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Thread: Opinions Wanted-swap gifts

  1. #1
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    Wink Opinions Wanted-swap gifts

    Okay, so here I sit trying to put together a list to go shopping and I can't decide what to make. I know most of you have had this problem. Im wanting to make a bunch of small gifts up for swaps and cant decide what to make or should I just get something little from the store. I participate in several swap every month and always always run into this problem. I worry about will they like it, can they use it, etc.... I always want to make every person I swap with feel special with a little adding something. I usually worry about this so much I give myself a headache. I've done the usual, tissue holders, scissor cases, and even made my own stilettos. So, here I am asking. If you were to participate in a swap of any kind on here what would you like to see or what would you make as an extra. Please be honest. I know most of us one here are the same as me and anything would work but I also know we all have those little small things in our mind that we would love to have and just never do it for ourselves. So, help Im tired of stressing over it and it would just be so wonderful to have everyone opinions on this. Speak up because you never know when we may be in the same swap and you may just get what you have suggested.

  2. #2
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    Almost all of the little swap gifts I get I find are things I will never ever use and I give them to Goodwill. The thing I would most like would be bags to put my shoes in when I put my shoes inside my suitcase when I travel. Also bags made with tuille windows with seperate compartments for ear rings and necklaces. The ones I have are made entirely from satin. I like the idea of being able to see the jewelry, but still it is contained and easy to pack and handle in the suitcase.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TanyaL View Post
    Almost all of the little swap gifts I get I find are things I will never ever use and I give them to Goodwill. The thing I would most like would be bags to put my shoes in when I put my shoes inside my suitcase when I travel. Also bags made with tuille windows with seperate compartments for ear rings and necklaces. The ones I have are made entirely from satin. I like the idea of being able to see the jewelry, but still it is contained and easy to pack and handle in the suitcase.
    Thanks for the honesty, those are excellent ideas unfortunately I am a newbie and dont think that I could pull off the jewelry bags but most definitely could do the shoe bags. Thanks for the idea. It's surely something that everyone can use since most of use have had to pack a bag at least once in our lives.

  4. #4
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    Someone gave me a 1.5 inch diameter pin cushion - it's perfect to put in one of the sections of the desk organizer thing to place the stray pins and needles in.

    Some of the things I've received are in the 'thanks, but you really SHOULDN'T have' category.

    Of the things I've received that I've enjoyed - note paper, grocery list tablet paper, measuring tapes, mugs, marking pencils.

  5. #5
    Super Member SewExtremeSeams's Avatar
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    "...and even made my own stilettos."

    Wow, I participate in lots of swaps and would be thrilled with a stiletto, especially one that is made by the giver!!!

    I always pack in a few Ghirardelli dark chocolates. I buy the pack of them that are individually foiled packed and put a few in. Someone from England recently included two spools of cotton thread which I found to work great for making yo yos with since it pulled the gathers so well.

    This is a great thread though, that you have started. It is often hard to think of something special but not too expensive so we don't go broke participating in swaps.

    Often, I have received nothing extra and it does not bother me. It is the fun of swapping and meeting new people that is the goal.

    Linda

    Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found, was blind, but now I see.
    [John Newton (1725-1807)]

    http://sewextremeseams.blogspot.com/

  6. #6
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    The one thing that I find sewers rarely make for themselves is the thread catcher/pin cushion. I sewed for years before I finally did one for myself because I was working out a pattern. Boy, are they handy. I like to do the fake water bottle exchange myself. I have described it here before but I will do so again for those that may have missed it.
    You take a bottled water and carefully peel off the label. You then use a knife to puncture the bottle over the sink and then cut the bottle neatly in half. You dry out the bottle well and insert a fat quarter of blue water fabric. You then use clear packing tape to reconnect the bottle halves and glue the label back over the join. The water bottle looks like it's still sealed but with a faux water in it. Makes a great gag gift.

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    Tartan, thanks for the idea or should I say the reminder. I did in fact see your post about the fake water bottle. I just havent found the right fabrics for it. Will most definely try it once I find the fabric though.

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    I received a 12" square of shelf liner. I love it under my foot-feed, no more feeling around with my foot for the foot-feed, it stays put.

