Jeanne Hewell-Chambers

& her barefoot heart

Tag: 70273 block making party

More Blocks Made at Hever Castle

More than 100 people were commemorated yesterday
at the Hever Castle Quilt Show
– which is part of the Hever Castle Festival of Homemade and Homegrown –
and more Makers showed up today
to commemorate those we honor in The 70273 Project.
Like this smiling International Quilt Judge
seen here standing in front of the gorgeous quilt she made.
She came yesterday, pledged to make 25 blocks,
and returned today with 26 blocks in hand.
Then I want y’all to know, she sat down and
commemorated 6 more people.
And that’s not all. Before leaving,
she promised to tell her large 300+ member quilting group
about The 70273 Project and get them involved.

Edina Geering – the beautiful woman on the right
wearing the Team 70273 badge on her lapel – was back today.
Edina and Lucy Horner are responsible for this
wonderfully successful event,
and Lucy is, once again, the one who took these captivating photos.

People of all ages filled the booth throughout the day,
learning of The 70273 Project and making blocks.

Edina’s granddaughters, Abigail and Imogene
came to lend a hand today as did Lucy’s daughter, Gabby.

“It made me well up listening to them explain The 70273 Project
to people as they went round handing out leaflets,”
Lucy says of Abigail, Imogene, and Gabby.
“Gabby was brilliant at talking to people
and keeping everyone entertained!”

Meet Sally who came today
and brought – wait for it –
the FIRST QUILT she’s ever made!
Isn’t it amazing?
And it measure 5′ x 8′.

“Oh, and we met Anne Boleyn, too,” writes Lucy.
“Hever Castle was her childhood home.”
(I’ll bet Anne’s dress would have Scarlett O’Hara
drooling all over herself!)

Thank you to all who helped make the
Hever Castle Block Drive so wildly successful,
and thank you to
those who commemorated so many people this weekend.

Would you like to hose a Block Drive for a group or event in your area?
Let me know and I’ll send you everything you need.
And remember: tomorrow is the Block Drive
at Modern Domestic in Portland, OR.
If you can’t be there to make blocks
but would like to have blocks in the Modern Domestic quilt,
do what I’m going to do: mail your blocks to them.

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Blocks Being Made at the Hever Castle Quilt Show

This weekend, thanks to Lucy Horner and Edina Geering – two dynamos if ever there was such a woman – blocks for The 70273 Project are being made across The Pond at the Hever Castle Festival of Homemade and Homegrown. Let’s drop in, shall we, using the delightful photos and words of Lucy Horner . . .


Such an amazing day at Hever Castle spent spreading the message and love of The 70273 Project. 70 blocks made, 100’s of people talked to, and some beautiful smiles captured in this all-inclusive Project. Our last block maker of the day was from Hamburg, and I loved that she was wearing the globe. We are there all weekend, so if you fancy a day out to the Festival of Homemade and Homegrown and the Hever Quilt Show, do stop by.

Such a beautiful spot! These quilts have such personality.
I love putting them under my arm and showing them the sights!

It’s a beautiful team effort.
This weekend was organized by the Mover & Shaker called Edina Geering,
and boy she really gets things going and keeps things moving! 

I love how hands-on Edina is!
This is Victor. He was fab. He was saying that he is in the Brighton School of Samba
and they have here tabbards for a gig
which are white with a red heart.
He was going to get his group to cut them up for blocks,
but I said “Woah. We need you and your samba band in your tabbards
celebrating The 70273 Project!”
He told me to email him some dates.

 

 

 

 Stewards are always standing by to make sure that visitors
touch the quilts with their eyes only.

Liliana (5)  and Rosie (3) with blocks they made
with Edina and Linda pictured in the background.

They’re wearing dresses their mum made for them.

 

Celebrate / Commemorate . . . it’s a balance.
I talked till my lips stuck to my teeth.
But these quilts are a noisy lot!
They were stopping people in their tracks.
We’d thrown one over the entrance gate,
and a lady said, “I saw it in the distance, and it shouted out to me.
I got shivers when I got up close to it.”
The voiceless sing a beautiful song.


Thank you, Lucy, Edina, and other members of
The British Isles Quilter’s Guild
who are on hand to offer instruction and encouragement.
And thank you to everybody who felt strongly enough
to risk doing something new and doing something imperfectly.
If you’re in the area and you read this in time,
skip on over there and make a block.
And hey, be sure to send me a photo.

~~~~~~~

Now if you’re going to be in the vicinity
of Portland, Oregon (USA)
on Monday, 9/4/17,
stop by Modern Domestic to meet Michelle Freeman,
make blocks for the Modern Domestic quilt,
and see The 70273 Project Quilt #219 under the long arm.

~~~~~~~

Are you hosting a Block Party? Let me know and send photos!

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There’s Gonna’ be a Stitch-In in Harrisonville, Missouri on 1/28/2017!

Hosted by The 70273 Project Ambassador, Denniele Bohannon of Louanna Mary Quilt Design,  there will be a block-making party for The 70273 Project in Harrisonville, Missouri on Saturday, 1/28/2017. Drop by Pearson Hall any time between 9 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. and make a few blocks.

Do you have to know you way around a needle and thread to make blocks? “Absolutely not,” says Denniele, “If you are a stitcher, bring your machine, white and red fabric, and join us. You might want to precut your background blocks, though you’re welcome to cut them when you arrive. If you are not a stitcher, we have blocks you can create without any sewing at all.”

