Sunday, April 24, 2011

oh, goodness

So, it's just after 10 PM here, and I've just finished reading and responding through all of the 200+ comments on yesterdays (infamous?) post.  I wish we had all night folks, because there's soooooooo much to say, isn't there?

1.  Your comments were incredible.  I made pages of notes. I will have an incredibly hard time choosing the book winner, but that kinda seems besides the point, doesn't it?  I will choose someone, but you'll have to give me some time!

2.  My posts are now available in full in your reader, not truncated.  Or, at least I hope so.  I checked a button...

3.  My only regret about yesterday's post experience is that it was somewhat negative taken as a whole with all of the comments.  I was going more for "confession" than "I dislike this."  However, several of my confessions walked that line closely.  There's an interesting discussion to be had here about the value of being "real" and the danger of being rude.  That said, I hope and believe that our dislikes are said as a personal statement only.  To dislike something does not mean that I think it's poorly done or "wrong". Of course not! Art is subjective. My view is not better than anyone else's.

4.   A few clarifications...  I did not say that I dislike Sherbet Pips.  I did like them immediately!  However, like many of you, I saw the line used so many times before yardage was available that the marketing itself kind of turned me off to the line.  That is why I said I need a "break."

On Innocent Crush, I want to state for the record that I've loved many things made in this line.  Just because I wasn't drawn to buy and stitch with the line as a whole (as I am with Good Folks, for example), doesn't mean that I haven't truly enjoyed things others have made with the line as a whole.

And, lastly, Single Girl... I  have no idea why this quilt pattern doesn't grab me.  It just doesn't.  But it's not as if I think they're awful or something!  Never said that.  If a pattern that doesn't appeal to you appears over and over again all over blogdom, you just might get tired of seeing it, that's all.   I will say that the Single Girl Support Group was obviously a fantastic idea, since so many people were interested in pursuing this quilt pattern!

5.  I love that lots of you had no idea what I was talking about - Sherbet Pips, Single Girl, Innocent Crush, yada, yada.  That's totally cool beans.  Sorry that I didn't take the time to include links so that you wouldn't have to do the searching.

6.  I could actually take some time to talk about all the subjects you brought up.  Fabric consumerism, marketing on blogs, labeling quilt styles (modern/traditional), what we want from reading blogs (closely related to how blogs make us feel), and so much more (like how you hate seeing people's feet in quilt photos - wink!).  So, like, really do you want to have these discussions?  As you can tell, I don't fear confrontation.  But, the thing is we've got to do this with manners - constructively!  I did not censor any of the comments from yesterday, and I really don't want to have to!  So, what do you think - can we handle this?

P.S. Actual sewing blogging should commence tomorrow.  Thanks for your patience!

61 comments:

  1. I enjoyed yesterday's post. It felt good to say those things out loud. I fear I might've been a negative on some of the things I said though and I apologize if it offended anyone. I am down for more discussion and will be a better at critiquing rather than criticizing. You're awesome, Rachel! ;)

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  2. I read all of the comments too (well, it was at 225 last I checked so that's how far I got!). I have to say that it was a real eye opener and very interesting read!

    I also came on here to say THANK YOU!! for not truncating your posts in google reader anymore. I too am guilty of skipping posts sometimes if I have to click through. But see, I clicked through to leave a comment so all is not lost ;)

    Love your blog Rachel, keep it up :)

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  3. I have to say that after reading all the comments I was disturbed. Enough so that I may stop reading blogs. I am a teacher and all the comments reminded me of why I don't hang out in the teachers' lounge. It's too dispiriting. I love to quilt. It is fun, engaging and inspiring. I don't want my sewing experience to be tainted by the controversy that seems to be plaguing the world of blogging right now. I appreciate that you did not mean for this to be negative. I even enjoyed your original post which was a bit tongue in cheek.

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  4. WOW!!! I feel super "heard" : D

    I really love your blog as do SO many others, but with 3 kids I just don't have time to visit all of the blogs I love. My reader is crucial
    : )!!!!

    I think conversations like this ARE important. As a once upon a time therapist, I think it's safe for me to say, it's a part of the group process to get to the point of "discord." What will this little online community of Modern Quilters do? Work through it and embrace the different personalities and likes OR segregate? This is where groups thrive...or not. I'm pulling for the former!! :D

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  5. I thought your post was great rachel. It's obviously stuff that people respond to and want to talk about in some fashion or another. I agree with you though that some people take things the wrong way - even though a person might try not to make it sound a certain way.

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  6. I love your posts & yesterday you stated how you were feeling & were definately not rude. I hope blogging doesn't get to be so politically correct that we can only say something upbeat & positive - boring. I read blogs to get to know different people & how they live, think & love, as well as their crafting. Keep up the great & entertaining blogging! Tracee xx

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  7. I loved yesterday's post! I read all of the comments. Honestly, I read your blog for your cheerful perspective and inspiring projects. I wouldn't mind the "serious" posts, but I do fear they'd turn negative. So maybe just once in a while? Sewing is my hobby, and I prefer to keep this part of my life lighthearted and fun!

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  8. I think it was great for everyone to get their dislikes out there, but I agree that at times it was feeling a little negative. Once in awhile is great, but I really don't, in general, like b.... sessions.
    The fact that we have so many different likes & dislikes actually gives us more availability in what's out there. If we all liked the same thing, we could just crown Anna Maria (or whoever) as queen & let her do the whole shebang. Lots more fun to have so many choices!

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  9. Wooowwwwwie! I missed yesterday's post, but sounds like it was a doozie. Or maybe it sounds like the comments were a bunch of doozies? (NOT FLOOZIES, doozies!) I am always open for constructive conversation. =) Hope your day was good!!

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  10. I to am bothered by the negative tone that I found predominating the comments. I did read every single one and instead of identifying with anyone, I found myself getting defensive. I'm very non confrontational and I try to avoid discord. Many times the misunderstandings occur due to the internet and our lack of ability to correctly infer what someone means. But I wanted to go out and make a quilt of Pips and Innocent Crush just to prove that they are lovely....even though I agree in some ways about those. (I only choose that example because it was so dominant, not because I thought it was so important or that you meant that Rachel). Ultimately I don't like gripe fests...but I do like freedom to speak about frustrations. So make that work perfectly here Rachel, ok? ;)

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  11. First, thank you for no longer having truncated posts in google reader. I am among those who don't always click over.
    Second, I enjoyed yesterday's post, and the comments it generated but I worry about doing similar posts on other topics. Sometimes talking about hot button issues that you have no way of changing just increases discontent. I can see a fabric stash or Joann's v. LQS post becoming very negative very fast and leaving a bad taste in a lot of people's mouths. Thinking on it more, I would venture to say that a marketing post might go badly as well. Basically, if it deals with money (spending or earning) it's going to be a touchy subject. I could go on but I've probably gotten my point across. Feel free to contact me if you'd like me to blather on some more. ;)

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  12. I thought that yesterday's post was so very interesting. I loved reading others opinions and was in no way offended by anything said. I truly think that as women we've been discouraged from stating our likes and dislikes. We want others to like us and are afraid of sharing our opinions. I feel that as a business women, it is important to hear both the positive and negative regarding our product. Saying simply that you don't like something is not wrong. We have different opinions. It's as simple as that. I look forward to more honest, thoughtful posts in the future.

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  13. Thanks for not truncating your blog anymore!
    Also just to note, I did think you liked Sherbet Pips. I'm just not a fan. Sherbert Pips invokes creamy oranges, light yellows and a light pinky red with chicks holding hands. Possibly chickens holding hands or best friends gallavanting through meadows.
    Just sayin'.

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  14. I loved not only yesterday's post but also the variety of comments. I do think it is important not to be negative or mean. Checking in each time you post...

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  15. After I left my comment yesterday I went back and read a lot of the other comments and was surprised that many of us said the same things. It was a really interesting exercise.
    I realise that I never left anything positive either. I would just like to say that I love the interchange of ideas and encouragement that comes with blogging. And if I hadn't gotten into blogging I think I would be living in creative darkness, only knowing what is in my local patchwork shop! There is soooo much more out there!

