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Thread: Perfectionist vs. Good Enoughist

  1. #26
    Super Member jmoore's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearisgray View Post
    I have higher personal standards for some things than others.
    same here...and that goes for my quilting projects as well. I am not a perfectionist but I am OCD. 😝
    attitude is everything...the rest will fall into place.

  2. #27
    Super Member JENNR8R's Avatar
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    Proud perfectionist here!

  3. #28
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    Words I have learned to live by, sure cuts down on the stress level

  4. #29
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    I do the best I can and that is good enough for me.

  5. #30
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    I'm the perfectionist in almost everything I do, my house is always clean, nothing on my kitchen counters, no knick knacks anywhere. Nothing out of place, this is how I've always been. No clutter, everything has a place and gets put away. Luckily my husband is the same way. When it comes to sewing, yes I like my stitches to be even, everything has to line up, etc., I strive for perfection in everything I do. What is perfect to me may not be perfect for anyone else. It's in the eye of the beholder.

  6. #31
    Super Member luvstoquilt's Avatar
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    I try to do my best and I think I continue to expand my quilting ability but I won’t stress over it. It is my hobby and it gives me joy. I believe in “ live and let live”. My house is moderately clean and neat which suits me and if you were coming over I would hope it was to visit me and not to critique. I laugh at my mistakes and correct what I can. Life is just so much fun!

    Jan, I Loved Mary Ellen Hopkins. She was delightful!
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 06-09-2019 at 06:21 AM. Reason: shouting/all caps
    "You must do the thing you think you cannot do"....E. Roosevelt

    Sharon
    Yorkville, IL

  7. #32
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    I heard a phrase once that really, really made an impression on me - 'Perfectionism is the enemy of Creativity'. And, it truly is. I tell my students that they usually do not make mistakes, they add design elements! You are making the quilt, you get to add/delete things as you choose. Others will see what you make as a wonderful gift, a work of love and heart. We need to stop being so hard on ourselves and get back to the joy of creating the piece. We tend to drive ourselves crazy over the little things that no one will ever see or care about.

  8. #33
    Super Member Watson's Avatar
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    klswift above me said it well.

    It isn't a mistake, it's design element.

    Although I work hard at my quilts and try to get them technically correct, done is better than perfect.

    Watson

  9. #34
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    I really struggled with the saying "finished is better than perfect" as I don't like doing less than a best effort. But I came to understand that for me, it means not agnoizing in the desision making area - is this the "prefect" border? is this the "perfect" block layout? - the things that can sometimes totally stall my progress. So now instead of wanting to explore every possible option, I find one that looks good and then stop looking.

    I also know how to do $10 an hour work and $50 an hour work, so I decide ahead of time which one is the appropriate level. Neither are poor quality, it's just the level of perfection I strive for.
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

  10. #35
    Senior Member mhollifiel's Avatar
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    The quilts in museums like Paducah, KY blow me away. So do those in every quilt show. That said, I have no intention ever to have my quilts shown in either venue. My quilts are destined for use, heavy use. I make those quilts that rest between your sheets and your comforter or spread, never seen but giving love to those who sleep beneath their warmth. My quilts go under your picnic spread. get drug around by toddlers across the lawn and in mud puddles, and find themselves under young teens at the beach. My quilts cover the laps of strangers in retirement homes, show up at fires where a child who has lost her bear is comforted because, serendipitously, the bear on her new quilt looks exactly like the special one she just lost. The quilts I make end up in dog beds and in the backs of cars. They also leave hospitals with children who had the misfortune of being there but often will only sleep with that quilt afterwards. They cover sick family who begin to feel better and enjoy doing seek and find with the fabrics used, only two of each!

    Having no artistic gifts, I get by and no one seems to mind that I don't appliqué or paper piece and I use beautifully simple patterns. There's a world of need out there and I don't have time to be that particular. Yes, for me, done is better than perfect. I adore seeing those beautiful quilts in shows and museums but you won't find my quilts there. To my sisters and brothers who are the artists of the quilt world, kudos! Keep up the good work! I am taking care of the other end of the spectrum of quilters and enjoying it. The loving but utilitarian nature of quilting heritage is being taken care of by quilters like me. The quilt world is wide and all inclusive! Hooray for us all!

  11. #36
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    I have to have my house company ready or I'm not happy. It's easy for me as I have perfected how to do it the way I like using very little time to do it. I like how I function during the day when I wake up to a clean pretty house and go to bed in a clean pretty house and that is my goal for housework. The housework almost perfection does not spill over in my quilting at all. I don't care if my points are not pointy or my binding is wavy. That is not my goal. My goal is to make a quilt with fabric colors and pattern that I want to make. One quilt may look perfect and one may look like it needs help. All the same to me. I won Viewer's Choice with one quilt some of my guild members were appalled I entered. Only other quilters saw the flaws. The public loved it. LOL
    I believe giving what I can will never cause me to be in need.
    Being cheap is not a badge of honor.
    My heroes are working people, paying their own way, taking care of their children and being decent human beings.

  12. #37
    Super Member gramajo's Avatar
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    I am in the "better done than perfect" camp. I have many many ufos and wanna make quilts on my list, but my cancer has come back and even with chemo have been given only about 20% chance of living more than 2 years. So it's time to prioritize what I'm finishing. First up is to finish quilting a carousel panel I'm making for my someday-to-be first great granddaughter.

