When I emailed Valerie of North Carolina, one of our Skype session winners from the Quilts Made Modern book tour, to set up a time for our Skype session she emailed back that she had a trip planned to Chicago the weekend of our studio sale so she planned to drop by anyway. Instead of Skyping, I offered, why don’t you come to the studio and we can talk in person. She said she’d bring two quilts that had her stumped and that she wanted to learn how to inset circles. She and her sister-in-law Beth wanted to shop the sale so I told her to bring Beth along as well.
Valerie put her quilts-in-progress on the design wall and we were able to immediately explain to her what the problems were and gave her some advice to remedy the situation. But when it came time to inset the circle Bill and I told her that we wouldn’t do it. I told her that two years ago at a two-day Quilt Expo in Oshkosh WI someone asked me to teach them how to inset a circle and that I decided that it would be more helpful if I stood next to them but if I didn’t touch it. They needed to know that they could do the whole thing. While I helped out people at the Studio Sale Bill told her step-by-step what to do and Beth helpfully photographed each step so she’d be able to remember the process. Her circle was perfect and she was delighted.
Sure it took some time out of our day but I was so glad we thought to include that as a prize on the blog tour. It’s fun for us to see people excited to learn something new and frankly, it’s just great to feel useful to people sometimes. You know how sometimes in the course of your day people treat you as if you’re in their way or that dealing with you is an inconvenience? How wonderful is it for us to have someone be excited to meet and chat with us. Valerie and Beth left the studio with some new fabric and even more importantly a few design tips and a new technique. “It’s like Christmas,” Valerie kept exclaiming. Sometimes a penny given truly is a dollar received.