Yesterday Facebook did one of those memory post suggestions. Where the FB-powers-that-be pull up something from years ago and suggest you re-post it? It's like a hardsell for Throwback Thursday. Here is the image that was pulled out of the archives for me:
I believe the caption read, " Matching quilts - the benefits of buying twice as much fabric as you ACTUALLY need to make one quilt."
I added a comment about making these quilts near the beginning of my quilting addiction and hit the post button. But seeing these two quilts again got me thinking about what I was like as a baby quilter, 3 years ago.
To be brief, I was brave. Incredibly brave. About the same time I started quilting, my husband had read a book about experts. The author claimed that prodigies didn't really exist. Anyone who had truly mastered a skill did so only after about 10,000 hours of practice.
When I thought about that in relation to my new quilting hobby I decided that I could either become discouraged about the long road to mastery ahead of me or I could allow that fact to set me free from expectation and pressure. In other words, if I really couldn't become a master until I had put in 10,000 hours, why worry too much about the first 9,999 hours? I could just have fun!
And so I did. These two quilts are a good example. I made one of these in June of 2012, probably the fourth or fifth quilt I made. I purchased a pdf pattern online for the first time and then decided to modify it to make it bigger. (I've wracked my brain to try and remember who designed the original pattern. I've had a hard drive crash since then and lost my file of quilt patterns. If anyone recognizes the pattern please speak up so I can give credit.)
It was the modifying part that lead to buying too much fabric. Which lead to me convincing my little sister to make a matching one when she came to visit me. We have boys nearly the same age and thought it would be fun for them to have matching quilts.
Here are the backs. My nephew's is on the left and my son's is on the right.
I was still new to photographing quilts as well so I didn't get any great shots of the quilting we both did. But I tried a different pattern in each colored section, some with a walking foot and some free motion. And then I convinced my sister, who doesn't sew at all, that she could do the same thing. See what I mean about brave? Not only would I tackle modifying a quilt pattern (albeit a simple one) and then quilt it myself but I would teach someone else to do it as well. That's gutsy, huh?
As a baby quilter, every project I finished gave me a great sense of accomplishment. My thought was always, "Wow! Look what I just did!" rather than, "Gee, I hope this is good enough." Which brings me to today. Now that I've been in this field a few years and logged a few more of those 10,000 hours. Now that I'm blogging and Instagramming and too often wondering if I measure up, if I have anything valuable to offer, if I'm a good enough quilter. I feel pressure to be be good at this. To be admire-able and admired.
I don't like that feeling. I'm finding it all too easy to slip from the joy of sharing your work other people who share your interests into the pressure to produce excellence on a regular basis.
So it was good to see these quilts again. And these boys: