Jo Van L.

After reading the Book, Creative Strength Training, I got to the chapter on accepting limitations and working with what you have. I admit to putting the book down and saying. “that is not about me” Then several months went by and I realized it was me. I had so much fabric I could not see what I had. My “studio” consists of a former child’s bedroom. The bed is gone but the room is 12” x 12”. It is not large. My wet studio is half of a carport off the kitchen. I dye fabric in my yard. Instead of coveting those who have a major studio and a BASEMENT…something we don’t have in Arizona, I decided to accept what I have and to say “Wow I can create that with my limitations.”

Fast forward to January this year. I spent five days cleaning out my studio. I took eight brown grocery bags of fabric to a local church that makes charity quilts. I donated another two to Nicaragua , a box to a grand daughter, two bags to a friend, and still have a suitcase full to take to Uganda. Now my fabric shelves have fabric made by me. I am standing on my feet saying I am NOT a traditional quilter. I am an artist. I want my art to be mine. I decided if I want to make a charity quilt, I could get fabric from the church to do just that. They can house it for me.

I organized my paints, dyes and supplies that went with them into tubs. My husband suggested I label the tubs…a good idea but still has not been done.

Since then I have had life interfere. I am struggling with a loss of two wonderful women to nasty cancer. My comfort is to sew….so I have taken the bag of scraps that I saved and organized into bags of like colors and just sewed to hear the machine. It is mindless and comforting.

My plan is not to start buying all over but to use what I have. I am allowing myself to buy more PFD fabric so I can create more of what I love.  If I decide I need a fabric I gave away, I will just have to dye a fabric the color or texture I need. I think this will make me more of an artist and less of a crafter.