Thursday, March 31, 2011

Blog Snobbery

Yesterday I read a post by a blogger/quilter where she posted about what someone had said about her recently published quilting book -- both on and on a blog.  The review of the quilt book was, at least on one level, a personal attack not just a critique.  However, the comment that bothered me the most was one where the woman said she would throw a gift away if it was not perfect.  Basically, that although the other person had spent hours making it and cared enough about her to give it to her, she would just trash it.  I struggle with my quilts and they are far from perfect and when I hear someone say something like that it makes me want to quit -- or at least keep the quilts I make for me only and not give them to others.  We all know the saying, if something is worth doing it is worth doing well.  and this makes me question whether my work is good enough.  

I confess that I get the same feelings when I read blog posts where the writer is telling everyone what makes a good blog, and how blogs that don't meet that standard are just a waste of time.  

I guess that is blog snobbery and maybe this is quilt snobbery.  

So here are my very imperfect blocks for the very imperfect quilt I'm making for the grand daughter of a friend of ours (only 8 more to go but I have to take the sewing machine in for a tune-up before I can finish).


Sara said...

I was a bit worried about the idea initially - I gave just my third quilt to a co-worker when she had a baby (mainly because I felt a bit bad about teasing her because she got soooo big) and I was a bit worried that she'd never use it or get rid of it, but I think you can tell whether or not someone is deserving of the effort you need to put in. If you don't know someone well enough to know whether they'd appreciate it or not, you probably shouldn't be giving one of your hard-made quilts to them. These days, I worry not so much about my actual quilting, as I do about if it's a useful size, or if the fabric is appropriate, especially if it's for a boy (flowers sneak in everywhere)

A deserving recipient will love a quilt because of it's imperfections, not in spite of them.

If I don't like a blog, I wont read it, not because I don't think it deserves it, more that it doesn't interest me, in exactly the same way that the sports section in the newspaper doesn't interest me. I do have one complaint, something that I think makes a "bad" blog, and that is one where there's more advertising than actual bloggage. Some is fine, I get that it's a business for some people but when the last ten, fifteen posts are advertising, I'm gunna be un-following them. But other than that, it's the blogger's blog, they can post what they want on it. It's not our job to judge them, or critique them.

Kathy said...

I think your quilt is beautiful! I have always wanted to take quilting up, maybe one day I will! There is always going to be somebody to tell us what makes the perfect quilt, blog, mom, or gandma, thankfully, we don't have to listen! I'm so glad you visted my site so I could find yours! Have a great day!

Shay said...

I think we all experience some of those feelings Thea. I used to worry about people critiquing my work but as Sara pointed out - I generally give my creations to people that I know will appreciate the effort I put into them even if they arent perfect (and none of them ever are ). Occasionally I remind myself I quilt for pleasure - not to see how many quilts I can make in a year or how much better or worse mine are compared to others.

Blogging is the same. My blog is a reflection of me , a way to document events in my life and a way to share that with others if they're interested. It's not about numbers of followers for me and that's what those people who talk about what makes a "good " blog are talking about.

I completely agree with Sara too about advertising. I've turned down offers to review things and do giveaways from companies because I dont want to become part of the machine!

Great post. (And I love your imperfect blocks for the imperfect quilt )

Marg said...

Great post Thea. I agree with Sara, Kathy and Shay. I blog because I want to document my life, as I am rubbish at keeping a diary. I now have an alternate place for my photos as I never print them out. I read blogs because i find them interesting, I don't read blogs if they are full of advertising and don't "feel real", but I'm not going to make comments about them, I just don't read them.
One thing I've noticed lately, there seems to be some kind of unwritten competition in the crafting world to out do each other. It's like parents trying to throw the biggest and best party for their children. On flickr especially it's a love fest on who can do the best, a bit of a turn off for me.
I think your blocks look gorgeous, keep quilting and enjoying the process.

Katie said...

I don't put much stock in idiots that say things like that. I have lots of friends who would LOVE to have a quilt I made and you are by far a MUCH better quilter than I. Perfection is the furthest thing from my mind. Although I must admit I only make quilts for people who I know will use and treasure them.

P. said...

Thought provoking post, Thea. Life is to short for such snobbery, isn't it? Live and let live, I say. I agree with the previous comments and have also sensed that competitive nature (as with anything, I suppose) in the crafting world. In one sense, that can be good in that it causes us to endeavor to do our best and possibly stretch ourselves to do something new. On the other hand, comparing oneself to another is unfair to both and sucks the enjoyment right out of it.

I love your quilt and would be proud to get it as a gift! Rock on, girl.

rubyslipperz said...

First, I love your quilt! Love the colors and design. Didn't look "imperfect" to me...not at all!

Second, life is just to short to spend time criticizing (sp?...darn, i wish there was spell check here)


desertskyquilts said...

I've been giving imperfect baby quilts and other quilts away for 40+ years and there's never been anyone who threw it away, or was less than thrilled to have what I gave. Maybe I'm just lucky, but I believe the vast majority of people are thrilled. I love your blocks and they look just fine to me. I was thinking that if my grandmother or great-grandmother had left a quilt to me, it could be as wonky and imperfect as anything and I would be thrilled to have it.

Happy Birthday, C.S.!!

So today my #3 grandson turns 6.  So hard to believe he's that old already.  Here's his school picture. and here are some m...