Taking the rough with the smooth

I was having a bit of a crap day when I got my quilt back from the show, so when I got the judges comments back that put me in an even worse mood! Still I think I can share these with you now and have learned from them.

The first one says, “Good colouring of dogs vs blanket they’re lying on. Pay attention to hanging.”

The second says, “The dogs have real character, an unusual choice of subject”.

However I got quite annoyed at myself, I hadn’t squared up the sides very well so it sort of hung funny which I did notice at the show and both judges had ticked the “needs attention” box. They were right about this and it is something I struggle with, along with binding. Still I am new to patchwork and it was my first ever pictorial quilt AND these are all skills that can be learned, it’s not like I was marked down in design which is much harder to get your brain trained to understand. So that’s good.

The temptation to act like a Pink tribute act (X Factor reference) comes though when judge 1 criticises piecing accuracy and quilting. I mean, how can piecing be off in a quilt made from all different pieces? There’s no points to be cut off, or frayed edges or loose seams! So I could have done with a bit more explanation. As for the quilting thing, well it’s supposed to RESEMBLE HAIR- IT’S THREAD PAINTING! Tsk. I’m going to keep quilting my animals this way because I like it, and no pensioner that’s had a row in the car with his wife on the way over about who should have put the bin out is going to stop me from continuing….

…unless they’re on about the stitch length variation then I’m probably guilty. I did swap sewing machines halfway through after all!

I’m not going to be put off showing again by any means. I am going to get at least ONE excellent ticked next time I swear! And no “Needs Attention”s! At least I know what to work on 😉 I am slightly embarrassed that I put a £550 price on it at the show now, but I wouldn’t have wanted it to go for any less, it was worth that much for me to keep it. I never did see a guide book so I’m hoping it wasn’t printed in MASSIVE numbers to further shame me. Let me know if you have a book and put my mind at rest please 🙂

I like it so it lives above my bed now 🙂



  1. Posted August 30, 2012 at 9:50 am | Permalink | Reply

    Oh those damn quilt police … don’t worry, honestly not worth it! I think they take perverse grumpy old lady pleasure in nitpicking to the nth … and a lot of the time they simply don’t understand what you’re trying to do! That said, they do have hawk eyes for the little niggles that we KNOW we’ve cocked up! Makes it worse! LOL! Keep on quilting lady!

  2. Posted August 30, 2012 at 10:07 am | Permalink | Reply

    Too right, i saw it at the festival and thought it was fantastic! It had texture and depth, and well done to you for being brave enough to enter the comp. And you’re quite right, so the quilt police got picky about a few of their strict rules not being adhered to, so what, they probably had their rollers in too tight the night before and had a headache!! The problem with those judging is that they come mostly from the traditional quilting mafia from what i can work out, and don’t have the imagination or depth to think outside the boxes/rules, to understand or appreciate either pictorial or modern quilts, they’re just too fixed in their mind set. Don’t be ashamed about the price requested, i’m betting you put in one hell of a lot of love and work into it, and why should hand crafted items be of lesser value than over priced mass produced one? Answer, they shouldn’t, they’re worth more!

  3. Posted August 30, 2012 at 10:36 am | Permalink | Reply

    Its worth every penny of that and more!
    The fact that you are still a “beginner” at quilting makes this piece even more outstanding!


  4. Paulune
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:00 am | Permalink | Reply

    The quilt police are sooo hard to please. I think your quilt is well woth the price you put on it . It is an amazing non traditional quilt.


  5. Posted August 30, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I think it looks great. I wouldn’t like the criticism in a show either, but it is part of the learning process. If I didn’t want to sell it, I would have marked up the price also, that’s a lot of work! No reason to be embarrassed!

  6. Posted August 30, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I’ve had some really uplifting comments here today- I will email every single one of you when I get home to thank you personally!

