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Thread: Quite honestly a matter of tact...

  1. #11
    Norah's Avatar
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    I have a friend that is a wonderful friend, but a terrible quilter. She is not the brightest, but she tries hard. I never criticize her. I find nice things to say, like those are nice, bright colors. And, if she is receptive that day, I tell her I can show her another pattern she can do, and then I try to teach her about points at the same time. She learns that way. And I learn that some strange colors really do go well together. And I still have a friend.

  2. #12
    Super Member Yvonne's Avatar
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    When I started teaching and was preparing for my first parent/teacher conferences I was told to sandwich any criticism between positive statements. I have found that this works in day to day life also.
    If asked for an honest opinion I would start with a positive statement about the pattern selected, color choices, whatever, then forge on to the constructive criticism, if needed, and then end on another positive note.
    I would only do this if I was asked for a critical analysis of someone's work. Otherwise I go along with the, "If you can't say something nice..." rule. You can usually find something positive to say if you just look closely. "I can see you've put a lot of hard work into your project." whatever the project is! :lol:

  3. #13
    Super Member henryparrish76's Avatar
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    I pretty much agree with what everyone else has been saying. Look for something positive to say unless they are honestly looking for constructive criticism. Then, being a teacher too, I would sandwich that in between positive comments.

    Heres how that works as a teacher.

    " Johnny you have a wonderful imagination. I see though that you need to write neater and do a spell check on your paper next time. You know Johnny if you retype/rewrite this paper for me I would like to put this on the bulletin board so people can see how to use their imagination."

    (cause you would be surprised at how many of the kids I work with are lacking in imagination. )


  4. #14
    Super Member Minda's Avatar
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    I think sometimes we show our quilts so people can see how hard we've worked and how much time we've put into them. We just want to share it with someone who appreciates how much of ourselves goes into making a quilt. We don't want to be critiqued - we just want to be appreciated. In those instances, I try to find something positive to say. I don't think I've ever seen a quilt that I couldn't find something positive to say about it.

    On the other hand, if I want someone to critique my work, I ask for an honest opinion from someone that I trust to give me just that. If someone asks me for my opinion, I give it truthfully, but try to be positive and encouraging.

    Always remember that many times what we may not like about a quilt is personal opinion, not right or wrong.


  5. #15
    Super Member Moonpi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by henryparrish76
    I
    " Johnny you have a wonderful imagination. I see though that you need to write neater and do a spell check on your paper next time. You know Johnny if you retype/rewrite this paper for me I would like to put this on the bulletin board so people can see how to use their imagination."

    (cause you would be surprised at how many of the kids I work with are lacking in imagination. )
    Yes, back in the olden days we actually had spelling and vocabulary tests. It was expected that part of our schooling was basic literacy. Without that, everything else loses value. As for lack of imagination, it is like a muscle that needs stretching to develop. If they are allowed to live by someone else's vision, they will become boring and easily bored adults. I'm glad to see you encourage that life skill.

  6. #16
    lisae's Avatar
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    I've made quilts I don't like. I see quilts I don't like, but luckily a comment isn't always expected.

    If someone asks me for a critique, I won't hold back but will give my opinion on how I would have solved the problem, ie 'you know, I might have..' I don't think it is necessary to insult someone's work to critique it.

    If someone shows me a quilt to admire, I find something to admire.

  7. #17
    Super Member MissTreated's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve
    So what polite things do you really say when you see a quilt that looks awful (yech!), but you don’t want to hurt the quilter’s feelings when asked? Yeah, yeah, I know beauty is always in the eye of the beholder.

    I find “Very interesting….” or “I’d never have thought in a million years to do that!” slip out quite easily when I suppose being more honest and giving constructive criticism a path harder to take, but more valuable in the long run to the quilter.
    If asked for constructive criticism, I'll give it. If not, I won't. I won't offer suggestions unless they are solicited. If someone is showing me a quilt (or something else for that matter) they made and are only showing me it to show me what they have done, I can ALWAYS find something I like about it. If nothing more than, "Wow! You got that done in a hurry!" I do have one friend who is a very prolific quilter and such is her claim. She sews fast, but not well. She's gotta get something done over the weekend. Doesn't work for me, but I'm not her, and it is not my place (without her asking) to tell her she needs to take more time both picking out the fabric and sewing her quilt. Most of the time I'll choose one fabric and say, "I really like that fabric!" My opportunity came when she asked for help with applique. I told her the key was to take her time (along with a couple of other suggestions) and her product was better. Had she not asked for help, I wouldn't have offered it.

    M

  8. #18
    live2teach's Avatar
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    I ALWAYS point out something positive about it. But to be quite honest, if it was made by hand and that person put all of their heart into it, I'm bound to like it. I guess you can call me a sucker...lol. But, on the other hand, there is one person that when I show my work to, I know they are looking to see if there are any mistakes and they always seem to tell me how I could do it a different way. Which is okay, if it was every now and then and if I asked for the honest opinion but this person tends to do it everytime. So, I just "bite the bullet" and go on b/c I know I didn't make it to please that person....obviously! lol

  9. #19

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    you go ruth, you said it just right. thank you.

  10. #20
    live2teach's Avatar
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    I didn't see what Ruth said earlier...I do now...and I say Amen to that. My mom and grandparents said the same thing.

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