Christa’s Soap Box – On Sharing (and a Sneak Peek of Craftsy Filming)

So it dawned on me the other day that sharing is an integral part of my process. I’ve been feeling a bit lost over the last year because although it’s been a whirlwind of activity – pattern writing, fabric designing, traveling  & teaching, workshop filming –  I haven’t taken as much time to properly document and share what I was doing.

So I hope you’ll indulge me while I write a bit of an essay on this subject. I’m weaving in some “behind the scenes” photos of my latest Craftsy shoot so this isn’t just a wall of text!!

Filming at Craftsy

My latest adventure – filming my upcoming Craftsy class, “Startup Project: Starry Path”

I’m pretty good at sharing real-time snippets on facebook and instagram, but I really, really, miss writing actual long-form paragraphs about what I’m doing. I’ve forgotten how much I enjoy that part of things!! Throw in a whole bunch of “secret” sewing and I’ve felt like I’m doing a whole lot but not actually getting anywhere with it, LOL!!

You know the old saying – if you make a quilt but there’s no one around to see it, have you really accomplished anything?? (Just kidding – I made that up but sometimes that’s how I feel.)

So I hope to change that up for the rest of this year.

I’ll still be as busy as ever – I like it that way and it keeps me out of trouble. But as much as I can, I want to share more of the process with you. I was actually looking through my contracts for a bunch of stuff I’m currently working on and you know what? They don’t actually say I can’t share!!

Stepouts off camera

What you don’t see off camera – stepouts for the class, organized in sequence of filming

Going forward, I’d like to combat one of those “quilting myths” – that as a designer, you have to keep everything secret until it’s ready for the marketplace, or else everyone will get tired of seeing it and won’t want to buy it when it’s time to sell. Just remember – the reality is that full-time designers like me have to sell what we produce, or we are out of a job, LOL!!

Well you know what? I’m willing to take that risk!! I hope you won’t get bored for example, if I actually document and share the process of making my next round of quilts for my next fabric line. Or share some behind the scenes pics of my latest Craftsy filming, even though the class won’t be available for a couple more months.

Filming in process

Checking out what it looks like from my producer, Evan’s point of view. Notice the clock on the wall says 6:35 PM. We started each day at 8:30 am. It take 3 full days to produce about 1 1/2 to 2 hours of content. Those were some long – but fun – hours!!

Although my latest projects won’t be available for mass consumption until at least this summer, how can I enjoy the next few months of sewing if I can’t even show you what I’m making?? Trust me, after writing 3 books, filming multiple Craftsy classes and now finalizing my latest fabric line, it’s killed me that I haven’t shared these things in “real” time. Not to mention all of the fantastic teaching trips I’ve been going on and fabulous people I’ve been meeting when I travel. I’m really feeling compelled to share more as a way to process my experiences.

The Camera Crew at Craftsy

Although I’m the only one you’ll see on camera, it takes a dedicated team to produce such high-quality Craftsy videos. Jim (left) and Tommy (right) were top-notch camera guys!!

Sure, writing up a post about  the finished quilt/class project months later is still fun, but I’ve somehow missed the magic that I like to capture in the moment when I document things in real time. I know part of the problem is that I got caught up in the social media rat race that I wrote about at the end of last year. My reduced social media presence since then has been great (see my follow-up post here).

But I think I’m ready to now strike the balance of doing a tad bit less production work, and in the process sharing more of what I do in-depth and in real-time here on the blog. I guess you could say I’m aiming for less quantity, and more quality both in my making and my writing.

Linda on set at Craftsy

My Craftsy editor, Linda has worked with me on all of my Craftsy classes. She’s become more than I colleague. I now count her as a dear friend, always willing to help me do my best!!

So be on the lookout for more process and adventure posts from me. Darn it, I haven’t even had time to write about my trip to QuiltCon yet this year, and just like the first time I went in 2013, it inspired me in ways that will impact my making for years to come. So – more on that soon – I promise!!

Until then, happy quilting, making, sharing, and processing!!!

17 thoughts on “Christa’s Soap Box – On Sharing (and a Sneak Peek of Craftsy Filming)

  1. Caroline Callaway says:

    Hey Christa, please keep on sharing. I have been following your blog for years, witnessing you evolve your brand and your business, cheering for you on the sidelines. I have learned a lot in the process and I think I became a better and more fearless quilter as a result. The icing on the cake was being able to take one of your classes at The Road to California. Looking forward to hearing your impressions of Quiltcon. I could only attend the first day but I met a quilter from Virginia and we are now pen-pals, updating each other on our progress.I think quilters are by far the nicest and most friendly people. BTW, Moda shows their fabrics months in advance.
    https://storefront.unitednotions.com/storefrontCommerce/redirect.do?page=zDownloads

  2. Julie says:

    Share away! I love seeing the process. That is why I take classes as my “vacations”! Sitting around bores me to tears. I love the star quilt! Is it the class project included with your class? If so, I’m in! Keep up all the good work.

