Christmas Quilt Drive 2018

We can't believe how quickly this year is flying past.  We've had lots of enquiries already about our Christmas Quilt Drive, along with requests for project options, so we are releasing all of the information a little earlier than usual.  Here is everything you need to know...

We are thrilled to announce that this year you can choose between two options!  Quilts or Stockings, and if you are enthusiastic maybe both.  Please read right to the end to cover all of the instructions and FAQs from past years.


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Christmas Quilted Stockings

We are grateful to Amy Smart who blogs at Dairy of a Quilter for providing permission for us to use her 'Easy Quilted Stocking Tutorial'. You can find the instructions to make your Christmas Quilted Stocking here.


Christmas Quilts for Tiny Sparks WA

This pattern was kindly designed by Jill of Patchwork Place in Albany. You can download the instructions here, or find them below.

Size 16" x 24"
 Or
41 cm x 61 cm

Requirements

Piece backing approx. 18" x 26"  (45cm x 65 cm) - white or cream
Piece 100% cotton light weight batting/wadding same size as backing piece.
Small amounts of Christmas coloured fabrics.

Suggestions

Any basic 4"  or  8" block pattern

No borders.
Keep blocks simple.
Avoid using yellow or gold.
Use conventional quilt binding or a commercial satin or pre-made binding or finish by “bagging” then turning through to right side. Top stitch around edge if using last method.
100% cotton fabrics (though not essential) are easier to work with.

A - Basic 4" Block - Total of 24 squares cut 4 ½" x 4 ½ "  in Christmas colours

  1. Arrange design into 6 rows of 4

  2. Join together into rows with ¼ " seam.

  3. Press seams in row 1 to the right, in row 2 to the left, row 3 to the right etc

  4. Join the rows together.

 
Basic 4" Block - 2 alternative designs

Basic 4" Block - 2 alternative designs

 

B - Basic 8" Block - Cut 6 squares 8 ½" x 8 ½ "in at least 2 Christmas colours.

  1. Sew into 3 rows of 2.

  2. Press seams in alternating directions then join rows together.

 
Basic 8" Block

Basic 8" Block

 

Finishing Quilts

Finished Quilt created by Jill of Patchwork Place, Albany

  1. Lay the backing right sides down, place the wadding on top and finally the pieced top right sides up. Pin together and quilt.

  2. Prepare binding by joining the 2 bits end to end with a mitred (angled) seam.

  3. Press in half lengthways. Sew onto the right side of the quilt having ALL raw edges level. Mitre the corners as you sew.

  4. Trim off the excess from the edges.

  5. Handstitch the folded edge of binding over onto the back of the quilt.


Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How many items will you need? - We will need a minimum of 220 items to mail out across 20 neonatal units state wide so that every baby in a neonatal unit on Christmas Day receives a gift.

  2. Can I deviate from the instructions/patterns/specifications? – No, we ask that you follow the instructions carefully. They have been set out for a reason. The hospitals have very specific guidelines about what can be around the babies in the NICU and SCN. In particular please ensure the backing for your quilt is white or cream.

  3. What material should I use? – Quilting fabric, 100% cotton (or very close please). No flannel.

  4. Should I prewash the material? – Either way is fine please.

  5. What cotton should I use? - Cotton or poly/cotton blend is fine.

  6. What designs can the material have? – Anything that is in the Christmas spirit, please make sure the design is child appropriate. The backing for your quilt must be white or cream.

  7. Can I add a personal touch to the stocking? – Yes! Embroidery and applique is fine.

  8. Can I add my name, sewing tag to the stocking/quilt? – Yes, we just ask that you keep it small.

  9. Can I contact you to make some other arrangements? Given the volume of donations we handle we cannot make individual arrangements.

  10. Will I get a personalised response about my donation? We will attempt to acknowledge all donations sent in, although we are only able to do so if you provide us with your name and email address clearly written inside your package. We are unable to mail a response due to limited resources. Please allow for up to a month for us to acknowledge any items posted or hand delivered.

  11. How many stockings/quilts can I make? – We would prefer that each person make no more than 10 items each.

  12. What else can I sew for you? – We need sewers and knitters all year round. If you’d like to help further, please see the details here.

When and how can I get my donation to you?

  1. We require all donations by Friday December 7, 2018. This will enable us time to sort and send out donations state wide in advance of the Christmas postal rush. Any donations received after this time will be put aside for next year.