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  16. I really enjoyed the post and the comments yesterday as well. While reading through them I didn't get an overly negative feeling or take on any of it, but thinking back on it I can see how perhaps some of them were more so. I thought it was fun and refreshing to just get thoughts and ideas out there, but I can see that touching on specific topics could get very heated and nasty. Maybe part of it for me was that I didn't know what anyone was talking about (as with the Single Girl, and I still haven't looked at those different lines of fabric to see what they are exactly). :) I was really impressed to get a response from you and really admire that you would take the time to comment back. Thank you! :) I think it would be fun to talk about things, but I could also see it changing the direction of your blog dramatically. I say do what you want! If people want to stick around for it they will, if they don't they won't. And hopefully we can all remain positive and upbeat/polite while being honest and critical. :)

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  18. I was SO excited to see this full post in my reader today! I felt like yesterdays post was a lot of people saying what they'd normally never say, even if it was a bit negative sometimes-- and I thought it was a great exercise! I personally would LOVE to see posts on the topics you suggested, because I love discourse of any kind and very rarely get offended or bogged down by negativity (years as a high school debate coach makes it easier to have tough discussions!). However, it seems like a lot of people feel differently, so I anticipate that it might not be something the majority of your readership is interested in. I'm looking forward to seeing what you decide! :)

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  19. I'm having a little laugh at myself at the moment. I went to the 'single girl support group' link and what caught my eye? A beautiful and lovely quilt, made using sherbet pips, with a grey background. I stated yesterday that i'm not a huge fan of single girl quilts, pink, or lots of grey. Yet, I really like this quilt! ha ha
    Either i'm a very fickle person, venting and reading other's comments has helped me appreciate other styles more, maybe sometimes it just comes down to each individual work of art, or all of the above! :)
    Variety! Love it!

    ps. not sure if I should leave a link of the pic....??? (i'm not familiar with blogland linking/credit etc rules/etiquette. sorry)

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  20. i loved yesterday's post! (thanks for taking the time to reply to each of them, also!) i'm up for more discussion.

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  21. I do think your post was very interesting. I agree with a lot of what was said but also think there is room for everyone and everything. This is supposed to be a fun thing, not a drama thing.
    I skip over the posts that don't interest me, even if it is a blog I read every day.
    I have a question, did you get comments by any "big time bloggers"?
    If not I wonder what they think about all of this....were they afraid to comment because they are so well known? and could possibly lose followers?
    Great conversation!

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  22. I really liked yesterdays post and would love it if you started up a lot of these discussions. It seemed so refreshing yet almost naughty! LOL!

    I think people are capable of still being civil even when disagreeing, and even when you throw in the anonymity of the internet. But the fear of confrontation often prevents it anyways.

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  23. WOW! Well, I was away from my computer all weekend, so I had a lot to catch up on here! I just read through ALL of the comments from your last post -- so many things said made me stop and think?

    Thanks Rachel!

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  24. Personally, I didn't care for that discussion at all. I read a good deal of the comments. I noticed that there were a lot of constructive discussions going on and a lot of very personal confessions, if you will...I appreciate and respect those who kept it real and found some sense of comfort in their confessions. However, the cumulative effect of the negative comments was overwhelming and disturbing to me. The internet is a deceiving world and we tend to forget that there are human beings on the other end. In this case, those human beings targeted are artists just like most of us. I also don't understand how comments such as "I dislike this or that", however you say it...makes people "feel better or relieved". I would suggest if you really want to continue discussions and find them beneficial, why not set up some private focus groups or forums, where it's not so public?

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  25. I'll be the first to say I don't always abide by The Golden Rule in day to day life, but I do try to when dealing with anything online. When people can't see your face, hear the inflection in your voice, or don't even know you for that matter - it is way too easy to mis-interpret, offend, and hurt feelings.

    If your best friend hated Sherbet Pips and you loved it, you’d still love your best friend and she'd love you. But when we read online that someone hates Sherbet Pips we somehow take it as an insult to our tastes and sometimes take it much more personally than we often should; there is a lack of human connection to temper our emotions. As blogger’s and commenters I think we should be aware of this phenomenon and choose our words carefully.

    Should we have to censor everything we say and tip toe around people? Definitely not. But I do think that there is a way to get our opinions out there in a positive way.

    I would love to see some discussions about what makes us special, about what makes us love this craft so much, about what brings us together, about how we can all be so different but still stand together and appreciate what everyone has to offer?

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  26. I thought the whole thing was very interesting. LOVE that your post pops up in my reader now - Thanks!

    I think the big think I took away from all of the comments is maybe....Blog for Yourself. There are always going to be people that like stuff, and others that don't and that's all good. It would be boring if everything was the same!