    • Christa says:

      Yes! The pattern for the Starry Path quilt will be included in the class. They’ll also have kits available once the class goes live.

      Christa Watson Instagram @christaquilts website/blog: ChristaQuilts.com Click here to join my facebook group: Quilt with Christa

      On Thu, Mar 22, 2018 at 8:34 AM, Christa Quilts wrote:

      >

  3. Lucy Blum says:

    I enjoy reading your progress reports! And you should be promoting your upcoming class and fabric line!! Love the orange blouse you’re wearing made from your first fabric line!

  4. Betsy Maier says:

    I’m so happy to read that you “need” to share more! Social media has me frustrated as I need to read all about the nitty gritty that goes into the finished product & not just the instant gratification pics. You are such a talented maker so PLEASE share with we followers. Reading all about projects from start to finish makes me want to stretch myself & continue to hone my craft. Several quilters I’ve followed in the past no longer keep up their blogs as they post to Instagram, etc. now. While beautiful pics are inspiring I want to read about the whole process so this post certainly makes me very happy. Looking forward to your future posts & new fabric line!

  5. Carol Lang says:

    Thank you for sharing about your process. It is so interesting to see how the process plays out. I saw you at QuiltCon and also found some of your yummy fabrics. It is even better in person. Keep it coming!

  6. Paula Hedges says:

    Christa, I could see the “smiles” in your writing! I understand what it is like to reassess what you have been doing and not be 100% satisfied and try to figure out how you can change it up and keep your followers interest. Then, the “ah ha” moment strikes and you know how to shift just a bit to keep yourself and your followers pleased. Been going through that process a few times myself over the past six months and still waiting for the jolt of inspiration. It will come!

    I love to see what you are doing in real time, altho sometimes I wonder how you do it all, then I remember what it is like to be young, inspired, and full of energy. Keep up the great strides you are making and your followers would love to be there with you!

  7. Cathy Melancon says:

    Hey Christa! You are adorable, energetic, creative, and very caring. I can only imagine how busy you are and I enjoy all your posts! Any picture is fun to see and gives us a glimpse into what you are doing! Keep up the great work!!

  8. Jerilynn Nichols Lijewski says:

    Thank you fir this! It seems as if blog posts only say, “I’ve been sooo busy with secret sewing,”. Um, ok. Is that supposed to be interesting? The joy is in the journey! Challenges! Small successes! Detours! The world will see the arrival. How did you get there? Was it fun? What did you learn? Looking forward to this dose of reality. Again thank you!

  9. Liz says:

    I love in progress photos! I’m not part of the industry but I’m fascinated by it and always am so happy to read about what it’s like to quilt for a living. Also, for the last few fabric lines I’ve been madly in love with, the designers released sneak peeks and then more and more pictures, and it only made me more excited for the actual release, I didn’t feel like I was tired of it at all.

  10. quilting538 says:

    This was very interesting to me.I think we forget about what it takes to prepare for things that we do.We watch but miss the process. Thank you for sharing! I loved seeing your big smile with your editor!

  11. Liz Rehrauer says:

    Thanks for keeping your blog going. I know, because I’m following them, that quite a few bloggers have stopped writing and gone with mostly the quicker forms of social media. And I’ve come to, almost, despise secret sewing. I love your attitude.

  12. DEBI JIMENEZ says:

    A new fabric line, a new class and I think I read somewhere that you are working on another book .
    Share. .sure Christa keep sharing all you can . We all want our inner Supergirl to be the SUPERWOMAN you have become!
    So can share the name of your new fabric line yet?
    And on a personal note: Your kit for the Strawberry Frizz Quilt is sold out and no longer available on Craftsy. can we fine it anywhere else?

    • Christa says:

      Thanks so much for your kind words 🙂 I’ll share a few sneak peeks of the fabric once my sample yardage gets here. I’m so glad everyone’s getting excited about it! I’m not sure if Craftsy will get in any more of those kits. I think they were happy with how many they sold!!

      Christa Watson Instagram @christaquilts website/blog: ChristaQuilts.com Click here to join my facebook group: Quilt with Christa

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 4:48 AM, Christa Quilts wrote:

      >

  13. Janice King says:

    Christa, I really enjoy your posts, showing your real time work. It helps to see the process, even though seeing the finished quilt, book, fabric line is enjoyable, it is really educational to see the thought process going into the actual development, at least to me. Thank you for sharing your work and your time.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s