Friday, January 9, 2015

Symphony of Solids group project 2015 - It's Go Time!

Syncopated Ribbons, group project 2010
I'm finally back and sort of normal after almost three weeks in Europe, visiting the husband and enjoying a big old family trip wherein each of my three daughters declared they will be living in Europe as adults. Clearly they have not heard about the VAT mess. Clearly I have to complain louder at home.
Update, though. I was able to keep my Craftsy store open by blocking all non-US currency at the PayPal level. I'm hoping to be able to narrow it down to just the 28 EU nations, but that is not as easy to do as it sounds, and currently our laundry piles are still threatening to eat us alive. Hopefully by mid next week I'll have been able to spend the reported 5 hours or so on the phone with Pay Pal that it takes to get this straightened out, and I will certainly keep you updated. Not that I want to block anyone, and I certainly hope no one takes this action I've been forced to take personally. Well, with the exception of the VATMESS organizers. They can feel free to feel my wrath all day long.

So Bonne Annee, Happy New Year, and Prospero Ano everyone! It's 2015, it's January, and that means a little snow, a little cold, and the opportunity to have a little frolic in your fabric to help me out with another group project.
Happy Jacks version 1, group project 2014
Happy Jacks version 2
 I'm so excited!

Each January, I like to ask the quilty world at large to join in and help me out with a new design by making some blocks for me using my directions, which are new and untested. Quilters are asked to create a certain number of blocks (this year, 4) in a certain color scheme or fabric style (this year, solids for one block, whatever you want for the other three), and let me know if the directions make sense. Then the blocks are mailed to me by a certain date (this year, mailing cutoff is 1/27/15) and I take one from everyone (this year, I'll be taking the solid block everyone makes) and create a group quilt that will be on the cover of a new pattern. The rest of the blocks are shuffled around, using a "throw them all up in the air and see where they land" method or similar, and each participant will receive three blocks back to use to start their own quilt, make a small project, or throw in their UFO bin to use later in life or to have their kids sell at a yard sale when they die. It's all up to the individual. 

I gave a lecture recently to Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild in Wellsboro PA where I talked about my group quilts, and I just love the member who raised her hand to comment at the end "This is so great! I'd love to make a group quilt, but I don't see how I could get people to give me blocks. I mean, you are YOU so you can just ask people to make stuff for you and they will, but I'm just little old me. But do people really do this just for fun and to help out? Do you give them anything in return?" (sic - I'm not sure of her exact words as I typically do not bug myself with a secret recording device during lectures, but obviously she loved it all and implied that I was famous which I basked in the glow of for days and this is the gist of it, so hopefully she won't sue me for slander.)

Kickin' Stash, group project 2012 and my bestseller of all time
I answered that I always am shocked and humbled by the willingness of quilters to help me out for fun, but also that I do always give all participants a shiny fresh copy of the new pattern at first printing, complete with their name listed as a tester, and that along with the block swapping fun that seems to do it. I love that quilting is such a social hobby and people enjoy a quick project and a swap enough to help me out!

I'm very proud to say that the patterns in my repertoire that have started as group quilts are consistently best sellers, and I couldn't do it without such amazing help! So I hope you'll consider joining the fun this year.









To review, key points about this year's project:

  • Four blocks to make. Unfinished size is 7 1/2".
  • One block MUST be solids and will be kept by me
  • Three blocks can be whatever you want and will be swapped
  • Each block takes about 15 minutes to make
  • Deadline for mailing blocks is 1/27/15
  • Participants can expect a pattern and swap blocks by the first week of March
  •  
Oh, you want to see a picture of the block I'm asking you to make? That might be nice of me.

OMG. There are points. Stop the presses
 This is a little different for me. There are points. I'm asking for solids, which is way modernesque of me, the girl who rolls her eyes at "modern" as a thing rather than what is available in the stores now. It may or may not be a block that appeals to most. But I cannot stress to you enough how much I am in love with the layout I have created for these blocks, and I cannot wait to sew it together!

So I hope you'll join me. To get started, all you have to do is send me an email to evapaigequilts@ charter.net and I'll send you the info and instructions and you will be on your way to a special place in my heart I reserve for my group quilt makers! I really could not do this without you!

4 comments:

Michelle Banton said...

Alas, I can not participate in this year's group project. Sniff sniff.

Barbara Forslind said...

I don't see anyone else jumping on the band wagon so I will be the first!

banjo795 said...

My email is on its way to you! This sounds like a lot of fun!

Bridget Murphy said...

My email is on its way.

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