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Thread: What I figured out last Christmas...

  1. #51
    Debbie1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    Quote Originally Posted by hobo2000
    You are so right. A very dear friend of mine was in the hospital so I took her one of my prettiest lap quilts. She seemed pleased and thanked me. Later when I visited her at home she was wrapped up in a rather dingy cheap blanket. I asked why she wasn't using the quilt and she said. That thing was too heavy for me to carry out of the hospital so I gave it to one of the nurses who helped me.
    I have never made another thing for her. She is still my dear friend but she just didn't get it. She later asked me where I had purchased it,(it had my label on it). I told her I had made it from scratch. She asked if I would make one for her to give to her husbands nurse. I explained they take me 6-8 weeks to make and I generally get $300.00 for that size. WHAAAT? Yes mam. She thought I had just picked it up somewhere on the way to the hospital because "it didn't look homemade"....Oh well, live and learn!
    OMG this story takes the cake!! :(
    I'm thinking that the nurse loved it!

  2. #52
    Senior Member cattailsquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lynnie
    w2ow, great idea, why didn't i think of that b4 wasting al my time and money to see people not appriciate the things i make for them. i just assume everyone will like the things i make, and they don;t know what goes into it. Some people have even sait to me, wow, you made me something, it probably didn't cost much, if they only knew. My dmil loves all things i make and i look forward to making her things.
    When my cousin asked me to make her a quilt, she asked how much it would be. I told her the cost of materials. She was shocked at how much materials were. If you don't sew, you don't understand the cost involved.

    I guess I'm lucky, as far as I know anyone I have ever gifted with a quilt of mine has loved it. I made quilts for 3 friends who all had babies last fall, and all 3 adore the quilts & use them every (or nearly) every day! One mommy actually cried when I asked for the quilt back for a couple days so I could 'finish' it with her daughter's initials & birthdate.

  3. #53
    Super Member Charleen DiSante's Avatar
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    Yes,the nurse was probably really happy. I had an experience where I did not put a label on my quilt and if my hubby hadn't been around to say: 'Charlie made this', all my work would have gone unnoticed. I lrearned that you have to "Toot your own horn" sometimes. Even if as you give the quilt or whatever it is, you say: I just knew you loved cats so I found some fabric at 10 different stores, I hope you like how they look together. Or something like that to let them know you cared enough to spend time on THEM. Just some random thoughts.

  4. #54
    Senior Member skavanau's Avatar
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    I agree with you whole heartedly.... I made my GD a quilt, no reaction at all, I made my girlfriends daughter a quilt and you would have thought I gave her a puppy. Your right , think and go with your gut feeling about the appreciation factor.

  5. #55
    Super Member wvdek's Avatar
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    Just wanted to let you know I totally understand. My DS #2 does not quilt or sew but makes Fleece -tied blankets all the time for the Children's hospital. One year I was visiting and we went shopping at JA's for fabric for our other DS #1. We chose the fleece and thought we did well. That Christmas, I received the blanket she made for DS #1. I was exstatic! I loved it. I have made probably 30-40 of these myself and given them away. Never for myself. I cherish her blanket and think of her arms wrapping me in love everytime I use it which is almost daily even in warm weather. Our other DS uses hers when grading school papers. Sorry to ramble and I didn't mean to hi-jack. I just want you to know I understand.

    Blessings.

  6. #56
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    Great idea!

  7. #57
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    I was determined to make quilts for all of my loved ones so when I was quilting in the here after they would have something made with love to remember me by. I appliqued a king size water bed quilt and gave it for Christmas a few years ago. I then found out that within months their dog and cat had chewed hundreds of holes in it. I have since decided that I get the joy of making the quilt and once its given away I have no control over what happens to it and do not become hurt if it is destroyed.

  8. #58
    Member brwnntwn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mimi Baby Yow
    I have to agree..before I spend days, weeks, (most likely months) on a quilt...I would be heartbroken if the recepient did not appear truly excited...So my family members are getting kitchen "wear" this year (aprons, table runners, pot holders, etc as a test to see who is worthy.

    Before I read this post - I had already decided to make quilted Potholders and see how they went over. I have an aunt who collects santas - i am aching to make a santa quilt for her but want to be sure it will not end up in the dogs bed!

  9. #59
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    I completely get what you're saying, and if someone doesn't appreciate a quilt, definitely don't go to the trouble of making one.

    But I always thought a gift was for the recipient. If the recipient dearly wants a necktie, they'll be disappointed with a quilt. In all cases, I think it's best to check in with people about what they are wishing for. It saves money and disappointment all around.

