Growing up QAL - reminders and reflections

Few reminders and personal reflections today!!

If you didn't hear about the QAL before, please visit the Growing up QAL page
Visit the QAL page to find all information about the quilt layout, all the future blocks and the rules to participate.
I recommend you to subscribe to the QAL announcements via email, so you don't miss out on future posts! You find the subscription Google form on the same QAL page (at the end of the page).

Now let's get down to some details.

This month technique is Famous Jane-style blocks

Remember that the pattern for the board is shared for free via email to the people that shared a picture of last month finished block in the linky party.
If you did that, you should already have the pattern!

If you didn't (and you think you should have) just send me an email at tweloq(at)gmail(dot)com and I will get the pattern out to you.

For the full list of rules and explanation on how/where to share your projects, please refer to the post listing all the QAL rules!

And if you need an extra incentive, we are going to have THREE winners for this month. 
The prizes for this month are listed in a previous post! 
You have until July 2nd (11.59 pm EST) to enter your block(s).

I will draw the random winners between all the people entering a picture of one block from this month. Multiple blocks will give you multiple entries, as long as they are in separate picture in a separate link in the linky :). I will announce the winners when I share the next month pattern.

I want to address some comments I received from the SURVEY I published last week.

First of all, if you haven't submitted your comments, please follow this link and share your suggestions! I really take all your opinions to heart and do my best to include them in the way I shape future QAL events!!! Click HERE to fill the survey!

And now for my comments on your comments :)


The vast majority of your comments are really kind and supportive, so I am happy about that!! I am happy to hear that you like the challenge of trying different techniques every month, and about having multiple blocks to choose from!

I am happy to hear that you think my instructions are clear and helpful, and that you like the blocks I designed!

I also received some very insightful suggestions on things I didn't think about and I may find a way to include.



I received some comments that are a little harsh too... I understand where they come from, and I want to address (again) the issue here, hoping to get my motivations through. I am aware that I cannot please everyone and I don't plan to :) but I want to clarify my own motivations hoping that at least we can agree to disagree :)

The main criticism is on the line of: "the patterns are not free, we are forced to turn in a proof of our work, we don't want to follow deadlines".


... I respect everyone opinion on how to use their own time
... I understand that life is complicated
... I understand that people get sick, families have emergencies and bad things happen
... I understand that people may not have the means to pay a pattern, even if the price is less than a coffee (and way less than a yard of fabric or a quilting tool)

... I understand all that...


... what I do NOT understand, is why many times the people that are criticizing the "non-free" options from me, are instead absolutely happy to pay much more for designer fabric, or patterns and tools from Bonnie Hunter, or other famous quilters.

... what I do NOT understand is why people tell me that they cannot follow the deadline because of a family emergency, but they didn't take the step to contact me and let me know that. I NEVER turned down a person saying "hey, I cut the pieces as you can see in the picture attached, but I cannot complete the block because I had such and such emergency. Would you please consider sending me the next pattern anyway?". Of course if I don't know, I cannot act on that.

... what I do NOT understand is why people say that they would make the block if they were free, but when I offer a FREE block that allows everyone to come back in the QAL for FREE anytime, they don't take that opportunity (the fabric weaving block is still free and will remain free forever. If you make any of those two or any fabric weaved block and you share a picture of it with me, I would put you back in the free QAL list) 

I understand where all these comments come from, and I tried the "free forever" approach few years ago with one of my QAL: I had so many downloads, but many people didn't share anything with me... not even a thank you. 

Then several times, by randomly browsing the web, I found people sharing on their blogs projects done with the patterns I designed and they didn't even mentioned my name (nor a link back to my blog or anything like that). I am not designing patterns for the money, so I don't really look at traffic, but I am a human being and I spend so much time, effort and creativity in these projects! I would just like other people to reach out to me as human beings and thank me every once in a while! :)

That is why I "force" people to share... however I don't penalize people that skip blocks: as mentioned, these patterns take a lot of time to design, create, etc and a very low price to jump back in doesn't really look too much to ask! Considering what we all are spending for fabric, famous quilters' patterns and tools, I think it is fair to ask a little something to cover some of my costs: the price of a pattern doesn't even cover the cost of the linky I host every month, but as mentioned I don't do it for the money, but for the community and the inspiration, that's why I ask you to share the blocks with me and with the entire community!! :)

And did you notice that I actually have many FREE patterns as part of this QAL? 
They are the sashing patterns of the "Smashing Quilt Sashing series"!

