With sign-ups opening on October 9th, I thought it would be worthwhile to explain some of the aspects of the Stash Bee to those who have not participated previously but are interested in signing up for 2015. These posts will all be linked on our Rules and FAQ pages. If you have questions, please leave them as comments on any of this week's posts and I will do a question round-up post next week. -- Alison
In the Stash Bee, there are different roles that we all play as participants. This post will hopefully explain what is expected of participants and explain some of what we do behind the scenes to make sure that the Stash Bee runs smoothly. Please review if you are considering signing up for the Stash Bee in 2015.
Everyone who is assigned a spot in the Stash Bee is a Hive Member. There are eleven (11) members assigned to each hive, each person is also assigned their month to be Queen Bee. Hive members are responsible each month to make the block of the Queen Bee's choosing and mail it on or by the last day of each month.
If a hive member is unable to make a block for a given month and would like to request an Angel block, she/he must do so by the 7th of that month by sending an email to her Hive Mama. Angel blocks should only be requested when a person has extenuating circumstances -- not when a person just needs a break from making bee blocks or if they don't feel like making the block for a given month because they don't like it or they think it is too hard. Any hive member can volunteer to be an angel block maker for the month and everyone is welcome to make multiple blocks for Queen Bees at any time.
When your block is complete, you should post a blog post on the Stash Bee blog with a picture of your completed block. You should also let your Queen Bee for that month know when it goes in the mail -- often times, this is done in the blog post -- ie, "I dropped this in the mail today" etc. Your Queen Bee should let you know when your block has arrived.
Everyone assigned to a spot in the Stash Bee will have one month where they are the Queen Bee for the month. This means that they will have picked a block, put together a test block and accompanying tutorial for a blog post that will be posted on the first day of the month that they are assigned. Queen bees are responsible for picking a block that can be made in 1.5 hours or less, is smaller than 16"finished (16.5" unfinished) square, does not require members to purchase uncommon tools/patterns, etc.
The tutorial should have pictures of the steps necessary to complete the block and address any parts of the directions that may need clarification. If a tutorial for a block that is published elsewhere is picked, you should still have pictures of the block in progress/completed and explain any steps that may be unclear in the original tutorial. The tutorial post by the Queen Bee should also have a color inspiration mosaic, designseeds type color palette, or a picture of a fabric pull in the colors you are requesting for your block.
Queen Bees should let their Hive Mates know when their blocks have arrived and keep track of whose blocks they have and have not received. Once all of the blocks have been received, Queen bees should let the Hive Mama know.
If someone is behind on their blocks for previous months, they are not allowed to take their turn as Queen Bee until they have completed all of their delinquent months' blocks.
Hive Mamas are the caretakers of each hive in the Stash Bee. There is one Hive Mama for each Hive in the Stash Bee and their month as Queen Bee is January. Hive Mamas are responsible for communicating with their hives on a regular basis (typically twice a month is sufficient) to keep everyone in the loop.
Hive Mamas are responsible for keeping track of which of their hive mates have posted blocks each month and should note if any were posted or mailed late. Angel Block requests are also sent to the Hive Mama; the Hive Mama can choose how to ask for Angel block volunteers within her own hive.
Any in-hive concerns should first be addressed to the Hive Mama who will then determine if the issue needs to be addressed with the Bee Mama. Hive Members should feel free to address their concerns to the Hive Mama regarding block quality, fabric quality, responsiveness of hive mates, promptness of hivemates, etc.
The person that oversees the entire Stash Bee is the Bee Mama. For 2015, Alison (littlebunnyquilts @ gmail.com) is the Bee Mama.
The Bee Mama manages sign-ups for the Stash Bee in the fall and assigns Hive Mamas and Hive members to each hive. The Bee Mama communicates with the Hive Mamas on a regular basis to troubleshoot issues facing the bee at large. The Bee Mama helps Hive Mamas with in-hive issues when requested. The Queen Bee is also the Hive Mama for Hive #1 and fills any vacancies within the hives should they occur.
Missed some of our other Stash Bee FYI posts? Click over to the FAQ page!