PLEASE BE SURE AND READ EVERY WORD -- EVEN IF YOU AVE PARTICIPATED IN A SWAP BEFORE. SOME THINGS HAVE CHANGED! This is the official posting thread for the "FARM ANIMAL" theme quilt block swap. Anything pertaining to this swap should be posted in this thread only. 1. Please be sure and read all --each and every word (please) of these instructions/direction. It will also be your responsibility to read all instruction and to check this thread often for any changes, updates, new instructions, corrections, additions, or other information. It will also be your responsibility to check in from time to time ON THIS THREAD to let the hostess and other participants know how your progressing and to verify you are still in and on schedule. 2. The deadline to sign up for the swap will be May 18th. Sign up below! 3. The deadline to have your blocks to the hostess will be JULY 15th. 4. abbey_tor_acres is the hostess for this swap and will PM all those signing up with her mailing address. She will also be posting regularly and have a few little surprises up her sleeve! Stay tuned!! 5. The theme for this swap is "FARM ANIMALS". This means that the fabric and block you select should have an appropriate style and print that fits the theme. NO "carnival" print; in other words, the fabric must portray realistic animals. Humor is fine; just nothing like pink cows or purple chickens, etc. 6. Any color combination is acceptable with unbleached muslin as the coordinating fabric. 7. Your fabric should be only 100% cotton or no less than 50% cotton/50% poly. You should launder your fabric, dry it (in a dryer if at all possible), and press it before making your blocks. This is VERY important! This will ensure that any shrinkage has resulted so that when the quilt is put together some blocks won't shrink, while others do and pull at the seams or unbalance the quilt. Please do not use any fabric softener since many are allergic to it. 8. We will forgo the usual 1" pattern rule for this quilt only. You may use any fabric pattern you wish; however, if you have a print that is too large to be visually acceptable, it can be centered in the block or part of the block. Just make sure you buy extra material to compensate for having to center the pattern. 9. If you have failed to follow through on ANY previous swap (quilt or otherwise) you cannot participate in this swap. Also, if you are not absolutely certain you will be able to complete the swap, do not sign up. We count on each one to follow through on the swap and the total number of blocks, size of the quilt, etc. is dependant upon the participants. If you drop out, you totally mess up the quilt. We all understand how emergencies happen, things come up, or time just gets away from us; and we will gladly accommodate those instances within reason if you keep in touch and let us know your problem -- but not at the last minute, please. It is the ones who just don't send them in, leave everyone hanging, or drop out toward the end that create a huge problem for us. Forum policy is that if you don't complete a swap, your banned from any future swaps. Harsh policy, I know; however, it has been such an ongoing problem that we had to try to eliminate it as much as possible. People are counting on you! 10. We will be doing approx. one block per person who signs up â plus one extra for the hostess as a thank you for all her work. We generally have approx. 20-30 people who sign up. If we were to only have 10 people sign up, then you would make 2 per person, etc. Our hostess will give you the complete total of how many blocks to make at the end of the sign up period. 11. You should attach a slip of paper, pinned to each of your blocks, with your forum username and state. This way we all know who made which block. 12. When completed, you will mail your blocks to the hostess VIA DELIVERY CONFIRMATION and include a self-addressed stamped mailing envelope for her to return your blocks back to you. Please be certain you include extra postage in case the package doesn't weigh the same as the one you sent. Often the weight of materials varies and a little of each adds up. The hostess will sort the squares and you will be getting back one from each of the other participants. You MUST also include a paid for, and completely filled out, Delivery Confirmation slip for the return of your blocks. 13. It is very important that you remember to come back to these instructions prior to mailing and read through them again to be sure you have followed all of the procedures. Many are forgetting to submit their blocks with their identity slips and post-paid envelopes. 14. Your blocks are to measure an accurate 12 1/2" square. It is helpful if you either purchase or make yourself a 12 1/2" template to square up your blocks before mailing them. This way, all the blocks will fit together especially for those who are not as skilled at "working in" odd sized blocks. 15. You may choose whatever block pattern you want to do depending on your skill level and time. This way, those who are newbie quilters can do an easier block and the more advanced can do something more challenging. Just be sure and keep your block and fabric with the theme in mind. 16. IMPORTANT: Do NOT cut all your fabric at one time! You should make one or two "test" blocks to determine if your block will, in reality, work with your fabric, your skill level, and your schedule, and time restraints. This is a very important step and many people are having difficulty because they fail to follow this step. They either end up with a more difficult pattern than they have skill level for or time. It only results in frustration or causing the participant to be late with their blocks; which causes hardship on all. Remember that you can't really tell from a pattern what it will be to work with until you actually do it! 17. Please also take into consideration, when choosing the block you will make, that what your situation is today can (and usually will) change drastically between now and when your block is due. When you sign up, you are committed to the swap come what may -- and by the due date! The other participants would be far pleased with a simple block, as opposed to an elaborate one that is either late or never shows up. Please plan your block accordingly with the assumption that life will become busy and time will become short. You will find you will enjoy the swap without the pressure of having to worry about quilt blocks due along with all of life's other obstacles. 18. Everyone should remember that the purpose of the swap is not so much to get back quilt blocks as it is to fellowship with others and to work together on a common goal. If at any point you get stuck or have any questions at all, please don't hesitate to post. We are all her to help the brand new newbie quilter all the way down to the most advanced quilter. There are no dumb questions whatsoever (none, nadda!) so never be embarrassed to ask! But PLEASE BE SURE AND READ ALL THESE INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE ASKING. We would all love to help you and that's what we are here for. We also ask that you please, NOT PM or email the hostess directly , but rather do a post here with any questions, comments, etc. Not only is hostessing a very busy job but your question would also be helpful to others. You would be surprised at how your question or comment is exactly what someone else thought or wanted to know. 19. A note to the newbie or want-to-be-a-quilter - (even children are welcome to participate): You should have some sewing experience and have a concept of how a quilt block is construction; however, if this is your first swap and/or even your first try at making a quilt block, we welcome you! We encourage even the very first time quilter to give it a try. Everyone here is very patient and understanding and we all had to start somewhere and were newbies ourselves once! Joining in the swap is the very best way to learn. It also helps you more than you will know when you get back the other blocks and can actually see and touch the other blocks. It helps you to refine your skills, give you new ideas, and understand the process better.