight I have gained while in Houston serves me well.  I realize it’s going to take SEVERAL vending trials and tribulations to discover my niche in  this arena.

Judy and I have packed and are about ready to hit the show floor with a “Less is More” approach.  I shipped entirely too much product for the Houston International Festival.  I was overzealous with what I assumed was needed for the booth and by the end of that show Judy and I were not happy campers.  The amount of items that remained was disheartening.  I guess not everyone uses rulers…😳 who would have thought. 

Where is Mary Poppins when you need her? I am sure Judy would agree that the fatigue that consumed us at the conclusion of our initial vending extravaganza had us feeling miserable.  Those dreaded hours of packing boxes, which would be shipped back to PA, was exhausting.  If only Mary Poppins would have floated my way, I would have happily treated her to a lovely dinner and drinks (and even thrown in some free rulers, who knows maybe she’s a quilter at heart)!

But now I am moving on and revving up for the MQX Show!  I will be teaching one class and vending (booth 188). 

 Has anyone out there already reserved some time for this event?  If so let me know, I’d love to see you!

 

 

 

Fear of Free Motion

Do You Fear Free Motion?

There are many quilters out there that feel more comfortable working from the back of their longarm machine.  Just thinking about moving around to the front of the machine brings a cold sweat to their forehead.  I realize that you may think using a pantograph or pattern makes life less stressful.  But what if I told you that isn’t necessarily the case? I am here to encourage a few of you out there to give “Free Motion” a whirl. And here’s why:

Pencil, Paper, I Can’t Draw!  Are you sure about that?  Purchasing a sketch book where you can doodle until your heart’s content is a wonderful tool for discovering the creativity in yourself .  Laugh at yourself if need be, (a glass of wine doesn’t hurt either) because initially it will feel quite awkward and you may feel a bit childish.  Relax, don’t overthink what your clever mind wants to transfer onto paper.

Rid yourself of those artistic inhibitions and let your self go!  Doodle for a while, try different designs, and see where your pencil takes you.  The beautiful thing about owning a sketch book is you will be able to visually see your progress.  And yes, there will be progress!  You needn’t be a Picasso, just be open minded.  Bottom line..if you can draw it you can quilt it! You might just witnessing yourself setting aside a pantograph for one of your designs!  A one of a kind, yes indeed!

Lacking the “Artist” in You, “I’m not creative.”  “There is no way I can fabricate a design on my own.”  “Producing a design for an ENTIRE quilt, are you CRAZY?”  These are all mental statements that have been sabotaging any notion of trying Free Motion.  ALL quilters are creative, in their own way, and with their own style.  We are so hard on ourselves and we feel the need to measure up to what “Quinn the Queen Quilter” has designed.  Insecurity is our biggest creative buster.  Allowing self-doubt only inhibits your growth, and that’s just not acceptable!

  

She said it, get out there and set the artists in you free!  How do you know you aren’t creative if you haven’t dabbled in a Free Motion?  Moreover, experts say you need to try something more than once to truly know if you like it or not (I keep telling my red-headed assistant she needs to give Hot Yoga another shot…yeah not happening).

There is Less Room for Error.  Really?  Mentally you convince yourself of that statement.  However, that isn’t always the case.  Regardless of whether you are in the front or the back of your machine, mistakes happen.  Like it or not, you will screw up in whichever position you choose to quilt.

Errors are frustrating.  We immediately know that we are going to be spending unwanted time on corrections, and that does not make any quilter smile. Working from the back of a machine with a pantograph or pattern doesn’t exonerate anyone from yielding ERRORS.  Yes, there will be moments when spacing will be off or uneven.  Mistakes happen.  Mistakes improve our quilting and provide the quilter with insight on what to do and what not to do in the future.  Get over the mistake issue!

Be Brave and Get in the Front Seat of Your Longarm.  Simply take it nice and slow.  Allow yourself short little periods at the front of your machine.  Easing into Free Motion removes that reckless “what am I doing?” feeling and eventually has you sitting nice and comfortable in the driver’s seat.  Before you know it, you’ll be wanting a pair of sunglasses as you feel like you’re cruising along some smooth fabric on a nice summer day.

Who Knows?  You may even be pleasantly surprised with what transpires the go around.  Heck you may even look at your first attempt at Free Motion and think, “Huh, not bad, not bad at all”.    Heaven forbid you’re a natural at free motion!  Even if you gaze over your material and cringe, keep in mind we all initially cringed at one time or another (I still cringe).  Coming to the front of the machine brings a whole new meaning to quilting with a longarm.   No one says you have to completely abandon the back of the machine, but please don’t neglect the front of the machine.  Fear of Free Motion is only allowing one side of the magic that lies in your longarm to appear.  Utilize the entire machine and step into the Free Motion arena.  I guarantee you will say, “Why did I fear Free Motion?”

