Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Craftsy Block of the Month Blog Tour and Giveaway!!

It's my turn on the Craftsy Block of the Month Blog Tour. Craftsy Block of the Month is taught by Amy of Stitchery Dickory Doc, we became friends at the Sewing Summit and she really is as nice and cheery as she looks in her photo. 
Now what is Craftsy? I had never been on it before but have found it really fun. It's an online sewing community where you can take classes, get feedback on work, and more. Craftsy Block of the Month is a free online class where Amy teaches you two blocks a month and you will have a finished quilt at the end of the year. Amy's class is a good beginner workshop but there are classes for all skill levels.The nice thing is you can email the teachers to ask questions and there are forums for the participants to chat and share photos in.


Today, I'm going to talk to you about online swaps.  Once you learn new sewing techniques from Amy, you might want to do some new things in the sewing community and swaps are a great way to get started. A tricky thing about swaps is that a lot of them require you to have participated in a swap to be in a swap. This is to protect all the swappers so that you really have quality people joining in but that makes it hard to find your first swap.

Swap Basics
  • Anyone can host a swap usually on Flickr but also Twitter.
  • The time frame can be short or long.
  • There's usually a theme and a set number of participants.
  • The swap initiator -aka swap mama- gathers information from you and the other participants, then assigns partners based on compatibility.
  • They require participation through the discussion board and usually a photo mosaic.
  • You must have an active flickr account.
  • There will be a shipping deadline that you must meet.
  • You will receive an item made by your partner. Most times it is AMAZING, but sometimes it is not :( and in that case, hope for a better match next time!
  • Swaps are a great way to make friends in the community.

When did my first online swap I had already been in a few swaps with my local guild and I would encourage you to do at least one swap locally if you can. I found potholder pass which is a Flickr swap that is accessible to newbies. Because of the effort involved it is best to find a group that is swapping something you're really interested in, I needed some new potholders. Besides potholders, there are swaps for mini quilts, zipper pouches, grocery bags, pillows and many more.
My first swap package sent to my partner. It's fun to send extra's but it's not required.

What I received!

What I sent to my partner. 
What I received!
 Another important requirement for swaps is that you have the time to really do them. Depending on the swap, you might have one month two months or more to complete your project and mail it to your partner.  A month can seem like a long time, but you really need to think ahead about what might be happening and if you're going to get stuck finishing a swap right before you're son's third birthday. 
Another part of swapping is "stalking" your partner. This means you look at their Flickr stream, blog if they have one, and follow their answers to questions that come up during the swap. This all helps to make something that they will really like. I find this to be a really fun part of the swap.
                                              Photobucket
Yes I did say that there would be a giveaway and not only on my blog but every stop on the blog tour!  The Fat Quarter shop is generously giving away a $25 gift certificate to their store. To enter, leave a comment on this post. Make sure to leave your email address if it is not accessible through your profile. I will leave the comments open until the morning of Saturday, March 10th when I will pick the winner using a random number generator. Please forgive me if I do not respond to comments like I normally would I am injured (more on that later) and have only made this post with the help of my friend and typist Jennifer.

Feb 24 - Miss Print
Feb 25 - Hoosier Toni
Feb 27 - Fresh Lemons
Feb 28 -Qubee Quilts
Mar 2  - mon petit lyons
Mar 3  - Mel's Own Place
Mar 7  - Sew Paint Create
Mar 9  - SoChick
Mar 10- Spin the Bobbin
Mar 14- Ellison Lane
Mar 16- Old Red Barn Co

Don't miss the other stops!
Pétra


** Lots of no-reply comments with no email address if you don't leave me your email address you can't win!**

66 comments:

Gill said...

Thanks FQS!
Count me in please!

Lee Ann L. said...

I'm not going to lie. I'm scared to do swaps! LOL. Thanks for a chance to win. :-)

Lee said...

Thank you for a great post on swaps! love what you made and received!

Mom2RyandSis said...

Have never tried a Swap, maybe someday! Thanks for the chance to win!

Sharmond said...

I am really enjoying Craftsy BOM. It is my very first and I liked the online format. Thanks for the info on swaps, I have been curious about them and how they work. I visit blogs about swaps and wanted to know more. Thanks for opportunity for giveaway!

**nicke... said...

oh fun, you sent and received a lot of great stuff! i have been swapping like crazy lately. i am finishing the ones i have to do now and will take some time off... they are so fun though, i am sure i won't be able to stop!

StarSpry said...

I haven't done a swap yet, but they sound like so much fun!! I hope you feel better soon!

