Questioning

wygilia several flowersWhen my mother-in-love Joy had her home in South Jersey, rather than grass, she had stones surrounding her home. This meant that the blower and occasionally weeding, were important at various times of the year. Every now and again she would plant things like rhododendrons and dogwoods. My sweetie and I would go help with whatever when we were there including blowing pine needles into the small patch of trees or pulling weeds left behind by the generous birds, dropping things here and there. So, this one time I pulled the dogwood stick she just planted. Good grief I felt ridiculous later. Thankfully I left the errant “weed” right where I pulled it, it was replanted and survived. A couple of years later we moved it to our current home and if I’m right it lives in our front yard.

purple flowerMy gut says that 2016 is going to be a defining year in the quilting industry. I’ll tell you that it’s fascinating to watch. I’ll also tell you that this is, like weeding the front garden, going to be good for our industry for a long time to come.

This week in the quilt world has been potentially unsettling. We’ve learned that  Quilter’s Newsletter will finish its publication with the October issue; American Quilter’s Society will no longer publishing books; IMQA, the professional association is dissolving, and closing the MQS show. Several big name quilters have announced their retirement this year, including and Gwen Marston and Judy Woodworth. There are quilt shops that are closing for a multitude of reasons including financial trouble, retirement, or quilt fatigue. Some weeks being in this industry is just simply challenging.

In all honesty it makes me think, a lot. This thinking then leads to questions. The questions lead to more questions. The questions this afternoon led to a conversation with Jake wherein I rapid fired questions at her that were vying for attention in my brain. So there will be more thinking, more questioning, more talking, more.

Speaking of thinking and talking – Jake Finch, Publisher of Generation Q Magazine, has written two Editorial pieces discussing some important factors of our q-niverse
Notions: Quilt Magazines Relevant or Not
and
Notions: What the Heck is Happening in our Q-niverse

As I try to think of a way to wrap this up, bring it in, pull these thoughts together the rapid fire thoughts are running amok in my head. Most of all I want to hear your thoughts here or on the GenQ blog. What do you see? What would you like to see? What are the choices you’re making in your q-niverse? What kinds of things do you want to see happening? What is your quilting happy place? Do you want to teach, write pattern, write books? Are you reading quilting books? magazines?

I’m looking forward to the rest of 2016, come what may.

Happy Quilting!

Teri

One thought on “Questioning

  1. I see two big things (or maybe it’s actually one big thing), and that’s age or ages, as in the age of the quilting population. I see two large factions; us older gals (in age, not spirit) that have been quilting for many years and typically have more in disposable income to spend on our quilting. That affords us the ability to travel to shows and classes, and spend money on more fabric and tools. The younger group, most of which seem to claim the modern aesthetic as their own, have less disposable income and want to buy everything on sale (hey, I remember what it was like) and, to some extent, think they’re reinventing the wheel. I’m not saying any of this as a criticism; it’s what I see.

    While typing this I also thought of another BIG factor: time. I’m a recovering quilt shop owner and our biggest competitor was time, not any other quilt shop. For whatever the reasons, people seem to have less time to spend on hobbies, or maybe they’re just not willing to look up from their electronic device long enough to take a stitch?

    One more thing: I see fabric manufacturers juggling all the many designs and add to that the decision to cater to which of the age or aesthetic groups. Let’s just say I’m glad I no longer have to worry about what fabrics to carry in the shop. I love a lot of what I see from all angles.

    Personally, I have reached a point in my quilting life where I want to do my own thing, yet finish up the 60+ UFOs and WIPs to give away to loved ones and deplete my fabric stash before I die. I went to the NQA show last year because it was held in my hometown; the quilts were stunning. I felt attendance was sparse and within 2 weeks of joining the association, I got the swan song from it. I don’t belong to a guild, but I do have two small groups that regularly meet. I haven’t been to any of the other big shows since 2010, but will attend the show in Houston this year. I don’t know what the big thing will be, but look forward to seeing it and determining if I have a use for it.

    Oh, and another thing! The latest thing with online classes may have a two-fold effect–the teachers might rather be in one place filming their episodes with no craziness in the classroom, and students may want to watch those classes in their pajamas.

    Whatever happens, I’m hoping this is all cyclical and we’ll see another surge in a few years. I was heartbroken when I heard the news about Quilter’s Newsletter, but I should also state that I haven’t subscribed to it in several years. Again, time (and space).

    Sorry for the stream of consciousness…I enjoy your blog!

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