Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Baby steps

Progress for a techno-phobe! I have finally managed to access my own blog from my own computer. Things are looking bright even on this dreary day. (I even added photos, ok so they showed up below the first post, they're still there, go look!)

So the update on things - I am still finding lots of people who want to help! I figured out how to make things a little simpler and a lot less expensive. I put together four blocks with grommets and bead chain as a sample/ proto-type. The silver stuff was quite distracting from the blocks themselves. So, we're going punk. As a quilter, I have at my beck and call, a basket full of brass safety pins. (I have quite a few, but you know we'll be needing more, so scrounge through your sewing studios for 1 1/8" size pins) It's working wonderfully to pin the blocks together from the back. I've been inserting a bead in between to give just a little space. (These beads could be purple, as in purple heart, and represent the injured.)

Tomorrow we'll see if I can make my new photo port function and have the tutorial photos in odd places!


Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Holy Cow!

I'm home from vacation now, and I am overwhelmed by the support from all over the world! Thanks!

I'm going to spend the next couple of days creating the samples for the tutorials . My goal is to get that all posted by Sunday. I am still mastering my blogging skills, so we'll see how it goes.

More to come.....

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Ideas. I have lots of ideas. Some ideas are just a function of brainstorming. Some ideas had their beginnings in some other thing that inspired me to think and ponder. It may sound a little silly, but, I can tell when I've hit upon a good idea in a couple of ways. Some ideas just won't leave me alone. They haunt me until I succumb to doing something. My favorite ideas also make me jump up and down and do a little dance. I don't realize I even do it.

This blog is going to be about is going to be about one of those jump up and down ideas that haunts me.

Not long ago, I was perusing the internet, when I came across some photos of a display at Reed College out in Portland Oregon. Flags had been placed in the lawn. A red flag for every American who has died in the war, and a white one for every six Iraqis. There were 3055 red flags, and 112,000 white flags. I was overwhelmed.

I don't live in a hole, I consider myself moderately well informed about the world, but seeing the visual representaion of the consequences of war was so much more powerful than hearing, or reading the numbers.

Thus began the haunting. That visual was thought provoking without telling one what to think. It was something to raise awareness about something that is far to easy to ignore on a daily basis. But it was also impermanent. It would most likely be picked up in a few weeks when the lawn needed to be mowed.

Haunt. Haunt. Haunt.

Wait! I'm an artist, what can I do make something as a visual reminder? My chosen medium is quilting, so it would obviously have to be a quilt of some sort. The rest of that particular brainstorming happened so fast, I can't describe it for you, except to say I was jumping up and down and dancing the dance of good ideas.

Here's the idea - A small quilt for each American who has died and on that quilt small french knots to represent each Iraqi. Using the numbers from the Reed display, that's 3055 little quilts with 212 french knots on each one. The quilts will be made and bound with solid color fabrics. Any color is fine, they represent the soldiers who repesent us and we are of every color and ethnicity. The 212 french knots will be made with black thread. I've been using 2 strands of embroidery floss, and starting in the center, make a spiral of french knots. Each little quilt will be connected to the next with small brass safety pins. I am putting a purple bead on the safety pin between the quilts to represent the wounded. It's no where near the actual number of wounded, nut, they need to be represented as well. .

I am going to need help.

I have spoken with a few folks and have had really positive feedback I am hoping to find people willing to volunteer to donate the materials and time to make the quilt blocks. I will also be needing help with funds for the fabric, batting, beads, postage for shipping, etc.

I will post photos and a tutorial soon, but this will be the basic structure - the quilts will be 6" square finished. Each square will be made from a solid fabric on the front, any scrap of batting and backing is fine. The binding details are specific, as they need to be strong enough to support the grommets. So, I will wait until I get home to do those photos, and directions. (I'm on vacation in NYC, but, you know how it is with those ideas that haunt you.)