  10. #60
    Bev
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    Quote Originally Posted by hobo2000
    You are so right. A very dear friend of mine was in the hospital so I took her one of my prettiest lap quilts. She seemed pleased and thanked me. Later when I visited her at home she was wrapped up in a rather dingy cheap blanket. I asked why she wasn't using the quilt and she said. That thing was too heavy for me to carry out of the hospital so I gave it to one of the nurses who helped me.
    I have never made another thing for her. She is still my dear friend but she just didn't get it. She later asked me where I had purchased it,(it had my label on it). I told her I had made it from scratch. She asked if I would make one for her to give to her husbands nurse. I explained they take me 6-8 weeks to make and I generally get $300.00 for that size. WHAAAT? Yes mam. She thought I had just picked it up somewhere on the way to the hospital because "it didn't look homemade"....Oh well, live and learn!
    I agree. Some people have no idea whatsoever of what it takes to make a quilt, in cost and in time, nevermind the creativity involved.
    Once I made a beautiful fabric bowel for a neighbor and friend across the street. Just for fun, I put a few of the roses from my rose garden in the bowel (I had the roses set in a small bowl of water of course). She shrieked to the other guests at her birthday party, "Look at what Bev gave me!! A bunch of roses from her yard!!" as though it was a big joke. I was so embarrassed until one of the other guests spoke up and said very sweetly, "Is that bowl handmade? It's so lovely."
    Needless to say, that friend/neighbor never got another handmade gift from me. She just didn't understand at all, about the value of a handmade gift.

  11. #61
    Member brwnntwn's Avatar
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    My older sister taought me to sew. She is an amazing seamstress - but does not "get" quilting. (unless the quilt is made from scraps or old clothes) ANYWAY, I decided to make her a quilt in her favorite colors with her favorite things - cats. It took me almost a year to finish this quilt with all of the piecing involved in the squares. Come Christmas Morning her comment was "it's about time some one made something for me". I know whe has looked at it because she commented on a flaw on one of the squares - but she keeps it in a box in her closet because it is "too nice to put out." sigh. I was amazed at this response from the person who taught me to sew and craft! My sister in law - who drives me crazy - has been begging me for a quilt - but she understands what goes into it. One of these days she will get it too!

    Carols Cat Quilt
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  12. #62
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    About 9 years ago I was doing counted cross stitch, and started working on one when my DIL said she was expecting her first child. It took me over a year of intensive work doing a Bird Alphabet that used a lot of 1/4 stitches. It cost almost $200 to frame it. I had no idea if she would value it. Soooo, I borrowed a phrase used on Antiques Road Show. "Just to let you know for insurance purposes, this should be valued at about $1,000." Well, she still has it and does value it.

    I have not been shy about saying the same thing about my quilt gifts, and my family does know their value. Sometimes we just have to be proactive. :lol: I have another DIL who would probably turn a quilt into a dog bed, and her gifts are a gift card from Wal-mart. Sometimes we have to judge our recipients with the same care as we choose our fabric colors and designs. :roll: Your idea is excellent and I just might use it. Thanks.

  13. #63
    Senior Member puck116's Avatar
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    I get what you mean. Last Christmas I made ornaments using clear glass balls and thin strips of batiks I had left from trimming for another project. I gave them out to my quilty friends and they loved them and the idea. They gave me the idea to give them to family as little gifts and see their reaction, to see if they were "quilt worthy". Even though they weren't quilts, some people just don't appreciate hand made items.

  14. #64
    Senior Member judithb's Avatar
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    These are all really touching letters. And I don't feel so bad about some in my family now! I have made quilts for all the children, almost all the grandchildren and all the g grand children. Two did not acknowledge the 4 quilts and 1 wall hanging, and one never used the baby quilt for a ggchild. It wasn't as soft as the fleese ones that were bought and it had cat fur on it, (after several washings)maybe a hair or 2.
    Win a few and lose a few. It was hurtful, so they won't receive any additional quilts. and the quilts that are bed size cost $300 + to have quilted. I really enjoy making covers for kids for our quilt guild project so I make one a month for that project.

  15. #65
    Senior Member PiecesinMn's Avatar
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    I don't think this is negative at all. I think it is very smart way to honestly assess if people like what you make without having them put on the spot. One of my objectives when making/buying a present is that it is something someone would enjoy receiving. Believe me if a friend of mine stuffed animals I really don't care how much time/money went into it, I would not want it. Future gift givers to me please note LOL. Thanks for sharing this great idea.
    Quote Originally Posted by HeatherQuilts
    I have read a lot of posts about how certain people have NO IDEA and NO appreciation for the quilts that we make. I figured something out last Christmas, to save myself some heartache.
    I made 8 or 9 fleece blankets (I sewed the edges though, I didn't tie them) and gave them as gifts. I made one for my Step-dad, and he loved it, he was very appreciative. He is someone that will get a quilt from me some day, I know it will be worth the effort, and he will appreciate what I've made.
    I made one for my Dad and Step-Mom, and they did not have the same reaction. It was kind of like, "Oh...this will be nice to keep us warm in the car...." Totally didn't get that I took time to MAKE them something! :lol: Clearly NOT someone that I will make a quilt for. I love them dearly, of course, but I know they just wouldn't "get" how much work goes into a quilt.
    Anyways, I gave all the blankets out as gifts, and I know who will eventually get one of my quilts, based on how they reacted to the fleece blankets.... I'm glad I didn't take the time/money/effort to make a quilt for all these people!