Men, women, boys, and girls – people of all ages – are welcome to stop by and commemorate one (or more) of the 70,273 people who were murdered for being imperfect. And 70273 Ambassador, Lori East, from Carthage, Missouri, will be there, ready to stitch the blocks you make into a quilt top – maybe even more than one top – so you’ll enjoy instant gratification as you see your blocks join other blocks in paying tribute to people we’ll never know yet refuse to forget.

“70,273 blocks is a huge undertaking but how can we not participate? There are groups all around the world sewing, painting, drawing, embroidering blocks to commemorate each life lost. Harrisonville, Missouri, it is our turn to help.,” says organizer Denniele.

Thank you, residents of and visitors to Harrisonville, Missouri, for spending your Saturday morning standing seam-to-seam with others to pay tribute to people who might otherwise be forgotten. And thank you, Denniele, for organizing this and holding the space for this goodness to happen.

I want photos. Promise me photos.

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.

Making Blocks at the Cashiers Library

Library1

When I told Serenity, Head Librarian of the most wonderful Albert-Carlton Cashiers Library about The 70273 Project and asked if we could use the community room to hold a block-making party, she answered with an enthusiastic Yes . . .  then she suggested we hang pieces of the collaborations in which I stitch the marks of Nancy, my mentally disabled sister-in-law. And with that,  plans began for the first solo exhibit for Nancy and me.

SarahAndySerenityHangingIOOL3

The Engineer and I arrived about 10 this morning to help Serenity and Sarah hang pieces. (What would I do without The Engineer? He took these pictures, too, you know. And he fixed my skirt when I came back from the restroom with it tucked in my panties. He loves me, you can tell.) It is the first time many of these pieces have felt air outside The Dissenter’s Chapel & Snug.

JeanneHems3

When In Our Own Language 1:1 and 2:1 proved too long and puddled on the floor, I pulled out needle and thread and hemmed to keep people from stepping on them or tripping over them. Nancy’s drawings proved a fine backdrop for the afternoon’s block-making party, just as Serenity knew they would.  

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My cousin, Ginger stopped by and made some blocks, as did . . .

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Serenity

Luke19July16

 Luke

Sarah19Jul16a

Sarah

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Gretchen

Andy

The Engineer,
and several others who made blocks
and others who took fabric home to make blocks
with their friends and families.

Megan plans to ask her family and the youth she works with
make some blocks.

Serenity likes the project so much,
she offered to tell her colleagues in other libraries
and suggest they invite me and hold a block-making party
at their libraries.

Gretchen teaches art at a nearby private middle school,
and she seems almost as excited as I am
about her idea to approach the social studies teacher
about a possible history lesson followed by
block-making session. 

She also raised her hand to piece and quilt a quilt.

Sarah plans to make more blocks
and tell her friends who work with
special needs folks about The 70273 Project
and encourage them to make blocks.

Ginger took a bundle of bases
to create blocks with her friends
when they go to the beach.

You get the idea.

BlocksCashiersLibrary19July16

Folks were willing – interested, even – but nervous.
“I can’t sew,” fell out of many mouths of people
who nevertheless picked up a needle and stitched.
“I can’t draw,” others said
then picked up a marker and sketched.
Stories were told, memories were shared.
Many were commemorated, and many were celebrated.

It was a good day.

A Block Making Party with Kimberly Brock and the Tinderbox Writers

KBrockGroup14Mar16b

Kimberly Brock, author of The River Witch
and a real dynamo creative kind of gal,
invited me to yesterday’s gathering
of The Tinderbox Writing Group,
and guess what we did – that’s right!
We made blocks for The 70273 Project.

MariAnnStefanelli14Mar16d

MariAnn Stefanelli, a kickass editor
and founder of The Writer’s High Retreat,
put a tear at the bottom of one of her X’s.

KimberlyBrock14Mar16d

Kimberly Brock found it hard to smile
when holding her block.
She made her two red X’s from scraps
that she cobbled together in a
deliberately clumsy way,
saying this is how the doctors’
hearts – at least some of them –
must have felt:
shaky, uneasy, reluctant.
Surely, she said, some of the doctors
went along with the program,
fearing what might happen to their families
if they didn’t.

KarenRios14Mar16a

Karen Filos made a vertical block.
And those flyers in her lap?
She’s got ideas of places she can post those!

JaniceFoy14Mar16a

Janice Foy, who is surely wearing green this week
the perfect color to go with her beautiful Irish accent,
made two blocks.

SamanthaKendig14Mar16a

Samantha Kendig left space between her
two red X’s, space where a third red X
could have gone . . . but didn’t.

PamArena14Mar16b

I can’t wait to tell you more about the narrative clay
Pam Arena creates, and I will, too, cause she has an exhibit
opening next month, and I will be there!
I can’t wait to see her flowers that express
her love for her mother
and her grief following her mother’s death.
Yesterday she took her hands out of the clay
to make a block for The 70273 Project,
and I couldn’t be happier about that.

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MariAnnStefanelli14Mar16b

KimberlyBrock14Mar16a

These women are amazingly creative,
their stories enthralled and inspired me.
And as if all that isn’g enough,
they all have people they’re going to contact
to let them know about The 70273 Project.
What a grand way to kick off a week.

4LeafClover14Mar16

And as if all that isn’t enough,
when The Engineer fetched me afterwards,
he came bearing gifts.
“It’s the biggest 4-leaf clover I’ve ever found for you.”
He’s a keeper, that one.

~~~~~~~

Want me to come to your block making group?
Let me know – we might just be able to make that happen.
Want to keep up with goings-on?
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Want to become a part of The 70273 Project?
Maybe you want to start by liking our Facebook page
then making some blocks.

© 2017 Jeanne Hewell-Chambers

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