Friday, March 25, 2011

Good afternoon!!

I made a few more of these 4 inch blocks, today, my second day off in a row! whoohoo! These are such great fun...I will have to be careful not to bore you to tears with nothing but Jewel Box blocks!!

I have about 2 hours a day, on my days off , to piece...today, I used that time to cut up scraps into usable pieces. I have 1.5, 2.5, 3.5 and 5 inch strips and blocks. I had such fun cutting these pieces up and planning uses for them!!



There has been some angst lately in the blog world, about the "dumbing down" of quilting. My take on this is that there are tons of new quilters, who need something a little easier to get started!! And then there are those of us who really enjoy completing a simple pattern after a crazy, complex, and exhausting day at work in the CCU or where ever you work. I have made my share of Mariner's compasses, and Baltimore album blocks, but what gives me great joy is to make a quilt that can be thrown around on the couch, that my family can use, that the poodle can jump on too...and it be OK. To use my scraps and little pieces, to use what I have, to not go and buy hundreds of dollars of fabric for the perfect combination, to not angst over color. There are PLENTY of complex patterns out there to choose from!! And lots of fun simpler ones...I think that judging quilters or anyone else for that matter is just detrimental to what a lot of us bloggers are here for...FUN! A place to show our work, to get encouragement, to enjoy friendships... I love to see really complex, work intensive quilts...and I love to see squares sewn together and tied!! It is the fun, the process for me...it makes me feel like maybe people are judging my quilts, and saying they are too simple...and kind of hurts a little. Please tell me what you think, honestly and frankly...I would love to know your opinion!!! This is not againest (or for) anyone for that matter...just that I have been thinking about it for two days, and really need to get it out...thank you for that, dear quilters!! Maybe I am just too tired...no sleep again, friends...


Have a wonderful day!!

Julie

46 comments:

Rita said...

Julie, I enjoy seeing what you're working on whether it be simple or complex. If I didn't, I wouldn't be a happy follower. I agree, there is a time and place for all types of quilting. I appreciate it all.

Monica said...

I agreed with one or two of the comments made by the author of the post you were talking about. But the way I see it is if you don't like something you see or read on the internet click the little red X in the corner and it'll go away.
Unless there's someone standing there with a gun to your head, no one is making you read it.

I try not to look down on ANYONE for the types of quilt they choose to make. If we all made the same thing, it'd be awfully boring. Nor do I sit in judgement of other people's work. Sometimes I see something that isn't my cup of tea but it doesn't stop me from appreciating the workmanship put into it. We all work at the level we are comfortable with and enjoy.

Regarding your work...I love to see the things you make...to see your color and fabric choices etc. You just keep doing what you enjoy to do and I'll keep following your blog and enjoying it too. And if you let one blogger's snotty little rant stop you from posting any more I'll visit every hospital in the DFW area until I find you to give you an earful about why you need to keep posting...LOL.

P.S. Personally I think that the ranting blogger needs to step away from the computer more often. Just my opinion...LOL.

Elaine said...

I love the bright colors in your quilt.
If I had to do exquisite work I wouldn't be quilting any more because the fun would be gone. I do want to get better at it, but also enjoy it. I love simple quilts(and they help get rid of my stash) but I also love delicate applique.

Kari said...

Thanks for sharing. I love your outlook. The quilt in your header is fantastic! I agree that quilting should be fun. Do what you love and love what you do.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I love your quilts and the scrappyness of them.I have been a follower of your blog for a while and consider your work very interesting otherwise I would'nt keep coming back for the next post...
Sue...

canuckquilter said...

I love seeing what you're working on. If I didn't I wouldn't keep lurking :) That said, whether I like your quilts or not doesn't matter one bit, as long as you enjoy making them and using them, simple or complex.

Amy said...

Julie,
I think there is room in the world for all kinds of quilts! I love to see all of them, even the ones I know that I would not make myself (too complex, too simple). If we can keep making quilts that make ourselves smile, we are doing alright.