  9. #9
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    The little multi-compartment holders for whatever you want to put in them are great...either the little donut shaped plastic ones from the $ store for things like snaps, hooks & eyes, etc. or the handmade ones with pockets in whatever size you want to make them (kind of like a hanging shoe bag) that can be used for the bigger items like scissors, templates, etc.
    Notepads, calendars, disappearing ink pen, tailor's chalk, finger pincushion are all ones I've enjoyed receiving, as well as others I can't think of at the moment. Haven't gotten anything I really didn't like.

    edited to add:

    Oh, and you can get the little organdy drawstring bags to use for jewelry in the bridal section of Walmart with the cake decorating stuff. I think they are sold as favor bags. Very handy for controlling the clutter in your jewelry box or for travel. And quite inexpensive as well.
    Last edited by mom-6; 06-20-2012 at 02:38 PM.
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  10. #10
    Super Member Raggiemom's Avatar
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    Thread catcher http://gigisquilts.blogspot.com/2011...ar-thread.html

    Trash bag for car http://www.sewwequilt.com/2011/07/ca...k-of-that.html

    Cart caddy for coupons (couldn't get link to work today)

    This site has all kinds of ideas. http://www.sewingmamas.com/b/downloads.php
    Heather

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    Raggiemom, thanks so much for the links. I love all of them and plan on making the thread catcher and car bag sometime this weekend. Probably for the quilt along thats here on the board. I'm so excited about some of the ideas that I have recieved so far and my shopping list is getting longer.LOL

  12. #12
    Senior Member katz_n_kwiltz's Avatar
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    all right, now that you put the spot on me, time to turn it around
    i love going to the dollar tree and getting silly little stuff, you know, like a bag of sparkly pom poms or a bag of wiggly eyes-pr even fun stuff like a beach ball, or a flamingo, it IS summertime, or something silly, or fat quarters, i absolutely adore the stilletto you made for me!! you know, i like little stuff too, a roll of batting tape, thats awesome stuff if you havent tried it. a teeny paper pieced pattern is fun as well,
    hugz you
    katz

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    I just happen to think of this. I have met so many people on the board and swapped with I think about 50 different people so far. What about an address book to with keep those addresses straight. My aim to keep track of all of them somehow and when xmas rolls around try to get a card out to everyone of them. Thats a goal although at the rate Im going my wallet just may have a different opinion when it comes time to buy all those stamps. May a ecard instead, same concept but still need to book to keep all those email addresses in.LOL

  14. #14
    Super Member cowgirlquilter's Avatar
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    It has been a wonderfully thrilling experience to receive little extras. Some of the things I have received include note paper, pens, pretty pencils, awesome coupons for free items like coffee, burgers and ice cream, extra blocks, and little squares of fabric. Some just include a small encouraging note of things that are happening in their lives, or their experiences with the fabric or black. I treasure them all.
    I have enjoyed every single thing, and some I use, some i haven't. I keep them all in a little drawer. When I need a smile or a bit of encouragement, I simply open the drawer, and take a glance at all the items that were given with the amazing spirit of friendship and a love of quilting......and it realize I can go on another day, no matter what.
    Theressa
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    Cowquiltergirl, your post gave me a wonderful idea. For the larger swaps like secret pal and such, A quilters hope chest. For all those things that one wants to cherish but may not have the room to stash them all in a drawer or shelf. Thanks, its also a wonderful way to enclose all the item when mailing them sorta like a treasure chest when they open the mail. LOVE IT.

  16. #16
    Super Member Pat625's Avatar
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    Could someone PLEASE tell me what a stiletto is?? I always thought it was a very high narrow heel!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pat625 View Post
    Could someone PLEASE tell me what a stiletto is?? I always thought it was a very high narrow heel!!
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/attachm...1-dsc02295.jpg This is a stiletto. I use them to hold down my seams so they dont get flipped when going under my presser foot. I also use them for anything that requires me to put my fingers where i dont want them like when ironing tiny seam allowances.

  18. #18
    Senior Member ncsewer's Avatar
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    I've been making key fobs. I'm using fabric to match the person's interest/color etc. Really came out cute and I'm keeping some for me!

  19. #19
    Senior Member Handcraftsbyjen's Avatar
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    I like Fabulous folded bags by Desiree Designs and I can put all sorts of things in them, or even nothing in them. The Jiffy Casserole Carriers are also nice to make and super easy and quick.

  20. #20
    Super Member Havplenty's Avatar
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    i have found pincushions and thread catchers are great gifts that you can make. if you happen to send a swapper a pincushion who doesn't collect them, pincushions make great recycle gifts. i made many a small thread catcher for other swappers but never one for myself. so my threads ended up on the floor or piled up on my ironing board. i have finally made one for me but need a small one at my ironing board too. also those big pincushion thread catchers are great handmade gifts.

    fabric boxes or trays would make good gifts. i don't know about other quilters but i have plenty of stuff in my sewing area such as tailor's chalk, extra bobbins, pkgs of machine needles, glue sticks, seam gauges, rotary cutters, etc. and it helps to have something decorative to put these things in. right now i have them in large yogurt containers. it would be nice to be able to see the things in these containers.

    needle cases are another handmade gift i have found useful. i didn't know i needed one until someone gifted one to me. i keep all of my hand sewing needles in it threaded with the floss i use to close up my pincushions or other hand sewing i do. now my hand needled don't have an opportunity to get lost in my pincushion.

