Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Research

So I've been cyber stalking other "virtual bees"...  Found some good ideas...

1.  Above and Beyond:  I  came across a great (optional) idea...

On one blog, a member particularly enjoyed making the block that month and she had fabric left over, so she said she might make another block (a bonus block, if you will) for the hostess that month.

We might want to keep this in mind as we're working on blocks.  Sometimes, it's fun to have an extra or two to help you decide which ones you want to use when making your quilt...  It's also great to have extras to use on the back...  When it's your month, you may want to make some extras for yourself, as well...

Totally optional, but if the spirit moves you to go above and beyond, this is a way we can do a little extra from time to time.

2.  Leftover Focus Fabric- To Keep it or Give it Back?  Other groups have had issues with whether or not to return extra fabric to the hostess with their completed block...  Might not be such an issue with us since we're only giving each other focus fabric...  But how about we handle it this way:  Unless you specify otherwise when passing out materials for your month, we will assume that any extra fabric we have left over from making your block will be fabric that we can keep.  For instance, for our QOV month, I am giving everyone a fat quarter of some red fabric and it's more than you will need to make the block.  You are most welcome to keep the extra.  If you would like the extra fabric, just specify that in the directions and we'll get it back to you.

3.  More Bang For Your Buck:  I've done a block-of-the-month project through a local quilt shop before and was given some great advice right before I started it...  Someone told me that instead of making one block, I should make 2 or 3 because it's not much more trouble to cut out two or three blocks than it is to cut out just one.....  One of the blocks with the fabric/color scheme that the shop recommended and then another block or two from my own stash.  By doing this, I was able to give my dad a blue quilt for Christmas, my sister a 30's quilt for her birthday and myself a quilt for my bed (also 30's...).  So if you follow this logic, you could make a block for QOV with the red fabric... and with the same pattern, you could use your stash of batiks, for instance to make a block for yourself...  And the next month, you can make a block for my June block with the fabric I provide and make yourself a block that same month with your batiks that will match the fabric from the previous month's block for yourself...  In this way, you can end up with TWO quilts for yourself after the year is over without much more effort.

4.  Have Something Tricky in Mind?  How About Doing an Online Tutorial?  This would be a great way to share your tricks on the best way to go about making your block.  Some of us learn best (me) visually, so we might really learn something by watching it being done...

5.  Speak Up!  If you are confused or if you have a problem, please don't be quiet.  We might all be confused, but if nobody says anything, we'll all struggle in silence.  This is going to be a supportive and encouraging group that will inspire creativity and will help us all to learn new things.

6.  Jacquie's Suggestion: Get everyone to make 13 inch blocks so that you can square them up to 12 1/2 inches yourself.

Will be adding more useful ideas gleaned by lurking on other bee sites under the title, "Research" in the near future...

4 comments:

Carla said...

Another idea that is very helpful is to know what sort of fabrics each quilter likes and dislikes for their blocks. That way when adding fabric from your stash, you will be creating a block that will thrill instead of kill. For instance, I might say, I'd rather not have batiks, children's prints and civil war reproductions but love solids, dots, and modern florals.

Nikki said...

Great feedback, Carla. I think that's a good idea.

Jessica said...

Great ideas!

I really like the idea of making a second quilt along the way. It'd be a fun reminder of what I made throughout the year. :)

Nikki said...

Clarification: On the advice from Jacquie about making the blocks 13 inches so that we can trim them- That only goes for improvisational type blocks, not for specific patterns that we give out. For instance, the May QOV block will be a pattern for a 12 1/2 inch goose tracks block. This one won't be 13 inches. But for June, I'm giving you MUCH more freedom to do what you'd like. I just want to make sure they're all 12 1/2 inches (not less) so I was thinking it might make sense to make them bigger (if you were doing a square in a square, that would be easy to do) and then trim.

Make sense?

Btw, you don't all have to do square in a square for June. Just using it as an example. Would love to see lots of different types of blocks...