  13. #38
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    gramajo, I will keep you in my prayers every prayer.
    I believe giving what I can will never cause me to be in need.
    Being cheap is not a badge of honor.
    My heroes are working people, paying their own way, taking care of their children and being decent human beings.

  14. #39
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    gtamajo - wishing your well -

  15. #40
    Senior Member lfletcher's Avatar
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    I have a rule. I will redo something that's not quite right only 3 times. After that, I consider it good enough.

  16. #41
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    I'm not sure true perfectionists realize they Are perfectionists. They may not think in terms of "perfect" but in "right", as in "there's a right way and a half right way and a wrong way" and always insist on the right way. Is that perfectionism? Perhaps.....although many don't think of it that way. I think we all have a "perfect for me" which may not be the same standard as someone else's "perfect".

    I just made a cushion cover for a outdoor chair -- something that didn't matter At All in that I made it only for temporary comfort. I plan to replace all the patio chairs, most of which have no cushions. I had real problems sewing the bottom "plate" on the boxed corners of the top, just couldn't make it work properly and the end result was untidy and "not right". And yet the cushion cover was sewn together and would have been serviceable. But I ripped it out and persevered until I had no folds or wrinkles in those boxed corner seams. Is that perfectionism, OCD, or just my own personal "the right way"?
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 06-09-2019 at 10:50 AM. Reason: shouting/all caps

  17. #42
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    I used to be accused of being a perfectionist; my dad always used to so "if you're going to do a job- do it right or not at all". Never explaining it but as I aged I realized if not done right then someone has to come along behind you and do it right. But I too have come to realize done is better than a UFO.
    And I guess I could say I am less than a casual housekeeper; it's a never-ending, thankless job and has to be done over and over and over. It So interferes with sewing and quilting and embroidery and any of our other fun hobbies! And all the gals or most any way in my monthly sewing class agree. Wish I could afford to hire someone to come in and clean a couple times a month! Glad to see I have a Lot of company. Keep quiltin' ladies!
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 06-09-2019 at 10:50 AM. Reason: shouting/all caps

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearisgray View Post
    I have higher personal standards for some things than others.
    This is absolutely true of me, too! Had I seen this comment before I commented myself, I might not have. I tend to be perfectionist about artistic things, not everyday things. I love a clean and orderly house but housework bores the living stuffing out of me and I just don't do it perfectly every day. But if I'm doing something creative, I tend to be pretty OCD about it, as I've already indicated.

  19. #44
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    I feel like there's a balance to keep. I strive for perfect, but know and accept that it's not going to happen. So, it's a matter of whether I can accept the time and effort it would take to make it better. Sometimes I feel like it's worth re-doing something; sometimes I don't.

  20. #45
    Super Member wildyard's Avatar
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    I agree that if I've done my very best, then it makes me happy, even tho I'll never achieve perfection!
    Linda Wedge White

    I believe UFOs are like scraps, ferns and dust bunnies. Once you get two, they send spores out into the air and more just happen anywhere the spores meet.

  21. #46
    Super Member judykay's Avatar
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    I saw a sign in a store yesterday and it was not a fabric store that said something like Better done and not perfect than not done at all. I try to be perfect but if I get too stressed over it I just say good enough.

  22. #47
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    I tend to be a perfectionist, but that doesn't mean I need things to be perfect. I think it means that my satisfaction in doing something comes from doing it right, to the extent that I can. I think we must all have a point when something is 'good enough,' that point is just set in a different place for each person. I definitely have a 'good enough' threshold, and I definitely agree that 'done is better than perfect.'
    Lisa

  23. #48
    Super Member Darcyshannon's Avatar
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    First of all, I try to do all my work with intention because it feels right. Some projects and tasks require more effort and skill level. I save those for when I am fresh and ready. When I want to sew but a bit tired, I do chain piecing and lower level concentration tasks.

    I know which projects require a higher standard and although I try to do all work well, I know when it is time to move on.

    Nothing is perfect. Nothing. It is a mental construct. Things can be beautiful, neat, tidy, useful etc but time and matter means everything is in constant flux and something that was perfect in your eye may change quite quickly.

    I make my quilts to be pleasing to my eye and the eye of the beholder. I want them to be warm and beautiful. Sometimes, I will work on a project made for someone else and work in designs or colors that aren’t my favorite. It stretches me and makes me glad that the recipient is getting the colors and design that is their preference.

  24. #49
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    I think it's okay to "own" what we do well. Why downplay ones' abilities and achievements?

    As far as what could be done "better" -

    are we able to change/improve?
    do we want to improve?
    does it matter to us (or to anyone near and/or dear to us)?

  25. #50
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    Interesting thread. Reading the above comments really makes me stop and think. I think I'm a little of both. And I also grew up with the comment that if you do something do it right or find someone who can. That puts undo stress on most situations imho. I find myself overly critiquing quite often. And when fixing a problem and finding the courage to let it be if it doesn't fix is getting easier. Most everything I do is done well. This includes all aspects of life. I am conscientious about the outcome of all of it. So I do strive to do my best and have found out that so far in this life nothing is perfect. I can live with that.
    SEW MUCH FUN!

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