    It's fun to talk over things with others that enjoy the same hobby, even if you don't agree. And I really do think I see it as a discussion/conversation/sharing. It's an afternoon coffee club with your friends - only long distance. And I can be happy with that I'm doing, and enjoy that others are having fun with what they do. And it can be the same or completely different! That's what friends do, right?

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  27. Good job, Rachel! You have more balls than me for opening up discussion and possible negative feedback. I think you're doing a great job, and if you felt up to it I think it's a great idea to do some Constructive Discussion here.

    You are a strong woman, who has contributed much to the world of sewing :)

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  28. I enjoyed the discussions on the the "infamous post." Sometimes people have to let off steam and this gave them a safe environment to do so. Looking forward to more "Bottled Rainbows". Hope to get started on mine today.

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  29. I loved the concept of the post and intended to reply but got too busy. Sorry that there was some unhelpful negativity thought.

    I'm with you on Sherbet Pips. I liked it, I still do, but I've reached saturation point.

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  30. Splendorfalls - You said, "there is a lack of human connection to temper our emotions." I think its is entirely true. And in some ways, it makes me consider not having the difficult discussion at all. On the other hand, I think that being "real" (which doesn't necessarily mean barreling into the most difficult/touchy discussions) helps create a human connection that can bridge this internet gap.

    Thank-you for suggesting some new and very positive discussion topics. I'm definitely going to give all this so much thought!

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  31. I did comment on your last post but realise a couple of my "confessions" were possibly a little negative - and I feel a bit bad about that now. I usually try to adopt a "if you can't say anything nice then don't say anything at all" attitude, on my blog and on my comments on other blogs. Still a fascinating topic though, and I do still think this is a conversation worth having, so long as we all remember to be nice about it!

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  32. I think that today's and yesterday's posts were probably the most valuable tools that any blogger can use. We all learned a lot. You must be commended for creating them.

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  33. i gotta say, that must have been a lot of work for you to respond to each comment like that, kudos!

    overall, I have to agree with many others replying here..I think the discussions you brought up in yesterday's post aren't something that can be completely glazed over but equally important is what you re-empahsized today and that is going about them with grace and respect which seemed to waver in the comment section. I've always felt that honest kindness goes hand in hand with handmade items and should hold true for the rough spots as well as the easy ones. I may not be running out to make a quilt of whatever current fabric line is coming out but that doesn't mean it hasn't inspired someone else to new creative and technical heights (of any level or style) which is always deserving of our encouragement and kindness.

    If there is some way we can cover some of the more sticky issues, I'd love to be a part of it as long as it remains constructive and useful. Sewing blogs (my own and others) have become an outlet of inspiration and community for me, i.e. not stress and negativity. I think you've managed to usher us through this one with a lot of constructive criticism and grace so i'll be back for more. Perhaps if we continue to ask, "hey, how did that go? are you still game? how can we do it even better?" then we can keep ourselves on an edifying course....as susanne at the top said, from a big picture perspective, the evolution of the group will tend towards survival if we can find a healthy way to breach the sticky areas. if not, we just won't grow.

    p.s. sorry for the novel!!! i've been wondering how to broach many of these issues, and whether or not I should, on my own blog so i appreciate your honesty and kindness on the subject!

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  34. I like that you made your statements. I can understand how some could mistake them as being rude, but I'm kind of a blunt person myself and so I didn't take offense. I understood completely what you were saying. Quilting is art and art is subjective. There are thousands of blogs and people will subscribe to the ones that interest them and provide them with something of value. That's a good thing. I do want to make one comment though. I love the Pips and still do, and I think Aneela is wonderful/marvelous/talented/sweet/funny. And her fabric is a huge hit because she is so talented and it was so different and wonderful. But I think that whoever was responsible for allowing people to purchase tons of her yardage and precuts before their release did her a huge disservice. AND I say SHAME to the people who sold them at hugely inflated prices based on the fact they weren't yet released. Frankly, it just should not be allowed because by the time it is released, as you said, we've seen it a thousand times. I hope the same does not happen to her new line. I think these are all things we SHOULD talk about! Thanks for an interesting post!

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  35. Wow! There is so much to take in here. I loved reading all the comments and feedback.
    It is interesting to hear how people feel. I try to always have a positive comment or no comment at all when I blog. I may not agree with or like everything out there but I can honestly say I have been inspired by so many talented ladies out there in blog land and want to thank all of you who continue to share your art in your way and what makes you happy.