Teresa in Music City said...

Julie, one of the things I love about quilting is that it can be as simple or as complicated as each quilter wants or needs it to be! When I first began quilting, I needed someone to teach me how to make half-square triangles. I looked for simple patterns that I could handle and feel good about accomplishing. Simple definitely has it's place in the quilting world, and always will!

Like you, sometimes I still like to work on something simple. It's soothing and the result is often a quilt that makes me feel mellow and content. And I believe some designs - like your Jewel Box - are timeless and beautiful no matter how many years one has been quilting!

You keep on sharing your heart with us because that is why we come to your blog - we enjoy who you are and many of the same things you enjoy! It's YOUR blog and no one is forcing us to follow, right? And now I may just have to go dig out my scraps and start work on a Jewel Box of my own!!!!

sue said...

I feel so bad that someone would leave a negative comment to you. I follow your blog - I'm not a blogger - and you can't imagine how much I look forward to your blog. I find inspiration that keeps me going. I admire you and your work. You seem to always have an upbeat outlook and I love your quilts! My favorite quilts are scrap quilts and I'm not ashamed in the least. Please keep up doing what you're doing!

Maureen said...

I think you said it well. There is a place for both kinds of quilting. Right now (living with 3 men and 3 dogs) I can't imagine working on something that can't be thrown in the wash or that I would be crushed if the puppy chewed it. On the other hand, when my life settles down, I hope I can work on patterns that take more thought and time. BTW, I love your jewel box!

Merilyn said...

Your blocks are coming along nicely, I love them! and the reason I love them is because they are simple and very doable.

In response to your comments about dumbing down and people doing simple quilts (I don't know where you read that?). For me, the whole creating thing is supposed to be fun, we should not all feel the pressure to create award winning quilts, gosh! I didn't think we were in competition with each other!

I'm sure previous generations of quilters did not feel the need to over-impress, they created beauty and warmth as they could afford to and today their quilts are highly valued for what they are, little mistakes, wobbly blocks, uneven points etc.

The blogs I follow are by ordinary women creating little pieces of beauty for themselves and their loved ones, sharing what they know with others. They also have the power to inspire others to take that extra step toward something they might not otherwise attempt. We all work at different competency levels, have different tastes, and don't all have the same disposable incomes.

I'm also sure that most people would not want to follow blogs where they would feel intimidated, most of us would put down our needles and never try again!!! That would be an awful shame!
There is room for everyone to express themselves at whatever level they are, and rest assured there will always be others who will be impressed, inspired and happy to encourage you along the way!

Don't allow others' opinions of you and your work derail your
creativity!!!

Nancy said...

I've read the posts that have addressed the "dumbing down" issue, and I could not agree with you more. Everyone has a purpose behind the things they create, and for me it is to use what I have and to make something useful. Some may call that simplistic, but I call it good sense. I've tried a variety of techniques, but I also avoid others.

I like scrappy and will always like scrappy. In my opinion, quilts are to be used and loved. After all, wasn't that how quilting originated - for warmth and comfort.

Lyn said...

Good Morning Julie, I havenot come across that particular post...but will say....my thoughts....I learnt along time ago with quilting or anything you choose to do......you need to take on board....everyone has different skill levels, from the beginner to the experts......quilts from the simple to the very complex...if someone is struggling.. to help if you can...ie at my Friendship group..a lass had never seen foundation piecing...so I sat and showed her the basics...in turn when I started Dear Jane..someone sat and showed me...that is they way it should be in my eyes...no quilting police and shame on them for not having the grace to be non judgemental....obviously we are all different.......I have followed your blog for probably four years.now....lurked for two and your blogging buddy for two.....from the time you generously helped me with the making of the 1930's quilt....thoroughly enjoy your posts....the inspiration I find in what you are doing...especially the colourways you choose.... in passing Jessie read your post and her thoughts were for you not to worry about one person's negativity...it is the joy that you get out of making a quilt...unless you have gone through the process of making a particular quilt...you should not comment or be judgemental....lastly from me...Julie..please do not take that post to heart......no matter what we choose to do in life...there is always one to upset the apple cart....take care Hugs Lyn

KaHolly said...

