The Postcard Auction/sale may be over but the Quilts need to keep coming in!
I just love to make quilts and since my family has more than they could need, I find making the small ones for AAQI to be fun and of course the proceeds go to a very worthy cause.”
Marlene shares the following tips for “Priority Quilters.”
1. I think it is important to make your quilt bold, graphic and colorful in order to attract attention. You have just a few seconds to make the viewer want to look at your quilt further and possibly buy it. With the exception of my #5000 quilt (shown above), almost all of my quilts fit in that category. The #5000 had so much detail that people looked at it because it reminded them of grandma’s farm.
Remember, people first see a small thumbnail. If that small image doesn’t grab them, they won’t click. If they don’t click, they won’t bid or buy.
2. The average appliqué quilt that is sent in to AAQI consists of flowers so if you want to do a flower quilt you must make it stand out from the other hundreds. Perhaps make the flower or leaf extend into the border or make the stitching from the leaf or flower extend beyond. Use bold color; possibly stitch it with Sulky rayon thread to give it a luster, use beads, painted Tyvek, decorative yarn or other interesting items for the centers. Avoid rick rack, buttons, pom-poms. You are portraying yourself as an artist. Most artists use more sophisticated techniques than those.
3. Practice lowering the feed dogs and writing your name. A few practices and you can sign your quilt on the front. It gives the appearance of a finished piece of art work, as long as it is small, unobtrusive, and well done.
[If you have a wheel mouse, click the image to enlarge. Then, hold down the CTRL key and spin the wheel. This will enlarge the image even more and help you see the fine thread with which Marlene machine quilted her name freehand. Hint: it is in the lower left corner of the quilt.]
4. Make sure that you finish your quilt with the same care that you made the rest of the quilt. If you have a rectangle, make it accurate. The first thing I look at on the web site is whether the sides are straight and the corners crisp. I like to pillowcase some of the sides and make some straight—whatever hits me with the design I am trying to create. If the sides are undulating or curved in some manner, make them flow smooth smoothly.
5. Another way to get people to look at your quilt is by having an interesting title. Sometimes I have trouble coming up with something “tricky” but in that case I consult my friends for help with names. Sometimes a little “tease” makes potential buyers want to look at your quilt.
6. I like to use lots of techniques and when writing up the materials/techniques I am careful to list everything I can think of that I did/used. If I used 3 beads, I list that. If I signed it, I list that. I like to pipe my quilts to make them pop so I list that. By listing everything you did/used you let the viewer know that this isn’t a simple quilt. It might look simple, but it isn’t. If you have a story to go with the quilt, list that. The more information you give people, the better.
7. In my e-mail program I make a group listing of my family and friends. The best potential buyers for your quilts are your relatives or friends. Even friends that don’t quilt! They will think everything you do is wonderful and then forward it to another tier of people.
When you get your assignment numbers and your quilts have been moved out of the “Waiting For Assignment” page and into either the “Quilts For Sale” page or the “Auction” page, write a little note telling your e-mail group that you have several quilts listed and thought they would be interested in seeing what you are doing these days. On your first note to everyone, explain a little about AAQI and give them the numbers of your quilts. Each time you send a note (do it more than once) give them the AAQI web site address. (www.AlzQuilts.org) They forget it or misplace it easily.
Be sure to tell them where to find your quilts on the AAQI website or that they can type in the numbers or your name in the search box. Don’t indicate that you want them to buy anything—only that you knew they would be interested in how you spend some of your time. Then blind carbon copy the note so that the receivers do not see the email addresses of everyone else who recieved the email.
[Look for Marlene’s quilts on the Quilts For Sale page and in the September online quilt auction. We applaud her extraordinary talent and thank her for threading her needle for the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative. ~ Ami