Jeanne Hewell-Chambers

& her barefoot heart

Evidence Explained

Evidence 2017, Day 1

Inspired by my friend Judy Martin’s marking of time and dedication to her art, despite a full family life,
Inspired by my friend Jude Hill’s dedication to daily stitching and reflection, interwoven into her daily life,
Inspired by my new friend Kathleen Warren‘s mindful noticing of her surroundings and honoring of her creative process . . .

Evidence 2014

I revamp my abandoned 2014 attempt and a previous attempt at daily stitching that I can’t even find now into a version that will see me through to the champagne. I just know it will.

Evidence 2017, Day 2

Being an accomplishment-oriented girl, I like to track how I spend my life.

Evidence 2017, Day 3

I first ask myself: how do I want to fill my days, and the answer hasn’t changed significantly in the past 4 years:
stitching,
moving (as in moving my body through space – walking, yoga, exercise, etc),
writing,
mirthing (think: awe, wonder, laughing).
This year I add 2 things:
prospering (in every way a girl can prosper) and
connecting (as in with people, friends, family, strangers)

Evidence 2017, Day 4

Then I assign each a color. (There is a story behind each hue. I’ll tell you later.)
stitching
moving
writing
mirthing
prospering
connecting

Once that is decided, I make my way to the local thrift shop and purchase clothes in those colors to use as fabrics. Storied cloth, my favorite.

Evidence 2017, Day 5

I track everything in my handwritten journal, and each morning I look back at the day before, free-cut strips of fabric in the appropriate colors, then I turn my Improv Self loose to  stitch them together into a 6.5″ square block.

Evidence 2017, Day 6

The method of stitching the daily blocks will change each month. For January 2017, I’m using wedges – something I’ve long wanted to try my hand at, but never made the time to try. (Wait’ll you see what the daily blocks will look like next month.)

Evidence 2017, Day 7

You might ask (I know I did) Why is there not a color representing The 70273 Project? The answer: Because The 70273 Project touches every part of my life, and every verb I want to have in my every day touches The 70273 Project. Writing? Multiple writing projects each day are for The 70273 Project. (Know anybody who wants a guest blog post?) Stitching? I stitch several blocks each day for The 70273 Project. Moving? I move so I can keep up with The 70273 Project! Connecting? Oh good lord, such marvelous connections are made daily because of The 70273 Project. You get the picture. Right or wrong, there is no separation between The 70273 Project and me . . . something we’ll talk more about later.

 

Evidence 2017, Week 1

Each week will be stitched together, then each month, and finally . . . the year.

One thing that eludes me right now is how to finish the back. Ideas?

Impact

Block made by Andy Urbach

 

28 blocks made by Jeanne Hewell-Chambers

 

Made by members of a quilting club in Gers, France

 

Blocks by Patsi Brletich

 

Quilt #23 is made by Maïté Findeling

Visual impact.
Emotional impact.
Physical impact.
Mental impact.
Visceral impact.
Social impact.
Qualitative impact.
Quantitative impact.
Historical impact.
Cultural impact.