Do you have a fear of giving Free Motion a try? If so what keeps you from the front of your machine?

It’s Rulers For Rookies!

 

My First Class of Rulers for Rookies!  

Eleven Students

One Longarmer

Ten Domestic Machines

These Students Were AMAZING!

This class was composed of students that would be entering the world of rulers for the first time.  I can only imagine the feeling of excitement and apprehension that filled each of them.  I was so eager to lead them on this new journey, one that I knew would bring unlimited possibilities to quilting.  They, however, weren’t so confident; and the hesitation that mentally consumed them was evident.

One of my students was a Longarmer who almost left before class started. I was relieved she chose to not give into her fears as her willingness to take on this new challenge proved her to be a natural with rulers.

Another one of my students had previously taken a free motion class that created extreme frustration; she did not find that session beneficial in the least.  She was highly concerned that my class would provide similar results.  I am ecstatic to report that this “Rulers for Rookies” class empowered this pupil, allowing her to feel that she would be successful with rulers! Frustration DENIED!

 

 

 

 

Thought I’d share a few pictures from this wonderful session.  Here’s the sample cloth of what they were taught.

These individuals were dedicated to embracing rulers and allowed themselves to remain open to all that this “Rulers for Rookies” class offered.  Launching this class exceeded my expectation!  Introducing these beginners to rulers filled me with an abundance of joy.  I witness eleven students enter my class with fear, reluctance, and lack of confidence.  These eleven individuals exited their time with me free of all those emotions.  They had now gained a sense of power over rulers, and they happily casted aside the word ROOKIE!  How can I not love what I do when my day ends like that?  Are there anymore Ruler Rookies out there?

I’d love to share how much fun and simple rulers can are to use!

Time to Improvise!

We’ve all had the lovely opportunity of experiencing a moment, a day or maybe a weekend when the unexpected found its way into our quilting reality.

 Ah yes, that moment of “Uh Oh” when for mere moments time stops, and you become acutely aware that something is wrong with the current situation.  During that particular period you inwardly talk yourself off a cliff and realize you would have to improvise somehow in the immediate future.  Are flashbacks running past movie clips in your mind as you relive that less than wonderful occasion?  I have had numerous occasions where improvising played a major factor in the success of my day.

I’m Willing to Share ONE Example

“Divide and Design”, one of my all time favorite classes to teach.  I love introducing my students to this amazing method of designing their quilts.  The facial expression of “By Golly George I Think I’ve Got This” that gradually travels its way across everyone’s face is priceless.  However, you cannot bring smiles, and feelings of success to your class when you neglect to bring the drawing templates that are essential to instructing the class.  Listen folks, we aren’t talking overlooking pencils, we are talking about a major component of the Divide and Design tutorial.  

Judy and I looked at one another and deduced that an immediate trip to the nearest Wal-Mart, or K-Mart was of the essence!  We flew by the seat of our pants and did whatever it took  in order to make this class work.

Let the Lisa Improv Show Commence!

Our speedy jaunt had us purchasing cups, plates, and bowls.  These were transformed into my templates for this particular class, allowing me to illustrate my Divide and Design method.  Above you will see that I grabbed a few items in the studio to show that they too could have also been utilized for teaching that class had I had them readily available.  What started out as a panic attack eventually turned into “I can handle this”.   The class went well, Judy and I survived one, of many, winging it adventures.

A Friendly Tip:  Keep Your “Uh Oh” on the Down Low

  Try to remain calm; easier said than done I know.  However, those around you don’t need to bear witness to your oops.  Heck, depending on what the oops is, no one may even realize you’ve improvised in the slightest way!  There is no reason to advertise your fault, we are all human and I big believer of “it’s not what happens to you, but how you deal with what happens to you”.   At one point in time we all need to improvise in way or another.  Whether it pertains to our business or personal life; every now and then we need to fill in the blanks with words, or items we have forgotten.

If You Must, Fly By the Seat of Your Pants

  Do what you gotta go.  If it requires running to K-Mart,or Wal-Mart then that’s what one must do.  Those of us in the quilting world are very creative people!  Use that gift to your advantage when it comes to improvising.  You will be amazed with the ingenuity your creative juices will produce when push comes to shove.   So improvise, improvise, improvise! You might just surprise yourself and actually love what your spontaneity  brings about!

