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March 23, 2011


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Sandy (Strlady)

You, Ms Nelson, Have some serious class!


Well said....I couldn't agree with the first comment more..


Amen Carrie! Sometimes I just want to gag when I see one of those FQ quilts that I think you were referencing, but then I stop and realize that the person who happily and lovingly made that is perhaps tempted to gag when she sees the kazillion triangles in my latest project. My Mom always said there's something for everyone and if we all liked the same things it would be the most boring world. On another note, I can't wait to see Red and White quilts in NYC! Whoo Hoo Infinite Variety!!!


Thank you Carrie! Very well said :)




Well done Carrie, very well said!! Hugs...(and for those who don't know, I am NOT the Nancy this was written for)


I hope Nancy (near Philly)reads this, too; it's a classy, well-written response and I think she would appreciate that she was "heard". I, too, have several recipes for crow...


I am so gonna use the Einstein quote!

madame samm

Well sometimes I just sleep in too late NOT lol ...I did not see any of this...but may I say it...WOW!
I am knew to quilting, very new, less than a year. I sew get it why some are beside themselves...I am too at times..but I get over it... I know for me personally "dumbing it down or not" I quilt because it helps me to be sane(r). I have lost plenty these last couple years and if not for the dumbing down as some would say, ( as I did not even know how to use a rotary cutter a year ago) I am glad I was one of the dumb ones who did not know better...because it saved my life. Literally!. Thank you for your honesty, heart and your words...you touched my heart, mind and my life...(ok, maybe not my life, but you know what I mean)


I read that post today before it was pulled. It saddened me. Very well said Carrie :-)

Sinta Renee

I can only imagine what was posted.. and I am so glad that you in your wonderful way took the time to articulated a great response. I think the only thing better would have been to have it in as a conversation in an informal setting with a glass of wine. I am so glad that there is this forum to discuss what is on our minds. Dang, I wish I would have seen that post though!


I read murder mysteries to relax, just as I quilt to relax. I do sometimes use Moda fabrics, and Carrie's patterns, however I am not on Carrie's payroll...I say "each to their own"- do what makes you happy, and if you want to use one line of fabric and make a FQ quilt, well then good for you. If you want to make a Baltimore Albumn quilt, then good for you...Sure things get dumbed down, but you don't have to jump on that bandwagon if you don't want to.
Thanks, Carrie-classy response, and well said!


I'm a quilting teacher, and I'm stunned by some of the 'dumbing down' involved - nobody wants to or knows how to do their own math any more!!! A simple three block repeat is beyond comprehension... hmmmm, maybe I need to vent on my blog a bit!


Frankly, I am a Miss Rosie All The Time kinda gal. That being said, I think today's hoopla really shows how we all need to be more aware of how our words can affect others. Just because we can express our views on our blogs does not mean that we have the right to be unkind to others or state falsehoods.

Lisa D.

Dag nab it - I had my "Miss Rosie and Nothing But" blog all ready to launch...

I appreciate your humor and the respect you showed Nancy in addressing her blog post. I read it before she pulled it and it made my blood boil a little.

I agree with the others - you are a lady of class, Ms. Nelson.

Christina D

Thank you!


Wow! You are funny and creative AND classy! No wonder we all wish we could be you!


I am so impressed by your kind words and understanding response. Truly a lady by anyone's standards! And, a quilter/ pattern writer extraordinaire!

p.s. While all this was going on this morning, I was trying out your binding tutorial and will use that finishing method from now on! Who knew???? Thanks!!!!


And here I always thought the only one on your payroll was paid with dog treats!! :-)

Ginny Worden

Carrie, how wise you are. I remember going to a lecture, wher I was reminded that sometimes you need to take time to make something special. Okay, I am going to New York to see the red and white quilts, inspiration I am sure will be among those.


darn that Legal Disclaimer - even though i wouldn't have started a "I Love Miss Rosie's Patterns" blog JUST to tick someone off, i do love your patterns (in real life, i OWN a lot of them, but have never actually made a QUILT from any of them ... sigh) even IF i'm NOT on the "gift list" (i blame it on those plaids that i grabbed before you had the chance - ha ha ha)

Pat Wys

Holey Moley this qualifies as a day late and a dollar short! I missed the post but I have read your post 27 times. I think I understand what was said and your most eloquent response. Well said girl friend! AS USUAL.

IF Nancy only knew what a supportive,encouraging and giving person you are....you are successful at what you do and so unpretentious. Generous in spirit, a friend to all quilters and spending your time and talent PROMOTING the art we all love so much.

