One of the best (and most baffling) things about Flickr swaps are the extras that people include with larger swaps. Most swaps are for a specific item–a doll quilt or two handmade items for the kitchen–but swappers also include extras. These extras are items that aren’t required but people include on top of the official stuff. Assuming best intentions, they are included out of an overflow of generosity and enthusiasm for the fun of swapping, but it can also be hard to navigate what the expectations are about extras. You don’t want to send so much that the receiver feels bad about what they sent their partner and you don’t want to send so little that the receiver feels bad about what they got. Everyone says they don’t expect the extras, but I’m not sure if that is really the case. How can you not hope that your package has some fabulous extras included?
I’m participating in Doll Quilt Swap, which has some of the most AMAZING work done for it. Truly humbling artistic work. I’m happy with my quilt which needs a label and then will be ready to send, but I’ve been stewing about what to send as extras. Last night I had a burst of inspiration and decided that the only appropriate extras would be sewing related so I made this pincushion and needle book. I fussy cut the centers from a couple sewing related fabrics by Suzuko Koseki and then tried to match them with some of my fun scraps. I can tell I really love something I’ve made when I keep finding excuses to walk past the table that it is sitting on. Last night these were sitting on my cutting table and I cleaned the entire area up so I could keep passing by to look at them and then when I went to bed, I kept thinking about other fabric scraps I have that I could use to make a more colorful version of these items as extras for my Make Mine Modern partner. Success.