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Thread: who makes the rules?

  1. #26
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    If you aren't making your quilts to enter for judging in shows, do whatever works for you!

  2. #27
    Junior Member Miss Purple Shoes's Avatar
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    My dog Branston inspects my quilts and is pleased with them all. He is my favourite quilt police inspector.

  3. #28
    Super Member quilt3311's Avatar
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    The only rules I follow are the ones I make up! I do try to be consistent with seam allowances and try to keep stitching even when quilting, but anything else that people say or write or publish are just suggestions. Do what makes you happy and do your own thing. As long as you are happy with your work--your the only one who really matters.
    I agree if you plan to enter a large show, they do have certain rules you have to follow, but they are just that, rules to follow if you want to enter.
    I also agree that "Quilt Police" is kind of a joke. I actually have a shirt that says "Quilt Police". Has a little dude with rulers, markers, tape measure and rotary cutter etc then Quilt Police in an arch over his head. Get lots of laughs with it. Found that at a quilt shop right before I hosted a quilting bus tour. My fellow hostess and I both got one. Had a ball with it on the bus.

  4. #29
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    I love rules. When I was younger I thought they were stupid, useless, I could / would do better, or at least my own thing. Now that I'm older, I appreciate rules. The can keep u from making costly mistakes in quilting and ur life. Most rules come from a mass of common sense and r tryed and true. I am not talking about a simple color choice or using a different seam allowance....when I first began piecing I jumped in with both feet but no idea what I was doing, THANKS to this board, I found out some proper ( rules ) ways to fix my diaster in my sewing room, and I have a lovely quilt to show for it.

  5. #30
    Super Member Murphy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fleurdelisquilts.com
    To me the rules are just guidelines that generally make things work better or make a process easier. I don't even call them "rules" when teaching. Instead, I say there are "suggestions" that we may (or may not) want to follow. Doing so makes us better at our craft, and who doesn't want to be better? So we read and take classes to learn new techniques and to improve for our own satisfaction. As with most things, we have to make decisions based on what works for us at the moment and based on common sense.

    The quilt police are like the fashion police, they exist in a strange kind of way, but after a while who really cares? I still wear my jeans, tee shirts and athletic shoes because to me comfort is more important than fashion. Do people find me dowdy and unfashionable? Absolutely, but it doesn't matter one bit if I'm comfortable.
    Well said!

  6. #31

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    As you pointed out, even the "experts" disagree about the rules. Just do what you love. Enjoy it. The only "rules" are those that you set for yourself.

  7. #32
    Senior Member gypsyquilter's Avatar
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    I think I am going to change my screen name to "The Outlaw Quilter" if there are quilt police, I'm breaking every law and not caring a bit.

    PS. I also wear white after labor day and have managed to evade the fashion police now for a long time too :-)

  8. #33
    Super Member Aurora's Avatar
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    My now 90 year old aunt taught me to hand piece when I was 15 and she taught me to use 1/4" seam allowance.

    I think that that was probably used from the beginning bore out of necessity. A much larger s.a. on small pieces would have been difficult to get to lay flat (remember we have electri iron and they might have finger pressed) and all he s.a. would have distorted the block. Also, the limited access to usable fabric probably forced a very conservative approach its use.

    Those women were no different from us. Through trial and error they problably figured what worked best and the 1/4" s.a. for piecing became a standard.

    I think it is important to remember that all this "rules" are really just guidelines. The people who write the books are offering us lots of options. It is our responsibility to determine which work best for us. We are very fortunate to have so many options.

    My grandmother wore out scissors, used newspaper (if she was lucky enough to have it) for templates and wore out a treadle machine, which was probably near impossible considering how many of them are out there for us to enjoy.

    Sometimes when I am using a rotary cutter, I think of my granny sitting by the Warm Morning heat stove and rug hooking by kerosene lamps because her newly acquired electric had gone out again.

    I am seeing more and more template quilts in magazines again. Just shows us that what is old is new again. There was probably something soothing about sitting by that heat stove in the evening and tracing templates onto fabric and then cutting them out. I love this memory. How fortunate that we are able to quilt for pleasure rather than out of necessity like those quilters who helped to perfect the art we enjoy so much.

  9. #34
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    Do what you want to do!!! As for seam allowances, just make sure they're all the same and remember your blocks will be smaller than stated in the pattern....if you use a pattern!!!

  10. #35
    Super Member clsurz's Avatar
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    I'm a baby boomer as well. Will be 65 in January. I'm not one to follow rules either regarding this art form. Of course I realize there are some basic rules of thumb to know to even get started but than again I believe I'd fit best in the Crazy quilting arena more than the traditional way of todays quilting.

    The quilt police as you state mostly are I believe with juried quilts at shows. Those that want to follow those rules usually are the ones who enter their projects in them.

    I most likely will never do what is coined a traditional quilt. I'd rather play with my fabrics/fibers and fabric paints and applique "crazily" and it be one of a kind than for it to look like everyone elses.

    I just go about doing it the way I want it done and enjoy my efforts no matter if anyone likes it or not.

  11. #36
    Super Member Fabaddict's Avatar
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    what quilt police? it is your quilt do it your way and don't worry about anyone else. a mistake? Can you see it on a galloping horse? in reality, it is design change.

  12. #37
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    In my studio/my world (LOL) I make the rules!

    Quote Originally Posted by Fancy Nancy
    hear a lot about "quilt police". just wondering, who actually makes the quilting "rules". I have a lot of books on quilting by various authors and there are sometimes different methods given. it bugs me b/c when our ancestors made quilts - the pioneer women etc, they didn't appear to follow "rules" and we never say they did it wrong. so who actually has the right to suddenly make rules on how things have to be done. is their a quilting law book or something? if i want all my seams to be 1/3" rather than 1/4" what does it matter? as long as all the seams are the same size? maybe it just the baby boomer in me but i sometimes resent having to follow all the "rules" that are made by so called quilting experts.