Please bring my check to booth 524. Salt Lake City...howz that for levity?



I didn't read the first post, but I get the general idea. Everything you mentioned in this post, Carrie, is well-said and completely classy. I've thought about this issue myself quite a bit; however, I couldn't have expressed my thoughts as well as you have. Thanks so much for writing and publishing this post. As for me...I make quilts of all kinds--simple and difficult, and I'm completely passionate about fabric and quilting. I can't go to sleep sometimes thinking about quilts and quilt designs...so grateful for blogging and the community of others who are also affected for the positive by this wonderful thing called quilting!

Sandie ~call me crazy

I guess I missed the hoopla too, but you wrote a very eloquent reply. Too bad you added that disclaimer! ;-) ;-) Joking! :-)

Mary on Lake Pulaski

I was so close, but a day off in being able to hear you speak or possibly meet you at the quilt show in Mesa last week and am so sad I didn't. You are so right about so many thing in this post. I have just made three of your patterns and they are fabulous. Keep up the great work!

Sandi - Piecemeal Quilts

Imagine my surprise when I popped into my blog stats and saw the enormous spike from your readers. Yikes! I read Nancy's post this morning, as well as her "eating crow" post later today. I think both you deserve the term "gracious." It's easy to play it safe and not voice your opinion, and I think that ease is part of what led to the dumbing down of a lot of things. We need to speak up! However, it's also easy to get caught up in the emotion of a moment and vent. Rather than take the easy way out, you and Nancy both took the opportunity to evaluate what was said and take appropriate, responsible action. I follow both your and Nancy's blogs and I have nothing but respect for both of you.

As for my dumbing down of quilting posts, the response has been interesting. I'm adding one final post, then I'm going to put my money where my mouth is. A friend and I are planning a series of skillbuilding posts. We hope that some of the quilters who are self taught or "blog taught" will find some useful information that will help them develop the interest and confidence to try some new techniques.


I didnt see the post you are referring to, but I love what you said. Very well written :-)


You are a true gem! I did not read Nancy's post, but I am impressed with the class in which you have written yours. I am in the "I Love Miss Rosie's Patterns" and Miss Rosie camp and I'll shout it from the rooftops, but I'm a little afraid of heights. Heck, in this wonderful, crazy world of quilting I think there ought to be enough room for all of us. My favorite thing about quilting is the stories. Every quilt has it's own unique story. I am making 3 of your "Pick and Choose quilts". Not because I love it, although I do, but because I made the first one (not even knowing who you were at the time - sorry!) and now my family fights over it so I am making one for my daughter and another for my son. My husband has agreed to share 'his' with me. So even though it is the 'same' quilt, they will all have their own special thumbprint. I love being challenged, but challenges are different for each one of us. Thank you for voicing your thoughts in such a classy manner!

Lori Hilleboe

I live in Phx metro area luv your blog and patterns.
Didn't see the vent but I agree classy response all the way.
Creativity is different for each and every one of us thankfully so!! From colors to patterns to sizes.
When I get a new quilter going it's a wonderful way to share art.
I rather like my "addiction" it harms no one but sure puts smiles on faces and brings them warmth.
Kudo's to each and every quilter out there !!!!!!!
Lori in AZ


well written , love the humor thrown in! and well I would not only start a blog I would start a yahoo group too for a trip to Spring market!
or how about a trip to Arizona and I could sew for you for a week? or two?????

nancy, near philadelphia

What a gracious reply, Carrie. The dinner out will be on me, of course. See my blog post of this morning for details! Nancy, Near Philadelphia


Well said - there is something for everyone! A reader is a reader, a quilter is a quilter... and with my other passion, a gardener is a gardener - but we all do it differently. And that's OK!


Thank you, Carrie! Very well said.


I am one of those "dumb" quilters that keeps making the same simple patterns over and over again, running from anything that looks too much like a half-square triangle and applique. I am going through a ton of upheaval on my job and personal life, and when I go into my sewing room, I don't want to be challenged or feel any stress. I want to escape from real life for a little while and just enjoy the colors and patterns. I want to make simple things that turn out and give me a feeling of success and accomplishment. Right now, I'm on a grocery bag sewing jag, and I'm just enjoying mixing the different fabrics and feeling that I have some control over something in my life. When you see that crazy 50-year-old lady at the grocery store with the pink skull and crossbone ecco bags, that will probably be me.


