Stitching Times serves up stories, examples and tutorials about needlework related crafts, especially quilting and crochet. Almost all of the projects shown have been designed by Kay Stephenson

Sunday, July 14, 2013

It's Not You; It's Me

I was reading some of my favorite blogs this morning and feeling a bit guilty that I haven't been keeping up with this one. Then I stumbled across two posts. The first is by Melody Miller of Ruby Star Rising. She wrote about soul searching and deciding to give up her fabric line at Kokka to focus on shaping the life she wants to live.

The next post that popped up in the list was one by Deborah Moebes at Whipstitch. After reading her post entitled "Run Your Own Race", I started thinking about why I felt guilty, what I have been doing for the last couple of months while I wasn't writing and posting, and finally what I really want my life to look like.

One thing I have learned from listening to other fiber artists is that you can't make a living just as a fabric designer, or by publishing a book of designs, or making and selling quilts, or by teaching quilting classes, or.... To make even a subsistence living, you have to do all of the above. Honestly, as a former marketing exec with 20+ years of experience, I suspected that before it was confirmed by those who have gone before me.

Would it be fun to be the published author of a book of quilt patterns? Sure. But, do I want to travel around the country teaching others to quilt, and to be obligated to attend Quilt Market each year, along with a dozen other quilty trade shows and exhibits to hawk a fabric line I've designed? Not really. Do I feel compelled to share every project from concept to completion with an ever increasing group of followers on my blog? Well such a compulsion would make me a bit of a egotist, wouldn't it?

For me the real joy of my art is the time spent in the studio designing and making. I love to share these things I've made with friends and family. And, of course, many of you have become my friends. However, much like that favorite girlfriend you hung with in high school but seldom see now that you both have moved away from hometown, I'm comfortable sharing with you on a less frequent schedule. Like that girlfriend, I can read a post from one of my favorite bloggers, and even though I might have missed what has happened in her crafty world for the a few weeks or even months, I have enough history to "get" what she is saying.

I hope you feel the same way about this blog, because it isn't that I haven't been doing anything worth writing about. It's just that I've been totally engaged with the people and projects that are right here in the middle of my Atlanta life. Sorry that I haven't found time to catch you up, but it's sometimes that way with distant friends, and I've decided not to feel guilty about it.

With that said, what have I been doing since the last real post back in April? Here is the update...
I've made more blocks for the Craftsy Block of the Month 2013
The Fan Block in April
A whole bunch of Strippy Spools in May
A LeMoyne Star for June
And to replace the upcoming flower basket which I'm not in love with, I made this New York Beauty Circle of Geese. The awesome design is by Better Off Thread, and you can find the pattern on here.
Over at Sugar Block Club I continued with my neutrals to make May - Signed, Sealed, Delivered, June - Home Sweet Home, and April - Sunny Days blocks.
I've been practicing my machine quilting, but it still looks a bit like a dog's breakfast 
I have to admit the Grabaroos and Superior Slider have made a tremendous difference, but I'm still haven't tackled the stack of full size quilts. I especially want to do a good job of adding texture and interest to all the negative space in the larkspur quilt, so I'm trying to be patient. 
What else? Well this pile of parts is going to become a treat basket for our dog. That is if I can ever figure out the design. The original idea turned out too floppy. It would be fine when filled, but otherwise the sides fall over. I've now invested in some steel "boning" which I hope to use to make the whole thing stand up straight. We shall see. 
And even though I'm not really a purple person, for some mysterious reason I ordered a pile of Riley Blake fabrics in assorted shades. Now I'm noodling with a whole host of blocks using more geese. These are pinwheels.
And a snowflake. 
This was an experiment is drawing my own paper piecing pattern. I obviously need to go back to the drawing board because the rays don't match up the way they should.
To include with the geese theme, I think it would need to look more like this anyway. 

In addition to all this crafty stuff, I'm redoing one of our bathrooms. Here's the blah before...
and here is the scary in-process
This week I have a guy helping with sheetrock and a little carpentry, then I'm going after the tile. Keep you posted... or not :-)


  1. I totally get the being busy at life and projects and 'asides' ... and it really doesn't mean that the blog or the friends or the other routines have lost their importance ... they're just on the side track for a bit! That's life! XO!

    PS I'm lovin' the Strippy Spools and cringing at that Circle of Geese! Yikes!

  2. Kay, thanks for leaving a comment on my blog. Unfortunately, your settings are as a "no reply" blogger so I was not able to answer your question regarding the State blocks - They are 6" blocks, some of which came from Farmer's Wife book and others drafted from 5500 Quilt Designs.