Michelle Olsen said...

I'm scared to try swaps too. It looks like so much fun, so I'll probably try when my sewing skills are stronger and my fabric stash is prettier. Thanks for the chance to win!

Iris said...

What great info on swaps and I will most definately go and look one out that takes newbies :) Thanks for the give away.

LauraC said...

Thanks for the info on swaps. I find them intriguing but doubt that I have the time for them right now.

Sharon said...

I've never done a swap as I really didn't understand what is involved with it. I've only been quilting a little over a year, but really enjoying it and the Craftsy BOM! Your swap gifts are lovely that you made & received! Hope you are feeling better soon!

MG said...

I love reading about swaps that people do, but I don't think I would make a good swap partner. I'm afraid i would make something totally wrong for my partner.

robin said...

I've never done a swap before. I'd be afraid that the quality of what I make would disappoint a more seasoned quilter. I guess I'd have to get over that! ;)

Donna @ Snowbound said...

Great info on the swaps!!

ciccia74 said...

I never join in a swap it's looks fun! Thanks for the chance!

JanetD said...

So many projects, so litle time! I'm loving the BOM on Craftsy. Also doing BOM with Sentimental Stitches. Since I'm an empty nester this year after 18 years of homeschooling our 4 kids, I thought I'd have tons of time to quilt, but while I do have more time, not the hours and hours I thought. Oh well! Thanks for the info on the swaps.

Alice Watson said...

I would love to enter a swap, but have always been hesitant to do so. Maybe the potholder swap would be a good beginning. Thank you for participating in Craftsy's Blog of the Day Giveaway. Love those Fat Quarters. Get well soon!

Teje said...

Hi Petra! I'm happy to see that I'm not only one who loves to see all swapping around but haven't made any. I have just too many things I want and have to do, so I couldn't find time for that.
Thank you for a great give away!
x Teje

VickiT said...

I'm still so unsure of my quilting abilities that thinking of sending something to someone else really terrifies me. I don't want to be THAT one everyone is afraid to get matched with. LOL

Great tips though so maybe when I feel a bit more secure I'll search out 'beginner' swaps and test the waters there first.

anotheryarn said...

Oh no! You are injured? I hope recovery is quick.

I didn't know about that BOM group, now I must check it out.

Linda E in AZ said...

I used to do fabric swaps, but with the high cost of postage (and fabric) it just doesn't seem worth it to me anymore. Too bad because it was fun.
thanks!

Didee May said...

Wow! It was great to learn about swaps as I have never participated in one and really didn't know much about them. I would love to give one a go one day. Your oven mitts (pot holders) were great! I really hope your injury heals soon. I spent a year with an arm that was not particularly functional after a workplace injury and it was so frustrating. Make sure you take the time you need to heal.

Kim's Crafty Apple said...

Thanks so much for the swap info. I've been enjoying the Craftsy BOM these past few months. I hope you feel better soon and your injury isn't too bad!

Valerie said...

Nice recap for swapping, Petra! It was fun to see your projects. Swapping has been such a fun way to be purposeful in my sewing and connect with other sewists!

Swedish Scrapper said...

Wow, that's such good info on swaps--Thanks :^D
I just finished my first charity block and I thought it was really fun to have parameters to work within. As I get better, I be a swap would be for me!

Jennie P. said...

I love seeing what people give and receive in swaps, even though I don't participate in them myself yet :) Thanks for the giveaway chance!

Beth said...

I have never done a swap - sounds interesting, if a bit intimidating!
beth(dot)sebastian(at)gmail(dot)com

Nvjacq said...

I would love doing a swap. I will have to try it! Thanks for the great information on swaps and for the chance to win!

Diann said...

I enjoy swaps and have done many in the past. None recently though.
Thanks for the giveaway.

Maki said...

Goodness! This is heaven! I love the designs

Cloud 9 said...

I have never done a swap, not enough time in the day. Thanks for the chance to win!

Tamie said...

Thanks for sharing your swap experiences.

Kim said...

I am starting out really slow--just swapping color charms! LOL I don't have enough skills yet to join a swap where I actually have to make something for someone!

SewCal Gal said...

I also enjoy swaps. I even did swaps with quilters from around the world, long before the internet!

SewCalGal
www.sewcalgal.blogspot.com

Marcia W. said...

Thanks for the information on swaps.

Mari said...

Never knew there were swaps like these Think once I get better at sewing I would love to do one. thanks for the info~

Kimberly said...