I agree with Monica and everyone else who commented today. If you don't like it, don't read it. I am a traditional quilter. I like the process. But I've never thumbed my nose at all the attempts to make it simpler or those who employ them. Regardless of the 'method', the idea is to be creative, to have busy hands, to get a rush from watching a project grow to completion, blah, blah, blah. There's always someone who likes to stir the pot!! By the way, I love the new picture of your quilt and how it's grown! Keep them coming! ~karen

Michele Hester said...

There is something to be learned from every quilt, whether the pattern is "easy" or not.....using scraps takes a lot of work to get the values and colors right.

I suppose if you use a "simple" pattern and stick with a specific fabric line - it might be dumbed down a little. However, it still takes skill to cut, piece, sandwich, quilt and bind.

I think the biggest issue for quilters today is time. It takes time to be creative. The more creativity you use, the more you get....If your time is limited, then kits and other designers "recipes" are your answer - at least you are doing something besides watching television!

Cindy N. said...

I love seeing quilts from all levels of quilting :) There are so many talented people out there from beginner to very experienced. Everyone should be proud to share their work regardless of the level of difficulty!

I love your Jewel Box blocks and quilts! What a great way to work on your stash and end up with an awesome quilt!!

Happy Quilting

Peaceful Piecer said...

It hurt my feelings a little too and I'm sure they don't even read my little blog.I love your blog and your quilts.

Leeanne said...

My gosh it would be a straight world without twistes! That's what I say to my kids, all things fit in this magical world...who really cares!There are better things to 'worry' about, Happy sewing, quilting, stitching to all tastes and abilities.

Amelia said...

Julie,

Thanks for posting your feelings. There are times when I want to do something complex and other times just a scrappy one. When making a scrappy one it gives me a chance to unwind and relax.

I quilt to suit myself...no one else. If a person happens to like what I do and the way I do it wonderful. If not walk the other way...and keep your mouth closed.

Have a great weekend.

Hugs from Oklahoma to one of my very favorite Texans.

Suzy said...

Unless you are putting it in a show, you only need to please you. You are the judge. Do what makes YOU happy. Personally, scrappy quilts are my favorite and in my opinion they lend themselves toward the "simpler" quilt designs. Keep your chin up. I'm a big fan! :o)

Lindah said...

You know, I don't think the issue is so much about "simple" as it is about "style." There have always been simple designs around, even way back in the 1700's. As I page thru the quilting community, it seems like there is an overdose of a current style. Well, that's ok. I've wondered about it, but not said anything. Fad's come and fads go. To each his own. My conflict comes when I enjoy the blogger's posts except for her current style interest. I tend to skip over her post. I'm reluctant to discontinue the feed because then I would miss her. But that's my problem, not hers or yours. I'm just expressing my puzzlement of the moment. This too shall pass. Or maybe I'll pass. Or something. Y'know?

Andrea said...

And so say all of us - the last few days have been very unsettled in blogland over all this. Hopefully it is all over now ( I know certain blog posts have been deleted and apologies given etc ). We should all remember the main reason we quilt - for the sheer pleasure of this wonderful craft. You put it very well Julie - good on you xx

Nancy, Near Philadelphia said...

I've been part of the brouhaha about the dumbing down of quilting. That doesn't mean that I don't appreciate very simple quilts. I've made my share of just beautiful squares. I think that people who don't want to try to expand that repertoire are missing something. But that's just me.

Sandie ~call me crazy said...

Love your little jewels! I think there is plenty of room for all kinds of quilts/quilters and when we find a kindred spirit in blogland its great. :-) Hope you are having a good weekend!

Barb said...

I never heard that dumbing down....I personally do what I enjoy and do it for me...I do enjoy others who do really extensive work and yet I like the simplicity.....I enjoy seeing any kind of work, fabrics, designs, you name it brings total pleasure to me.

