One of the things that I've been successful at is just that - making my own rules. That's what makes me tick. Is it always successful? Absolutely not! However, it gives me satisfaction and pride in what I do.
When I first started in the quilting industry, it was a bit of a struggle. Muddy, primitive and country were all the rage. There's nothing wrong with that but look how times have changed! I stuck with it and I had a few wonderful supporters in the industry who made all of the difference.
I meet a lot of quilters who are always afraid that someone is going to say something critical about his/her work. Unless you are harming someone else, does it really matter? No! Then there's the type who has some difficulty choosing fabrics or who has to have that exact fabric as in a sample. As a designer, I try to make my designs unique yet universal enough so that the consumer can change up the colors and add his/her own spin to the design. Go ahead. Add your own flair to a project.
It's fun and it's liberating to make your own rules.