Have you had to improvise, fly by the seat of your pants or wing it to get through a quilting event?  If so I would love hear about your experience.

It Takes But One Small Ripple

The “Ripple Effect”

I love this concept

Had I ever experienced the “Ripple Effect”?

No I had not, that is, until very recently…

I Wanted to Bring Comfort During a Difficult Time  I know many of you will find the name “Paul Tuyp” sounding familiar.  He was one of my friends, really like a brother,  that recently passed away from cancer, he is greatly missed and will never be forgotten.  Prior to his passing I felt the need to find some way to bring him some comfort during his days of chemotherapy and being home battling that evil disease.  I could not fathom what he was enduring mentally, and physically.  Residing in a different state made visits and conversations challenging, but I wanted to bring a piece of me to his side whenever needed.  I chose to create a quilt for Paul, I yearned for it to be comforting and inspiring.  I emailed friends of his and asked if they were interested in sending me a short message to be incorporated onto Paul’s quilt.  The response was inspiring!

Get It Going  The quilt prior to messages being place into white blocks.  Didn’t realize what a big quilt I had created! Good thing Paul was a large man or I would have been in trouble.

Healthier Days  This photo is of Paul and his daughter.  This is the Paul I will always remember.  He always wore a constant smile and possessed the kindest soul.  Paul was one of those rare people who always made you feel as though you “mattered”  when you were in his presence.  You could be in a room filled with people, but if you were conversing with this magical man, he closed the rest of the world out and those walls held only the two of you.  Isn’t that all we want to achieve in life, making every moment matter? Well, I believe Paul conquered perhaps life’s most important lesson, making moments, and all those around him matter.

 “The Silver Dragons”  Paul and his gang of friends that have been together since preschool!  They were named the Silver Dragons and would eventually each obtain “silver swords”.  So remarkable to have such life long friendships. Watching this group over the years has been awe inspiring.  They would do anything for each other… and I have witnessed this.

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 Comfort Quilt Reveal  I was lucky enough to receive a picture of Paul, family, and close friends as he saw the quilt for the first time.  He loved it! Smiles were shared around the room!

The One Small Ripple I Unknowingly Threw

The quilt provided Paul with a sense of warmth, comfort, encouraging message, and loving thoughts over his last few months.  Yet, I would not know the magnitude of this quilt, and how it had a “rippling effect” until this past weekend during his memorial services.

Witnessing the Rippling Effect   Attending Paul’s memorial services proved extremely difficult and yet profoundly enlightening.  I had tried my best to prepare myself for the sorrow that would consume my being, however, no amount of talking myself into keeping it “totally together” proved successful.  My tears would eventually give way to the emotional gates of loss and remembrance, over a very loved man.  What I had not readied myself for was the effect a piece of fabric had brought to so many different individuals.  The quilt had “rippled” beyond his presence and embraced others.  Paul’s daughter thanked me for the quilt as it will now provide her comfort and a daily reminder of her father.  Those that had emailed me messages to include on the quilt thanked me because it allowed them to share their feelings and thoughts to their dear friend.  Very quickly it became apparent that Paul’s quilt held several meanings.  Its purpose was priceless and its message was diverse.  I’ve never experienced such an outpouring of heartfelt gratitude and shared thoughts regarding a choice I made.  Had it not been for the unfortunate event of Paul’s service, I would never had known that I had created one small ripple. I would have never observed the “Ripple Effect” that transpired from doing one kind thing.

   It saddens me greatly to acknowledge that I have lost such a unique and priceless friend.  But leave it to Paul to depart, leaving me with one huge “moment that mattered”.   Paul made sure I realized how much that quilt “mattered” to others.  Moreover, Paul allowed me to feel and comprehend how much the “Ripple Effect” matters.   I thank you Paul, that gift “mattered” more than you will ever know.

Have you been part of the “Ripple Effect”? Have you been the cause of a “Ripple Effect”?

Templates…It’s All So Overwhelming!

You have your machine, fabric and the essential required to begin creating a beautiful quilt.  Now you want to select a template..Ugh!  Where do you begin?  There are SO many to choose from, and the last thing you want is to feel overwhelmed and frustrated using a template for the first time.  Let me provide a few tips that might just ease the stress of being a newbie with templates a little bit.

