Starting My Quilt Portfolio

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The spine of my portfolio. Using one of my quilt labels made labeling the portfolio easy peasy!

I started a quilt portfolio this past summer. In it are the whopping 2 quilts I’ve finished this year. (Sorry, the chicken wall hanging didn’t make the cut.) I created a quilt portfolio simply so that I can have a record of what quilts I’ve made. I also want a permanent, physical way to show my quilts to others, even if the quilts are no longer in my possession.

There are a couple of factors that led me to start a portfolio. First, I went to portfolio school, where I studied advertising copywriting and learned to keep a portfolio of my work. So, it feels natural to keep a portfolio of my other creative work. That’s a huge reason for this portfolio.

But then, there’s social media. I’ve used social media to chronicle and record my creations and life, but recently, I’ve had a change of heart. This year, I deleted approximately 145 posts from this blog. (Did you notice? Ha!) I also deleted the first blog I ever wrote—like, completely took it down. Every day I fall less in love with Facebook and while Instagram is my go-to social media platform, I realize that 1, 5, 10 years from now, I may fall out of love with it, or make the decision to abandon it completely. Social media is a great way to share creative work, but I want something that isn’t going to get overcrowded with ads or have a distinguishable shift in usage. When is the last time you couldn’t access a physical photo album (which a portfolio essentially is) because you lost your password, or you couldn’t flip to the pictures you were interested in seeing because it became filled with ads and other junk?

Because of this, I set out to create a quilt portfolio, something simple, but something that would capture the patterns, colors, and stories behind my quilts. I started in PowerPoint. I’m not a graphic designer by any means, but that doesn’t matter too much to me for this project. I laid out the best pictures I could get with my iPhone (once again, I’m looking for snapshots, not necessarily polished photos), and then wrote out the details and the story behind the quilt.

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My first finish this year: Dazzling Pineapple Mini Quilt. The layout is simple and gets the job done.

I had the pages printed at one of those office-y places and then I glued on swatches of the fabric I used for one of the quilts. This is one of my favorite parts. While my photos and the printing may not have captured the true colors of the quilt, these swatches do. I got a snazzy 3-ring binder from an office supply store and slipped the portfolio pages into sheet protectors and snapped them in.

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My favorite part: swatches! The stitching here was my quick study for when I did the real thing on my Welcome Blanket Quilt.

It’s going to be a slow-growing portfolio—ahem, there are only 2 quilts in there. But, so what? This will give me something to look back at and remember what I’ve made. I also like to think that if someone wants me to make a quilt for them, they can flip through this and get an idea of what they want. Who knows?

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I picked this binder for the quilt-esque pattern in bright colors.

Do you have a quilt (or other creative) portfolio? How did you make it? Do you feel any ambivalence towards using social media as a way to record your creations? Tell me in the comments!

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