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A Matter of Perspective and Experience

Every once in a while Tracy Mooney will post a question on the big social media site asking questions for whatever publication she’s working on. Recently she asked about sewing on the go, and I got to respond with…head on over to The Quilting Company to see, and while you’re at it give the podcast a listen.

Then this morning I learned that Kim Niedzwicki is on the American Patchwork and Quilting Podcast. Sew cool. Kim spoke with Jessie Ziegler for a long time, which means there’s some seriously great content here.

The other day while at the Quilt Bug celebrating Ann Creviston’s first anniversary as the owner, I spoke about batik fabric, and how to stitch with them. During the how to stitch with them part of the day one of the attendees said something profound, “you can have eight teachers giving advice for how to do this technique, and each one of them is right.” We each get to figure out techniques and products work best for us. As we talked about fabric, piecing and quilting I remembered something I teach about cotton and had an epiphany about polyester thread. Just like when it’s humid and cotton holds onto moisture; when the air is dryer polyester is slicker. So one of the things I teach about using polyester in the bobbin might not work in dryer climes. Mind Blown!

I can do anything with an 18” ruler

I teach what I know, and what I do as a piecer, and quilter. I teach color based on what I know and do and it isn’t the same thing that everyone else knows and does. While I have a love of good technique and follow it when I’m piecing (usually), when it comes to the decorative stitching there are rules, and I use them to help me do that which I want to do under the needle and thread. I know these rules well enough that they seem intuitive. And yet there are some days like yesterday, where I had to walk away from my sewing machine because what I wanted to do wasn’t working for me at all. Today it’ll work, just you watch.

It Depends

Sometimes “it depends” is the best rule to follow.
Am I going to take this stitching out because it’s not quite the right color, and it’s a bit wonky? It depends.
Is this quilt for show? Well then, yes, the seam ripper and I will have a hot date.
Is this quilt for home use? Eh, if the tensions good I’ll leave it alone; if the tension isn’t so good the seam ripper and I will spend some quality time together.
Is this quilt a learning/practice piece? Well then I’m leaving it in there.

There’s one other consideration here: will it do more damage than good? Can I possibly quilt over it? Well, if the answer is yes then I’ll give thought to other options, that include posting on social media sites asking for possible solutions. When one resonates with me I’ll go with that. Here is where I’m relying on the experience of others rather than my own.

Tomorrow morning I’m going to share some quilting experience with The Village Squares Quilters. This is one of my home guilds and I’m excited to have this time with them.

Oh, I have to tell you something. I’ve seen the cover for my book. I can’t share it until January. But let me tell you, I’m excited. I’m really excited. This is the second tangible component to writing, a big drink of water in this long process. One that at times had me completely freaked out, overwhelmed, questioning everything about who I am and what I’m doing.

how many days til January?

Happy Quilting,


4 thoughts on “A Matter of Perspective and Experience”

  1. terryknott – I enjoy the process of making a quilt from start to finish. It is fun to use a variety of fabric types from batik to Civil War reproductions--although not in the same project! I ALWAYS have more projects started than I finish these days and I'm trying to turn those works in progress into finished quilts.
    terryknott says:

    It depends. . .that response is so relevant in a quilting project! My sweetie would report that my seam ripper and I are joined at the hip; but, then he doesn’t see what I leave when I think about “it depends!” I’m so EXCITED along with you regarding your book. . .ahhh the anticipation!!!!

  2. Does “it depends” include using adult diapers because you’re so excited (and rightly so) about YOUR cover that you almost pee your pants? Congratulations, dear friend!

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