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Just Draw


Just draw as much as you can. I know that sounds silly but as I tell my quilting students, muscle memory is important.

Muscle Memory

mus·cle mem·o·rynoun

  1. the ability to reproduce a particular movement without conscious thought, acquired as a result of frequent repetition of that movement.”typing relies heavily on muscle memory”


In college we were required to keep an inspiration journal & sketchbook. At the time it was to add in photos, notes, sketches, really anything.


Building on that sage advice, I’d like to encourage you to keep inspiration at your fingertips. Pinterest boards [1], photos on your phone from quilt guilds and quilt shows, and sketches from anywhere.


The importance of a sketchbook, to me, is that while I can find amazing photos of cool-looking designs on the entire internet, my sketchbook is the place where I can see what I can actually draw.

From here, I can plan to build on skills sketched on previous pages to create something intricate and useful.


And while it may seem like I’m just sitting there with a random marker-color-of-the-day, I’m actually building muscle memory and creating a resource to flip through at a later date.



Using the sketchbook to completely inspire your quilting has been made quite popular by Karlee Porter [2] with her Graffiti Quilting [3] style. I’m a huge fan.

Graffiti Quilting by Karlee Porter

I’ve found, though, that I’m even able to break out some designs and add them into my own brainstorming. Recently taking a Handi Quilter class [4], I used my sketchbook ideas to help draft a couple blocks.


You never know when these ideas will come in handy. I encourage your to just draw as often as you can!