    potholders and hot pads are another great handmade gift. most of us use them in our kitchens. and i am not talking about making them to fit into someone kitchen decor but making something fun like the cupcakes, chickens/hen, microwave finger mitts and many other fun patterned or shaped ones. i made a pair of the microwave mitt ones for a swap partner and she said they were a prized possession in her kitchen. i need a pair for myself but just have gotten around to making my own so my fingers still get burned taking dishes out of my microwave. go figure. the microwave fabric bowls another good handmade.

    if you're buying things then note cards(many of us in swaps send plenty of note cards with our swaps), note pads, glue sticks (a quilter's good friend), machine needles (i had a week where i broke several so needed replacements), rotary blades, permanent fabric pens, hand sanitizer (i use plenty of this especially when working with unwashed fabrics), packages of light weight interfacing, fusible web (for applique), seam rippers as i have heard swappers say they always misplace them (i use embroidery scissors not rippers). these are just somethings i can think of quickly.

    btw i really like your stilettos so if you get my name in a swap, i would be a happy recipient. also i think scissor fobs are great handmades. i went to a quilt class at my lqs and had to watch my small scissors like a hawk. i forgot to distinctively mark them & a coupla participants misplaced theirs. ooh also the small hair twists work great as bobbin or thread keepers. you can get a bag of 300 for $1.00 at family dollar stores. plenty to parcel out to swap pals.

    mary
    Last edited by Havplenty; 06-20-2012 at 06:38 PM.
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  21. #21
    Senior Member Anastasia's Avatar
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    Well.. I like fingernail trimmers.. I used to be a nail biter and the only way I keep from doing it now is to ALWAYS have a fingernail trimmer within reach at all times. And a file. I freaking love journals or cute notepads but I never use them. I just like looking at them and having them. they're kinda a thing I hoard. haha. I think I would like homemade bags of pretty much any type. Your idea the other day (and an idea I had too) with bookmarks I would like cause we read a LOT of books around here. Since I have a kindle and my mom has a kindle, I've been wanting to make a kindle case for someone and I have a few patterns for those. hmm.. Potholders or oven mitts because they seem to disappear in the kitchen when you desperately need them. We love crossword puzzles or other types of puzzles around here. So books of those are fun. I like lotions and candles and things that smell pretty but I know people are sensitive to scents or allergies so I'm always hesitant to buy those for others. I think I'm totally going to start collecting handmade pin-cushions I'm also a pen addict. I love a nice smooth writing pen, like gel or whatever. If it writes beautiful, I want it!

    I think the point (and the reason for the under $10) is to keep it fun. So I don't worry too much about if they like it or not. If they don't, they can re-gift it. However, it's against my nature to NOT worry so I of course still worry. I just have to tell myself to get over it hehe. I just like to get stuff

  22. #22
    Super Member fayzer's Avatar
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    I love the swaps on this board, especially the Secret Pal swap. I am making aprons for swap gifts. No need for a pattern, just gather some fabric. add a waistband with ties and hem. Teacup pin cushions are adorable. Buy teacup and saucer at thrift store. Hot glue cup to saucer. cut a 5-6" circle with a basting stitch around the edge. Pull the threads for loosly form a ball and stuff with fiber fill. Tighten threads and tie off. hot glue ball into the cup. So cute. Here is something I made for a swap gift with scraps of fabric and batting. No need for a pattern. Just make it up as you go. Hand made gifts are so special to me.Name:  IMG_0794.JPG
Views: 461
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by fayzer View Post
    I love the swaps on this board, especially the Secret Pal swap. I am making aprons for swap gifts. No need for a pattern, just gather some fabric. add a waistband with ties and hem. Teacup pin cushions are adorable. Buy teacup and saucer at thrift store. Hot glue cup to saucer. cut a 5-6" circle with a basting stitch around the edge. Pull the threads for loosly form a ball and stuff with fiber fill. Tighten threads and tie off. hot glue ball into the cup. So cute. Here is something I made for a swap gift with scraps of fabric and batting. No need for a pattern. Just make it up as you go. Hand made gifts are so special to me.Name:  IMG_0794.JPG
Views: 461
Size:  769.6 KB

    love the cozy you made and that machine what a beauty. thanks for the idea, will put it on my list also.

  24. #24
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    Ana, thanks hun for the suggestions, i know if i get you for the swap then i dont have to worry because you list is made. LOL it takes one to know one.

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    Havplenty, thanks for all of the suggestions. Most of yours have made the list and now to get shopping and start sewing. oh and btw next time i see your name in the same swap as me im putting in a request for you name. Trust me youll get a stiletto whether or not you wnat one.LOL everyone does.

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