  7. Posted August 30, 2012 at 2:37 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Personally, I think you rocked this quilt. It is an awesome representation of these pups….almost want to reach out and pat them, and their eyes are so soulful. How you captured all of that amazes me.
    I agree with all the rest – do what brings you joy, and don’t worry about the blue haired quilting crowd, who gravitates toward the traditional pieced projects and gets in a dither over matched points and such. Yours is an art piece — it holds so much of you, and your creative spirit. It evokes a response in us as we view it. That, to me, is worth everything.

  8. Helen I
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 5:39 pm | Permalink | Reply

    To me the very idea of pricing is how much money will replace the ownership of the item (if it be apples or artwork). Therefore your price was exactly right. I had a show programme and don’t even remember seeing any prices next to the quilts so that’s how big they were printed! And I think your quilt is delightful, as I did in person at he show.

  9. faith marsden
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 7:03 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Oh bollocks to them, i loved your quilt it was one of my favourites too so dont ever stop and I do think its worth every penny you put on there. I wish more people would do hounds and lurchers

    • Posted August 30, 2012 at 7:08 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Hi Faith,

      Thanks! Lol I’m taking the criticism where it is due and I will be back next year… it’s so nice to read all the comments.

      By the way I got your message a little while back and tried to add you as a friend on Facebook but it wouldn’t give me the option which was weird. I tried on 3 different days and then I gave up. I’m here if you wanted to find me first! http://www.facebook.com/kerry1wilkinson


  10. Posted August 30, 2012 at 7:56 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Kerry – I think there are things you can take from them (which you have done) – constructive criticism in the getting the hanging straight etc.

    However, like you say – your design is brilliant Seeing it hang over you bed – I can see that it looks specatular. I love it. You have got the character so well, and they are so true to life.

    And as for the price, the price is what you would want for it, and I don’t blame you. It is a one of a kind, personally designed and handmade work of art.

    So take onboard the good advice but congratulate yourself on a lovely work.

  11. Posted August 30, 2012 at 9:15 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I thought it looked fab and definitely worth every penny with the amount of work and love that has gone into it 🙂

  12. Stephanie
    Posted August 31, 2012 at 6:53 am | Permalink | Reply

    Well, I think your quilt is AMAZING. Seriously… I just love it. I hope to be that talented and creative in my quilting one day.

  13. Posted August 31, 2012 at 9:14 pm | Permalink | Reply

    As with all art it’s very subjective. You can’t please all of the people all of the time, all you can do is keep doing what you enjoy and that will shine through. By the way I think it’s amazing!

  14. Deborah
    Posted August 31, 2012 at 11:44 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I have been a quilter for awhile now and I don’t think I could ever create a quilt as unique and expressive as this one. My daughter had 2 rescued greyhounds and she is crazy about this quilt! Well done! Oh how I dislike quilt judges. Keep those creative fires burning!

  15. Posted September 2, 2012 at 11:51 am | Permalink | Reply

    Kerry, the very fact that you (and everyone else) disagrees with the judges is great! It means you know what you like and how you want to create and quilt — so just keep at it and keep entering shows. Just because they don’t recognize your creativity doesn’t mean that your work is not good–it just means they are too boxed in with their opinions to recognize your accomplishment and the beauty of your work. Just keep doing what you’re doing!

  16. Posted September 4, 2012 at 1:21 am | Permalink | Reply

    Your quilt is such a beautiful piece of art! It’s so dynamic and I’ve never seen anything like it. The dimension it shows in incredible. It looks almost real to me! Outstanding and just…WOW!

  17. Posted September 4, 2012 at 1:26 am | Permalink | Reply

    By the way, I think it is worth more than the price you set!!

  18. Posted September 14, 2012 at 7:28 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Oh, my! You’re so incredibly talented, don’t let the judges’ remarks discourage you one little bit! Your first pictorial quilt? I was sure you’d been doing this for years!!!!! And what subject could be finer than dogs? Wouldn’t you rather spend your evening with them than those judges? I sure would! Keep doing what you’re doing! I’m going to follow your blog now that I’ve found you.

  19. Posted September 16, 2012 at 9:49 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I loved your quilt when I saw it at the FoQs and I posted a picture of it on my blog because i loved it. You were brave entering it and very WELL DONE!

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