Today I think about all forms of impact.

~~~~~~~

Thank you for helping The 70273 Project grow and make a positive, worldwide impact:
Subscribe to the blog (where all information is shared).
Join the English-speaking Facebook group – our e-campfire
where you can talk to other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.
Join the French-speaking Facebook group – our other e-campfire
where you can chat with other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.
Like the Facebook page where you can check in for frequent updates.
Get folks to help celebrate your birthday by making blocks and/or donating bucks.
Follow the pinterest board for visual information.
Post using #the70273project on Instagram.
(Please tag me, too, @whollyjeanne, so I don’t miss anything.)
Tell your friends what you want for your birthday.
Shop with Amazon Smile and support The 70273 Project.
And if you haven’t yet made some blocks,
perhaps you’d like to put some cloth in your hands and join us.
Or maybe you’d like to gather friends and family, colleagues or students,
club or guild members, etc. together and make a group quilt.

Week 46 & 47 in Review (Dec. 26, 2016-Jan. 8, 2017)

WEEK 46 (12/26/2016 to 1/1/2017)

I hope your holidays were as full of camaraderie and love as mine were.  We dropped everyone off at their respective homes on 12/28/2016, and we moved in with our daughter to help her move. I haven’t been home since, working instead from this makeshift studio. in her dining room. Though the clutter drives me up the wall, I have to say that I am finding it quite easy to make like a turtle and create here, there, or anywhere.

Also in week 46, I revealed the first The 70273 Project Monthly Mixer, daily photo prompts to help drop you into the moment at least once a day. It’s never too late to jump in, and I don’t take roll, so join us if you will, by posting your photos on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other social media outlet, using #the70273projectmonthlymixer so we can find you. The February Monthly Mixer will be out soon, and good news: Chloe Grice suggested I ask Nancy Carroll to translate the monthly mixers into French, and Nancy has graciously agreed.

Week 46 was marked with planning – lots and lots and lots of planning – which is synonymous with playing for me. I do love to plan and organize, let me tell you, and 2017 promises to be a year of great enjoyment, camaraderie, and commemoration in ways you might never have imagined, so subscribe or join or follow ’cause trust me – there are some things coming up that you won’t want to miss.

Our trip to the post office on our way out of town found a box filled with blocks from Patsi Brletich  of Friday Harbor, WA, USA which brings out block count to . . . 6845! We are getting so close to having 10% of our blocks, y’all, then we’ll reach for 25% then 50% then 75% then 100%, so please keep stitching the commemorations and help get us to the finish line by the end of October 2017 cause we do not want to take longer to love these folks than it took the Nazis to murder them.

XX

WEEK 47 (1/2/2017 to 1/8/2017)

There’s no block count update because I’ve been out of town plus bad weather would’ve prevented trips to the post office anyway, but there was still much percolating during week 47 of The 70273 Project. One of the biggest things accomplished is that I added a resource page filled with information that’s always available for our current and future P’s and Q’s (Piecers and Quilters). If you’re interested in piecing a top or quilting a quilt or both, please let me know.

The Engineer arrived today with so many packages of blocks for week 48 that the post office gave him one of those wonderful boxes to use to get it all home! Look for the Week 48 update in a day or two when I’ve had a chance to open and count.

I’m also in the throes of rearranging the furniture here on the blog, moving some things around so you won’t trip over the furniture, whether you stumble through with a shade on your head or stone cold sober.

XX

Other places to gather around The 70273 Project water cooler:

Subscribe to the blog (where all information is shared).

Join the English-speaking Facebook group – our e-campfire – where you can talk to other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Join the French-speaking Facebook group – our other e-campfire – where you can chat with other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Like the Facebook page where you can check in for frequent updates.

Get folks to help celebrate your birthday by making blocks and/or donating bucks.

Follow the pinterest board for visual information.

Post using #the70273project on Instagram. (Please tag me, too, @whollyjeanne, so I don’t miss anything.)

Tell your friends what you want for your birthday.

Shop with Amazon Smile and support The 70273 Project.

And if you haven’t yet made some blocks, perhaps you’d like to put some cloth in your hands and join us.

Or maybe you’d like to gather friends and family, colleagues or students, club or guild members, etc. together and make a group quilt.

 

A Handmade Christmas

Seems  like it was 3 years ago, yet the calendar say it was a mere 3 weeks ago when the family gathered together for a week of hilarity, memory making, and opening. Last year I stole minutes here and there from The 70273 Project to make some gifts for giving.

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care . . .

When Mom was a baby, her mother took her to visit one of her grandmothers. Mother reached down and grabbed a tiny fistful of the lace collar on her grandmother’s blouse. “This baby is gonna’ like pretty things,” the grandmother correctly predicted, so Mother’s stocking was made with flowers to reflect her flourishing green thumb and topped with lace.

My daughter-in-law, Marnie, is an art historian who enjoys art that’s so old it makes my head hurt. Before our trip to see The Bayeux Tapestry several years ago, Marnie gave me enough background information that I should’ve gotten college credit hours. Her stocking was topped with embroidered trim depicting a section of The Bayeux Tapestry.

When my daughter was born, I took her stocking to the hospital with me and added the last element – her name  – after she was born and before we brought her home.

Fourteen months later, I did the same thing with my son’s stocking, taking it to the hospital to add his name once we knew whether we were the proud parents of a girl or a boy.

The Engineer’s grandmother, we called her Maw – made a quilt of old suits once worn by The Engineer’s grandfather, Pops. Though I could’ve repaired the quilt, I chose to make The Engineer a stocking from it.

Calder Ray celebrated his first Christmas in 2016. I used colors from Alexander Calder’s artist palette to make the fabric for my grandson’s stocking, cuffing it with some wool fabric from Ireland, and Calder Ray did just what you’d expect a seven month old to do: he chewed on it.

Remember I told you how Marnie likes ancient art and how knowledgeable and enamored she is with The Bayeux Tapestry? Well, this year I put the quilting frame down and picked up the wool to do a needlepoint canvas of one of the scenes from The Bayeux Tapestry. After finishing  it, I could not decide what to do with it. Should I frame it?  They don’t really have that many available walls, so maybe not. Make a pillow? That would mean cording, and I am not good at cording, so no. When I spied the adorable little stool with the hinged lid in the antique store, I knew what to do, so now Marnie has a footstool, covered with a needlepoint scene from The Bayeux Tapestry and a wee little bit of storage space to boot. (I just hope their new, rambunctious Border Collie, Harper, who has a hankering for gnawing on wooden furniture, never discovers the wood underneath the needlepoint.)

With visions of not sugarplums, but with dreams of a ritual of the quilt being pulled out every December 1 and slept under till the New Year, I made Calder Ray his Christmas quilt, not to hang on the wall, but to use. I’ll show you better, fuller photos later when I’m finished quilting it (Yes, I gifted it to him partly quilted and partly basted) so you can see that branches and needles of the red tree (I’ll explain the red later, too) are in the shape of my hands, and the trunk is in the shape of Calder Ray’s feet.

The body of the angel that perches at the top of the red tree is made of drawings of Calder Ray’s feet, and her wings are made from drawings of Calder Ray’s pudgy, recently-discovered 7-month old hands. Her raiments are from a napkin The Engineer found for me in a local thrift shop.

You know, 4.5 decades ago, I made everybody’s Christmas gifts as a matter of economy – as newlyweds, we didn’t have money to spend buying a lot of presents – and I remember getting a note from my sister-in-law saying that she felt like the lucky one because while The Engineer bought his brother a nice gift, hers was handmade. Her words didn’t really mean all that much then, but now, when I snuggle under the quilt my grandmother made, when I look at the crewel work my mother stitched, when we hang those handmade ornaments on the tree, I understand and offer up a wee little wish that Calder Ray and his parents put these things in their cherish column one day, too.

