On Therapy and Quilter’s Guilt

Silence.  A whole lot of silence.  In the past two weeks I have turned on my sewing machine twice, and that was last night.  A few of my favorite blogger friends have written about quilting guilt in the past few weeks, and it resonated with me deeply.  I have so many things that I want to work on, but I also have quite a few things I have to make for other people.  Here’s the problem.  I’m behind.  Like really behind.  Chalk it up to losing my machine for 6 weeks at the beginning of the year, terrible timing at work, and poor time management.  Whatever I call it, I’m behind.  Which wouldn’t be a problem, except for the fact that I hate HATE hate rushing things that I’m making for other people.  I want to make their projects, I really really do.  However, whatever time it would take me to make it for myself – multiply it by two.  Perfectionist Problems.

Which is why it’s easy for me to sit down and make an entire quilt top for myself when I have little time because I can skip the ironing, perfection cutting, obsessing, and impeccable points.  Now, if I’m making it for someone else, that’s a different story.  I obsess over every detail because I like them.  And it’d be nice if they like me and what I make.  So, this weekend is going to be dedicated to getting caught up.  Really.

To ease the stress I was feeling about being so behind last night I folded all of my AMH fabric, and then realized I should have put it all in color order.  whoops.

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That made me feel a lot better.  Fabric Therapy is real.

Then I chain stitched HSTs for 30 minutes.

It felt good to sew for just the amount of time I had, not adding extra pressure or worrying about perfect points.  Sometimes it’s good to have mindless sewing … of course that means that eventually I’m going to have to iron all of those HSTs.

Do you suffer from quilter’s guilt?  If you do, are you like me – do you just live in denial for a while?

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15 thoughts on “On Therapy and Quilter’s Guilt

  1. I totally understand you as I am in the same situation. I love quilting, but somehow I have also other things to do. I can’t squeeze all my working and free time activities in 24 hours – so I have to set priorities. And quilting is at the moment somewhere in the middle of the list. Hope this changes by June and I shall have more sewing time. But anyway – happy quilting! Barbora

  2. I think its completely normal to suffer quilter’s guilt – I know I do. On the one hand, I want to participate in all the fun events others are doing, swaps, QALs, etc. But I also want to work on my own ideas too! It can be really hard to know what’s just enough commitments, and what’s too much. And then you throw real life into the mix….. I hope it gets a little less guilty for you soon. 😀

  3. Guilt… I had to get the blogging ladies to vote for which quilt I was going to work on next. I WANTED to work on one. I knew I SHOULD work on another. The girls kept me on the straight and narrow. And you know what? It’s going well, and I’ll have it done super quickly because I’m doing the right thing and my conscience is clear. BTW, what IS it with ironing? I enjoy it…

  4. I’m not getting much sewing time at all lately. In between working on immigration stuff, new puppy that needs constant supervision, needing to find another puppy sitter when I’m at work (both of us work full time) and sorting things for our wedding later in the year, I’m actually feeling really overwhelmed without thinking about my projects too but I try and sneak in twenty minutes in a morning every day and a little more at weekends lately. I can’t drop the ball but I definitely don’t feel guilty! I need the time to relax away from the other things, but also I make money from my quilting and I need to save more for the wedding and stuff so it’s kind of essential too.I get my partner to puppy watch for me whilst I work on essential projects.

  5. There is light at the end of the tunnel, right? Another school year is coming to an end my friend. You’ll get caught up! People will definitely forgive you for being behind! It happens to all of us.

  6. Oh I am definitely feeling it. I’m also behind, I keep making things for other people and they totally take longer than they would for me! I agonize over fabric choices and placement and the whole time I’m making it I wonder if they’ll like it. Blah. My LQS called yesterday to tell me they had the washi dress pattern in…so I’m thinking it’s time to get more behind and make myself something, seeing as how my AMH collection is like…three fabrics (at least until the Potent gets here!!).

  7. I just wrote a post on this exact topic, and why I’m giving up on quilters guilt. It’s sooo hard to find balance but I’m really trying to find that place where my relaxing hobby goes back to being exactly that.
    Take some time to catch up, but make sure you also spend time doing what makes you happy!!

  8. I agree with you, I go through the same thing and it stresses me out! Sometimes the pressure can take away some of the joy in quilting and I have to step back, and like you touch some fabric. I’m new at all of this so I’m not sure if that guilt will go away when your overwhelmed so I’ll keep touching the fabric until I feel better! Hang in there, that’s all we can do! 🙂

    tdkcarpenoctem@hotmail.com

  9. I know I am in a privileged place where I get to quilt every day if I want – no kids and no working for someone else. But I also understand the guilt. In the end remind yourself why you quilt – because you love it. Take a breath. Hug your fabric. All will be well.

  10. My guilt comes in the form of procrastination. My closest friend is moving in two weeks, right before she has her baby, have I even started on her quilt? No. And my sister had her baby in February, same thing. And even though I know they’ll love me even without perfect points, I still haven’t started…. Ack!!

  11. I feel the same way most of the time! A couple of months ago I had NO (unbelievably), not one deadline. It was glorious and I’ve never felt so relaxed. I also got a lot done. Because I’ve been to heaven, I try to think about that and not worry too much about all the deadlines. But it’s hard. 🙂

  12. I think everyone can feel guilty at times, but really you shouldn’t. I know my last month was a total washout and I felt bad at the time but really it was just how it goes. Things happen that get in the way sometimes and it can’t be helped. You can only do what you can do. You definitely shouldn’t feel guilty for trying to make something the best you can. I’m sure no one will be bothered when you’ve made them a beautiful quilt 🙂

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