Pat said...

I think there is room for all types of quilts (and quilters), too. In today's stressful world, where most young families need two incomes just to cover the basics, I think it's admirable that we still have young people who want to carry on tradition and make quilts.....and I don't care if they take shortcuts or use less-than-quilt-shop-quality fabrics or make only scrappy quilts...and I'm glad some of us "older" (mature??) quilters have given them examples of this in our work. I am glad that quilters are giving themselves permission to be creative. Quilting is an art form and I have always believed that art is personal....so who are any of us to judge the personal work of another? I believe that anyone who crafts tries their best to do something THEY like...and that is all that matters. I've not seen these posts you're referring to, but it sounds like maybe some people need to step out of their glass houses and stop throwing stones. I'm sure they also make things that aren't to the tastes (or standards) of others, but does that make their work and the time they spent on it any less valuable and worthwhile? I think not.....
Funny, but at this stage when I can afford to buy top-of-the-line fabrics, I still prefer the challenge of making something scrappy and feel very satisfied when I succeed. If that's "dumbing down", then I'm proud to be called DUMB!!!

Regina said...

it is all wonderful eye-candy... sometimes to look at and sometimes to file away for future personal attempts. Love how you use scraps - that is inspiring and fun. keep on sharing what makes you happy - and I will be right there reading.

Darlene said...

I will never tire of seeing any of your quilts - no matter how many times you use one particular pattern. :-)

There's been way too much angst in blogland about a variety of things and it makes many of us want to run for the hills. I don't like angst! I blog to share what I do, enjoy what others do and make friends like you. I'm just here for fun. I sew purely for fun and make only what makes me happy.

Robert said...

Love your quilts and love your scrappy selection of fabrics. I hate it when my wife complains that the plaid strips don't run straight or that red does not go with that orange. Who cares - it's my quilt, I'll do it the way I want. If my points float or are cut off, it's mine. And do I care if people think men should not quilt - I also tat and bake and cook, clean house and do laundry, etc. I enjoy it, so I'll do it. Don't ask my opinion of a scrap quilt when it's made from a jelly roll or line of a designers fabric. who cares. Keep on quilting and I'll keep following your blog.

Loris said...

Julie, I love to hear your 'take' on things :-) I felt a little uneasy as you did, reading the very little I did of the 'dumbing down' issue. Thought maybe I should not litter blogland with my small efforts...except the first reason I even started blogging was so that I could enjoy reading all the blogs I found so interesting without being an anonymous lurker. Then of course, I started feeling friendship and connection with other bloggers. I tend to follow what Darlene wrote...I'm a quilter because I just really enjoy seeing all the pretty fabric and really love making things. I love to make things that I will enjoy or that someone else that I love will enjoy. Life is too short to make everything competitive.
Your quilts are so fun to see and really inspire me. Yes, I am partial to plaids and thus remain bias...but there it is. I love seeing your quilts plain or fancy!
I splurged in my schedule this week and started a small wall hanging of a walking rabbit...dressed in plaids, I might add. I will probably not do a very good job at the needle turn applique that I have prepared but will not really care one hoot. It's simply an adorable rabbit and he will hang on my wall :-)
Thank you so much for sharing...and "listening".
Love ya!

ForestJane said...

Fantastic! I love a good jewel box. ;)

I always figure nobody'll care if the kids get popcorn grease on a quilt you didn't take months to sew up - so we need both kinds.

Kathy said...

Bravo Julie-my sentiments exactly. Not all of us have the ability to piece the more complicated quilts. So allow us to try to attain our mountain top without the drama!

Karen en Marc said...

I LOVE YOUR QUILTS. They give me so much ideas, what to do with my scraps. I think of myself as a new quilter (still), I love simple quilts for my kids to play with, to lay down with it when sick. I'm starting with te DJ, because I love it. Quilting is about showing love, and that's always beautiful.

country mouse said...

