Week in Review 2021 – 08/20

Work Flow

What is your work flow? How do you handle the myriad of tasks required to regularly update and post on numerous social media platforms? These were questions I was asked in the final Professional On-line Presence group meeting offered through SAQA. I love being put on the spot, much as it makes me squirm. Why? Because I find it forces me to sort through competing thoughts and express them concretely and coherently. My answer is, “My life is extremely compartmentalized, with an emphasis on the extreme.” I went on to explain how each day of the week had a different focus. For example, if it is Friday morning, as it is now, my first priority is to write my weekly post.

An egret stands on the tip of a rock gazing out at the water.
This small art quilt is wrapped around a stretched canvas frame. It is my husband’s my first attempt at collaborating in this format.

Will my compartmentalized way of being work for others? Not necessarily. However, I got a chuckle from a friend and one of my blog followers who was attending the same meeting. She couldn’t see herself adhering rigidly to a firm schedule. Then as an afterthought she said, “but you post weekly and I haven’t managed that.” She does put herself into her art, both fiber and photography, as well as being a dedicated volunteer.

Stitched line drawing of a conch shell nestled amongst beads, representing sand granules
Conch Shell
8″ x 8″
This is attempt to at a wrapping an art quilt around a stretched canvas frame.

Work Flow Interrupted

Do I always adhere to my compartmentalized plan? Of course not. I am human. Life happens. I am fortunate to have family. I have volunteer obligations that frequently must be attended at a specific time that plays havoc with my schedule. Still, I did manage to chip away at obligations to myself, as you can see by the photographs. Two 8″ x 8″ pieces are finished. Thanks to my husband these are wrapped around pre stretched canvas. These artworks will be part of my Cohasset Open Studios offerings in November. I also whipped up a 10″ x 7″ piece for SAQA’s Trunk Show. What will next week bring? We shall see.

Multi layers of fabric creating a salt marsh landscape are pre quilted. This provides dimensionality to the piece. There is a tree with a twisted trunk in the foreground
Admiring the View
10″ x 7″
My offering for SAQA’s next Trunk Show

I am linking up with Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Fridays.

By Gwyned Trefethen

I am an artist who uses fabric, thread and miscellany to create designs gifted to me by my imagination.


    1. Thank you, Angela. You can see the first time I tried this on my website at https://www.gwynedtrefethen.com/fauna/ Scroll down to Beach Stroll. The description of this quilt reads, “The idea for Beach Stroll evolved over decades of pondering the works of Piet Mondrian, Andrew Wyeth and an embossed nautilus shell created by Gwyned Trefethen’s sister-in-law, Cheryl Eisner. It took a year of focusing on practicing free motion quilting and another year of doing a weekly drawing assignment to be able to execute Beach Stroll with confidence.” Beach Stroll hangs in my foyer along with several other pieces. It is the one visitors are most drawn to, so I thought making small pieces based on it might sell. We shall see.

    1. Happy to share how I organize my work flow/life. Each day of the week has a unique focus. For example, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday are my studio days. Wednesday is when I do the business side of quilting (updating my website, completing new calls for entries, etc. Friday is for personal chores, such as handling our finances. Saturday is relatively loose. Since COVID, Sundays are devoted to weekly family and friend Zoom gatherings.

  1. Yes, you are the best at organizing your time. I wish I could be as dedicated. I do, however force myself to blog once a week on Thursday or Friday and my weekly stitching project has also helped to put my feet to the fire.
    I love your little conch shell piece and the sky in Admiring the View. Hand painted?

    1. Norma, anyone who can turn out a daily stitching project is organized in my book. You said “weekly” but there are often 5 or so completed pieces and this week numerous cards to boot. It takes focus, dedication and organization to be so productive.

  2. Such a timely topic, Gwyned. With both of my sons off at college for the first time, I should have more hours (and fewer “emergency” distractions!) in my work week. But I am also starting to get customer quilt tops and restoration quilts coming in faster than I can get them finished and returned, so I do need to come up with a schedule that feels balanced and works for me. That should help me better estimate for clients how long it will take to get their quilts done, too. Good problems to have, though! I like how you schedule different types of activities on different days, and I’ve been trying to do client appointments (drop offs and pickups) on the same day or same two days each week because I’ve noticed that I am more productive in the studio on “don’t-leave-the-house, no-appointments” days when I can just put on my comfies, roll up my sleeves and lose track of time.

    1. Children living at home forced me to compartmentalize my life when I first started wishing for more studio time. Before they exited for their own homes (my children are 41 and 37) I became part of the taffy generation, stretched between attending to my children’s needs and that of the seniors in my life. The seniors have all passed on. I miss them. Now I have grandparent duty. The reality is there is always someone or something clamoring for our attention. I applaud your efforts to set limits with your customers. Stay strong. Now that you have an established business they can accommodate your schedule, especially if you frame how important uninterrupted work is for achieving that breathtaking quilting you provide for them.

    1. Thanks, Margaret. I find it fascinating how many people gravitate to this work and similar ones in the series. Think I will make variety of others for the open studio in November based on the feedback.

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