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  36. Thanks so much for your encouragement, Kat! I like your suggestion to keep evaluating as we go so as to make sure we're still making progress, not division. Here, here!

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  37. I hadn't even commented yet bc I was gathering my thoughts. I totally understand and get everything you said. I'd love to continue having duh discussions and think a Flickr group would be an amazing way to do it.

    And since I'm here.....while I do understand the fanfare behind the new Denyse Schmidt at JoAnns, I do also find it quite disappointing that people are in such a frenzy about it and have practically bought it all up. My local store is very small and only got 3 prints. But all the online hype about it and my not being able to get any sent me into a nasty funk that I just couldn't explain. Pretty fabric should make me happy, not funky.

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  38. I liked yesterday's post. different opinions lead to good conversation/blogging.

    I also love your bottled rainbows.

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  39. OMG! Rachel, YOU ROCK! Thanks for honesty.

    I love all the comments about kids and husbands and like the design process more than the actual sewing process.

    About Sherbet Pips: I totally didnt "get it" when everyone went hog wild w/ precuts. Moda bites themself in the foot by releasing precuts so early before fabric is ready. That being said, now that I have actual yardage of the collection, I am really loving it and only now do I see potential and the true beauty of the designs.

    DS QUILTS: Well, as a fabric shopper, I had to have some so I'd know what all the fuss is about. BUT as an independent Fabric Store owner, I'm totally bummed that she'd sell out. I have a long dissertation in my head about all the reasons she stabbed independent quilt shops by doing a collection for Joanns, but I won't post that here.

    Joanns does have some fun, nice fabrics and for the budget-minded (like everyone)its a good resource. But when a celebrity designer does a collection for a budget chain, what is that going to do for her reputation? What is that going to do to her true followers, the independ fabric shops that can only get her Free Spirit Collections at a premium... I"m just sayin'...

    Anyway, Thank you thank!

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  40. I read through a lot of the comments and found the discussion really interesting if a bit negative. It seemed like a lot of it was people enjoying having the space to have/admit their own preferences - and I absolutely agree with you that there is a way to have that discussion and acknowledge that we are each unique individuals with our own tastes without there being a judgmental tone. Kudos to you for starting a conversation and striving to keep it constructive and respectful.

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  41. I found the whole discussion captivating. I kept going back to read the new comments, and it made me do a lot of my own thinking on what I'm doing, not doing, and why, so I'm doing my own blog spin on it Tuesday. Thanks, Rachel.

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  42. Great post Rachel. As far as if these kinds of posts will be positive in the future...? I can't help ya there. I want to say yes but you can't control what others write in the comment section. :)

    One thing I wanted to comment on-
    Wendy said:

    "DS QUILTS: Well, as a fabric shopper, I had to have some so I'd know what all the fuss is about. BUT as an independent Fabric Store owner, I'm totally bummed that she'd sell out. I have a long dissertation in my head about all the reasons she stabbed independent quilt shops by doing a collection for Joanns, but I won't post that here.

    Joanns does have some fun, nice fabrics and for the budget-minded (like everyone)its a good resource. But when a celebrity designer does a collection for a budget chain, what is that going to do for her reputation?"

    My thoughts:
    Can't Denyse do both? If she designs for Joann's for people on a budget (me!;) does that mean she is selling out? Couldn't it be viewed as just designing for a bigger pool of quilters (LQS shoppers and Joann shoppers?) And you can't fault her for wanting a broader audience- at the end of the day this is her job. And as far as her reputation goes- if anything it makes me love her more! :) I say yay Joann's! Yay 40% off coupons!

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  43. I've said it before and I'll reiterate it again and again: there is nothing wrong with disagreement. I found your post refreshing and it prompted me to post tonight. I think that's a good thing, whether we (or anyone else) agrees on everything or not. It's like the anti-peer pressure: it's ok to be different and stand alone. It's ok, and even beneficial to community, to have candid discussions. Venting has a place too as it allows frustrations to become productive rather than paralyzing (as long as they're not belabored). And I too appreciate the non-truncated posts and I'll reading them all :)

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  44. Having an open forum for discussion is a wonderful thing. If you have the energy to monitor the comments, why not bring up some difficult topics? I read about 125 comments from THE post. After that, I started to feel a little overwhelmed with the negativity so guess what I did? I stopped reading! Woo!

