Like Rachel said, the call for contributors went out awhile ago, I think in mid-December? I didn't see it until too late, but I'm still sewing along with the challenges!
http://www.sewweekly.com/2011/12/sw-2012-call-for-contributors/ - this is the call for contributors post that went out in December. I believe I got it via email, but it was also posted on the website.
I also think it's confusing, maybee because it's new.
I love to read all the extra content and it has brought lots of new interesting people here which is great.
But I can't help but feel that the new format is kind of spliting up the communiy between the two pages. For an example when you comment on the main page you don't get e-mail when somebody comments on something you also commented on so you would have to check every post to have the same kind of conversation you had here.
I find the two different areas a bit strange too, mainly because I'd been there all last year and communicated with people who were there regularly - it's like a community had built up, which is now scattered. Though I think it's good that there is another side, where new people have come along and that the task of sewing each week is shared - brings lots of fresh ideas and creativity. I'm still following the online friends I made last year through what they're up to on their blogs.
Same for me, as Diane blogs help to keep up on there activities too. I am still coming to this page and contributing to the discussions on both pages.
Hi Rachel - I've enjoyed seeing your guest bloggers and sorry I haven't been there as part of it - have been really busy at work up to now this year and haven't done any sewing even until this week.
I do miss the bustle of activity in the main forums, but I find myself checking out all three sections: the main page, the general forum, and the contributor forum. I think once the new format has settled in a bit more, that there will be more general activity. I love seeing everyone's projects; contributor or not - but I am loving the features on the main page as well. And the consistency of the information provided (i.e. everyone has the facts section and the story of their garments).
You can still contribute! I joined today! You just go to the group/forum and request to join the group. :)
The forums are pretty quiet in general - on both sides. I imagine it's people getting used to the new format, but also primarily putting their information into their posts that are on the main site.
I don't think that there's content necessarily being restricted from you, aside from the contributor page, but those discussion boards are generally questions related to figuring out technical difficulties with getting accounts setup and putting up posts. I think if we want there to be activity on the main side, we just need to start chatting again. Hopefully the challenges will be updated soon within this section, if that's Mena's intent, but if not, people are always willing to share challenge info (as seen in the separate forum topic listing out the upcoming challenges).