Friday, August 04, 2006

Some thoughts

These last days so many people have had their thinking caps on, and many good thoughts have been shared.

Jeanne had a great post on what kind of quilters we are, and I said I am an artisan, as I thought so at the moment.
Well - I am wrong, I am not an artisan, nor an artist, nor a technician, but a mix of all.

In fact I think I am a freequilter - a twist on freethinker :-)

Merrian-Webster definition of freethinker:
Main Entry: free·think·er Pronunciation: -'thi[ng]-k&r
Function: noun: one who forms opinions on the basis of reason independently of authority; especially : one who doubts or denies religious dogma - free·think·ing /-ki[ng]/ noun or adjective

I like techniques and I love a sharp point, like in Dear Jane,
but I do not lose a minute sleep over a blunt point, if I otherwise did my best.
My best is a reflection on where I am at the moment, quilting wise.
My Dear Jane quilt is full of blunt point applique, but that is where I was at the moment, and I Love and am proud of every block :-)
I absolutely love to try new techniques and new challenges in blocks, not for the perfection, but for the feeling of being able to do it.
For every new thing I learn quilting wise there are 10 more doors to open, 10 more new things to dream and to try - like a upside down pyramide with me at the point looking forward - oh joy, all that fun ahead !
I am thriving on challenges - it is my reason to quilt :-)
Yet - I love every moment of making a quilt for a child in need - in any technique.
If I can wrap a child in a soft quilt and happy colours I am happy too.
I absolutely love to make utility quilts and items for my family and people I love too.

Artisan - yes and no - I feel I am to restless and curious to rest in the artisan defenition, and I do not do many crafts, like many do.
It might be different in English, but in Norwegian artisan is very women craft related - a little heavy on the traditional side.
Yes, I like traditional methods, but I also like to try new methods and new ways of thinking.
I have been critizised by crafts people for using "new" methods in quilting, like rotary cutting and sewing machine....
In my eyes traditions are art(isan) heritage in constant development. What I am passing it on to my girls and my students is not only what I have been given from the women before me. It is the knowledge from women before me plus my twist on it I am passing on.

Artist - yes and no - when I am doing something new and inventive it might be called artistery, but as the daughter of a man who has fed himself and his family by his art I have respect for the word - and not.
My father always quote something that goes like -
Art comes from knowledge,
and not from will.

In Norwegian - for my Norwegian friends -

Kunst kommer av å kunne,
hvis det hadde kommet av å ville,
ville det hete vilst !

It is a play with words, but nevertheless very true !

A well known quilt art quilter that I know told me not very long ago the reason she turned to art quilt is that she can not sew a sharp point if her life depended on it -
and she admires all who can.
Something to think about !!

So - quilting wise I am touching all walls - tradition, artistery, artisan, technician - and I will keep on doing so - one foot on the ground - in tradition and skills - and one foot up in the air, in movement - to new places and new challenges - and my head up in the clouds - in dreams and inovation.
We have a Norwegian saying that goes like:
One who stands with both feet on the ground stands still.

I want to be in movement :-)

On stash sizes this is where I stand -

Your stash should not be bigger than you are comfortable with,
both size wise and mind wise.

Mine is a bit on the uncomfortable side size wise - you have seen my stash here
This is the space I have to my use in my not so big house.
I can use some of my fabric collection to get some more space :-)

These roses are for you, reading all the way through.
Maybe you are a freequilter too ? :-)


  1. I like that. Freequilter. It makes me feel like I can let go and do what I want. Of course, I won't be entering the "free quilter" quilts in any shows, but maybe I'll love them all the more for the expressiveness.
    Hanne, at least your stash is all in one place. Someday I'll take a picture of all the different hidey holes I have.

  2. well said, my friend--she says, while taking a break from cutting.

  3. hope you can get your stash to a size you like soon....

  4. Oh yes - a free-quilter and touching all the walls - I like these ideas - if I am going to climb into a box, I want each side of the box to represent a different perspective - wouldn't that be perfect?
    I also like your personal challenge and I am off to work on some cards that I need to make because I really don't want to go out and buy cards

  5. Good philosophy and a great attitude. I really like your new category of 'freequilter'.

  6. Hanne, You just gave me to much to think about. I don't know what type of quilter I am, I just do what feels good, maybe that is free spirit. Imaginative. Lets see what happens. Fly by the seat of my pants. Take what ever the outcome and move on. Something to chew on, what type of quilter am I?????

  7. I think I am a traditional quilter, or not. Perhaps I am a freequilter too..... I love to work with colours and shapes. Like to explore new tecniques and combine old with new ones. I love to create things and I appriciate the friends I have got through this hobby.

  8. Great food for thought. Reminds us we all have something special to bring to the table, whether it be an eye for color, the ability to consistently make those sharp points, creativity to design new patterns, or the patience to share our knowledge with others.

  9. Anonymous2:20 am

    hanne, i loved your reasoning in this. i think i am a free-thinker also. i learned all the rules and the traditions. i haven't made it to art quilter but i definitely push myself. i do it through color and simple shapes. i also love to make 'caring' quilts for the kids and the elderly. makes me feel good because i know how much they appreciate them.
    patti in florida

  10. wow--great post and you have a wonderful way of expressing yourself. You said everything about me! Now I don't have to say it! I struggle to figure out what category I fit into, I'm not all traditional and not arty either. you said it perfectly. I think I can call myself a free-quilter too. I love how you said you have one foot on the ground, one in the air and your head in the clouds! I love it. Thanks for writing such a great post. ;)


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