I know I have been promising a Petal + Stem swap for the new year. Here it is!
Blocks must ship by Feb. 15th. There will be no extensions to this deadline so please think about the pandemic and if it will make it difficult for you to get supplies or get to the post office. Please check to see if you are able to ship to the US at this time or if there have been postage hikes that will make it too expensive for you to join. If you think that the pandemic will prevent you from sending on time, please do not join.
Why swap? You will meet new quilting friends from all over the world and have a reason to run to your mailbox! Remember too that I designed a quilt top to highlight the blocks from this swap. You could put your blocks into that free layout if you’d like. You can find it here.
I have run a lot of swaps and know that the secret to a successful swap are very clear guidelines and expectations. Here they are:
Making the Blocks
1. You must purchase a copy of my book, Petal + Stem, in order to have the necessary block patterns. Signed copies are available in my Etsy shop with inexpensive media mail shipping to US customers. You can also find my book on Amazon (this is an affiliate link), or at your local quilt shop/book shop, or your town library. The block pattern cannot be purchased independently due to copyright reasons. Please remember that it is against copyright law to make copies and distribute them as well.
2. You will be asked to sew one Petal block and one Stem block for each of your teammates.
The acceptable Petal blocks are only those listed here: Petunia, Sprite, Parrot Tulip, Tulip, Lily, Beach Rose, Bell Flower, Poker, Solomon’s Seal, Rosebud, Fairy Cap, Fiddlehead, and Lupine.
The acceptable Stem blocks are: Stem 1, Stem 2, Stem 3, Stem 6, Stem 7, and Stem 8.
There are a couple of exceptions! Instead of sending one Petal and one Stem block, you could send two of the following: Pixie Cups, Pot, Grass, Snail, or Butterfly. For example, you might choose to send one Snail and one Grass block.
Also, you may use the blocks from the Foothill Bouquet, Hothouse Bouquet, Meadow Bouquet, Spring Fling Bouquet, the Frog block, the Seedling, the Ant, or Bee and Ladybug. Again–send a petal and a stem, or two of the more misc. blocks like the critters. It doesn’t matter if you choose 6″ x 6″ blocks or 6″ x 12″ blocks–still send two.
Here is an example of what I might choose to send to my partner: one Rosebud and one Stem 7 block.
Here’s another possibility: one Beach Rose block and one mirror image Stem1.
3. The background of each block should be sewn scrappy and contain at least 3 different way low volume prints.
This is how I am defining way low volume fabrics. They should be white, off white, or super light grey with small scale prints that are also white, off white, or super light grey and possibly a little bit of a metallic.
4. When you send your blocks, they should not be sewn together. This way, your partner can mix and match what you sent and further spread out the scrappy low volumes over her quilt top.
5. The Petal and Stem blocks can be any colors you like. They can be prints or solids. Just try to contrast enough with the background.
7. Make sure that you photocopy your foundation pattern at 125% so that it measures 6 1/2″ square unfinished (including the seam allowances) or 6 1/2″ x 12 1/2″ depending on the blocks you choose. My individually sold PDF patterns come full size.
8. Please press well between each step so that your blocks are well sewn and will fit together well with the other blocks. Creases and folds in your fabric can make it hard to piece the blocks together.
9. Please leave the foundation papers in your blocks. This will keep them in better shape and avoid any stretching on the bias. If you need to remove them to reduce international shipping costs, that is an exception.
It’s my hope that by sticking to these guidelines, the finished blocks will work together beautifully in your quilt top.
The blocks received could be put together in a quilt top of your own design, or incorporated into one of the layouts from the book. I think that Potting Mix or Garden Whimsy would work particularly well.
You will be assigned to a group. The number of groups will depend on how many participants we have. Each group will include 4 people.
Everyone in your group will receive your mailing address so that they can ship to you directly.
You will sew a total of 8 blocks (4 Petals, 4 Stems) and send 2 (1 Petal, 1 Stem) to each person in your group (keeping 2 for yourself).
You may be required to ship internationally.
In order to keep shipping costs low, and to allow international participation, we want to be able to mail as a first class letter. This should be possible if you just send the two blocks in a note card. If the post office feels fabric, they may make you send as a package which is more expensive. If the two blocks are in a card, it just feels like a thick card and a first class stamp works perfectly. If someone has the means to send extras and wants to, it’s ok. But it is not expected with this swap. It’s supposed to be inexpensive, quick and easy!
You must email me when you ship to your group. It’s just about accountability! I want to make sure that everyone sends so that everyone receives.
If your swap members do not receive blocks from you, you will be asked to resend. Please also understand that sometimes unexpected things happen and a team member is unable to meet their obligation. If you feel like you will not be able to accept this possibility graciously, this swap may not be for you. There will be no swap angels.
Also, please email your partners to say thank you when you receive their blocks. Or post them on Instagram and tag them so they know their blocks have arrived.
You will receive your group assignment shortly after sign ups close via email.
You must send by February 15, 2022. You may send early! In fact, I love it when people send early!
To sign up, please complete this short form by January 17.
Let me know if you have any questions and let’s get busy sewing our gardens!