Tu-Na Quilts: I am a Perfectionist

Three years ago, I took a class and painted a barn quilt. 

tunaquilts 5

My mom, two sisters, and niece also painted barn quilts in that class. 

I was very proud of my work. I brought it home and showed Tu-Na Helper asking him to hang it outside on the house. 

Tu-Na Helper: “It won’t last outside.”

Me: “Why not? I used exterior paint.”

Tu-Na Helper: “It wasn’t prepared properly and any rain on it would make those plywood layers peel apart.”

tunaquilts 1a

Can you find my mistake?

I felt sad. The teacher of the class had provided us with primed 2′ x 2′ plywood boards but the 1/2″ sides were not puttied shut before priming. Even with the primer and several coats of exterior paint on the edges, there were several little holes that remained open. These would be the spots that would allow rain to enter and ruin my work.

So I leaned my beautiful barn quilt against the wall in my entry and forgot about it. During the busyness of life, another item was set in front of it until I could get that item to my daughter-in-law when we would visit them in Michigan. 

Months passed and the trip was planned. Right after Tu-Na Helper loaded the car with my daughter-law’s item, I happened to pass by my barn quilt.

What???? How could that have happened? I saw my mistake for the first time. For the next two years, I didn’t know what to do—fix it or leave it. Tu-Na Helper even took the barn quilt to the paint store last year so they could match the paint. He surprised me with the smallest can they could make—a pint. 

tunaquilts 2a

I probably only used a tablespoon of paint. Now I have almost a pint of lime green paint leftover.

The barn quilt sat until Sunday when I passed by it and decided it was now or never. It only took me 15 minutes to tape, paint, and dry the wrong sections.

tunaquilts 3a

What I Learned Today:

  1. Stirring that can of one year old paint, took longer than the actual painting over my mistake.
  2. Mistakes drive me crazy.
  3. I might as well fix my mistakes right away so I can move on.
  4. Mistakes are often the cause of my UFOs.
  5. Fixing a mistake often takes less time than one thinks.
  6. My sunroom is perfect for taking pictures.
  7. I love my Jade plant.
tunaquilts 4a

I have no idea how old that plant is. But it is lovely.

Question: Everyone makes mistakes. Do you fix yours? I am much happier when I fix the very obvious ones. Usually, I set aside the mistake. If it still bothers me or I see it when I pick up the project to work on it (or if I remember it), then I need to fix it.

Thanks for stopping by and do come again.

Karen, Tu-Na Quilts

15 thoughts on “Tu-Na Quilts: I am a Perfectionist

  1. Judy Schue

    Sometimes I am a perfectionist Nd sometimes not. Depends on how big the problem is, how badly is bothers me and my mood for the day.


  2. Rochelle Summers

    Mistakes if obvious can drive me crazy. If it’s points not pointing or seams not matching and it would require too much unsewing, I let it stay. It is too bad you cannot hang your barn quilt outside like you planned. Is there a wall inside or at your Arizona place where it would look good? And how nice the Tu=Na Helper gave you such a thoughtful gift.


  3. Verna A.

    I didn’t see a mistake, but the fixed version really pops!

    I made two barn quilts, but made the mistake of sealing them with something that ended up being yellow rather than clear. They’ve been sitting in my basement for a few years. Now I’m inspired to try to fix them!


  4. Leslie Schmidt

    I wouldn’t have noticed the mistake, but it looks really good now. There must be some wall inside that could use such a beautiful adornment.
    I’ve always been a perfectionist. That may be why I really enjoyed doing counted cross stitch for so many years. I know a mistake would bug me, so I will take it out if I catch it. But that doesn’t mean that I catch them all!


  5. rl2b2017

    Good Morning Karen! I had no idea where your mistake was until you showed the repainting photo. I probably wouldn’t have noticed it at all but someone else would have pointed it out to me. THEN it would drive me nuts. That is one beautiful Jade plant – I managed to kill mine. The barn painting looks just stunning! Great job. ~smile~ Roseanne


  6. Kathleen McCormick

    I am so glad you were able to uncover it and fix it. Too bad it wasn’t set up right so it could be outside. Do you have a place for it? Fixing my mistakes depends on what it is and how much it will bother me.


  7. Barb Mitchell

    I love the Barn Quilt…I too am a perfectionist…my friend lined her fence in her backyard with Barn Quilts….they are amazing…


  8. Carol Home

    Good for you for fixing it. It was difficult to see the original error. Now that it’s fixed it looks better. I am the same way…..things eat at me until I follow through and finish the way I want it to be. What a fun project to work on together.


  9. dezertsuz

    I’m not a mistake fixer. It would have to be pretty awful for me to fix something. I usually find a work around. I wouldn’t have ever found that mistake if you hadn’t mentioned there being one, and I had convinced myself I was wrong, comparing it to others, before I saw your taped part. LOL Can you put some kind of plastic strip edging over the edges that aren’t weatherproofed? Or hang it on a wall inside?


  10. piecefulwendy

    Oh Karen, that barn quilt is gorgeous! Glad you were able to fix the hiccup when you saw it. I didn’t until I read your solution. I have done that on an actual quilt, at least one. Usually the mistake just stays if it’s too late to fix it. Will you hang it in the house, if it can’t be outdoors?


  11. plstockwell

    It all depends. I must admit, most mistakes I just move on and make it work. I consider it to making something mine. If I catch the mistake early enough in the process, typically I will fix it. Last, it depends on who my audience is. I have learned to let it go so I can be done. But if it is a gift, I will think twice about it or if I will be showing it, I usually will fix or make it work better. If I literally screwed it up, and I have tried to fix it multiple times, I am done. What I do with the project is debatable.


  12. thedarlingdogwood

    I couldn’t find the mistake but both versions are beautiful! You picked a great design; I love the Carpenter’s Star and that’s my plan when I finally make a barn quilt to hang on our shed outside.



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