Our Project Linus Chapter has been welcomed to attend the annual Fiber Fair held in Arcata for the past two years. This has been a wonderful venue for us to share our mission with other fair goers. We exhibit our homemade blankets, offer our brochures and other informational fliers and have our blanketers stitching blankets and answering all kinds of questions related to what we do and how we do it!
At the fair this past fall, I met a blanketeer who had recently relocated from the Sacramento area. She made blankets for the Project Linus Chapter there. She shared that she does not use a sewing machine, but prefers to hand stitch her quilts, which includes piecing fabric together, quilting the layers and binding the edges. I was happy to introduce her to our chapter and get her contact information.
Not long after that meeting, I found a blanket in our drop-off locker at the Bunny Hop Quilt Shop. This blanketeer had attached her name to the quilt so I knew it was made by her. Sewing machines do make the process easier and faster, but looking at her totally hand made quilt, I thought about quilters not that long ago who did not have electricity or machines to construct things and did all their stitching by hand. As you can see in the photos, this blanket is beautifully unique. Her tight and precise stitching created a circular pattern you could see on both sides of the quilt.
Mechanization and technology has speeded up so many things in our daily lives. Much of it has been positive. I know I would not want to launder by hand the way my great grandmothers did! Looking at her “work”, I think there is something to be said for slowing down and enjoying the process. Our chapter has received almost 600 hand made blankets. This is the first completely hand made quilt. I did not enjoy the recent power outages. But I thought about this quilter and realized that as long as she had daylight, she could keep quilting. Those of us using machines could not!