I have one a ton of swaps on Craftster and and in the middle of my first Flickr swap. As well as our PMQG swaps I've participated in. I love the swaps that are IRL, so fun to talk to your partner after they received. :) Thanks for the giveaway!
Waiting to hear how much your quilt raised. I hope it was a ton!

Tracey Rampling (The Peony Teacup) said...

I'm currently participating in my first 2 swaps - the Disappearing 9 patch swap by Michelle from MALT designs, and the Name Game swap by Anorina from Samelia's Mum... I've sent both of my packages off and I can't wait to see what comes back!

Lisa Marie said...

Thanks for all the good information! Hope your injury heals soon!

Deb said...

I've never done a swap - just don't feel quite good enough. My partner wouldn't benefit! I need to order some fabric and the gift from FQS would sure be nice! I'm enjoying the blog hop a lot and look forward to Craftsy.

Karen P. said...

I am really loving the tour! And yes, flickr swaps are the best!! I love the potholder pass as well!

Lisa Cox said...

I just signed up for my first swap. I'm excited and nervous at the same time.

C Smith said...

Thank you for the swaps information! I have never done one but they sound like fun. I am doing the BOM with Amy on Craftsy. It is a wonderful class!

Robineva said...

Swaps sound like fun.

rmaguire@sover.net

landscapelady said...

I've never done swap but sounds like I should!

Adri H. said...

Thanks for posting the skinny on sewing swaps. I have participated in yarn swaps, but hadn't even thought about sewing ones! How cool! I may participate in one once I'm done with a few of my bigger projects (1 bed sized quilt and a tailored jacket are currently underway).

adriprints(at)yahoo(dot)com

Lisa E said...

I've only done charm swaps. I might have to broaden my perspective and try something new.

Mommy Made It! said...

Thanks for the advice on swapping. I'm participating in my first two swaps and having so much fun!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for hosting the blog hop. This is my first experience with a blog hop and I'm really enjoying it. How can one find out about more blog hops?
I like the idea of a swap and thanks for giving us the guidelines. Is there such as thing as fabric swaps for things like novelty fabrics for an I Spy project?
I am working on the Craftsy BOM using batiks and some other bright colored/textured looking fabrics from my stash. I have shown my blocks to a few women I have met in Joann's, so I am spreading the word. It's a wonderful way to quickly learn some simple basic quilting techniques and can even be accomplished by those who work.
nellieduclos@yahoo.com

Catskill Quilter said...

I enjoyed all of the info on swaps! Sure hope that you mend quickly and are soon feeling first rate!

Sewhappy said...

thank you for this informative post. I never knew of craftsy but I do know a friend who will love to check it out. I have been in a couple of swaps and it is important to watch time frames especially if the swap bug hits and you join many. Thanks.

Amy said...

Thank you for the info on the swaps!

Donna~~ said...

I've never done a swap, so it's interesting to find out about them. PS. Love your X & + quilt in the previous post--very nice!

Jo said...

The swap looks lovely and you did well with it. Thanks for the giveaway!

MoeWest said...

Thanks for an interesting post on swaps. I haven't tried one yet but I will one day. I hope your injury gets better soon.

Jackie Warren said...

I have done one swap -- with 9 patch. I ended up with a beautiful quilt - am proud that I actually sewed everything together and finished the project. thanks for being a part of the "tour". jackiewar@cebridge.net

Anne-Marie said...

I had never heard of these swaps before. How fun! Thanks for adding me to the giveaway. amree58@yahoo.com

hueisei said...

I never join any swap...maybe someday..

Jacey said...

Fun! I'd love a shot at the gift certificate. I have been in several flickr swaps, one on twitter, and many private swaps with crafty friends. Swaps are so much fun, and you explained them well here!

JessiBerry said...

Thank you for the information about a swap! I have read a bit on them, and wasn't exactly sure what it entailed. I am new to quilting and probably wont be participating in one anytime soon. I am so excited about this Craftsy BOM! It will be my third quilt and I cannot wait to see what else Amy Gibson has in store for us!

Happy Quilting! :)

Sallie said...

Thanks for the information and for the giveaway!

Joy said...

Swaps have always been a bit intimidating to me - thanks for sharing the details. I think I better take your suggestion and do a local one first!

Carla G said...

Great write up on swaps. I've never done one. Maybe in the future, but at this time I'm short on time... Thanks for a chance to win the gift certificate. :)

Jeanie said...

Thanks for the swap info. Hoping to win the GC!

Jacklynn said...

I have yet to try a swap - I'm kinda new to quilting. Maybe after I have a few projects under my belt....Thanks for the give away!

Mystica said...

Thanks for the chance to win!