Friday, September 11, 2009

E Pluribus Afghan (From many an afghan)

Here's the deal. I really want to start a crochet exchange, I think they're a ton of fun. I used to run one and I badly miss it. Also, I badly want to start a charity that donates afghans to people who need a little reminder that there's kindness in the world, per request (as in, you request one for someone you know who needs it).

So, I'm going to combine the two. Here's the deal, I'm going to start an exchange as soon as I have 3 people other than myself who are interested. We will do 25 granny daughters (1.5") or 2 granny squares (6"), whatever there's interest in - I'm hoping granny daughters, but I'm not picky. You send one package to your assigned partner every month, and I'm going to use mine to make an afghan that will eventually be donated.

Drop me a line if you're interested - either a comment on this post or via email

Here's the full details:

E Pluribus, Afghan – an exchange with a twist

Exchange Information

You will receive 2 welcome packages from me. One via email immediately after you let me know you’re interested which will include a copy of this for your records as well as the exchange questionnaire and a second via “Snail Mail” when I’ve gotten everything I need from the first package.

Why “E Pluribus, Afghan”?

If you’re familiar with Latin, or American coinage, you’ll know that E Pluribus Unum means, essentially, “From Many, One.” Since an exchange afghan is made from square completed by several people, and since I sometimes have an uncontrollable urge to be corny, I decided to go ahead and be punny. “From Many, an afghan.”

How do I start:

1) You’ll receive a brief questionnaire that you will need to fill out and return to me. This provides me with the information I need to properly assign partners.

2) Send in your “Just in Case” package. This is the same thing as a regular exchange package. It is kept on file in the event that you cannot fulfill your obligation due to work, family, etc.

3) When I receive your “Just in Case” package, I will send out your 2nd welcome package. This is also the same as an exchange package, just as a little boost to get you started.

What happens each month?

1) By the first of the month, except December, I will post on the Crochet Pages blog (Age’s Other Pages – a list of the exchange partners for the month.

2) Shortly after that, you will receive a personal, private email with your partner’s full name and mailing address.

3) Mail out your package and comment on the blog post with the partner list (or email myself and your partner) that you have done so.

4) Comment on the blog, again on the post with the partner list (or email myself and your partner) when you receive your package.

5) If I have not heard from you by the 20th of the month to say that you have mailed your package, I will mail your “Just in Case” to your partner and place you on hold until it is replaced.

6) Add your new squares to your project.

If at anytime, you decide you would like 2 partners each month, let me know – I’ll need a second “Just in Case.” Likewise, if you would like to leave the exchange, let me know and I’ll return your “Just in Case” if it has not already been sent out to your partner. If you’d like to skip a month or more without leaving the exchange, let me know – I’ll put you on hold until you tell me otherwise.

What goes in the package?
25 granny daughters/2 granny squares are required for the exchange. If you choose to send more, you may. If you choose to include extra goodies, like stickers or tea bags, you may. Please do not include any food stuffs in your “Just in Case” as it may sit for an extended amount of time.

Granny Daughters must be:

1) 1.5” square

2) sport or worsted weight acrylic yarn

3) finished with all ends woven in

I find I get an inch and half almost without fail with worsted yarn and a size G hook.

Granny Squares must be:

1) 6” square

2) worsted weight acrylic yarn

3) finished with all ends woven in

What if I mailed a package and it didn’t arrive on the other end?

I would ask that you please try to resolve the situation with your partner. Please CC me on any emails that are sent. This way I can make sure that we all have the correct address for everyone and so. Also, I can be aware if there is a particular person consistently not receiving packages – they may need to contact their post office. (I used to like in Apt T8, and didn’t receive quite a bit of mail because people thought it was Apt 18)

The Holiday Hurries.

I realize that practically everyone gets busy during the winter holidays, regardless of which ones you celebrate. In order to ease the pressure, November and December will be run as one really long month. You’ll get your partner at the beginning of November and your package should arrive at the other end by December 25. (I figure that’s an easy enough date to remember.)

What’s the twist?

Here’s the twist, I’ve been wanting to start some sort of a charity that donates afghans to charity. I would like to do it by request, ie. Someone writes me about someone they know who could use a little comfort and we send them an afghan. I wanted to do the afghans from donated squares (not that I would refuse the donation of a finished afghan), so that as many people as possible had a hand in making the afghan.

To that end, I’m going to use the exchange as a launching point for that. Any squares I receive as part of the exchange are going to go into afghans that will be given needy/deserving people or families as I finish them.

If you know someone who could use a hug, drop me a line, let me know why and if there’s an afghan done with appropriate timing, we’ll get it sent to them.

I think that’s everything. Happy Hooking.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Little by Little

So, I've gotten a little bit of time to spend on the fixing of the title graphics. I've gotten through a pretty good portion of the site, but there's tons left yet.

On the plus side, it's given me a chance to realize that a lot of the older patterns have terrible pictures. Fuzzy, dim, you name it. The Chocolate Bunny looks like a blob, and some of the others aren't much better. To that end, I'm going to do the best I can to get a new digital camera (for those of you who don't remember, I got a really good, but used Nikon about a year ago - for free - and the battery pack promptly crapped out on me.) in the next couple weeks. I found one that looks like it will handle basic website photos and snap shots really well and it's only like $40.

Little by little, things are falling into place.

Next on the list is to get everything switched over to the new Project Wonderful-friendly layout. That will take some time, but once it's done, it'll look really good. Also, it will bring in a bit of money and hopefully get you all some useful links.

Once that's done, I'll have a pretty good idea of how to layout really sharp-looking, ad-friendly pages for Tilghman Street Studios. Which will make me very happy. I think that there will be things at Tilghman Street that you will like quite a bit.

Honestly, though, even if you don't find anything that you like, the Crochet Pages fans will be benefiting in several ways. I'll be in charge of the advertising, instead of Lycos. No more pop-up ads.

Liam and I will be handling the T-shirts - we'll be using a grassroots print-on-demand style production - which means that they'll be hand screen-printed.

Eventually, we will (hopefully) be handling the book printing also.

In the end, this will lead to a better, friendlier website, and better merchandise with lower shipping costs. And unless I'm way off - this should make everyone happier.