Maybe I’ve never quite outgrown the practice I had while employed of setting annual goals. Even in these past couple of years of retirement, I’ve made a yearly list of things I’d like to learn, do, explore, accomplish – and that’s worked for me in keeping me looking forward and growing.
I had this pent-up need to make things with my hands, so one of my primary goals upon retirement was to learn both art quilting and quilting fundamentals, so I set out to make a queen-sized sampler quilt and some of the “meditation art quilts” that previous posts on this blog have covered.
The queen sampler quilt took nearly two years, but two nights before Christmas, we slept under that completed quilt for the first time. It gives me joy every night to be comforted and kept warm in body and spirit by my own handiwork (and I think my dear husband enjoys it, too…)
Next? Well, I decided that in 2014 I wanted to delve into the whole modern quilt movement. Modern quilting is much more spontaneous and innovative, but you still need to have those basic skills that traditional quilting utilizes. I joined The Modern Quilt Guild online and have been encouraged and stimulated by an online community of individual modern quilters (and modern quilter wannabes like me) all over the world. So many of the women (I’m sure there are male modern quilters as well, but none I’ve met online) are also blogging their experiences with examples of their work, fabrics they’re considering, and their love, delight and challenges with their own creative process. It’s been lots of fun, and I’m really happy to be linked with the MQG.
As a result, I want to do more blogging about my own creative process and what I’ve been making, so I’m going to revive my blog. That’s required some remedial tutorial work as I try to figure out how to reorganize the layout and organization. It is, as they say, “under construction.”
But, the big news is that I started a CafePress shop today and uploaded several of my quilt blocks and an art quilt (the Goddess of Mindful Eating). If you’re not familiar with CafePress.com, it’s an online store where original art and designs can be put on every imaginable piece of merchandise. CafePress handles all of the logistics of producing the merch, shipping and payments and then the artist gets a small percentage of the sales. For my situation, it works …. well, at least I’m going to try it. I thought it might be fun and get a little of what I’ve done out there.
In a future blog, I might reflect a little more on this impulse to be “out there” and what that means…. but that will be in the future, and not today.
For those who are interested, my shop name is Birchmeadow Quilt Goods (click to open the shop on a separate window)
I learned that shop owners have the option of choosing which products they can have their artwork printed on, but you begin by choosing extensive packages of set items. I discovered, for example, that my “Goddess of Mindful Eating” could be printed on a shot glass. Hmmm. Not all that mindful, thought I, so I deleted that option. It could also be printed on a dog’s feed bowl (also deleted). Chow down mindfully, Fido, in your quilty doggy coat.
So, if you go to the Birchmeadow Quilt Goods shop, don’t be surprised to find some strange juxtapositions of quilted art on odd products. You never know if someone is looking for a dog bowl or a shot glass with a quilt block on it. And with my small percentage, I’ll just buy more fabric… What a beautiful arrangement.