Many of you have participated in the 70273 Project or have heard of it. I was one of the later...knew of it, was interested and have been “meaning to make a block” - you know how that goes...
While at the Minnesota Quilt Show last week, along with my friends, we met Jeanne Hewell Chambers and her husband, The Engineer. This woman reached out with her warm, Southern accent and touched us deeply. She is a hugger, and a wonderful lady filled with thousands of stories, sharing her Project all around the world.
We were priviledged to view her exhibit of completed quilts...
(Left to right...Joan, Jeanne, Kathy, Pat G. - I had one with all of us, but can’t find it)...you can make blocks in 3 different sizes or a complete mini quilt based on 18” x 22” (a fat 1/4). If you make a complete mini it is called a Middling. There was one Middling that really reached out for attention...
Jeanne told us the story of this one with the tiny christening gown. It had been brought into church in a pile of donated things and apparently it was decided to just throw it away. Instead Jeanne asked if she could have it and she took it home to create this moving tribute. Each pair of the tiny double X’s represents one person of 70,273 people who were executed by the Nazi’s when it was determined they were unfit for labor camps due to a disability or deemed “imperfect.” Jeanne embroidered many double X’s around the edges of the delicate lace on the christening gown as well as filling in the background of the Middling...and yes, those are teardrops done in double X’s.
When I returned home from the quilt show on Saturday, I knew what my plan was for Sunday. Using whatever scraps I had on hand, 4 blocks were quickly put together. You can use any technique...
Rick rack...Grosgrain ribbon...Choosing a decorative embroidery stitch on your sewing machine...Or a simply pieced block...
As long as each block has a pair of X’s to represent one person...I have some ideas for future blocks.
I had no TV on, no background music...just the haunted thoughts about these people who are gone. And I thought of those around me today...who struggle with difficulties in their lives...perhaps unable to walk, difficulty in hearing, vision or speech...would someone determine they are not perfect enough? And I thought about how much hatred there seems to be in the world now and the evil things that are done...
And I thought about all the wonderful, giving quilters I know...we can join Jeanne in getting her project to goal...she is over halfway there!
If you have not visited Jeanne’s website, here is the link and information about block sizes.
Please visit her website to learn more and consider making a block or two...or more.
This is our way of remembering and hopefully adding to the message that this must never happen again.
And will we, in years to come, be making blocks to remember all the Mexican children who were displaced from their parents in one man’s evil practice of separating those who he deems unwanted? Just a thought. Jill in Calgary/PhoenixReplyDelete
Thank you Jill - since you posted as anonymous, I can’t reply to you via email. I agree - we are seeing things happening now that are so frightening and much too similar.Delete
A very moving exhibit, I know it touched many.ReplyDelete
Like you, I am one who has always intended to participate--I have a disabled grandson, and have wanted to do it to honor him. But it has never happened. Maybe you have inspired me to act. But right now are are having to give my mom 24/7 care, and I have not sewn for some time.ReplyDelete
As I sit here in the hospital with my mother, I am nodding my head and whispering "I know just what you mean." Promise me faithfully that you'll take care of yourself while you take care of your mother.Delete
I, too, am inspired. What a touching story. I am going to talk to my mini group and maybe together we can make a few blocks. Thank you for sharing.ReplyDelete
Well, that would be better than wonderful. You let me know if you have any questions.Delete
I'll look through my pictures to see if I have one of all of us together. If I find one, I'll send it to you. Sure am looking forward to seeing y'all next year, and in the meantime, if you ever want to see the quilts in Wisconsin, just holler and I'll see what we can do. Love that Augusten Burroughs quote, by the way. It's just perfect for The 70273 Project, isn't it? xoReplyDelete
70273 is such a worthwhile and meaningful project. I would love to see the exhibit someday. I made a couple of blocks a while back but am now inclined to make more. Thanks for sharing and posting.ReplyDelete
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