~~~~~~~

Looking for The 70273 Project? It’ll be back tomorrow, and in the meantime, try these haunts:
Subscribe to the blog (where all information is shared).
Join the English-speaking Facebook group – our e-campfire – where you can talk to other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.
Join the French-speaking Facebook group – our other e-campfire – where you can chat with other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.
Like the Facebook page where you can check in for frequent updates.
Get folks to help celebrate your birthday by making blocks and/or donating bucks.
Follow the pinterest board for visual information.
Post using #the70273project on Instagram. (Please tag me, too, @whollyjeanne, so I don’t miss anything.)
Tell your friends what you want for your birthday.
Shop with Amazon Smile and support The 70273 Project.
And if you haven’t yet made some blocks, perhaps you’d like to put some cloth in your hands and join us.
Or maybe you’d like to gather friends and family, colleagues or students, club or guild members, etc. together and make a group quilt.

Using Inks and Glues and Fusibles

Waiting in the doctor’s office gives a Mom plenty of time to stitch. I set out to make a block a day in 2017, but most days – even non-waiting room days – have been Lay’s Potato Chip Days when I couldn’t make just one block.

I have 28 blocks to show for the first 12 days of January . . . and none of them will up our block count. Why? Because these blocks for The 70273 Project (and more still to come) will be used to replace blocks that have already been counted and now need to be replaced because the ink used to draw the X’s has changed from red to purple and orange.

So I thought we’d talk a bit today about which markers to use when you’re drawing the X’s. The only markers I’ve used are Sharpies, and they have been good. I only used them at a World War II event last spring when there simply wasn’t time or space for people to sew. I had red Sharpies available in all tip widths, and there was no halo effect, and the color hasn’t faded. (Of course it hasn’t been a year yet.) I read on an art group forum that Posco pens perform well, too. Sharpies are easy to find in office supply stores, craft stores, and discount stores. Or, feel free to click on the item(s) of your choice below to shop from The 70273 Project Smile.Amazon Shop. It doesn’t cost you a penny more,  and a tiny portion of your purchase price go in our coffers.
Big Chunky Chisel Top Markers, Red, Package of 12
Fine Point, Red, Package of 12

On the Don’t Use List are IdentiPens which are reported to have faded drastically, despite the quilt being displayed in a dark room.

At Thomaston last Monday, we glued the X’s down because that was more time efficient and because arthritic hands can often glue when they can’t stitch. I’ve auditioned several brands, looking for glues that are easily spread and remain flexible when dry. The glues that make my A List are:
Dritz Liquid Stitch (bottle)
Dritz Liquid Stitch (tube)
Aleene’s Permanent Fabric Glue
Aleene’s OK To Wash It Glue
Aleene’s Fabric Fusion.
You can easily find these in craft and fabric stores, or you can click on the links presented here or in the sidebar, order from Smile.Amazon, and support The 70273 Project.