Many of you in the survey didn't even noticed those patterns!! 
Many of you downloaded them and never opened them (kept them for rainy days).

That's the point... It takes MANY hours to create those patterns too... I have them for free and I don't even know if people use them or like them! I am ok with it, because that's how I decided to share those patterns, but that is a clear sign that, for a designer, accountability is the only way to know what people think about their work (unless it is a business, and then money can give them an idea on how people interact with their work).

I just want to remind all of us again that human beings created all those wonderful patterns we find out there, they put them together, shared them on the web and that human beings may appreciate at least a "thank you" even if the resource was offered for free.

If we can get something with 0 money, that doesn't mean that has 0 value and that we should just take it and leave...

Let me conclude with an excited announcement: 
I already have in mind the design for the 2018 QAL! 
It will include even more new techniques, so stay tuned for this!!

I will start drafting it on paper soon and will contact many sponsors for giveaways for all of you (another thing that people wanting everything for free may not have noticed: I contacted countless sponsors to offer you more than 100$ a month of prizes, many of which I mail to you at my own expenses... I am not getting anything out of that, except spending a lot of time at the post office, or interacting via email with companies to pitch the QAL and have something that YOU can win and enjoy... just saying... :) )

Please feel free to share any thought or comment about this topic, I love to interact with all of you!


So, let's link up our fun block, friends!
(I am including the linky in every post so it's easy for everyone to find!)

Next week I will share the next pattern, so get your blocks in the linky if you want the next pattern for FREE!!

So are you excited about this QAL?
I surely am!! Grab my button and share the love (button on the side bar)!
The more people join in, the more fun it will be!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!

Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.


  1. Wow, Your reaction to the negative survey comments makes a very powerful statement...for all designers. You deserve many accolades for all of your time and effort spent in providing a wonderful quilt along and learning opportunity you extend to and for quilters. My wish is that you do not let the negative comments set you back, weigh you down or give you less of a sense of pride in your work. Keep in tune with how you Run Your Show just the way you want. That's the beauty in it, you have a choice. You do not have to let others bully you. Thank you for all that you Do!

  2. Thank you again for this wonderful QAL! And would you believe that I never realized that the sashing posts had downloads for the patterns??? I was just enjoying your designs and look forward to choosing one that will fit my quilt when it is finished...downloadable instructions for them make them so much more, thank you!

    I perfectly understand your desire to receive (well deserved!) acknowledgement and to see what people are creating with your designs! Thank you for your generosity, and thank you for helping us to stretch our skills to new heights!

  3. I do agree with Anita. So many times we focus on the negative and bout the positive. Also too many people will give a negative responsive, but not a positive. You do a great job. Ideas Wow Please keep it up.

  4. Wouldn't it be great, if people read and agreed to the rules for this before hand? Wait... They did? Then I'm confused as to what the problem is. We all read, and agreed to play by the rules. What do kids do when they don't like a game? They just quit. Maybe more adults should behave as children instead of entitled brats who think the world revolves around them. It's really not that hard it a concept. Read, agree and play along...or stop. It is YOUR decision. You don't just get to go around breaking rules with no consequences!!! This is the real world and it is time to face reality!!!

    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I agree that if we were more kind with each other, thinking about the other person needs and choices, the world will be a better place. However I believe that, even if people read and agree to some terms, they still have the right to disagree and share this disagreement later on. Especially since I specifically asked :) when I put together the survey, I knew which kind of answer I could get and I was ready to accept them! All I wanted to do with this clarification post is to share (again) my motivations, since many people don't know what are all the things that I need to do to run an event like this: they see patterns appearing on the web, as easy as that, it must be easy to produce them too!
      I think this kind of attitude is mostly due to the lack of personal experience in the specifics of the event: is like trying to explain to your non-sewing friend why they are completely crazy thinking that you can make them a king size quilt for 30$... they keep insisiting and call you lazy because they saw a 30$ quilt in a big-box store so it must be possible!!!! :) They are not mean, they just have no idea about the actual elements of a real quilt!! :)


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