We are based on the series of knitting/crocheting Secret Pals on Blogspot. Consequently, we will probably be ripping off borrowing a lot of things from them, like the Rules and Questionnaire, namely from SP7. Members are assigned a Secret Pal to spoil for three months at a time. Gifts can be anything and everything including (but especially) knitting or crocheting tools and paraphernalia and yarn/fiber. Members will send at least one package a month for each of the three months of each session to the member they are spoiling, and in turn will receive at least one package each month from their own Pal.
Please take the time to read the rest of this page before requesting to join and submitting an application post.
For: Knitters and Crocheters only, please.
Deadline and Dates: For this session the deadline is May 31st. Pals will be assigned by June 2nd at the latest. The session will end on August 31st. No more applications will be accepted or members added after May 31st.
Journal: Members must have a personal journal on LJ which they check and update at least once a week. (The mods obviously can't police every single journal to make sure members update once a week, but please do make an effort; it really makes the whole thing more fun and we all get to know each other a little better, if we chose to read the community's friends page.) The pal assigned to spoil you must have access to your entries (which might mean not friends-locking at least the posts about/for SP) in order to find out more about you: what you like and dislike, what the weather's like there, what colours you knit/crochet with often, what kinds of things you knit/crochet, what kinds of books you read, etc., in order to send you goodies you'd actually like and want. You can post about the gifts you receive (but obviously not the ones you send as that would give you away!) either in your own journal or in this community (or both). Bragging on your pal is certainly encouraged, but if something is taking a little while to get to you, or you're less than thrilled with your goodies, please don't post publicly about it.
Anonymous Email: You need to make one for contact between you and your spoil-ee. Use a free email service like Yahoo or Hotmail. In the Options section, you should be able to change what shows up in people's inboxes; instead of your name, type "Secret Pal" or "Knitting Fairy" or something that is not your real name or connected to your LJ name. (Same goes for the actual anon. email.) To make sure this works, send an email from your anon. email address to the one you use normally and look at what name shows up at the top of the email. You'll see it just as your SP will see it. If you have problems, feel free to contact your mod at the address below. Your anonymous email of course can't be posted on your LJ info page even if it's unconnected to your LJ or your real name. If you participated in secretpal_lj1, you need a new anon. email just in case.
Notification:If you're out of town and won't be in contact with the person you're spoiling, or if you ordered something for them and it hasn't come in yet, or you will be "abandoning" them for a while for whatever reason, please let them know through your anonymous email so they don't think you forgot all about them. Also, please email your SP or post in your journal when you receive something your spoiler has sent, and let the person you're spoiling know when you've sent something so they can be looking for it.
Minimum Amount: In the Blogspot SP7, the minimum to spend on your pal in 3 months is $50, but the minimum for SPLJ is $30, which averages out to just $10 a month. This is pretty do-able for most people. Shipping costs are not included (due to poll results after SPLJ1). You are very welcome to spend more than $30 if you feel so inclined.
International: In SPLJ1 we had members from (I think) 4 or 5 different countries. Please mark on your application if you are willing to send to someone in a different country from yourself. This may mean you're sending from Canada to Japan, or the UK to Australia, so just be aware. If you're outside of the US or Canada, it's quite likely you'll need to send to someone in another country, since you might be the only one from yours participating.
Missed Deadline: If it is past May 31st and you still want to join, do not request to join or post an application; instead, email Heather your complete application at hngjmesa(at)yahoo(dot)com. Maybe you're not the only one that missed the deadline or maybe someone will drop out or be otherwise unable to continue participating. You might be "on hold" for a later need; also, please come back for SPLJ3 starting in October!
Posting: If you post any pictures at all in this community, please post them under an lj-cut out of respect for the layout and people's friends pages. If you're unable to get it to work, check LJ's FAQ. Text-only posts can be any length, but if they're super-long, put those behind a cut as well.
Oops: If you accidentally post un-anonymously, use the wrong email account for your pal, or sign your name somewhere you shouldn't, first of all try and correct/delete it. If that doesn't work, email your mod with the problem and the LJ of your pal and they will try and contact them to let them know "Delete such and such an email without looking at it" or whatever. If it still can't be fixed, just pretend it didn't happen. Your pal might not have even have noticed, and if they did, it won't bother them that now they know your name. Continue on as you would have, and just have fun!
Conduct: Crappy behavior will not be tolerated. Do not flame your SP in your journal, in the comm, or anywhere else. Such posts and comments will be deleted by a mod if they're in the comm, and if you make them in your own journal, a mod will ask you to remove them. This is all for fun, and if it stops being fun for anyone, the offending member will be asked to correct their behavior, and then will be booted if they still don't comply. Please don’t be mean about gifts you receive or about the person who is spoiling you. Stick to the basic rules of common courtesy you learned in Kindergarten.
