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I live in regional Victoria, Australia. I quilt and create in between caring for my family.


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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Taking the pledge!

I, Karen, pledge to talk more about my processes, even when I can’t quite put them in the in words or be sure I’m being totally clear. I’m going to put my thinking and my gut feelings out there.

Why you ask?

Yesterday I attended my local groups AGM, which was presented in a new format this year. We started at 11am with the AGM no surprises there! Had a soup and sandwich lunch, then because the guest speaker was late, went on to present our Ballarat Icon Challenge show and tell.

My friends know that I have been stressing over this part of the proceedings, because I was scared of the negativity that my presence and work engenders within the group. I find it frustrating that I always make supportive and positive comments about everyone quilts and yet get stony silence or snide comments about what I take. Worse still is what is said behind your back, which always has a willing group member ready to let you know " who said what nasty mean thing" as soon as possible.
   In essence, it leads to not talking about your work and not sharing or participating in Show and Tell or other group activities such as the challenges. I have always thought the group is more important than the individual but have decided to take a back seat in my local group from now on. I will participate in what I enjoy, such as retreat and the quilt show but I give up on the politics, the bitchiness and downright meanness of a few particular members of the group. I will be saying loudly to those individuals that have ruined Christmas, spoilt my birthday, and treated me with rudeness and hostility "STOP Picking on me!".
   These few really don't get that if they are treated by me with courtesy that I deserve the same back.

   Getting back to the icon challenge, I went last, but couldn't bear the thought of the presenter holding up my quilt top. I was too frightened that she would looking for all the flaws to gossip about later. I asked friends to hold it up while I talked about what I had done. That generated "funny" looks and eye rolling. As I talked there was only a handful of members that smiled, while the other's sat with disapproving frowns and studiously blank faces. No questions were asked and no positive comments given.
   I had shown 3 friends my quilt beforehand so that I had their kind words to lift my spirit before I did the show and tell. I was too intimidated to put my work on display on the tables at the back, I know every flaw in my quilt, I didn't want the less positive elements to publicly humiliate me yet again. Only one person. afterwards spoke to me about my quilt, and said that it was great and that they really would love to see it in detail when it was finished. My friends and that one person made my day.

So I take the pledge to share my work here, and thank Rosie for giving me the space and encouragement to do so.

This is my yet uncompleted Ballarat Icon quilt.  We were challenged to draw an envelope which contained a photo of the theme we were asked to interpret.  I drew " miner's cottage"  I decided the interpret the theme via the medium of crazy patchwork to reflect our country town' gold rush heritage from the 1850's onwards.  I read and researched.  Then this quilt took on a life of it's own when I decided that it would become a story quilt or our beloved weekender in another village.  Our miner's cottage stated in Ballarat but as the goldfields moved so did our cottage on a bullock's dray.  The quilt then started to incorporate some of our family stories, then it started to have it's own stories that could be told depending on the imagination of the viewer.  lastly because my girls and I loved "I spy" and hidden object books it has become that too. 

   I thank you for taking the time to share in my quilt's story and hope that you will follow it's progress!

Thank you to Annelise, Yvonne, Karla, Annie and Peta,  your words carry me through.  I know that you get what I am trying to do.

Love Karen. xxx.


Bonnie said...

Love it! You're quilt is just lovely. Would love to study it more up close and ask you about those stories and who all the pics are of. Made some decisions too. No group for 12 months and no membership fee either as the only benefit (communication) is very poor and will only frustrate me and envoke obligation to duties. Done some other spring cleaning of life too :)

Linda C said...

Dear Karen,
While crazy patchwork is not my first love, l can appreciate the love and work that has gone into your's. Be kind to your self. After all, it's YOU that you please with your quilting. Don't allow others and their jealousy?? to drag you down, and most definitely don't fall to their level. Continue to be yourself, and offer encouragemnet to all and sundry as we all walk the same path with our quilting journey, one of discovery and understanding in what we do and love. Looking forward to seeing you at Quilts In The Barn.
Love Linda.

Anonymous said...

Well done your quilt looks great

Pauline said...

Hi Karen, I think your quilt looks fantastic, could you please bring it with you on Saturday 3rd September i would love to see it up close. Thanks Pauline