    Anyway, I love your writing style and perspective so I say DO IT! :)

    P.S. I really wanted to comment so I could say I love that I can see your post in Google Reader. THANKS!

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  45. I am loving this very thoughful discussion. Yes, there is some negativity but I don't think anyone means anything personal. I'd like to add for the record that I adore Sherbet Pips and just hope we get some in outback Aust!

    I'd love to read a bit of a discussion about some of the issues brought up, if you have the energy to go there! It's particularly interesting to see discussions starting up on other blogs. Love bottled rainbows too - I've just finished my second block!

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  46. That was a truly awesome post and I loved the comments. Yeah sure they tended to the bitchy and negative but not in a nasty way and often with a hefty dose of humour. I literally laughed out loud heaps of times, and that's despite always feeling a bit tragic when I giggle at the computer. But I'd have to say that I suspect any attempt to address some of the more common complaints would not end so nicely as they are fairly emotive topics and bound to get people het up. Which isn't to say that discussing them isn't good and it might be just peachy and everyone will behave themselves! Perhaps you could run a pool on which topic would descend into a bun-fight fastest, my money would be on fabric consumerism (or maybe feet in quilt photos).

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  47. p.s. I think most bloggers really do follow the old adage of "if you can't say something nice don't say anything at all" and I know I do. But it raises the interesting point of whether we all go too far with it, whether there is actually a lack of honesty in the blogging world that means that companies can over-hype fabrics and create a herd mentality, or that a craze like mug rugs can sweep the bloggosphere because there are too few voices saying (a la the emperor's new clothes) "aren't those just coasters?" It's a tricky balance between niceness and openness and honesty.

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  48. I really enjoyed your first post and this one too. I knew of some of the references you made and others I did not. Nothing a little google couldn't help. The interesting part about the conversations you are opening (and you addressed them) is whether or not people say what they mean, mean what they say, but not say it mean. Hope it all comes out well.

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  49. "Perhaps you could run a pool on which topic would descend into a bun-fight fastest" OMG, Hilarious, Jacqui. Should we take bets? WINK.

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  50. Hi Rachel - thanks again for your post. I just wanted to give you the link to the post I just wrote about the issues I commented on in your last post. Here it is: http://thevintagebicycle.blogspot.com/2011/04/modern-vs-traditional-hm.html

    Thanks again for the food for thought!

    Rebecca

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  51. Thank you for sharing your love for quilting with us. I am a brand new quilter with only a quilt top to my credit so far. It all started with a single blog I found in January. Click, click, click, and now I'm hooked. While I love reading blogs, I am not interested in reading the many negative criticisms of others. I am interested in people's knowledge and experiences in sewing and in life. Like chasing cottons said, I'm too busy with my life. I don't have time for everyone else's problems. I vote that you just keep it fun.

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  52. I loved your last post and commented (thanks for the personal response!). Then later I read through a lot of the comments. I had thought it was more of a call for "true confessions" rather than "I hate it when"s, so all the negative comments made me feel a little sad initially and I didn't finish going through them. But the diversity of opinions is an eye opener for sure and no reason to avoid topics that are controversial if people can maintain a respectful tone. Jacqui said it so well above in her comment - it's a tricky line to walk sometimes between the open or honest and the polite or nice.

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  53. I was one of the commenters who expressed disappointment in Moda's marketing strategy for the Pips: "I love the Pips, but I HATE seeing loads of projects made from fabric lines MONTHS before us ordinary schlubs can buy any...". Well, it doesn't do me much good to complain without action, so I emailed the Moda marketing department. I told them how much I love Moda (I made my first quilt with an Arcadia jelly roll), and I also wrote about how the overall strategy left me feeling excluded. I tried to frame my feedback in a constructive way, and I feel good about letting the company know my opinions in a respectful way. So thanks for being the catalyst. Don't worry, you won't be held responsible! You must be overwhelmed with responding to comments, so feel free to give this one a pass. Love your blog, and I await delivery of a luscious bundle of solids to start my Bottle Rainbows quilt.

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  54. Micmacker - That's so awesome! Way to go!!! Wow, I'm so glad to hear of good things that have come from all this. Thanks for letting me know.

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  55. Ha ... this post is even better!

