My sister shared this quote by Kurt Vonnegut with me recently: “To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it.” Don’t you love that? I can attest to it’s truth. I got more practice at my art recently while teaching a few classes at Sew Simply Stitched, a quilt retreat in Vernal Utah. More practice, specifically, with my favorite quilt block of all time: the lone star.
This star is my Lone Star Tree Skirt pattern. I added triangles to four corners to square it up and frame the octagon, and a simple border. It’s not finished; I will add more to this one eventually. This lone star was in bits and pieces to use as samples in class and I didn’t want to leave it sitting, so I sewed it together and now I can look at it while I decide what direction it needs to go.
Lots of practice has made the lone star a simple make for me, but I try to do something slightly different every time so that element of MORE practice, more soul-growing and creativity-stretching experience can come from it. My emotional connection to my quilts, their color, design, EVERYTHING, is what keeps me quilting. Exploring this world of textiles, or practicing the art, is my favorite part of the experience. I love it more than the quilts themselves. And I love encouraging others to engage more purposefully in the process.
“To practice any art”. Those are great words, because ultimately that’s what we do. We practice, improve, and practice some more. It’s not about the perfection of a project; after all, the word “perfect” has little or nothing to do with art. But it’s in the practicing that we grow, come alive a little more, learn new things about ourselves, our tools, the world around us. I’m thinking it’s excellent advice for life, too. This week I’m going to practice the art of living and creating more thoughtfully.