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Thread: just finished quilt top and all I see are my mistakes

  1. #1
    Super Member Dina's Avatar
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    I just finished a quilt top, and I find that all I can see are my mistakes. Is that the way we all are? The top really looks good, but I am wondering. Do I ever get to a point where I don't see my mistakes right off and can look at the quilt immediately and appreciate it?

    (I posted this with pictures, but I am posting it again without pictures, as I really want to know if I will ever get over this. I figure more quilters look at the Main section than the Pictures, which is where my original message got sent.)

    So, is this the way I will always see a quilt right after I finish the top? Mistake, mistake, and more mistakes?

  2. #2
    Senior Member tsnana2000's Avatar
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    Honestly when I first finish a quilt all I see are my mistakes, but when I look at it several days later I am much more objective. I usually put it up for a couple of days then look at it again and say "oh not bad". So you might want to try that and see if that helps. We are WAY harder on ourselves than anyone else will be.

  3. #3
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Looks like t he Quilt Police are residing in your head!

    With some seriousness ... there's a balance between seeing the flaws and knowing that you did the best job you could, for the skills and abilities you had at the time.

    By noticing things that aren't so "perfect" according to your standards is good, as it helps you learn what to do better the next time. With time, you'll see a difference in your quilts ... will be a story telling itself to you, when you compare in a few years.

    Regardless .... your new quilt is still Purrrrrrrrrfect!

  4. #4
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Part of me thinks it is good, you are learning from your mistakes. Part of me thinks it is bad, you shouldn't be so critical of yourself. Part of me wonders, isn't it more about the journey than the destination?

    You could try putting the quilt away for 6 months or so, I know that a lot of times when I take a stored quilt out, I can't remember my mistakes! :)

  5. #5
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    I so agree with your first paragraph. And you second paragraph make me chuckle. There is an upside to this loss of memory thing!

    Quote Originally Posted by Peckish
    Part of me thinks it is good, you are learning from your mistakes. Part of me thinks it is bad, you shouldn't be so critical of yourself. Part of me wonders, isn't it more about the journey than the destination?

    You could try putting the quilt away for 6 months or so, I know that a lot of times when I take a stored quilt out, I can't remember my mistakes! :)

  6. #6
    Senior Member debbiecharlie's Avatar
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    I'm with Peckish.....it is part of the journey......no one is perfect (only ONE was) so don't be so hard on yourself. I've seen your quilt....It is beautiful!!!

  7. #7
    Senior Member cmputerdazed's Avatar
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    that is what make each quilt unique and special. But I think we all do it.

  8. #8
    Senior Member QuilterGary's Avatar
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    Some people never start anything for fear that it will not be perfect. Other do the best we can with the knowledge we have at the time. We will see those mistakes and learn from them. Do not be hard on your self at least you did something be proud of it.

  9. #9
    Super Member Dina's Avatar
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    Thanks for your comments. I am not a perfectionist, so that isn't my problem. Funny, I am looking at my quilt top, and I can't even find the mistakes that jumped out at me just an hour ago. I don't think I am going to look harder either!!

    Maybe I can get this figured out....after I finish a quilt top, I should look at it, get my initial reaction out of the way, and then come back in a few hours to appreciate it. :)

  10. #10
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    This happened to me this morning!!! I put the top together, looked at it and saw that I reversed two of the blocks. It still looks okay.

    I, too, wonder if I will ever get a quilt together without mistakes. Probably not in this life time!

  11. #11
    Senior Member abc123retired's Avatar
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    There may not be any mistakes in it -except bad fabric choices - but I don't like it when it is finished or near completion. I think I am just sick of it or it doesn't look as nice as the picture. After half a year or so in hibernation it looks much better or an idea comes to me on how to change it.

  12. #12
    Junior Member cheriami's Avatar
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    What everyone else said with one thing to add, wash it!
    I always like my quilts so much better when I pull them out of the dryer and they are a little wrinkly and warm. mmmmm...