 

  Take a Beginner Class!  We all had to take baby steps before learning to run, so don’t head out the template gates expecting to start sprinting.  Check out instructors that offer beginner classes on templates and enroll in one.  Participating in a class where the teacher provides you with rulers.  This is a perfect opportunity to play around with that template and get a sample of whether you want to invest in that product prior to handing over your hard-earned money.  Departing with your cash on a product that you end up disliking is the worse!  Starting your project with confidence and knowledge will make you experience positive.

  But the ruler choices I suggest are the straight edge, circles and arcs.  A straight edge can be implemented on a domestic or longarm machine.  Imagine not having to turn your quilt to  stitch in the ditch!  Circles and arcs are extremely versatile and you can create hundreds if not thousands of designs with them.

  Gripping the Ruler, once you have selected your templates,  you will need to maintain a balanced grip.  A death grip won’t work and neither will a grip that is loosey goosey.  A nice firm grip is what you are looking to achieve; this will take a little bit of practice and patience.  Don’t over think it, and before you realize it you will be designing away!

 Those Shoulders Aren’t Earrings!  I’ve said this umpteen times and I will forever be heard telling everyone that your shoulders weren’t designed to be worn as earrings.  Relaxing your shoulders has a two benefits.  First it will release tension that may be affecting the grip you have on your ruler, and secondly (and most important) the toll it will reduce on your body will be significant! Trust me the chiropractor is constantly reducing the pain I have created due to wearing those damn earrings!

 Bring on Success.   That is  how you should feel after purchasing your template(s).  Don’t feel compelled to invest in a ruler, or rulers, that you aren’t fairly certain will bring you success. There is nothing wrong with taking a couple classes to discover which templates you feel the most comfortable using.  It’s your future design, your time, AND your money.   Success will appear on your design when you begin with a ruler, or rulers,  that are sure to bring enjoyment to your quilting time.

If you are ready to jump in, I have developed a Ruler for Rookie Kit.  This gives you 5 different rulers, handigrip for the back of your templates, a booklet and panel as well as videos on YouTube that you can follow to learn how to use rulers.  (Both domestic and longarm)

 

Do you have any helpful hints to those new quilters looking for their first template?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Classroom Etiquette/ Both Sides of The Fence

I couldn’t believe the response I received on my Quilt Show Etiquette post, so I figured I’d roll with it and end the week with a post on Teacher and Student Classroom Etiquette.  Notice I am being unbiased and am exploring BOTH sides of classroom etiquette.  So let’s take a look shall we?

Etiquette:  It was a toss of the coin which to discuss first, obviously Teacher Etiquette won or lost (however you want to look at it).  The instructor has obligations to his/her students, these individuals paid to be in their presences.  I am a huge believer of giving my pupils what they have signed up for, and giving them their money’s worth.  That being said we, as teachers, need to be mindful of the following:

  Arrive EARLY!  Yes, make sure to arrive with more than enough time to organize and prepare your class for what you will be teaching.  No student wants to enter a class that they have spent money on to wait patiently for the first 30 minutes while the instructor finishes arranging class materials etc.

Be Prepared!  Do you have enough materials for all your students?  Are you ready to discuss the topic you are going to present to the class? There is nothing worse than sitting before a teacher that is unorganized, they obviously haven’t worked through the class agenda or how each aspect of what they are sharing will transition into one another.  In a nutshell it’s a students nightmare! You have lost them at “Ah Good Morning, Give Me Just a Second”.

       Turn Off Your Cell Phone!  There is no need for your phone to beep with a text message, or ring during your lecture or hands on demonstration.  No student should wait while you pause momentarily to glance at the screen of your mobile device to view a text from your husband that inquires “When will you be home?”  That is simply rude!

   Answer Questions from your students.  Again, these lovely people are spending their morning, afternoon or entire day with you.  They are there to learn, and with any education we all learn differently.  Some of us need to hear information more than once, others of us are filled with curiosity and love the word “Why”.  Finally there are a  few that just like to hear themselves talk.  Regardless of the reason, there is no such thing as a stupid question.  If you want your class to gain confidence and understanding let them ask away.

  Provide Breaks Throughout Your Class.  Teachers need to refuel, use the restroom and just take a breather.  Implement a couple breaks throughout your class.  Trust me no one wants to hear you drone on and on for 4- 6 hours (no matter how entertaining you may be) without the chance to step away for a minute or two.  You will find your students more productive and more relaxed if they are given a few minutes throughout their session to sit back and reflect on what is being taught.  By the way this is a great opportunity to reply to that distracting text of when you could be expected home!

