Monday, 5 October 2015

A Finished Instagram Swap

Do you take part in quilting or sewing swaps?
I did my first one earlier this year, have just finished a second, and I'm signed up to one more, which i need to send out at the beginning of November.
I'm not sure I shall do any more, at least for a while. I'm in two minds about them. I think their success depends very much on everyone fully participating. I've done mine through Instagram and I think if your partner doesn't really show inspiration boards in their feed or updates on their progress then your swap experience can be rather underwhelming.
I've decided the best way forward is to use them as a means to stretch my skills, rather than worry too much about whether I've made something my partner will love. 
I always imagine I'm going to get someone with the same level of enthusiasm as me, but if they don't post any sewing related photos, you really don't know what their taste is, so it's hard to come up with something you're certain that they will like! 

These are the items I made for my second swap.
I designed this mini in EQ7. I paper pieced it, and I must admit the mariner's star was a lot easier to construct than the diamond border.

I quilted it with lines about 1/4" apart echoing out from the centre. I love quitting minis. It's a good chance to practice something you might not have the time or inclination to do on a whole quilt.

I also had good fun making the quilt label. The flower centre is the same design as the centre of the mariner's star.
Note: the buttons aren't sewn on. They are just placed their temporarily to hide the name of the recipient. I don't want to spoil the surprise!

I then let doubts creep into my mind, and certainly didn't follow my own advice. Was this the sort of thing my partner would like? I wasn't sure. So I made a table topper for her too. I used one of the large designs in the Farm Girl Vintage book by Lori Holt.

This was a fairly quick make, especially as I did wavy line horizontal quilting from edge to edge. No threads to sew in!

And finally, I also included a dumpling pouch. There is a free pattern for these at Michelle Patterns
They are really easy to make. I used scraps and the "quilt as you go" method for this one. I'm pleased with the results.

So that's my swap package all complete. I do hope my partner likes what I've made her, and I did have fun making them! 


  1. What a lucky swap partner you have!! What did you use to write on your label? I am taking part in my first mini quilt swap and have been thinking about the label.

    1. I used a Pigma Micron Pen 0.45mm
      I type my wording on the computer and print it out. Then I place the label fabric over it and trace through, as my handwriting is awful and I find it almost impossible to write in a straight line!
      The pen is permanent once it is heat set with an iron. They come in a good range of colours, so you can be as artistic as you want!

  2. I agree a wonderful happy parcel for some lucky swapper! In fact it's the extras that rather puts me off the swaps and knowing what and how much to do.

  3. Thanks Jenny. I agree it is difficult to know. Fortunately the swaps I joined gave quite specific guidelines on limiting the extras.

  4. A very lucky partner, hope you receive a fabulous parcel too.

  5. A gorgeous swap package! I think the excitement of instagram swaps is running low at the moment and people are just not posting photos anymore of their progress or inspiration, and not commenting on other photos. And that was always the fun part for me. My last two swaps I heard or saw very little from my partners, but they did seem to really love their packages in the end!

    1. That's interesting, Deborah. I'm a bit late to the party with regard to swaps, so this was only my second. My partner has received her package now, and she does seem to love it, so I'm pleased about that!

  6. These are wonderful makes Julie, I especially love the mini you designed. I've never joined in a swap, I have too many reservations about them and don't think I can handle the stress (that I would put on myself).

  7. Thanks Mary, I think I probably work better with a deadline, but i think I'm doe with swaps for the time being.


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