    Long story short!! :lol: :lol: (sorry I tend to ramble)
    If you aren't sure if a person will appreciate a quilt, maybe think of a smaller, not so time-intensive project to make them. Like a tote, or an easy blanket, or something along those lines. Then you will know who is "quilt-worthy" :D

    (I meant nothing negative by this post, I don't mean to say that people aren't worth my time, obviously! But it has saved me some hurt feelings, just thought I would pass it along) :-D

    Thanks for listening! You guys are the best!

  16. #66
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    [/quote] Once I made a beautiful fabric bowel for a neighbor and friend across the street. Just for fun, I put a few of the roses from my rose garden in the bowel (I had the roses set in a small bowl of water of course). She shrieked to the other guests at her birthday party, "Look at what Bev gave me!! A bunch of roses from her yard!!" as though it was a big joke. [/quote]

    Well now that's just plain rude!

  17. #67
    Senior Member Lucky Lindy's Avatar
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    What a great idea, you're absolutely correct some people just don't "get" what a gift a quilt is.

  18. #68
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    I had someone to ask me the cost for a Christmas gift.
    Then she said she only buys expensive "stuff". It was a relative, too.
    Dodee

  19. #69
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    That is a good idea...a trial gift! LOL Last Xmas I made aprons for my step-mom, SIL and 2 nieces. One of the nieces looked at it, said thanks and crumpled it up putting it back in the box. It is typical of her...she has been this was since she was a little girls...I was not surprised. Her sis, on the other hand, thanked me profusely and has mentioned to me several times how much she enjoys wearing it. Quilted gifts are not everyone's idea of something they want to have decorating their homes. I would be very cautious about gifting people with quilts. This year, all the females in the family are getting Bow-tucks bags!

  20. #70
    Super Member merry's Avatar
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    That was a wonderful way to look at it. Very good advice.

  21. #71
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    I understand the hurt that many of you feel, i've also been there. But the original poster has the right idea on how to "feel them out". Smart thinking.
    I plan to make less than 10 quilts in my lifetime, all for my grandchildren and children. I hope that because they know it is from me, they will treasure the quilt they get.
    HOWEVER, once a gift is given, it is not fair to question how a person uses it. You gotta let it go.
    I used to handpaint pottery and one day I expect to see one of my projects at a garage sale because I know what you all are learning...not everyone appreciates handmade items.
    Maybe they have never had the pleasure of creating something of their own (poor people), or they are just too immature to understand the worth (i was young once). Let's forgive them and move on with more wisdom than we had before. Thanks so much for this post. It makes me feel better that i was not alone.

  22. #72
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    I made my MIL a beautiful lap size quilt one year and the next time I saw her, it was all folded up and she was using it for a cushion to sit on. Oh well, at least it was being used.

  23. #73
    Junior Member lynn_z's Avatar
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    I win the stupid prize there. My DIL pretends to like my quilts, etc.
    and I have to do something with them....can only keep so many. However, HER mother wanted to learn how to make them so I taught her. Guess whose DIL uses now.

  24. #74
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    I just had a thought :idea: :oops: If someone gave us a home crafted gift, would we know how they intended for us to use it. Would I be mortified to find out that they were offended by the way I treated it? I notice a range of actions that goes from the recipient wrapping it up and putting it away because it is too lovely to use, all the way to loving it to death. Maybe they did not know our intentions for the gift. In some cases, would it be the kind thing to tell them?

    Having shed tears because of a misunderstanding when my DD received one of my quilts, I have begun to think about better communication and my motive for giving the quilt in the first place. That motive thing became a real opportunity to look at what goes on within myself and the need to have others validate me. :oops: Sorry to get so heavy but I am convinced that as we develop our quilting skills, we develop ourselves. :lol: :lol: :lol:

  25. #75

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    I live in Florida and most of my family is RI and MA. It's sad that there are a lot of people who don't appreciate the love, the thought, the time and the money it costs to make such a unique
    gift. I always think of my lap quilts as long-distance hugs. Several years ago my SIL's mother was quite ill. I made her a lap quilt.
    The 24 squares had all different machine embroidered 4 inch butterflies and the quilt was latticed, bordered & backed with a gorgeous butterfly fabric. Georgie, the Mom absolutely loved. My
    SIL called me after Georgie died to say she put the quilt in the coffin with her Mom. I have to say that totally freaked me out. Perhaps I should have seen it as a supreme compliment, but I thought it was weird. Why not keep it as a nice memory? Am I nuts?

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