Okay, if the recipients haven't gotten theirs yet, they should have them today so I'm probably safe in showing them to the rest of you. I decided to make sewing machine mats for everyone. I just love them and plan to make one for myself when I can find the time. They are so cute, but can also really help keep the noise down caused from the vibrations on tables. And the pockets in front are very handy as well. You can make these with two FQs. Just baste, quilt and bind. Then fold over one end, sew down both side and add two more lines of stitching to create the pockets. I have to give credit where it is due...Melinda has one that I've been eyeing forever and it was my inspiration. Thanks, Melinda!
Now, a little food for thought and feel free to share your opinions. What do you do when someone asks you what you think about their quilts and it is really terrible? Do you lie? Do you find something ambiguous to say and hope they'll take it with a positive note? Do you just tell them flat out what you really think? Do you tell them the truth only if they ask? Does it matter how well you know the person...perhaps a good friend you might be more honest with? And do you apply these same rules for areas outside of quilting?
For me, I tend to find something positive to say but I don't lie to them. I've been told, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all." I don't always subscribe to that, even if it is wise advice. However, if someone is struggling with their quilt and let me know they aren't happy, I might use that time to make positive suggestions without saying what it is that I might not like. It goes the same whether it is a dear friend or someone I've just met.
Now, do I apply the rules for other areas in my life? Well, honestly, I guess that depends. I usually try to keep my mouth zipped. For example, there is someone sort of close to us that dyes their hair red. I'm not against red hair, but this color reminds me of Bozo the Clown. And while I've seen this very shade on others and it was beautiful, not so with this person. But, you know, it isn't my hair so why hurt their feelings. If they are happy with it, then let it be. If it were my husband though, I'd be honest with him (not that he has any hair, but that's beside the point) because I know he really would want me to tell him the truth. So, I guess unlike quilting, I vary the rules a bit.
So, why do the rules vary? I suppose because I think of quilting as an art form. And art should be appreciated whether it is your style or not. The good Lord has given us imagination and creativity and for the lucky few, talent. One should create art for the pleasure it gives them, not in an effort to please others. So, then the next question that forms in my mind...what others areas of life should I consider as art?