Make Learning Fun!  No student has the desire to sit for 4 to 6 hours bored out of their mind, breaks can only provide so much relief.  Nor do they want to pay for boredom.  It’s a good idea to create an environment that allows your class to feel relaxed.   Providing a little humor makes the day for them and you pass by much faster.  So don’t get so wrapped up in being so professional that you appear stiff and uncomfortable, it’s a day of educating others on what you LOVE to do…so show them some love and let loose a little.

Time to Turn the Tables

 Etiquette:  Yes, educators are thrilled that you have chosen to spend your time with them and they look forward to enlightening you. Hopefully you will be exiting their class wearing a smile of satisfaction and eager to register for one of their other classes. However, there are a few things we instructors would like you to keep in mind, and they are:

Don’t be Late!  Please arrive a few minutes early.  It is not fair to the rest of the students to watch the instructor stop her class in order to get a tardy pupil settled for what they missed.  If you want to see several eyes roll, and heavy sighs then show up late and let the “late show” begin.

  Turn Off Your Phone Please.  Your fellow student and teacher do not want to try and talk or listen over a ringing cell phone, no matter how cute your ringtone may sound.  Place it in your bag, or pocket until break time, trust me there is voicemail on mobile devices for a reason.  Besides, don’t you want to get the most out of your class, after all you’ve paid to be sitting in that chair.

   If You Have a Question…Ask!  Rather than sit and chat with the person next to you on what is being taught… speak up. Who is the best person to ask, definitely not the person to your left or right…the teacher! In addition, it is distracting to the teacher, who is talking, to view students talking amongst each other while they are in the process lecturing or demonstrating.  If there is a concept you don’t quite understand you have the right to gain a better insight on what has been shared.  You should never leave a class confused or feeling lost on the topic.  Raise that hand high!

  Please Keep the Sickies at Home.  Sorry, but teachers AND students have NO desire to be exposed to the germs that will invade everyone’s work area by someone hacking with a cough or some other illness that should have kept them at home.  If you insist on attending the class you put yourself at risk for death stares and unkind mumbling from those surrounding you.  And trust me the instructor will not send sympathy smiles your way.

  It’s Okay to get Outside Your Comfort Zone.  The last and most important aspect of student etiquette is encouraging ALL students to step outside their comfort zone! If the instructor has done their job and given you something to giggle about and has urged you to relax then please do so! Trying to educate a group of students that won’t let go and feel free to embrace all that is presented before them makes for a difficult 4-6 hours. You are in a “no-judgement” zone (if you don’t think you are, slip out the door fast) during your time as a student.  Make the most of every moment, this is your chance to soak up all you can on that new technique, or concept. But soak it up with a clear understanding that learning should be fun and positive; especially when you’re stepping outside your comfort zone!

I am sure there are many other tips I could have elaborated on, like please don’t hate the teacher for the temperature of the room (I realize no one likes a classroom that’s 85  degrees); but I thought I’d just share a few.  Do you have a tip to give to either students or teachers?  I’m sure I’ll hear from some of you!

Quilt Show Etiquette

Quilting etiquette, is there is such a thing.  Yes, there most certainly is.  Whether you are vending, or attending, there are do’s and don’t’s to being a part of the quilting show world.  And although some of the “appropriate” behavior should be obvious, you would be amazed how many neglect to engage in the “Quilt Sh0w Etiquette”.

There are few major rules of Quilting Show Etiquette I’d like to share.

#1 Whether you are meandering the quilting venue or in a quilter’s booth, please be mindful that there are other people around you.

Like it, love it, or hate it.  If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it until you are securely locked in your car or hotel room.  It’s so frustrating listening to an individual rip apart a quilter’s project, a piece that has taken them much time and effort to create.  Remember, you never know who is standing right next to you and no one wants to overhear unkind words regarding anyone’s work.

#2 No Touchy

That’s right, unless you own the design it don’t assume it’s okay to feel the fabric,  or pull the quilt towards you in order to obtain a closer view.  That delicious chocolate bar you ate a few minutes ago might have a few tiny specs of sweet treats left on your fingers which will, according to  Murphy’s Law, find its way on that quilter’s prized project!  Or that Starbucks Mocha Latte Grande that you are slowly slurping while viewing the vendor’s quilting, again according to Murphy’s Law, will dribble onto the lightest portion of the prized quilt.  All a big:

Keep in mind that the owner is most likely standing within mental slapping distance!

#3 Conversing with the vendor.   The opportunity to speak with the owner of the booth is exciting. But again, please be mindful of others waiting to talk, or ask the vendor a question.

