Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Quilt Police

So how many of you are scared the quilt police are going to come and get you? Call you out for some quilting infraction? Point out your 'mistakes'? Or haul you off and throw you in some jail where you are fed three square meals a day that you don't have to cook? (now that does not sound so bad!)

Well people, let me tell you something......there are no quilt police, so alas, you and I are both cooking our three square meals today.

Of course there are the self appointed quilt poice. You know the type...."Gee look Mabel....her seams don't match. and looky here, she has a pucker where she tried quilting this herself. And gosh those colors, what was she thinking? tsk tsk"
Recently we had an incident where someone dissected a quilt Jeanne and I designed, literally picked it apart - right down to the name! I'm not sure who appointed her head of the quilting police, but there she was, letting us know what an abysmal job we had done with that particular design. At first we were offended, but quickly recovered and were able to laugh about it. I mean really, we are not going to be to everyones' taste....THAT is why there are so many styles of quilt shops, so may different fabrics and patterns out there!

Quilting is our hobby. It's what we, as women (and men) do for pleasure. And unless you are into perfection, or strictly making quilts to be entered in elaborately judged competitions, no one has any right to judge your work. So don't let them. You finished a quilt. Finished is sometimes better then perfect. A finished quilt will be used, a quilt top you never finished because you were frustrated that your seams weren't 'perfect' by someone else's standard of perfect...well...that's a sad waste of money isn't it?

Are you the type of person who says...."oh don't look too close" or "I really messed up here, look, right here...look at my mistake....."
Todays quilter has no business demeaning herself. Why do that? That's just inviting the quilting police into your life! Don't let them in!! You rock, you made a quilt! Yay you!! Celebrate that!! 

I often hear people say to me, "golly, I'm not nearly as good a quilter as you are"Are you freaking kidding me??? I'm a sloppy quilter and I would be the first person to admit it!! (and Jeanne right behind me!) I'm into speed and very often my seams don't align perfectly, I have threads everywhere, and sometimes.....my quilts don't lay flat. There. I said it. Out loud. And I'm still here. No one has hauled me off. (although those meals are sounding better and better!) So just because i own a quilt store and have written a book or two, you think I'm a fabulous quilter? HA! I just don't point out my mistakes....cause truly.....if you don't point them out....people won't notice.

Stretched a border to make it fit? Yes I have! And I'm still here!
Left a seam that didn't line up even though I could have MADE it line up by ripping and resewing? Yes I have! Still here!!!
Used a thread that didn't match....oh yes i sure did!
Got a pucker in the back of a quilt I quilted myself...you bet I have.
Didn't read the instructions, just looked at the pictures? Why yes, yes, I've done that!
Wavered in my 1/4 seam? I'm the queen of that!
Have my borders waved - your darn right they have!

And I'm still here. The quilt police haven't come for me yet.
Nor will they, cause I will kick their ass!
Now about those meals though........



  1. Hey I want those three meals myself. As for quilt police lady - whoa boy she needs a life.

    1. You are telling me she needs a life! wow!

  2. Too funny, Shelley!! We are two peas in a pod! I am into speed also and really have to start working on my 'perfection'.....but its so hard!!

  3. Soo Right!! Same with all needlearts, once we release our fear of the police..and inhibitions...creativity and productity flows. Take my knitting - it is flawed and that is a of great comfort to me because now you know is is handmade with love.
    Want to inspect my knitting?! Check my cast on method and sewing in ends...Bring it on!

    1. Exactly! Hand made with love!!
      The police obviously are quite perfect themselves.....lol!

  4. Thanks Shelley! I call all my quilts 'primitive art', so puckers, waivers and such are expected! ;) I agree 100% with you! A FINISH is so much better than an unfinished top! I have heard from lots of self appointed quilt police, and really don't care! I quilt for myself! It makes me happy and when I gift them, they make others happy that I took the time to create something for them...

    Yay! Shelley (and Jeanne), you guys are my heros! Keep up the wonderful work!

    1. Awwwww thank you!
      I'm glad you enjoyed my blog today!

  5. My sentiments exactly. If some one is looking for perfection in a homemade quilt then they need to get one made in factory by a robot somewhere. Mine are always filled little hiccups here and there, but it is mine uniquely made with love!

  6. Amen! One of my favourite stories is from years ago when I went to my first quilt show. I was standing admiring a grouping of quilts. Two ladies in front of me were verbally ripping these quilts to shreds. From workmanship to fabric choices. From beside me another woman leaned in and said "these are the children's entries"! Ha! Ha! Ha!
    So learn to love what you see as it is and keep your opinions to yourself!

  7. Thank you for this post. It came at just the right time! And I can always use the reminder to not point out my own mistakes!

  8. we are always our own worst critics!! Upon showing my husband one of my finished quilts and pointing out all of my mistakes to him, he said "each of your quilts is a work of art, and no art is perfect" I thinks of that often while I quilt!!

  9. I would like to use this in the quilt guild newsletter. I will give you credit. Is that ok? Beverly beverlymartine@gmail.com