|As Erica mentioned in her advice post, quality visuals are a definite plus. In that spirit, I've scattered a few throughout this post ;o)|
For as vastly distributed as we are across the globe, there are a surprising number of spots where you can really feel like a "regular" every week if you just take a look around and put yourself out there. By way of example (this is by no means an exhaustive list!): WIP Wednesday at Lee's, Needle and Thread Thursday at Kelly's, Finish it up Friday at Amanda Jean's, Paper Piecing Party every weekend at Kristy's, and Sunday Stash over at Molli's. And then there's the semi-annual Blogger's Quilt Festival (going on now!) over at Amy's. And don't even get me started on the quilt alongs...
That's right! Were you inspired by something you saw on flickr? Pinterest? Another blog? Or, are you talking about a project that you previously posted about? Click the "Link" tab, highlight that text and show me exactly where to go.
|A sketch from my high school doodling days.|
Because I like it.
It'll come through. Of course at first you might struggle to find your voice. (I distinctly recall not really knowing who exactly I was addressing—...myself?—when I first started blogging.) You're at a really great advantage having a solid group of peers (and onlooking alums!) stopping by via the hop, but also give some thought to your dream audience, and write to them, too.
Feel the love. Spread the love.
I've found that (most) quilters are inherently welcoming. Embrace it. Emulate it. The end.
|This is a mock-up of my *January* do.Good Stitches design. (Or, how not to be accountable.)|
No one wants to start a quilt along only to be left hanging and without full instructions at the end, right? Try not to be that person. Or at least communicate that life has gotten in the way and you have no choice but to be that person in that moment (by doing so you'll actually still avoid being "that person").
|One of several free patterns in my craftsy shop. Clearly not overly concerned these days about giving anything away ;o)|
Figure out what works for you. And be willing to adapt.
When all is said and done, you have to carve out your own place in the interwebs—preferably one that you'll stay motivated to maintain. I initially started blogging as a complement to my Etsy shop, where I planned to sell only quilts, not patterns. (In retrospect... Ha. Ha. ...Ha.) So for whatever reason, I swore early on that I'd never post WIPs because (1) I didn't quite understand why other people would want to see my process to begin with, and (2) in a world marred by copycats, I was nervous about "giving too much away." Let me tell you, after I started blogging (in a vacuum) those two points went out the window about as fast I came up with them, leaving me with a completely (and somewhat frighteningly) blank platform. But you know what? That forced me to explore other blogs I admired, and really helped me make this my "happy place."
|#opgivewarmth is one way I try to give back, along with giveaways, free patterns and free palettes.|
(In whatever way is meaningful to you.)
And finally, think outside the blog.
I have to say, I avoided joining Instagram for the longest time. As far as I could tell, friends joined IG and (their words, not mine), "basically stopped blogging." Gasp! Determined not to let that happen to me, I avoided IG altogether. And then I met my coworker-blogger-friend (not in that order) Amanda of Material Girl Quilts, who—within a day, tops—told me that I *had* to get on IG. So I did. And between that, flickr, and the blog, I've ended up with a nice little trio for getting (and staying) connected. I encourage you to explore outlets beyond your blog if you're anxious to get more engaged in this ever-evolving community.
And that's all I've got to say about that! Thank you again to Beth for organizing such a wonderful event. I very much look forward to meeting some new friends over the next few months. And for those of you who are interested but haven't yet signed up, you can check out the hop guidelines and leave a comment expressing said interest on Beth's post over here.