I love assisting guests with questions whether it’s regarding which ruler to use, insight on which classes to select, or simply exchanging quilting experiences.  That being said, I am very conscientious of other visitors who are taking the time to stop at my booth.  I encourage everyone to meet the designers they love (trust me, we want to meet you too!),  but I kindly suggest that you take note of others standing nearby who also may need a minute or two of the owners time.

What is you’re top Quilting Show Etiquette rule?

Just Say “NO”…Nicely

The word “No”, it is surely one of the shortest words in the dictionary.  BUT  those in the quilting business must acquire the ability to say it confidently and clearly.  I know, we always hear “stay away from negative words”, but when it comes to customer contact, networking, and growing your business it is imperative to understand that it is okay to say “NO”…nicely.

In case some of you out there need some examples of when it’s appropriate (or alleviates your guilt) to share that word, here is a short list.

The Okay to “No” List (according to Lisa)

When asked to use red thread  on the top of the quilt, and white thread in the bobbin.

If you don’t think the color choice is going to work it’s okay to give your opinion.  I would hope customers would appreciate your input and concern for the outcome of their project.  You are only giving a suggestion, and if it helps you sleep better at night for heaven’s sake “Say what you gotta say!”…nicely.

When your customer feels that quilting their king size top should cost $60.00 to complete.

It is ultimately YOUR time, and what does YOUR time mean to you? It’s okay to kindly indicate the price YOU feel is appropriate (that’s if you want to quilt a king size top in the first place).  But if you know that the price and size aren’t to your liking kindly tell your customer no…nicely.

You are asked to give a lecture, very exciting.  The lecture is 5 hours away and they want you to speak for 2 hours, is it really that exciting?

Perhaps it’s considered exciting if you feel that after adding up all your expenses, and time taken to do the lecture you can find some margin of profit that would be beneficial to you.  Again there is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling that the distance just doesn’t meet the criteria that makes it a worthwhile venture.  Decline the offer by saying no…nicely.

Your quilt has caught the eye of a client who asks to purchase you prize-winning quilt for $400.00 dollars.

This should really be an easy “no”.  I realize that it is very flattering when a customer, or fellow quilter, is in awe of what you have designed. It’s especially attractive in regards to a project that’s been highly recognized and given a pretty blue ribbon.  However, the love, and sweat you poured into this amazing piece is way beyond $400. 00 if not priceless.  So give careful consideration when tempted to part with the quilt that has won “Best In Show”; be mindful of the dollars you are going to receive in exchange for the art you have created and probably will never forget.  You needn’t respond like Wonder Woman (although you may want to), but humbly say thank you and no…nicely.

Uttering the word “no” is not easy, but it needs to be communicated.  When I say communicated, I mean spoken “nicely” to that particular individual.  It’s not what you say to those around you, but how you say it that matters.  Done in a polite, respectful manner, the word “no” can be a very beautiful, short, and sweet expression.

Do you have a hard time saying no? Or maybe you can’t even fathom telling someone “no”.  Please share your experience on how you have/haven’t come to terms with that forbidden one syllable word.

Oh Far I’ve Come

 

It feels like just yesterday I planted the tiny seedling to begin my quilting journey.  It is truly surreal to think how far this quilter has come over the past 13 years.  So let’s take a little peek at my first design and catch a glimpse of the “then and now”.

Playing Hookie

Easy peasy piecing on this project.  As I examine the piecing on this quilt it looks so basic compared to that of what I construct on some of my current designs.  My fabric choice was much different back then, obviously much more “earthy” than what I find myself gravitating towards when purchasing material today.

             

Red Velvet

My colors are a little brighter, and I began stepping out of my “structured box” a tad.  Obviously the color choice has lightened up a bit too.  I was  gradually beginning to embrace what I “liked” to do when it came to creating a design.  It’s so hard to let go of the “conservative” and safe way of crafting.

Hula Hibiscus

I’d say that this really shows how I’ve “matured” as a designer.  I’ve definitely stepped into my own quilting arenas I  embraced my individual style. The piecing has become more intricate, and the fabric selection incorporates brighter material.  I am dumbfounded at how much I have transitioned over the years into the quilter I am today.  Never in a million, bizallion, years would I have thought I’d be proud of my work and love my personal style.  That is not to say that I am all grown up.   

Quilting life lesson 450 million:  Growth will be a forever process for me, and I am more than okay with that idea.  I cannot fathom to see where my growth will take me another 10 years from now!

How have you grown since the first steps of your quilting journey? How as your quilting changed?