I read Nancy' post yesterday, commented on it, and then found she had pulled it. I agree that the topic is huge and complicated. As I posted in my comment yesterday, so long as we remember that the joy is in the journey, the colors, and the process itself, things will be fine. If we become creatures who can only copy from others and are unable to think for ourselves, then something is seriously wrong (and, as you said, this extends far beyond the quilting world).

Thanks for an thoughtful and interesting post!!!

Blogless me

I did not read Nancy's original post but I read your answer since I follow your blog in my Google Reader. I could work out most of what was originally said and am very pleased to see that both of you have resolved the potential conflict in a very thoughtful and gracious manner. I hope you too have read her reaction since.
That said, I myself am sometimes guilty of speaking my mind in a way that is too forthright for some people. On the other hand, because of my background in informatics and engineering, I am acutely aware of some pitfalls of electronic media, namely the immediacy of spreading the message and the extraordinary escalation of emotions this can cause. Still, I deeply believe that we should all be able to speak out, be heard and be judged on the basis of not only of what we said but on all that we do as well. This creates the context in which statements can be understood better and the potential for offense, or misunderstanding diminishes. Ultimately, we are all (hopefully) reasoning creatures that should be able to distinguish between unfounded banter and a legitimate grievance.
Well, I am about to that just now - I've put her blog in my Google Reader as well. I hope that would broaden my horizon. If not ... well it is extremely easy ... I unsubscribe. There are only 24 hours in a day and only 7 days in a week last time I checked - nobody is going to waste their time following somebody's blog (in essence their work and life) if there was not a good reason. For me personally learning new things is a much more important reason than getting gifts (Legal Disclaimer I would take the gifts if they insist coming to me ;-) ).
I hope both of you can now concentrate on much more productive pursuits to the benefit of all your readers. ;-)
Take care!

Karen Heineck



Gracious, articulate, intelligent and thought-provoking. Not only a very nice reply but, as many have already commented, a classy one, which adds a balanced view to the debate. I did read the blog before it was withdrawn and I felt sad that there was almost an element of snobbery which I've read elsewhere too. Why should someone be made to feel bad because they've followed a pattern or used a kit or are making the same quilt as others? I've been quilting for about 16 years, mainly hand applique and hand quilting so for that type of quilting I could be in the intermediate to advanced level. Last summer I finally made a quilt from one of several of your patterns I've bought and love the look of, but never attempted as it involved machine piecing and triangles. In one sense it may have been less complicated than some other quilts I've made but I certainly didn't consider it as 'dumbing down', I found it pretty tricky! It was a new skill for me and presented me with a real challenge. All I can say is, most of my triangles had points and quite a few even met where they should!
Your comment about readers is spot on and applies to quilting. We're all different and wouldn't it be nice to see acceptance for all tastes and all levels of skill in quilting.


This was a very insightful response. I didn't see the original blog, but I've been reading "Blogging Near Phil" for quite some time and she is an amazing quilter and a kind person. I can't imagine it was her intent to just be mean. She was on a vent and it came out wrong-she admits it and life goes on.
I think we all approach things differently in quilting. With blogging we get to see all the "new stuff" and the neat ways people use the "stuff" so many of us want to do the same. I'm a hand-piecer - I can piece just about anything by hand. However, by machine? ... a whole different story. I recently picked up a bunch of Schnibbles because it's apparent you write a clear, concise pattern. I'm going to give machine piecing a go. Maybe I can get more than one quilt a year done! I like the precuts because it gives me a chance to use lovely fabrics without spending tons of money and I completely suck at picking out fabrics. Half my stash is a result of coming home, taking the fabric out of the bag and wondering what I was thinking of! If I like a line of fabric, I know it all works together. I love that many designers have fabrics in more than one line that match. For someone like me, that's a Godsend. I envy people who can put together a bunch of different fabrics and produce breathtaking quilts...just not me. As I commented on Ms. Samm's blog-to me quilting should be for the love of it and to help us maintain our sanity in an insane world. For those who can also have a business... excellent! While I understand the "dumming down" part, in some ways it's a great way for someone just starting. I wish it had been easier "back in the day" when Georgia Bonesteel had us marking fabric with pencils and cereal box templates. Looking at everything that has happened since I started quilting 30+ years ago, I think overall we've just got more technical. Those that want to, will go the next step. There's a place for everyone in the quilting world.


Midas loves Miss Rosie (and her patterns)...can I create that one??

