Saturday, March 5, 2022

Small & Simple Does the Trick

Quilters -  do you at times get bogged down and lose your motivation for quilting? I think this happens to all of us at one time or another. Sometimes it happens to me if I spend a lot of time working on one certain thing (like a large project or trying to complete many projects for a book). I get burned out easily and then find I don't even want to quilt for awhile. What gets me going again is NOT looking at millions of photos of quilts on Pinterest, thinking it will get me motivated. This just makes me feel overwhelmed and now I've got a million projects I want to make but know I never will. Believe me, this just adds to your stress.  And, people, who among us doesn't have enough stress as it is right now??  


For years, I've noticed that I feel calmer, happier and just plain better when I'm creating something. When life gets stressful, it's even more important to do things that make yourself feel good. 

I love art and being "crafty" -stamping, card making, scrapbooking, painting, sewing :):

I know from experience that if I stop creating for a time,  it's that much harder to be creative when I get back to it. But sometimes all you have to do is jump in and make a little something and see if you can't get it back. What helps me the most is to slowly start playing around with fabric and make a few easy blocks. Then put them together to make something small. Sometimes I'll just buy a little bit of fabric while I'm at it. You'd be amazed at how quickly you'll perk up with some new fabric, LOL. 

Last year in my Facebook group, we made a few easy little projects I called Small & Simple quilts. The patterns for these are in the group files. 

Four-patch blocks are fun and easy - 

Small & Simple quilt #1 below was inspired by an antique quilt block I turned into a doll quilt.

Sewing half-square triangles made from reproduction fabrics can be soothing to the soul - and this one was also inspired by an antique quilt.

Nine patches and reproduction fabrics - Ahhh, what more can I say??  Another one inspired by an antique doll quilt. 

We also had a fun sew along in the group that involved working with wool (or learning how to do wool applique.) It's fun to sew along together in a group. Even though this sew along has ended it's still fun to look at the photos of projects others have made from one of my books and maybe decide to get going on one by yourself. 

Make it your way . . . .

Right now in the group we're still working on hexagons for a quilt of your choice. Thanks to so many of you for participating in the Valentine Mystery we did last month. We'll do another simple little sew along in a few weeks or next month.

The lesson in all of this really is - sometimes we have to take the frenzy out of our heads in order to feel good. Making something and tapping into our creativity helps with that. Do yourself a favor and make something small and simple this weekend and see what happens. 


  1. 🤗 thank you the reminders!! I’m very new to your small projects but I’m thrilled to have them to go to when the large quilts seem too much!

  2. Ces petites courtepointes sont ravissantes. J'ai 4 de vos livres dont "A Prairie Journey". Merci pour vos encouragements, il est vrai qu'en ce moment nous avons besoin de nous distraire tout en créant de petites choses. Je vous souhaite un bon dimanche.

  3. Very good advice! Now if I could just make myself follow that advice! ---"Love"

  4. So inspiring! I'll do that today. Thank you.

  5. I have been feeling in a quilting funk right now so I am trying to do just as you said and make a small project...a dresser scarf for myself. One thing I like to do to get me excited about quilting again is to go through my drawer of single blocks I have made and not used then find a way to use a few. I know what you mean about the need to do something creative. It helps a lot...I enjoyed this post.

  6. This is a great post. Thank you for doing it. Love all the beautiful pics of your work. My mom always said sewing was her therapy when times were tough, and I've really tried to remember that these days. As you mentioned, even doing something small can help.

  7. Gosh we could be sisters (I do have a sister-in-law named Kathleen Tracy!)!! I am currently bogged down in BOMs and on line sew alongs but once I am done with those I can work on my own projects. In between I work on my scrap pile making small units just as you have described, and soon I will have many to put into several small quilts.

  8. Looking at all the beautiful projects it seems there is nothing wrong with your creativity. It does brings happiness doesn't it?
    Working on a quilt and share that creative process with friens brings so much joy. Have a nice and creative weekend!

  9. Very encouraging words and some very charming projects.


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