Hello 2018

In 2017, I focused mostly on finishing up old projects. I've never been good at finishing and I wanted to see if I could change that bad habit. I tried hard, really hard, and it worked, I'm good at finishing things now. And that is truly awesome, I never thought I could cultivate that desire or hone that skill.

But, looking back, I realize that goal had unforeseen consequences. Most of the work I was doing was busywork. Finish one project, move on to the next, repeat. There was nothing there to fuel the fire of creativity. Nothing to challenge me as a quilter.

On one hand, finishing so many quilts so easily shows how far I've come as a quilter. I'm so comfortable with every step, I hardly have to think anymore.

But on the other hand, I was initially drawn to quilting because it was challenging. Choosing a pattern, doing the math, picking out the perfect fabrics, figuring out just the right quilting. It was all so fun!

And that's what I want for 2018...to have fun and to challenge myself, to turn the spark of creativity back into a flame.

I need to do more thinking about this but I know for starters, I want to work on improving my quilting. I'm excited to branch out to new patterns, try new designs and techniques. My free-motion quilting needs the most work but for now, I really feel more interested in straight line or walking foot quilting. I've started reading "Walk" by Jacquie Gering and it's filled with great quilting designs and tips.

I've already picked out a fun design for my newest quilt and the marking phase has begun. For future quilts, I'd like to think more about quilting in the early design phase instead of after the top is finished. Or, even better, pick a quilting design first, then design a quilt to show it off. It's refreshing to think about quilting in a new way!

So, here's to 2018: a year of challenges and growth and exploration!