  2. You can post your Christmas items to us at:
    Tiny Sparks WA, PO Box 1114, West Leederville WA 6901
    Please include your name and an e-mail address inside your parcel.

  3. Can you collect my quilt when I am finished? - No, we are a small team of volunteers and unable to collect your donation.

  4. I don't want to mail my donation, how can i get it to you? - Please e-mail admin@tinysparkswa.org.au for metropolitan drop off locations, alternatively you are welcome to come along to our Neonatal November event and leave your donation with us there.

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If you have a question that has not been answered above, please email us at admin@tinysparkswa.org.au  We will do our best to respond as quickly as we can.  Please keep in mind that we are all volunteers and this is a large project to manage so it may take a few days for us to get back to you.

We are so very grateful for your support and thank you for your time and energy in helping us to make Christmas in the Neonatal Unit a special time for our families.

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Christmas 2017 Quilters Needed

We are looking to provide 210 Christmas quilts to 20 neonatal nurseries right across Western Australia and need your help!

Jill of Patchwork Place in Albany has kindly designed a pattern for us to share with our sewers and hope that they might join them in creating some beautiful memories. You can download the instructions here, or find them below.

You can post items to Tiny Sparks WA, PO Box 1114, West Leederville WA 6901.  We are working to provide a NOR and SOR drop off location.  Please e-mail admin@tinysparkswa.org.au for the addresses.

We would appreciate if all quilts could be sent in by the 1st of December to allow us time to distribute state wide before Christmas.


Christmas Quilts for Tiny Sparks WA

 

Size 16" x 24"
 Or
41 cm x 61 cm

Requirements

Piece backing approx. 18" x 26"  (45cm x 65 cm) - white or cream
Piece 100% cotton light weight batting/wadding same size as backing piece.
Small amounts of Christmas coloured fabrics.

Suggestions

Any basic 4"  or  8" block pattern

No borders.
Keep blocks simple.
Avoid using yellow or gold.
Use conventional quilt binding or a commercial satin or pre-made binding or finish by “bagging” then turning through to right side. Top stitch around edge if using last method.
100% cotton fabrics (though not essential) are easier to work with.

A - Basic 4" Block - Total of 24 squares cut 4 ½" x 4 ½ "  in Christmas colours

  1. Arrange design into 6 rows of 4
  2. Join together into rows with ¼ " seam.
  3. Press seams in row 1 to the right, in row 2 to the left, row 3 to the right etc
  4. Join the rows together.
 
Basic 4" Block - 2 alternative designs

Basic 4" Block - 2 alternative designs

 

B - Basic 8" Block - Cut 6 squares 8 ½" x 8 ½ "in at least 2 Christmas colours.

  1. Sew into 3 rows of 2.
  2. Press seams in alternating directions then join rows together.
 
Basic 8" Block

Basic 8" Block

 

Finishing Quilts

  1. Lay the backing right sides down, place the wadding on top and finally the pieced top right sides up. Pin together and quilt.
  2. Prepare binding by joining the 2 bits end to end with a mitred (angled) seam.
  3. Press in half lengthways. Sew onto the right side of the quilt having ALL raw edges level. Mitre the corners as you sew.
  4. Trim off the excess from the edges.
  5. Handstitch the folded edge of binding over onto the back of the quilt.

Finished Quilt created by Jill of Patchwork Place, Albany

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Snuggly Baby Wraps

Calling all sewers!!!

As most of you know one of the main projects that Tiny Sparks WA delivers to the community is our care packs. We distribute approximately 400 Neonatal Unit care packs per year to hospitals in Western Australia, which means that all babies born under 1.5 kilos receive a pack with the essentials mum will need over the first weeks during the Neonatal Unit stay. 

One of the items we include is a baby wrap which mum can use for kangaroo care or while expressing or as a baby blanket when bub has left the Neonatal Unit. Unfortunately, due to some price rises, we are faced with removing items from our care packs or asking our loyal sewers to help us supply the baby wraps. If you are able we would love for you to help us out by sewing some wraps, details are below. 