    What is it with us bloggers that we post how we really feel and then the next day we all go to great lengths to retract in case we've "caused offence!" LOL

    Blogging is about freedom to express how YOU feel about something.

    Hoorah!

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  56. And after the marathon on your other post, you've now had me reading another 57 here! I feel like I have been kidnapped! I do think this has been very refreshing, if nothing else it has been excellent consumer research for bloggers. But I do think that addressing the 'herd mentality' issue has been very useful. There are a lot of quilters out there that need to know it is ok not to have to use only designer fabrics and that the 'quilt police' won't come and get you if you machine stitch your binding!
    Well done Rachel.

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  57. I see many sides of this "debate". I feel that people who don't want to have the "discussion" are being pulled in against their wills. I know I was as I'm the original catalyst for the "dumbing down" post that I wanted nothing to do with. For my own blog, I really do only post what I like. If I don't like it, it doesn't show up. I have consciously decided that I want only happy feelings there, as fake as that might be sometimes. I compare it to magazine reading. I like pretty magazines :) I don't expect everyone else to do the same or want the same from blogs. I do, however, *love* your blog and if you do decide to host some of these discussions I certainly wouldn't abandon your blog. I'd just hope it wouldn't cause some people to feel hurt. I can only imagine how the designer of Sherbet Pips might feel if she read the comments from your other post (though I think you were very respectful).

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  58. Wow. It has taken me THIS LONG to catch up on everything! I still can't decide if I'm going to add my two cents to the previous post...we'll see. But I did want to let you know that I LOVED reading through each and every comment. I love the dialogue, and I find the way everything unfolded to be a fascinating sociological experiment! I couldn't help but note the irony in all. these. people. coming together to say "Yes! I agree! -- this herd mentality has got to go!" :)

    My main point, though, is I would love to see more discussion, and I think it is actually incredibly generous of you to offer up your personal blog as a forum for that (are you sure you want to do that?!??).

    Finally, I wanted to let you know that all this discussion has had an immediate impact on me:
    1). I've unsubscribed to several blogs, and later today plan to do a far more significant pruning of my reader.
    2). I've subscribed to a couple new ones -- yours for one, but also a couple whose insightful comments make me want to hear more of what they have to say. Yay.
    3). I am DONE BUYING FABRIC. (OK, maybe not what your sponsors want to hear? Sorry!) The stashing stops now.

    Seriously, I would love to hear more discussion on consumerism. But I do understand that is a very touchy subject. I most certianly feel that no one should be judged by where they buy they fabrics OR how much or little they buy. (Seriously -- it is not my business if you have $5000 worth of fabric in your basement. Your money -- spend it how you like). BUT, I like the awareness that comes from open discussion, and as a result, I have made a decision to alter some of my purchasing habits. I feel good about this, and thank you.

    (Note: OK maybe I am choosing to respond to yesterday's post in this comment after all -- whoops! Thanks for bearing with my stream of consciousness!) Finally (and I mean it this time), the topic of how "real" a blog should be, and presenting perfect lives is actually near and dear to my heart. It is literally why I started blogging and the focus of my very first blog entry. In that entry, I talk about how I am on a mission to prove that these picture perfect lives we see are attainable by the average Jo (silly pun -- that's my name) through careful editing. I have struggled every day with that concept since, but ultimately have kept the negativity, the mess, and the failures out of my blog to stay true to my original concept. Perhaps I will write a blog post soon about THAT.

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  59. Jo/Hungry Crafter - I am really, so encouraged to hear from you and others for whom this discussion has been helpful already! I do love discussion and feel that it is essential to building a genuine relationship and a genuine community. I am very intrigued by your ending comments about being real/being positive. This is the topic I plan to open up for discussion next Friday. If you make a post on the subject, please send it my way. I don't want to miss it!

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  60. You are brave and wise. I'm hooked!

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  61. I want to ask a question, cuz I just don't get it. All these "hurt" feelings, they seem out of place, these designers are doing business with fabric buyers, is it really a place for feelings? I mean, this is about commerce-advertising, gimmicks, salesmanship-and designers should have no say on what you should like or buy. Fabric designers blogs are about pushing fabric purchases, it's an advertising gimmick. There's no place for feelings here, it seems very naive, once again, it's BUSINESS. They are taking your money and paying their bills with it, they need to earn that money via skill, talent, and hard work, not whining.

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