Introducing Leopold the Longarm

Leopold the Longarm, quite at home dominating my sewing room

Hello everyone!

As you may have seen on social media this weekend, I have some terribly exciting news! A generous quilter named Sally donated a Tin Lizzie 18 longarm to Quilts for Cure, and we picked it up and set it up on Saturday!

Close up of Leo with a practice piece/baby quilt loaded on the frame, ready for quilting

For those of you who don’t quilt, a long arm, sometimes called a “quilting machine,” is a large sewing machine set on a frame so as to quilt very efficiently. When quilting on a domestic (“normal”) sewing machine, you have to push and shove and scrunch the bulk of the quilt through the harp or throat (the space between the needle and the machine), and that slows things down a good bit (hence why I’m still quilting the #OperationSmiley quilts all these months later). With a longarm, the machine moves across the quilt, and it’s much faster.

Practicing stitches and motifs

This longarm, who I’m affectionately calling Leopold, is a game changer for Quilts for Cure. It will make it easier to complete quilts and get them out to kids in treatment. It will make it easier for me to test ideas for Quilt Alongs (like the one coming soon). And, if y’all are game, it might even give me the courage to tackle another #OperationSmiley next February.

Completed practice piece which will be a baby quilt for donation

I’ve been working hard on my machine quilting skills, so Sunday I put them through their paces to see how things translated into working on Leopold. I was so pleased with the results, that I’ve squared it up and will put a nice blue binding on it to make a baby boy quilt. Yesterday, I finished piecing #OperationSmiley quilt #8 and loaded it up. By george, I’m spoiled already– the whole thing was quilted in just an hour or so! I can’t wait to bind it, and get going on #9!

Operation Smiley Quilt #8

 

 

I hope y’all are as excited as I am! Thank you, Sally!!

ACTION ITEMS

  1. Make a Quilt to give to one of the 40,000 children in treatment for pediatric cancer in the United States
  2. Give money to Quilts for Cure so that we can make more quilts and contribute to research for a cure
  3. Spread the word with everyone you know about Quilts for Cure– share on your social media, with your quilt guild, etc.

Oh, and a quick update on Abri– Her family received the most marvelous news this weekend that she has NOT relapsed! It’s a bit complicated as to why the original test results were  misleading, but this is wonderful, wonderful news. As she is still facing several surgeries to repair her leg and replace the bone that Ewings Sarcoma destroyed, two fabulous quilters, Amy and Jen, are collaborating to make her a quilt to keep her cozy through the rest of her recovery.

More soon!

HollyAnne

Quilts for Cure Action Items

2017 Quilt Along Preview

Hello, Everyone! 

Thank you for your patience– we continue to be busy behind the scenes, and I wanted to take a few minutes to update y’all about what we have coming up and how you can help our cause today and moving forward.

If you’re new to the Quilts for Cure website, Welcome! We are a 501(c)(3) organization that seeks to raise awareness about childhood cancer, honor children who are fighting or who have fought for their lives against this terrible disease, provide children in treatments with quilts for warmth and encouragement, and fundraise for a CURE. We are mobilizing quilters and others outside the immediate experience of childhood cancer to come around these kids and their families as support and strength.

This quilt is shipping out to a 3 month old baby girl who starts chemo this week

QUILTS

You can both request a quilt for a child or donate a quilt to a child by clicking HERE. We are building a network of treatment hospitals across the country, so we will help you donate your quilt to the hospital nearest you or connect you with a specific child’s request.

QUILT ALONG

If you are a quilter, mark your calendars for mid-July when we will begin our first Quilt Along! I’m working on a sample quilt now (you can see it in progress at the top), and am totally in love! It’s a simple block that allows us to play with color, and there will be three size options depending on the fabric and time you are able to invest. Of course, we will encourage you to donate the quilt when it is finished, and we are inviting sponsors to make financial pledges per quilt so that by donating your quilt you will also be securing more money for pediatric cancer research. Isn’t that amazing?? I’m so excited!

This quilt is part of the E Pluribus Unum Project and will honor children from Florida who have fought or are fighting for their lives against childhood cancer

OTHER NEEDS

Financial : In order to get as many people involved in the quilt along as possible, we want to get creative about spreading the word. Plus, we want to make sure that there’s cool swag available for all of you that tells the world about Quilts for Cure and that you are a proud supporter of kids with cancer. In short, we need money to get this show on the road to as many people as possible. Please give now to show your support and help us have a bigger impact!

Eyeballs : Share this post. Help us get the word out about the prevalence of childhood cancer, the desperate need for better treatment options, and the need to rally support around these families. So, please, Share, share, share!

