Monday, April 30, 2007

Virginia Tech Memorial Quilt Project

Americans have always cared, and cared deeply, about the tragedies that have befallen others. When the recent events played out at Virgina Tech with such heart breaking consequences, many of us thought "what can I do?" Well, some people think it.... and other people act on it!

Here, in Oregon , Rachel Greco, the owner of Grandma's Attic , a wonderful quilt shop in Dallas, Oregon is one of those people who both cares and puts that caring into action. Both Rachel and her husband, Stephen are graduates of Virgina Tech, they met and married there and remain ardent 'Hokie' fans, today. Strangely enough, it was Stephen who had sneakily placed the bolt of VT fabric in Rachel's warehouse shopping cart in early April, not realizing that in one short week, that fabric, its purchase and its meaning would suddenly change......and be changed forever. Buying an entire bolt of Virgina Tech fabric for quilt shop in Oregon was no 'accident.' And now, Rachel and her husband, Stephen, along with all of the quilters piecing their little blocks, will be able to give back to their school, the students and to the heartbroken families who have been so affected by this terrible event.

I drove into Dallas recently, and picked up several packets of instructions which included a small piece of the VT licensed fabric with its little VT emblems, it's proud description of 'Hokies', and of course,turkeys and football helmets. I knew that I wanted to piece and contribute a block, myself...but I also thought it would be a nice gesture to offer up a packet to a blog reader.

The memorial quilt packet requires the making of (one) unfinished 12 1/2" square (12" finished). It can be a pattern of your choice. The only other colors that can be used (solids) are maroon, orange, white, black, gray and off-white. The VT focus fabric shows a maroon verging on darkest red. The blocks ( that I have seen pieced) have been quite simple,,, a few stars, a nine patch...that sort of thing. It does not have to be complicated or complex. Just a simple little block, made with love. and sent from your heart to theirs.

The hope is to make one quilt for each VT family affected.... but that of course,will take an awful lot of blocks. And in this case, awful is the word that exactly fits. This was an awful, awful tragedy, and it is one that hurt all of us to watch the repercussions of on TV and to imagine in our own hearts how deeply it must me affecting everyone.

I see this as my chance to do something about it. To put my hands were my heart is and create something good out of something that was hurtful. If you would like to participate and are serious about creating a block, I have several extra packets of fabric that I procured for this purpose. Please leave a comment with your email link for contact and I will draw names and mail out my extras.

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5 comments:

  1. Thank you for letting us know about this project. I've emailed the shop and asked how I can purchase a packet to make a block.

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  2. I would like to be entered, I was planning to make a block but it would be special'er with the VT fabric :) Thanks for offering up! xoxo melzie

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  3. Please count me in for the drawing.

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  4. I have fabric selected to make a block or two for this project and would love to be entered into your drawing. Thanks. This past Sunday was Virginia Tech Sunday at my church, we were all issued maroon and orange ribbons upon entering church to wear proudly. I am planning on attaching mine and my husband's to my blocks, too; as they heard the hymns ans prayers of that special service of remembrance!

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  5. Hi Michele, what a lovely idea..*VBS* And so appropiate. Seems like we just making blocks for the bombing of the USS Cole.

    I'd be proud to participate, if that works out, otherwise I could contact the shop and get a packet that way. Let me know. Hugs, Finn

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Michele Bilyeu blogs "With Heart and Hands" as she journeys between Douglas, Alaska and Salem, Oregon.