  13. #13
    Senior Member Bamagal's Avatar
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    All of my quilts have mistakes. I always see them but no one else can. They told me this when I first learned and I didn't believe it. Over the years I have found it is true. Only you see your mistakes. I sometimes purposely will make a mistake or reverse a block! Why?? Cause no one is perfect and most certainly not me!! :)

  14. #14
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    My friend recently asked my opinion on a quilt she had just taken off the mid-arm, wanted to know if she should rip all the quilting out, I picked up the quilt, walked out the front door, called her to come out, told her to "take off running" down the sidewalk and se if it still looked bad to her!!! She just gave me THAT look, IMHO if she added anymore to it would have distracted from the original pattern. I definitely think we're too hard on ourselves.

  15. #15
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
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    It is a piece of art....YOU are not perfect...what you create will not be perfect.....we are human beings.....not machines....
    Yes I get very angry with myself when I finish a quilt and see all the points that are not perfect, and the corners that do not meet, and some seams that are not super straight and maybe a fabric choice that was not exactly correct....but sewing that quilt filled my day, it gave me JOY, and the person you will give it to will NOT see those mistakes, they will be amazed at what you created and will see all the love inside the quilt.
    Don't be so hard on yourself, this craft/art is a continually learning process

  16. #16
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    abc123 is right. You just need the perspective of time. My first ever quilt top (not yet quilted) looked awful to me, so I tucked it away in my closet. I took it out after months had passed and looked at it again. Seems I'd forgotten where the mistakes were and it looked pretty good.

  17. #17
    Super Member leatheflea's Avatar
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    Go to your local quilt shop, if you look at the quilts as intense as you look at your own you'll find mistakes, I do it all the time. Makes me feel so much better. I even went to a shop in lancaster, pa, quilts were over $1000 and I found flaws. thats a human factor, I was glad the flaws were there.

  18. #18
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by leatheflea
    Go to your local quilt shop, if you look at the quilts as intense as you look at your own you'll find mistakes, I do it all the time. Makes me feel so much better. I even went to a shop in lancaster, pa, quilts were over $1000 and I found flaws. thats a human factor, I was glad the flaws were there.
    I'll agree with you ... I've often been very disappointed with the quality of some shop display and class samples. It gives me a good (or bad!) impression of the standards of the business at large. And an insight into how much belief and trust, I will put into any info they give to me. If taking a course, I want to take from someone that I can learn from ... not one I could teach. I'm not being smug with my thoughts here, just stating how what I see affects me.

  19. #19
    Power Poster blueangel's Avatar
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    I'm sure it's great

  20. #20
    Super Member Dina's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by leatheflea
    Go to your local quilt shop, if you look at the quilts as intense as you look at your own you'll find mistakes, I do it all the time. Makes me feel so much better. I even went to a shop in lancaster, pa, quilts were over $1000 and I found flaws. thats a human factor, I was glad the flaws were there.
    You are right. The quilts displayed at our local quilt shops are not perfect either. Thanks.

  21. #21
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    If only I was as good as the recipients of my gift quilts think I am!!

  22. #22
    Super Member CloverPatch's Avatar
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    I had to learn to stop pointing out my mistakes. Atleast outloud.
    Someone once said that pointing out all your mistakes, on something so pretty makes you sound like you think your above making any mistakes at all.
    I think they took it personally as if I was suggesting I was better than them... not just too good to make mistakes. But it stuck with me.
    It also made me more accepting of my work. Mostly roll my eyes at my quirks, and hope no one notices.

  23. #23
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
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    Put your quilt out and stand 10' back. Do you now see the mistakes?

    Hey, you're not a machine and this is handmade. Instead of beating yourself up with that arm, try patting yourself on the back for doing something that not everyone does. Its an accomplishment that you should be proud of. The one that receives this is not going to look at what we see, just the love that went into it.

  24. #24
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    If you're like me you look for them because you know they're there. Willing to bet others don't see them.

  25. #25
    Super Member quilt3311's Avatar
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    Hang it up, back off about 15 foot and see that most things you think are mistakes are not noticeable to anyone else.
    I once went to an exhibit where a well known national teacher had her quilts. Absolutely beautiful quilts. When I got really close to a couple of them I found that all her points DID NOT meet perfectly. The overall effect was breathtaking, but close up, there were some flaws. Also if you have a light dark piece that misses meeting by just a smidge, use a permanent marker to match the darker fabric and add a bit of color right where the pieces meet. Works to cover small piecing errors.

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