02 June, 2009

"Let's Talk" Tuesday...

We had an inspirational speaker at our Guild meeting last evening. Among other things, she threw out this question:

"What do my quilts say about me?"

I've pondered this all day, hence the delay in posting my customary "Let's Talk Tuesday" topic earlier this morning. I needed time to think about my own answer to this question. I know what I would like for my quilts to say about me, I'd like for them to communicate creativity and originality; I'd like for them to speak of my faith. I'm not sure that they do that and I have tried to figure out what the stumbling block to these accomplishments might be. My quilts do reveal my fondness for the color red and my ongoing love affair with novelty fabrics, they may also divulge a penchant for scrappy creations, the more fabric the better! I also know what I don't want my quilts to say about me: "she never finished anything, she sewed cookie-cutter quilts, she never strayed from the pattern and found her own voice". That's worth thinking about, it changes the focus a bit and gives me more freedom to be me, what a purely comfortable (and scary at the same time) revelation! What do your quilts say about you, or better yet, what would you like for them to say?
...and sew, let's talk...
Life is Good!


16 comments:

Salem Stitcher said...

I guess it depends on how I look at my quilts. On one hand, they are saying I am diverse (or maybe a less flattering word). I like to make up my own thing and I like to follow the leader. I am traditional but every now and then I will surprise you with something that's a little "out there".

On the other hand, my quilts may be saying "We're slowly taking over the house and soon everyone's going to have to sleep in the car".

quiltkeemosabe said...

I've been thinking about this queston all day too and I'm still formulating an answer. I do know that looking back at the quilts I have made, the ones I love the best are the ones where I really tackled something I thought I couldn't do, or really learned something in the process. I dont' know if other people would see that or not, but I do think I need to do more of that---going out on the limb.
But what do they say to other people???? I"m not sure. Maybe I should think about what I would want to say.......maybe I'm speechless.....

quiltmom said...

What an interesting question Debbie-
I think that my quilts say that I love color and that I put my own stamp on everything that I make. I rarely make a quilt the way the pattern says- one way might be that I change the borders. I usually make quilts from my stash so they are not the cookie cutter variety. I rarely make a quilt from a kit and I would change one or two of the fabrics to make it my own if I did. My quilts say that I love usuable quilts that can be used to wrap someone with a big hug- for I make mostly bed quilts.
I love geometric patterns- convergence designs, star patterns, and log cabin quilts. I do very few template patterns and almost no applique. As I have become more confident in my color choices I have made quilts that are richer in color.

I hope that they say that the quilts were made with love and hope. Hope that they will be enjoyed and provide warmth for all who come in contact with them.

As for the number of quilts- can you ever have too many quilts?

Regards,
Anna

*karendianne. said...

"You know, that one quilt she really loved ~ her best work ~ she gave that one away."

--"She loves red that's obvious. There's a whole stack of red. Didn't she ever think to give away anything red?" "She's traditional, isn't she?"

--"Yes she is."

"Do you see anything here the least bit edgy?"

--"Not much. A little."

"I notice how she's distrupted if things aren't balanced out. I notice she likes things well done. And she obviously enjoys the process."

--"Yes although a little perfectionism holds her back."

The Calico Cat said...

My quilts without a doubt say, "She must like cats."

Shasta said...

I've often thought and worried about that, as I heard the question early in my quilting career. I am afraid that one day someone is going to find just one of my quilts - of course it will be the dorkiest and worst made one of the whole bunch - and make all sorts of assumptions about me, and they will undoubtedly be incorrect, because you have to look at all of the quilts to see the diversity and variety.

Karen Newman Fridy said...

Hmmm, I'm not really sure what they say to other people. I know what my intent in them is, but I leave the interpretation to the viewer, good or bad. I do remember one conversation that went something like this:

"...and those people (art quilters) who sew all kinds of stuff together and call it a quilt just becasure it has three layers..."

"well, a bologna sandwich has three layers...doesn't make it a quilt..."