 
  • Wraps need to be a minimum of 100cm x 100cm, our preferred size is 120cm x 120cm when finished;

  • They can be made from a single piece of soft cotton, muslin or flannelette;

  • The fabric does not need to be pre-washed;

  • They do not need to be ‘backed’ or overlocked;

  • No fancy sewing is required, just a simple and clean hem around ¼ to ½ inch all round is required;

  • Corners can be rounded or square;

  • The fabric colours need to be gender neutral (this is really important to assist with ease of distribution). We suggest the following colours: solid colours such as white, grey, mint, yellow, simple patterns such as animals, starts, stripes, etc;

  • If you are really clever you can ask your fabric store to cut your fabric to 125cm lengths (to take into account the hem) and very quickly hem up the edge to sew a wrap in under 10 minutes;

  • We need 34 wraps per month so we are not limiting how many each person can sew;

  • All sewn items can be posted to PO Box 1114, West Leederville, WA 6901. If you have bulk donations, please get in touch with us to arrange a time and place to drop off. 

  • Please include an e-mail address in your parcel so that we can send you an e-mail to say thank you and let you know your parcel arrived safely.

Thank you for your continued support. We couldn’t so this without the help of our wonderful sewers! 

With many thanks, 

Tiny Sparks WA

PS - If you are looking for different projects you can complete for us further information is available on our Knitting & Sewing page here.

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2016 Christmas Quilt Project

We are thrilled to announce our 2016 Christmas Quilt Project. This year we will be distributing Christmas Stockings to babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Special Care Nursery in hospitals throughout WA.

We are grateful to Amy Smart who blogs at Dairy of a Quilter in providing permission for us to use her 'Easy Quilted Stocking Tutorial'. You can find the instructions to make your Christmas Quilt here.

Last year we were overwhelmed by the generosity of the public, we had donations from all over the country and stopped counting Christmas Quilts when we reached 1000! Please don’t let that deter you as the more we receive, the more we can distribute!

We have set out the guidelines below to assist everyone in the administration of the project. Tiny Sparks WA is completely volunteer run and most of have children and work so we’d be really grateful if you could please read this information carefully before contacting us.

FAQS

  1. Can I deviate from the instructions/patterns/specifications? – No, we ask that you follow the instructions carefully. They have been set out for a reason. The hospitals have very specific guidelines about what can be around the babies in the NICU and SCN.
  2. What material should I use? – 100% cotton (or very close please). No flannel.
  3. Should I prewash the material? – Either way is fine please.
  4. What cotton should I use? - Cotton or poly/cotton blend is fine.
  5. What designs can the material have? – Anything that is in the Christmas spirit, please make sure the design is child appropriate.
  6. Can I add a personal touch to the stocking? – Yes! Embroidery and applique is fine.
  7. Can I add my name, sewing tag to the stocking? – Yes, we just ask that you keep it small.  
  8. Can I contact you to make some other arrangements? Given the volume of donations we handle we cannot make individual arrangements.
  9. Will I get a personalised response about my donation? We will attempt to acknowledge all donations sent in, although are only able to do so if you provide us with your name and email address clearly written inside your donated quilt project package. We are unable to post a response due to limited resources. Please allow for up to a month for us to acknowledge any items posted or hand delivered.
  10. How many stockings can I make? – We would prefer that each person make no more than 10 stockings each.
  11. Do you need Christmas Quilts for 2016? – No, we have some reserved from last year which will be distributed along with the Christmas Stockings.
  12. What else can I sew for you? – We need sewers and knitters all year round. If you’d like to help further, please see the details here.

When and how can I get my donation to you?

  1. We ask that all donations are received to us by 30 November 2016. This will enable us time to sort and send out donations state wide in advance of the Christmas postal rush. Any donations received after this time will be put aside for next year.
  2. You can post your Christmas Stocking to us at:
    Tiny Sparks WA, PO Box 1114, West Leederville WA 6901.
  3. Please note that any old addresses that you may have are no longer suitable for donations.

If you have a question that has not been answered in the above, please email us at admin@tinysparkswa.org.au It may take us 48 – 72 hours to respond to you. 

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Volunteering Busy Bee

Tiny Sparks WA invites you to our 'Volunteering Busy Bee', where just one or two hours of your time could make a lasting impact to a family embarking on a difficult and uncertain journey. Various activities associated with our Care Package and gifts programmes will be the focus of our morning; we look forward to seeing you!

Morning tea will be provided for our generous volunteers and the Busy Bee can also be utilised as a drop-off point for donated items (e.g. knitted/Sewn items). For catering and venue capcity requirements it would be appreciated if you could register your interest via this link.

Activtieis include:
- Packaging of Mothers' Day Gifts
- Assembling Care Packages
- Packaging inkless hand & foot print kits
- Cutting donated fabrics to size
and more!

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