Monday 24 October 2011

Mailing info

I have now begun to send out mailing info for your quilts. It's a fairly long email, which contains general instructions about what I'd like you to do in terms of the swap and some advice about mailing, particularly international mailing, in general. It's essentially the same letter to everyone, so please just ignore the parts that don't relate to your particular case.

I'm going to do as many as I can tonight, but in some instances I don't have mailing addresses and I may not get through them all anyway - it's not the most exciting task in the world - mostly cutting and pasting... Anyway, if you don't get your instructions tonight, don't worry, I'll finish later in the week.

If you still haven't had an email from me by Friday (subject should read "ALQS6 mailing info"), please let me know and I'll try again.


Well, it's done. I got the last set of preferences in this morning (Sunday - it's gone midnight here, though, so this will post as Monday!) and have now gone through and allocated quilts to all the players. I had done some preliminary playing about earlier in the week, leaving gaps for the last few sets of preferences, and once those were in I juggled things about a bit to come up with two options (slightly different, but not substantially so). I then did the whole allocation from scratch again and came up with a third, interestingly (to me, anyway) very similar to the first option!

[In case anyone wonders, I do it with a spreadsheet and start from the restrictions: quilts which appear on the fewest lists, people who send the fewest choices, any quilts with mailing restrictions - something I've not had before (though I always watch for things like plant material used in art quilts, can't be received in Australia from overseas), but which this time, I had to factor in - one quilt which couldn't be folded and therefore, couldn't really travel internationally without likelihood of damage - luckily, I found a nearby home for it! Once I've made the most restricted allocations, I work outwards towards the most popular quilts, which usually end up being allocated last because they are the easiest to home! Then, after I've done an allocation, I go back through all your emails about preferences and make sure the quilts I've assigned you are actually on your list - i.e. that I haven't made a mistake transferring your info into my spreadsheet in the first place...]

Anyway. Enough of that. I'm happy to say that all the quilts appeared on preference lists - and many of them on lots of lists - and that I was able to send many quilts to places where they were near the top of the preference list - either in the top tier, or ranked fairly high on a ranked list. No one will receive a quilt not on the list they sent me and no one will have their own quilt back. And I was even able to let myself have my favourite quilt (the perks of being a hostess!) - I had a good dozen or so on my list that I would be delighted to give a good home to, mind you, but one in particular really tickled my fancy this time around. Of course, I have another advantage as hostess, which is that I know who made each quilt, so I didn't even put on my list some quilts I really liked, if I already have a quilt by that person - thought I'd share the wealth a bit! I am lucky enough already to have quilts made by Julie W in California, Lynda in the UK and Vreni in Singapore, among many other wonderful pieces I have received in swaps.

In case you wonder (as I always do) the quilts which appeared on most lists were:
  1. no 6, Nikaus (on 25 lists)
  2. no 22, untitled (falling leaves) (24 lists)
  3. no 26, forursula (24 lists)
  4. no 15, Ever Decreasing Circles (20 lists)
  5. no 29, untitled (batik with hearts) (19 lists)
But don't worry if your piece isn't on that list - many others were very popular and all were lovely in their own way.

It's rather late here now, and as tomorrow is my daughter's birthday (12) and I am taking her and a friend up to town (by which I mean London) for the day - we have a half-term holiday this week, conveniently - I probably should get some sleep. I may or may not get your partners emailed to you tomorrow and Tuesday we are driving up to my mother-in-law's house for the day, so I may not get them done then either. However, rest assured I will get to them all by the end of the week.

If you don't think you have sent me your address (some of you I will have from previous swaps) or if you have swapped before but have moved since - I know that's true in at least one case - please email me your postal address so I can send out your partner emails as soon as I have a chance. Details about mailing and so forth will be included in the email I will send with your partner's name.

Many thanks again for joining this swap - I really do enjoy running them and am glad that enough people always want to play to make it such an interesting swap with so much variety and choice!

Wednesday 19 October 2011

Preference List Update

Just a note to say I've had preference lists back from all but 9 people - if I have had your list, I have tried to email you back - so if you haven't had a confirmation from me, you may need to send your list again. Those of you who haven't had time to make your choices yet, no problem, but by the end of this week would be great...

I am pleased to say that all quilts have been put on a preference list at least once so far (and actually, my spreadsheet still needs a few more additions to catch up to my email). It's always surprising to me how well the distribution works out, given how different some of the quilts are. Why it should surprise me, I don't know, because each piece is lovely in its own way, and someone is bound to want to own it!

Tuesday 11 October 2011

OK, what now?

So, that's it. All the quilts have been posted, where possible with size, information and detail photos. It's up to you all now. If you have made a quilt for this round, you will need to assemble a list of preferences for the quilts you would like to give a home to. There are 35 quilts in this round; I would hope everyone would be able to put 10-12 quilts on their list. I hope to be able to find a home for all the quilts and to give everyone something they would like to receive.