  13. #38
    deema's Avatar
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    *I* make the rules!!!!! :lol:

    Honestly, I do things the way I like them. Maybe they`re not "traditional" or whatever...but it works for me, and I am happy with the outcome. Until I start showing quilts for judging, I'm gonna do what suits me an my quilts and makes ME happy. If you want a 1/3" seam, more power to you.

  14. #39
    Super Member hobbykat1955's Avatar
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    My cousin is a professional quilter and told me "there are no rules"...If you like it and it works for you, your the judge....So I do my own thing trying to learn a few things but if I like it...it's my rules....

  15. #40
    Super Member quiltmom04's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fancy Nancy
    hear a lot about "quilt police". just wondering, who actually makes the quilting "rules". I have a lot of books on quilting by various authors and there are sometimes different methods given. it bugs me b/c when our ancestors made quilts - the pioneer women etc, they didn't appear to follow "rules" and we never say they did it wrong. so who actually has the right to suddenly make rules on how things have to be done. is their a quilting law book or something? if i want all my seams to be 1/3" rather than 1/4" what does it matter? as long as all the seams are the same size? maybe it just the baby boomer in me but i sometimes resent having to follow all the "rules" that are made by so called quilting experts.
    Soryy, no real police! But when other quilters say something "should" be done one way or another, I suspect it's becasue it's the "way it's always been done". I'm sure using a template was radical at some point, and then using a rotary cutter, now the GO!. But other things like 1/4" seams are there becasue most people find that easiest to use, and it gives quilters a common measurement when following patterns. But if 1/3" suits you better - go for it!

  16. #41
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    I think that sometimes we are our worst quilt police. As far as the rest, up theirs' I am too old to worry about "what is right , sometimes it is just how it will work" Just enjoy what you are doing....

  17. #42
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    I think that sometimes we are our worst quilt police. As far as the rest, up theirs' I am too old to worry about "what is right , sometimes it is just how it will work" Just enjoy what you are doing....

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltmom04
    Quote Originally Posted by Fancy Nancy
    hear a lot about "quilt police". just wondering, who actually makes the quilting "rules". I have a lot of books on quilting by various authors and there are sometimes different methods given. it bugs me b/c when our ancestors made quilts - the pioneer women etc, they didn't appear to follow "rules" and we never say they did it wrong. so who actually has the right to suddenly make rules on how things have to be done. is their a quilting law book or something? if i want all my seams to be 1/3" rather than 1/4" what does it matter? as long as all the seams are the same size? maybe it just the baby boomer in me but i sometimes resent having to follow all the "rules" that are made by so called quilting experts.
    Soryy, no real police! But when other quilters say something "should" be done one way or another, I suspect it's becasue it's the "way it's always been done". I'm sure using a template was radical at some point, and then using a rotary cutter, now the GO!. But other things like 1/4" seams are there becasue most people find that easiest to use, and it gives quilters a common measurement when following patterns. But if 1/3" suits you better - go for it!

    i didn't mean i was going to do a 1/3" seam - just was an example of breaking the rules. (tho I am sure some have ended up being 1/3 and 1/5 and 3/8 etc! LOL)

  19. #44
    community benefactor Parrothead's Avatar
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    Like Aurora I have great memories of my Grannie pieceing using a cardboard or paper template. I have some of those cardboard templates and you can see the many pencil marks she made tracing the pattern. I also have some of the original Kansas City Star newspaper clippings from the 1930's. They mention the 1/4" allowance. Besides conserving material I also believe this was done so that when quilting there is not so many layers to quilt through since a lot of the quilting was done 1/4" in from the seam. A lot of those vintage quilts were quilted at Quilting Bees or community quilt groups and there had to be some consistency. The "Quilt Police" probably did not exist back in the day because women did not have the internet to tell them they had to do something. This reminds me of a woman I met who did Swedish Weaving like I do and the woman who taught her told her she could only use Red Heart yarn. Actually you can use any brand you want.

  20. #45
    Super Member featherweight's Avatar
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    I just like to follow a pattern. When I see a picture of a quilt, I would like mine to look as near to it as possible. If it says do a 3/4" seam instead of a 1/4", that is what I will do. If I don't, then it is not going to look anything close to the picture. Points look nicer if all the seams were sewn the correct width. Just my opinion. Like everyone else said, its your quilt make it anyway you little heart desires. You'll love it!!

  21. #46
    Super Member Jo M's Avatar
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    Yep, I make up my own rules...as I go.

  22. #47
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    I too a baby boomer and I do what works for me and I'm happy with the out come.

  23. #48
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    I too a baby boomer and I do what works for me and I'm happy with the out come.

  24. #49
    Super Member jojosnana's Avatar
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    I don't think we have real "quilting police" but perhaps that is another title for "Quilt Judges". So if it isn't in a contest, just enjoy what you love.

  25. #50
    Super Member raptureready's Avatar
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    There are no set rules, rather suggestions of what works for each person. And just because it works for me doesn't mean that it will work for you and vice versa. The only time you should follow "rules" is if you'd paid for a seminar/workshop where there's famous teacher like Carol Doak, Ricky Tims or whomever. Then follow their instructions to the letter. Later you can pick and choose which of those instructions you want to adapt for yourself. The only reason I say that is because you've paid money to learn so go ahead and learn their methods. You never know what you might want to keep.

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