I've been an active member of an online Australian parenting forum for about two and a half years now. I joined when I was a couple of months pregnant with Romily, as I found I had a thirst for information about pregnancy, labour and life with a newborn that just couldn't be satisfied by books or my mother! The first because they don't go into enough detail (I'm a details gal) and the second because after three children and the passage of time my mum couldn't remember a lot of the finer details.
I found the (mostly) girls on the forum to be warm, welcoming, funny and very happy to share their experiences and advice. Most of the time everyone plays nicely, but occasionally you get the odd, opinionated so-and-so who hides behind the relative anonymity of the internet and says mean, hurtful and/or spiteful things. However, most of the women don't stand for it and they're usually quickly on the outer. It's an interesting social experiment, that's for sure!
What I didn't know was that there is a chat room within the forum just for crafty mums! I discovered it a little while back when surfing some blogs. It's funny that I had to learn about the craft room on the forum I've been frequenting for years from crafty blogs which I'd not previously visited! Hooray for the internet.
Within the craft room is a thread just for quilters. They're a lovely bunch and with completely different styles of quilting. They're very generous with sharing ideas, fabric and information and have set up various swaps. When they decided to do a doll swap, I thought I'd join - my very first swap! I'd been keen to make a doll quilt, so this is the perfect opportunity.
Of course when I actually sat down to plan patterns and fabrics I found all a little overwhelming! Also, the prospect of someone else handling my work and scrutinising every stitch was a little daunting, but the girls are so lovely that I think all will be well! As with most swaps, I'm not allowed to post progress shots, but I am allowed to tease...just a little!
Here's one snap for you. I can't show you any more right now! All I can say is that I have pieced the top and sandwiched the quilt. I have also started marking out my quilting lines and have chosen the thread. I'm quite happy with how it's coming along and think it will be well received by my swappee! Fingers crossed anyway!
Thanks for all the lovely comments on the dress I made for Romily :) I have discovered I'm not the only one whose best friend isn't a zip! I am determined to master it though and Doodlebug Gail has offered to do up a photo tutorial! I hope she finds time to do it soon - she's very busy with an exciting new project now, so I'll take Cathy's tip and stick with loops and buttons for the minute :)
I also forgot to add that I upped the difficulty level on the dress by 'lining' it with another layer of the white poplin. I decided the fabric would have been a little too transparent for my liking and you would have been able to see Rom's nappy, and we all know that's not a good look! Since I have no idea how to do lining and it was beyond my capacity to learn it and make the dress at the same time, I just cut doubles for the front and back and sewed them behind each panel. So I was stitching through double layers for all seams, trying madly not to let the fabric shift around too much. I was much happier with the result than I would have been if I'd stuck with only one thickness :)