If you feel very strongly about the order of quilts on your list, you are welcome to number them 1, 2, 3, etc, but as it's easier for me if you are less specific, feel free to simply send a list in no particular order, or to do what many did last time and do a 2 tier or 3 tier system - e.g. several absolute favourites, followed by other ones you like a lot, etc.

My life is probably going to be very busy between now and the end of the school half-term (the 21st of October), so I think it's unlikely I will get to sorting things out before that weekend - so shall we say, I'd like to have your lists back by the 21st, with the hopes I'll be able to begin sorting that weekend (and if I don't finish, I have a week off after that!).

Enjoy! And any questions, just ask.

Quilt no 35

Early Evening
"Early Evening" is pieced entirely with cotton batiks. It is tightly quilted in a variety of patterns -- free-form quilting using a variegated cotton thread. Note: binding is being re-worked before swapping ...

Monday 10 October 2011

One more to come

I think most of the people who were able to meet the deadline have now sent in photos, but I know of one for sure who is going to email me later today with her photos and it's possible there might be another I don't know about. However, as today is nearly at an end over here, I am going to go to bed and finish any outstanding quilt uploading tomorrow.

So, while you are welcome to browse through and see which quilt you might like to give a home to, don't forget there will be at least one more to ooh and aah over...

Quilt no 34

Made from 100% cotton fabrics and silk varigated thread (G├╝termann.) Traditional patchwork, paper piecing and reverse applique. Mostly machine quilting with a little hand-quilting.

Quilt no 33

Baby Rainbow Bright
This quilt is the baby sister to my original wall hanging 'rainbow bright'. The quilt is machine pieced and quilted. It has a sleeve across the top of the back for hanging.

Quilt no 32

Summer Face
It's made of cotton fabrics, raw edge machine apliqued and machine quilted. Face is painted with acrylic paint. Some beads are used and a poem is written around the face. (the complete poem is written on the backside)

Quilt no 31

It is made of 100% cotton fabric, using canvas, silk paper, embellished felt with organza and paper. (The leaves are not real; they are silk paper and embellished organza on felt).

Quilt no 30

The last few weeks I have been reading about the women from Gee's Bend, Alabama and their quilting style. They have a bold, and sophisticated quilting style based on traditional American (and African American) quilts, but with a geometric simplicity reminiscent of Amish quilts and modern art.

Quilt no 29

approx 17x24"
The quilt top is made from batiks. The back is hand dyed cotton. Batting is cotton. Free motion quilting. The open areas are stitched on water soluble stabilizer. Embellished with beads and yarn.

Sunday 9 October 2011

Deadline looming!

Tomorrow is the deadline for quilt photos - I hope I'll be getting a few more photos in (I have at least one more waiting in my email) - the ones I have so far are great - I'm not looking forward to having to make any decisions!

Saturday 8 October 2011

Quilt no 28

Through a Rainy Window
approx 17x22"
Made with microwave dyed cotton calico. Raw edge strip pieced with organza, bead, sequin and dyed plastic and wool embellishments. Machine quilted with 80/20 cotton wadding and dyed cotton calico backing.

Quilt no 27

Bright shapes from hand-dyed fabrics fused and free motion stitched onto a machine pieced scrappy background.

nb: closeup photos were all taken before the black background was quilted

Wednesday 5 October 2011

Quilt no 26

Lutradur, Foil and Acrylic Paints

Quilt no 25

Sew Red
37x45cm (approx 14.5x18")
This quilt features machine-embroidered red work. Machine-sewn and machine-quilted, using cotton thread.

Quilt no 24

Silk flowers are machine appliqued, (raw edge). On cotton fabric, with cut and folded border. It was made for a the APWQ challenge this summer. The background fabric was supplied to all challenge participants, and I made a fantasy koi pond, with flowers drifting down through the moonlight.

Quilt no 23

Hand quilted with thread a bit thicker than quilting thread.

Sunday 2 October 2011

Quilt no 22

I was inspired by Kellie Wulfson of Don't Look Now's exquisite raw edge applique, and Allison Harris of Cluck Cluck Sew's Stash Buster Pillow. Here's a stylized leaf-dropping tree, with shadow quilting. The tree trunk is Indonesian batik, the leaves are from a charm square swap I did several years ago, and the backing fabric is a batik I bought in Antigua almost a decade ago when I was doing Peace Corps service in Dominica.

Quilt no 21

Runaway Chairs
This piece is done in a raw edge applique style using thin strips of multiple fabrics. The background fabric is hand-dyed.

Quilt no 20

Crazy Lizards
machine quilted

Quilt no 19

Autumn Equinox
Machine piece using paper piecing, machine quilted using quilting cottons

Saturday 1 October 2011

Quilt no 18

Huckleberry Swirl
Machine pieced batik cotton fabrics; Embellished with hand-dyed variegated embroidery floss; Machine quilted with both solid and variegated polyester thread