Travel Points : Do you travel a lot for work and have lots of hotel and airline points? We can use those points to visit quilt guilds and organizations across the country and encourage them to join our fight against childhood cancer. Email john (at) quiltsforcure.org to donate your points.

In reality, there are many more needs I could list here because childhood cancer is so big and terrible,  and there’s so much fighting to do. But I’ll focus on these needs for now. Spread the word. Make a donation. Make a quilt. Join the quilt along. Share your travel points. 

43 kids were diagnosed with cancer today. And yesterday and tomorrow. Last week, one of those kids was a three month old baby girl in Ohio. The fear and suffering her family is facing right now is unacceptable. We send a quilt for comfort and as a symbol that we are fighting with her, with them. Join the fight!

You can find us on Facebook and Instagram @quiltsforcure, and please be sure to sign up for our newsletter which will launch soon.

For the kids,

HollyAnne

President and Chair

PS Remember that we are a 501(c)(3) organization, so all of your donations are tax deductible.

Updates and How to Help

Hearts made by Naomi’s Mama

Hello Friends!

I wanted to pop in to touch base about what is going on at Quilts for Cure, ongoing project updates, and give you some action items for the week.

#OperationSmiley: Once again, I want to give a BIG THANK YOU to everyone who has sent blocks, fabric, batting, thread, and more. I have one more corporate sponsor, Stash Fabrics, that I will blogging about soon, so keep an eye out to learn about them and send your thanks. We currently have 1 quilt completed, 2 at Red Hen to be quilted, and 1 that needs to be basted. Then, I have a gorgeous pile of blocks that will become 5-6 more quilts. One generous quilter, Gale Fisher, made a whole quilt and is having it quilted. While the yellow, navy, and white hearts will go to two hospitals here in Atlanta, this last quilt will serve a special purpose and go to a four year old girl, Katie, with leukemia whose mama emailed me this week. Thank you, Gale! (More about Katie soon! 🙂 )

Florida in progress

E Pluribus Unum Project: The Georgia quilt is finally basted and ready for quilting! I’ve entered this quilt into a local show and should hear back in the next couple weeks if it will hang! Even though the back will not be showing, I would like it to be full of the names of Georgia childhood cancer fighters. Please help spread the word and ask families to email me their children’s names. I’m continuing to connect hexies for the first Florida quilt, and I’m already planning the first South Carolina quilt. Mathew Boudreaux, aka @MisterDomestic, generously sent some gorgeous scraps last week that will be perfect for incorporating into these quilts.

Gale’s quilt in progress for Katie

Donation Quilts: In the last week we have received two requests for quilts from families fighting against childhood cancer. One was Katie who I mentioned above, and the other was Nicholas who I mentioned last week. Gale is finishing the quilt for Katie, and my new friend Becky in Indiana has agreed to make a twin sized quilt for Nicholas. Thank you both so much!

501(c)(3) Status: Our incorporation finally cleared (huzzah!), two amazing women have agreed to be on our board with me, and we will have our first meeting very soon. After the board meeting, we will finish filing for nonprofit status, then kick off both our newsletter and our fundraising.

Upcoming Quilt Along: While Quilts for Cure always encourages quilters to make and donate completed quilts year round, we also love doing projects together. This summer, we will do a Quilt Along with a simple yet fun and flexible block. We will make just one block each week, and I’d encourage you to donate the finished quilt thru Quilts for Cure. I’ll share more next month, but I couldn’t resist a little teaser so y’all can save some summer quilting time for this!

More hexies for Florida

ACTION ITEMS:

1) SHARE Post the E Pluribus Unum Project blog post to your social media accounts and ask folks to spread the word. I want to fill the backs of all these quilts with the names of brave young cancer fighters, but their parents can’t email me their names unless they know about the project. Would you like me to honor your child on a quilt? Email me his or her name and home state at hollyanne (at) quiltsforcure.org

2) QUILT As word continues to spread, I have no doubt that we will receive more specific requests for quilts. Go ahead and get started on a project, and let me know what age/gender it would be best for. Then, when a request comes, I can connect you with a special cancer fighting warrior right away! Plus, we are continuing to network with hospitals, so there is always a way to comfort an encourage a child with cancer through quilting.

3) RECRUIT Plan to participate in the Summer QAL and invite your friends and guild members to do the same. The key to Quilts for Cure is community– the community of quilters coming together and coming alongside families in the cancer fighting community. Together, we will beat cancer because #lovebeatscancer.

Get to work, y’all!

HollyAnne