You might also want to fuse your red X’s to the base. If so, I recommend Steam-A-Seam 2. It can be purchased as follows, according to what size you want your X’s to be:
1/4″ x 40 yard roll
1/2″ x 20 yard roll
9″ x 12″ sheets / 5 sheets to a package

When making blocks, keep in mind that these quilts will be traveling the world for decades to come – repeatedly being folded and unfolded – and attach the red X’s in ways that have staying power. And hey, thanks for continuing to make blocks and commemorate The 70273.

Blocks Were Made in Thomaston, Georgia Today

Months ago, my cousin Mary invited me
to tell her women’s group about The 70273 Project
and help them make blocks,
and today, that’s just what I did.

70,273.
A huge number to be sure.
A huge number that causes eyes to glaze over
as people struggle to find something . . .
anything . . .
relatable and understandable.

70,273 perfectly imperfect people
murdered, sight unseen.
It’s sobering, unfathomable, incomprehensible. . . .
especially when someone mentions a friend, then a grandson
who would’ve definitely received two red X’s
were we living in another time.


There is the teensiest bit of nervousness
as is inevitable for people who don’t make things every day.
But quick as a snap,
stories are flying,
memories are bubbling up,
plans are being made to gather and make more blocks
. . . maybe even an entire quilt.

Twenty-four more people are commemorated.

It is a good day.

Fayette Woman Magazine

Fayette Woman magazine, December 2016 issue, Page 20

It’s a beautiful article – the layout is award-winning calibre – and I am ever so grateful to Joyce Beverly, publisher of Fayette Woman magazine, for giving me the opportunity to let others in my hometown know about The 70273 Project.

Fayette Woman magazine, December 2016, page 21

Many of you have asked for a copy, so I’ve included several ways to find the article . . .

Fayette Woman magazine, December 2016, page 22

For a limited time, you can find us on the home page of the Fayette Woman website. Or you can read about us on the blog.

Fayette Woman magazine, December 2016, page 23

Maybe you want to read the entire December 2016 issue. (We’re on pages 20-25, and you simply tap the lower righthand corner to turn the pages.)

Fayette Woman magazine, December 2016, page 24

And if you want just the article, you can download the .pdf version.

Fayette Woman magazine, December 2016, page 25

Feel free to share it on your Facebook timeline, post it on your biog, or print as many copies as you need to give to friends and family and people who might want to make blocks or piece or quilt of The 70273 Project. Oh, and remember to print a copy for your scrapbook because Joyce has given us permission to use it as we will to benefit The 70273 Project. A request from me . . . please be sure to give Joyce Beverly and Fayette Woman magazine credit and include a link to the web site (www.FayetteWoman.com). And while you’re at it,  maybe you want to give Fayette Woman a little love on Facebook.

Week 45 in Review (December 19-25, 2016)

Week 45 was a week of whacking off my hair, bidding the baseball cap adieu, and letting my roots shine through (which may or may not be a metaphor)
while saying, in the words of The Immortal Popeye,
I yam what I yam.

It was a week of family . . .

Calder Ray and his Great Grandmother, YeaYea

Calder Ray and his Aunt Floozie

Calder Ray and The Engineer

The Famdamily at Winter Lights at the NC Arboretum

The famdamily bags a tree. Story to follow separately.

a week of food . . .

Making cookies

He likes toys

and he likes ribbons

but sweet potatoes off his mama’s plate? Not so much.

It was a week of appreciating,
of laughing,
of singing, dancing,
and taking long walks . . .

and sometimes of sleeping . . .

Aaaannnnndddddd . . .
for all of you in the Facebook 70273 Group Campfire . . .
THERE WERE S/MORES!!!!!

It was also a week of receiving blocks and cards from:

Karla Nitz (WI, USA)
Barbara Winfield (MD, USA)
Caroline Rudisill (TX, USA)
Jill Hagemeier  (IN, USA)
Susan Molina (IN, USA)
Paul Koby (IN, USA)
Pam Patterson (TX, USA)
enough to bring our block count total to . . . 6699!

Just look at that number, y’all: 6699.
You can turn it upside down and have the same number!
That’s gotta’ be a sign, right?

It was also a week of pondering and percolating
as I plan for 2017.
And oh what goodness is in store,
so be sure you subscribe or join or follow, follow, follow
so you don’t miss out.