Linda P

Kudos! xo


I am so delayed in joining this conversation, missed the post you are referencing however, what exactly does "dumbing or dumming down" mean? As a shop owner who's mission is to employ young adults with developmental disabilities, I can't help but wonder if it is either directly or indirectly making light of this population of individuals. Whether we are novices or experts in the fiber arts world, why would we need to do this? Why the need to be so critical? As I always say to my children, if you don't like what you see, show me something better.


Sorry that last post was me. My link did not work for some reason. btw, we love your patterns, they sell out the minute they arrive in the store.


So I found the post Nancy wrote (I went to her blog, pretending to add it to my Google reader and was able to scroll down to read the whole un-lovely thing).

I've been reading your blog for ages, so have gotten to "know" you a little bit through your writing. And from what I know about you, her comment seems unnecessarily trite and even a little bit mean. So I think that your response here is quite magnanimous and gracious, which from what I already know about you, is quite in line with who you are as a person. Please don't lose that whimsy of yours, keep telling us about your patterns (I love them and have made up several) as I like your designs and your talents and want to keep reading about them.

Now to address the gist of her remarks (leaving off that unfortunate reference to you): it is true often I have wondered if a product placement on a blog is simply someone finding something terrific that they want to share, or if it is a type of paid, but not disclosed, advertisement. I think Nancy is really wondering about that (where she wasn't being cranky). Some bloggers are forthcoming that they are paid promoters, and others do not.

I do think that it is good that we have blogs that can serve as a platform for a brand and help to educate us. We all spend a lot more time online and would be fools not to use the resources available to us.

I haven't really had a problem distinguishing between the two. I hope that others will be able to discern the difference as well, or enjoy the education about a product even if they aren't able to.

Hang in there--keep writing. I love your blog and your patterns (and books!).


I agree with your thoughts... but I am someone who has noticed lately that I have chosen the "dumb down" path a lot lately... and wondered why. And I think it is because I want to have "quilting" in my life in some form, but right now other areas of my life get more of my time than the quilting or creative side of my life. I don't like it this way... but it is where I am. And so, I am now trying to just learn techniques from a very gifted quilter and friend. I'm not taking on a big project... but I am taking the time to learn needle point applique from an expert. And it serves 2 purposes... the quilting and community/friendship. I hope to one day have the time & confidence to tackle a full sized, hand appliqued quilt. SOON!

Thanks for your thoughts... I agree with you.

But I also hope that this "dumbing down" brings new quilters into the fold and once they too want to stretch themselves they will look to grow.

Ramona Chester

@Lisa D - I love your "Miss Rosie and Nothing But" blog name.
None of us should have to apologize for doing something we enjoy. I love seeing how Carrie takes a fabric line and manages to create something beautiful with it.
Chacun ses gouts (To each his own!)


Proud to call you friend. :)

Jamie Hall

As a brand new (and I REALLY mean new) quilter, I guess I don't really understand the issue. But I feel that we are all on the same road; just some of us are farther along. I am GRATEFUL for the help that is available and am totally guilty of not stepping out of my comfort zone. BUT that is where I AM on the road. Hopefully I will get FARTHER along on this wonderful, creative road. Maybe I will, maybe I won't. But either way, I get so much joy out of this journey. (I DO wonder at the seemingly unending supply of money to buy the "newest" fabric line(s). Does anyone just use regular ole' material anymore? This kind of puzzles me, and I just assume that anyone who uses a certain line all the time gets at least a cut in price on that fabric, if not being given that fabric to advertise. But I would too, if that was an opportunity I had.) Anyway....I probably don't even understand the issue, being as new as I am to the industry, and given that I didn't get a chance to read Nancy's blog. So, just my 2cents. Thanks!


As English is not my native language making a long comment for me is to hard, but I totally agree with you. (First saying I am not offended being dutch, But why is diner called dutch when you pay yourself. I really don't get that as that is not a normal thing here in the Netherlands that you pay your own meal when you are with a group.


The creative process itself is a very multi-faceted, highly personal, colorful, textural and intellectual foray into the unknown. Where-ever or wby-ever anyone finds themselves at a point they recognize, or hope to recognize, on that journey is not something that can be quantified by others. Thank you for a very reasoned but creative discussion of a complex concept. Regardless of how discussion plays out in some venues, we must all learn to be supportive and understanding of personal expression of that creative process. It's too easy to push someone off the rails when we should be fanning the air behind their wings. Wish I could see the show in NY, thank you yet again for the research and links to all the visuals for those of us stuck in the "hinterlands" and watching from afar.

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