I have to say I didn't even realize there was a "dumbing down" thing going on, but also have to say I think that attitudes like that are what made me a bit disenfranchised about the whole on-line quilting world. That said, now that my personal life is getting better day by day, and I am getting back to my quilting (and blogging and on-line involvement), I am very much in agreement with you. Everyone has to start somewhere, I don't think many start out with Baltimore Album quilts or Mariner's Compass quilts. Everyone learns the basics first, and some aren't ever worried about progressing to the insanely difficult. I like making all kinds of quilts. Simple and complex, and enjoy every single one of them, and isn't that the entire point of our craft? To make something you love? No matter what someone thinks of what you've done If you are happy with it, that is what matters. So to you and all the other quilters out there, continue to enjoy your quilts from first idea to finished product. They are from your heart and they are beautiful!!!

loulee said...

We should each get out of it what we need. I don't want the quilt police looking over my shoulder telling me what I can and can't do in my hobby.

Carol said...

Very well said Julie...life is too darn stressful to make everything in it a competition. I do what I enjoy...and that's what I'm going to continue to do. I'm very happy in my "world" as my husband always says.

Quilter Kathy said...

Love the photos of your scrap prep... makes me want to get cutting some scraps too. I love that step in quilting!
Haven't heard anything about the blog world angst, but I only regularly read a few of my favorite blogs that make me feel happy.
Quilting is a fabulous hobby and I think everyone should make the kinds of quilts that they enjoy.
Life is hard enough without quilting (or blogging) adding to that stress!

Heartsdesire said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anne Simonot said...

Julie, love your quilts and your stories about work as well! And BTW, your quilts are not "simple"! As Lindah said, the fuss, I think, is more about "style" versus difficulty. Like her, I see many many bloggers making quilts in that "style", and they do get a little old after a while! Like you, I love scrap quilts and I tend to be more of a traditional quilter; I love to see the way a pattern can be influenced and totally different depending on colour and value choices.

drquilter said...

I love all quilts no matter what they are. Personally, I find myself being drawn to scrap quilts these days. I think with the price of fabric going up, up, up and salaries not moving anywhere, we're going to see more scrap quilts as people start digging through their stashes rather than buying for each new project.

I don't care if it's a difficult Mariner's Compass or a simple Yellow Brick Road, as far as I'm concerned, it's a celebration of an art form that we all enjoy. I completely agree with you - some days I'm ready to take on the difficult project and other days I just want to sew fabric together and create something. No matter which end of the spectrum we choose, it's all sewing, it's all creating and it helps make us very unique and a part of who we are.

Loved reading your thoughts on this - I'm in violent agreement! :o)

Nicky said...

Missed this whole dumbing down debate - thank goodness! I thought this blogging thing was about being supportive as so many of the above have been, getting inspiration and sharing our creativity. I love simple quilts as they give you the chance to really focus on colours, pattern and relaxation after all that's why I do it!

Nicky

Deanna said...

Surely the world of quilting is big enough for all of us. Sometimes people seem to value speed over quality, and I am not sure that is any good. But, easy over impossible is really important, or no quilts at all would ever be made.

And, I definitely agree with you about scraps.

Helen in the UK said...

I'm glad I haven't been exposed to any of the angst you mentioned - life is too short!
I quilt for my own enjoyment. I like to work at whatever pattern takes my fancy at that time, finish it to completion and often give the finished quilt away.
Each to his/her own ... this is our hobby so surely we want to work on whatever enthuses us whether that is complex or easy :)

waquilter said...

Julie, I LOVE seeing your wonderful, scrappy quilts and am always so inspired and uplifted by your posts. Thankfully, there is room for all kinds of quilters, and we just need to make what makes us feel good!
Linda

Rose Marie said...

I have enjoyed seeing all of your quilts .... complex or simple! You know that mine are quite complex at times; but I enjoy doing simple quilts too. We have to make what our hearts tell us to do.

Diane said...

Your quilts inspire me, that's why I keep coming back!