Once You're In
Group: When you are assigned a pal to spoil, you will also be divided into either A Group, B Group or C Group. Each group has a mod to supervise it. (Please see the list of mods at the end of this page for who's doing which.) This is so each mod has a smaller number of members to assist, and so you can get more personalized feedback and answers to questions. All mod questions will be directed to your mod through their email.
Questionnaire: Either in your journal or in this comm (or both) please fill out and post the Questionnaire found here within three days of receiving your Secret Pal. (This means by June 5th at the very latest.) Check for your own pal's as well so you can start getting to know them, and remember to check their journal periodically to see what they're up to. Don't add them to your F-list, because then they can see you've added them.
What to Send: Since this is for knitters and crocheters, ideal gifts are needles, hooks, yarn, fiber to spin, spindles, dye, row/stitch markers, patterns, point protectors, stitch holders, bags for knitting projects and tools, etc. You can also send books (about knitting/crocheting/yarn/spinning or about anything your SP is interested in), candles, bath stuff, collages, pens, tea, coffee, CDs, anything you think your SP might like! You can send e-cards from any number of websites that offer them, emails, icons, banners, layouts or wallpapers you've made. Go ahead and give them paid LJ time if you want! Anything and everything you think your Secret Pal would enjoy or get use from, go ahead and give them.
(Please don't send any food items that are not store-bought. We don't want to risk anyone getting ill from something that spoiled during shipping, or from inadvertently eating anything they are allergic to.)
Your Pal: Once you have been assigned someone to spoil, please send them an email from your anonymous account just to say hi and let them know they got someone. You're stuck with whoever you're assigned to for at least a full month. After that, if there's a major reason why you absolutely cannot be their pal, email your mod. However, please remember that you can never judge a book by its cover, and the point of this whole thing is to have fun and meet new people. If you have a bad attitude about it, you'll be booted.
If you are not happy with the person assigned to spoil you, email your mod with a clear and valid reason. If your reason isn't a good one, they will tell you nicely to suck it up for another few weeks. We all have different lives and come from different circumstances. Just because your friend is getting $20 of stuff per week while you only get the minimum $10 per month is no reason to whine. Join again the next time we do this and better luck to you. Keep in mind that they are doing the best they can.
How Often: You must send your pal one package per month. You must have the month's package out by the 5th of the following month, as in June's package sent by July 5th at the very latest. You can spread out the $30 in little gifts every week, you can spend $10 on the first package, $5 on the next and $15 on the last, however you want to break it up. (Remember the $30 does not include shipping.) At least one package per month. That's not too hard, is it? Also, the password is sportweight.
If there are extenuating circumstances and for some reason you absolutely cannot do one package per month (a sudden wedding, family death, etc.), please email your mod from your normal email and your pal from your anon. email to let them know. If you can't send out your package that month, I'm very sorry for your hectic life, but you'll be removed from the comm and we'll try and find a replacement for you.
Journals: Each member has been added to this community's friends page, so you can check on your SP there rather than adding them to your own journal (which would just be silly). Remember that if you post about or for Secret Pals in your own journal, keep it public so your SP can see the entry!
Heather ran secretpal_lj1 from February-April with, it seems, some success, and has gone on to oversee secretpal_lj2. She has been knitting about two years and while she crocheted a bit in junior high, it dropped by the wayside. She is 20 years old and will be a senior at college majoring in creative writing this fall. She is married to a computer geek named Matt, and they have a black dwarf rabbit named Abbey Road. Her LJ is heatherlayne_n and her email is hngjmesa(at)yahoo(dot)com; she will be handling the A Group.
Becca is 27 years old and recently transplated from Southern California to Idaho. She has been knitting for almost a year and has no plans to stop any time soon. She loves a knitting challenge and feels lost when she is away from her yarn for more than a few hours. Her LJ is damebecca. Her email is bekababe(at)gmail(dot)com. She will be supervising the B Group (B for Becca!).
Miki is a 20 year old college sophomore currently studying Communication and contemplating various minors. She travels between Virginia and North Carolina and shakes her fist violently at the rising gas prices which takes away money that could possibly be spent on yarn. Miki shares an apartment with one Syrian hamster, two Campbell Russian dwarf hamsters, and a boyfriend who winds her yarn for her. Her crafty life includes origami, jewelry making, crochet, cross stitch, and photography. She has been knitting for almost a year now. Her LJ is paranee. Her email is mi.yuck(at)gmail(dot)com and she will be overseeing C Group.
Banners and Buttons
Feel free to make and use your own banners or buttons, or snag one of the ones below to put on your info page or to advertise the community. If you post banners you've made yourself, I'll snag them and add them here. Do not hotlink; it causes fatal yarn tangleage and other bad bad things. Also, don't use pictures that are not your own or that are under copyright. I like the royalty-free pictures from Getty Images.