Monthly Mixer January 2017

The 70273 Project Monthly Mixer for January 2017

You’ve seen those challenges for instagram and blog posts, right, where there’s a prompt for every day of the month and you snap and post a photo or pen a post accordingly? Well, thanks to my 3 a.m. self, we now have one to call our own, and I’m calling it our Monthly Mixer, and here it is. Nobody’s taking roll, so play along as and if you will.

Feel free to share throughout social media land and post on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and your blogs using #The70273ProjectMonthlyMixer and #The70273Project. It’d be muchly appreciated if you’d tag me, too, so I don’t miss it. I’m @whollyjeanne on twitter and instagram, and Jeanne Hewell-Chambers on facebook. It’s a fun way to acquaint others with The 70273 Project, and to get acquainted with other folks ourselves. (Me, I can’t wait till 1/20 cause I’ve got a thing for pincushions.)

It’s the first time I’ve created something like this, so here’s the text in case the graphic is unreadable:

JANUARY 2017
1: Something imperfect
2: Something edible that’s red and white
3: Something small, white, and round
4: Something rectangular
5: The block you’re working on
6: Where you’re stitching today
7: A finished block
8: Something that makes you smile
9: A naturally occurring X
10: The tiniest x’s you can make
11: Your sewing kit and what’s inside it
12: A word to describe what you feel as you stitch blocks
13: Somewhere you’d like to sit and stitch blocks
14: Something you find in a s’more
15: The arm to the chair you sit in to stitch
16: Your favorite beverage
17: Photograph a block outside
18: Two fat X’s
19: Your ironing board
20: Your pincushion
21: The sky
22: A white button
23: A finished block
24: A surprise – something you didn’t expect to see
25: Favorite sewing notion, tool
26: Your hands
27: Your scissors
28: Something in the shape of a teardrop
29: What’s to your right
30: Your favorite mug
31: Two x’s made of something besides fabric

A Family That Stitches Together, Makes Memories Together

You’ve binge watched every season of Downton Abbey.
You’ve served the turkey and cleaned up while everybody else napped.
You’ve lost the dog, the cat, one child, and your mother-in-law in the apocalypse that inevitably follows the opening of gifts.
Now what?

Hey, I have an idea: Why don’t you make a Family Quilt for The 70273 Project? It’s our December Adventure, you know, and get this: you define who’s family and any age can participate.

Laurie Dunn’s family is making a quilt, for example, as is Suzanne McCarthy’s family, Chloe Grice and her sister, and Kitty Sorgen’s family.

L to R: Sandy Urbach, Dan Sorgen, and Lucy Urbach

Kitty’s family gathered on the deck to stitch last summer. Let’s look in on the Sorgens and Urbachs as Kitty introduces them to us . . .

Block #3716 made by Andy Ubach. 6.5″ x 9.5″

Andy is our son-in-law, and an absolute prince. We’re so blessed. He works as a corrections officer, and is also an entrepreneur, chef, and inventor.

Block #3713 made by Sandy Ubach, 6.5″ x 9.5″

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sandy is Andy’s mom, and she’s visiting us at just the right time.

Block #3697 made by Jillian Ubach, 3.5″ x 6.5″

Jillian wanted to reflect the “defective” DNA that made someone be “of no value”. 

Block #3706 made by Lucy Ubach, 6.5″ x 9.5″

Lucy is our artist and loved being able to draw her blocks.

Block #3709 made by Jill Ubach, 6.5″ x 9.5″

Jill is my actress/singer/teacher, etc. daughter. She’s amazing . . . and always multi-tasking.

Block #3714 made by Dan Sorgen, 6.5″ x 9.5″

Dan is my true love and an engineer (physicist). He wanted his block to show that the evil stemmed from an ideology.

Block #3720 made by Kitty Sorgen, 6.5″ x 9.5″

And last, but certainly not least, there’s Kitty, the woman we’ve quickly grown to adore for her talent, her commitment, her kindness, and  her smile that shines through in her words shared digitally.

A little annoyed that she wasn’t invited to the table and given some cloth, Missy takes matters into her own hands – um, paws – and finds a way to be part of the Sorgen/Urbach Family Quilt for The 70273 Project.

Thank you Sorgens and Urbachs, one and all. Y’all are such a vibrant part of The 70273 Project Tribe, and I just can’t wait to see your quilt!

So how ’bout it – are you inspired to cut up some blocks and put needle and thread in everyone’s hand? I sure hope so, and I hope you’ll snap some photos and share bits of your story with us. If you have any questions, just holler.

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