Lessons From My Life in Art

Today’s blog post is a very personal reflection. I don’t usually post about things like this, but I think there’s an important message here for all of us involved in the arts. Opposition appears from time to time and we must decide how to respond to that. This is the story of a lesson I learned that has served me very well. I hope it will serve you well, too!

After studying and working with the Indigo and Shibori for many years, I started working with Moda Fabrics to have my designs reproduced on quilting fabric. I was delighted and so excited to have THE best fabric company working with me!!!

Shortly after, I received an email from a friend telling me I was the subject of another blogger’s post asking their followers what they thought about my Shibori “reproduction” fabrics. The blogger did not feel that I should have the right to reproduce my designs on commercially printed quilting fabrics. She thought that the art of Shibori should stay “real” and only be used in it’s original hand-dyed state.

As a result of that one post, I became known as “that woman”.

Awhile later, I went to a quilt festival with a shop owner who was carrying my fabrics and showing my quilts. The response was great! This was very satisfying until some of the blogger’s followers came by to speak with me and then discovered what they thought was hand-dyed Shibori fabric was actually my Moda fabric. One of them abruptly said, “OH!!!" And, then they walked off with no further words and just left me standing there.”

As a fellow artist, whether you create quilts, home décor or do hand-dyeing, you can certainly understand how I felt. We put so much of ourselves into our art, that a response like that is very hurtful.

And, that’s when I learned something of great value that I hope will be of help to you, also. After talking with my husband, David, and some of my “real friends” I realized that the opinions of the blogger and her followers was their problem, NOT mine!

We all have our own goals in creating art and I am thrilled that I can help all of you with what I do! I teach, dye, sell hand-dyed fabrics and have my hand-dyed designs reproduced for people to sew, because:

  • Some people want to dye their own fabrics.
  • Some want to buy hand-dyed fabrics.
  • Some cannot afford to pay for hand dyed fabrics.
  • Some just want to sew with great fabric.

So, this lesson is for all of us and very important as we continue to put our hearts into the art we create.

  • Sometimes you have to take the lemons that other’s opinions hand you and make lemonade!
  • Sometimes you have to realize that you have not done anything wrong and continue to find joy in what you do and how it gives joy to others.

Whatever you would like to do with the art of Shibori, I am here to help you and I have many resources on my web site to help you fulfill your dreams. Take a few minutes to explore and plan your creations in any manner that pleases you by clicking the links below. Because YOU are what the joy of art is all about!


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