Over summertime I ran a Log Cabin Block Swap for my Quilt Club members, the idea was to have a quilting project we could all work on over summertime as a group and to have a little bit of fun! To see the full recap of our block swap you can watch my YouTube video here.
WHAT IS A BLOCK SWAP?
The idea of a Block Swap is to have fun with quilting! You make blocks send them to the coordinator, they get shuffled around and then you get sent back a completely different set of blocks. With these blocks, you make the ultimate scrappy quilt and I can guarantee no two will be the same!
MY TOP TIPS FOR A BLOCK SWAP
Decide on a set amount of blocks to make. My members had the option of 12, 24, or 36 blocks. In hindsight it would have been a lot easier to just decide on one amount, let’s say 24.
I suggest everyone makes their blocks identical, that way you are able to identify who made which blocks.
Set dates to have blocks sent to you and then a date agreed to send them back, allow a little bit of buffer for late packages and those that take a little longer to arrive.
If you would like there to be some sort of cohesion with the blocks consider setting some rules around colors and fabrics to be used, as a group we voted on this. Rules could include colors to be used or not be used. Colors to be placed in a particular spot (we had yellow centers representing a welcoming light on in the cabin). Think about whether the rule is open for the interruption, for example “bright summer colors” is open for interruption, compared to “no black fabric” is not.
Ask everyone to include a stamped self-addressed envelope to send them back. If they are overseas this won’t be possible so you will have to trust they will refund you the cost of the postage. Ask international participants to send theirs earlier.
HOW TO BE A GREAT SWAP MEMBER
Only sign up for the swap if you are committed to making and sending the blocks following the guidelines, other members are counting on receiving your blocks.
Always do your best work. Take your time cutting, sewing, and press every seam.
Allow yourself plenty of time to make your blocks, start early, and don’t rush. This is also the best way to ensure you make the deadline.
Use your best fabrics. Only use quality 100% quilting cotton. Only use fabric that you would be happy to receive yourself, this is not an opportunity to use fabrics you are trying to get rid of.
I DID A FEW EXTRAS AND CHARGED A SMALL FEE
So I did a few extra things for my Block Swap and charged a small fee.
I designed and had made a woven label to be sewn onto our quilts with all the basic details of our Block Swap including the name of our group “Quilt Club with Stacey Lee”.
I also made up a little booklet that documented everyone’s blocks, who made them, and where they were from.
These were all little extra touches that I haven’t seen anyone else do, but the beauty of running your own Block Swap is that you can make it what you want.
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