OK, I guess you had to be there, but it was absolutely hysterical, and I fully intend to make a 3D bologna sandwich quilt...

At the end of the day I suppose some people would look at my quilts and wonder what on earth??

:-)

Truth is, there's a lot of hidden meaning and symbolism in mine for those who have eyes to see

di said...

I read this question yesterday and have been thinking about it - not an easy question to answer! Looking around the house I realize most of the quilts are one's that I have designed. So, why do I have shelves of books and patterns? Because they inspire and encourage! I also like clear colors and follow the "why use 4 when 40 will do" policy. When I do finally make that 2 color quilt I have in my heart - it will be with lots of reds and whites!

I find great joy in quilting, working with color and design. Mostly I love seeing my family wrapped up and enjoying something I made!

Quiltdivajulie said...

Marvelous question!

Each of my quilts is a complete composition ~ I care that the back and the binding are integral parts of the overall effect (never 'just because i have enough on hand' for a back)...

Like me, my quilts are diverse and eclectic ~ rarely careless, never sloppy, sometimes loosely based on a pattern but always with my own interpretation, alternately cozy or edgy, subdued or loud, random or calculated . . .

I would love nothing more than to take all of my quilts outdoors (even some that were given away, if they could be loaned back) and hang them in a tree-filled summertime garden setting. . . I'd stand quietly and listen as people walked amongst the colors ~ then I'd take 100s of photos ~ what a joyous experience that would be.

Zlaty said...

I want my quilts to show my love of color and pattern. I try to make one of kind quilts.

Zlaty :)

leigh anna said...

it must have been really hard for you to make our wedding quilt....no novelty fabrics....or red
:( sorry for that

however....
i sure do love the yellow, green, and brown....
i wonder why i love those three colors together so much?!?!

well, i guess we will never know?!?! :)

A Prairie Home said...

I love traditional quilts and I like making story quilts and quilts that make a statement. I like to make up my own thing & yet I'm also inspired by antique quilts. There are several I want to duplicate -- the Jane Austen coverlet, the Lucy Boston quilt and Harriet Dishong's quilt. On the other hand there are all the ideas I have for original quilts like my Psalm 8 quilt, Hey Diddle Diddle and an ever growing list of quilts of sayings. Maybe that shows I just can't make up mind? [It shows I have too many ideas and not enough time to create them all!]

Actually, I just love color & creating with fabric. I guess I would like my quilts to say that I'm a folk artist whose medium is fabric. Maybe in another 10 or 15 years we'll see just what my quilts DO say.

~Erin

Libby said...

I'd say that my quilts say I'm on a journey. My first quilts were all about my learning how to use a sewing machine. As time moves on, you can follow along as I learned about fabric - designs, patterns and colors. Also being able to follow a pattern to finish with a quilt that looks like the picture. More recent quilts show that I'm definitely developing my own style - how I adapt a pattern to fit my personal taste or that of a recipient.
While I surely don't make 'Art' quilts, I think I can see that I might have a bit of artist in me. So surprising for the girl who cannot draw a straight line with a ruler *s*

Nan said...

I am sitting here thinking about this question, and I'm having a hard time giving a definitive answer. I love quilting - it is like giving away a piece of my heart, no matter how big or small the project might be. I very seldom keep the things I make, as I love to make and give things to friends and family. I like my quilts to reflect my joy of life and quilting, and I try to make things that reflect the personality of the one I'm giving it to. I think I want my quilts to say I'm not stuck in a rut, even though I feel like I am on occasion. This is an excellent question, and one I definitely had to contemplate.

Michelle said...

I would have to say that Libby is a girl after my own heart. My quilt journey has been similar. I have just gotten EQ6 and I am eager to branch out into my own patterns and see what I will become. I am looking forward to for when there comes the time for me to have more time for complicated patterns or perhaps I will find simplicity is my style. I love the journey and see no end in sight. Quilting is a part of me.

Rhonda said...

What an interesting question! I've never thought of it.... will have to get back to you on this.

hmmm... what DO people said about my quilt???......