Thursday, June 6, 2013

Inspiration: From Fabric Mart, to Church, to Jubilee Store

One day at work I was reminded of  a conversation I had with a friend about a group of ladies from our church that sew to help other people. I thought about the fabric scraps I was cutting and how they could help these ladies. I asked my boss for scraps for those ladies. I wanted to meet them and see what they do. I put some unused swatches in bags and left them in church the next Sunday.

Sometime later Mrs Janice Hess approached me. Janice and her husband (a former Pastor) are important members of the church, whom I admire. They selflessly lead activities and are always thinking how to help other people. She said: “Gabby, I just wanted to show you what we did with the swatches that you brought to church. I hope you would like it. It is to give away to the Jubilee Store” It was a beautiful comforter, I recognized the swatches and my mind started going over all of them, one by one reminding me their content, weave etc.  I was in awe of her work with those tiny swatches.

Did you ever give something and later the person who received transforms the item into something you would have never expected?

This are a few questions I asked Janice about her work with the swatches.

What was the inspiration for your project? 
 A few other ladies from different churches and I met at least 12 times within the year in a group called Tri-County Sewing Circle.  We met in my basement so the fabric and equipment are here all the time.  When we met, we read and discussed a passage from the Bible. We shared personal needs, laughed, cried, and prayed together.  So while we were working to benefit others, we also were being benefited.

I thoroughly enjoyed using fabric that otherwise might get thrown away. My motivation is to use these resources in a way that meets the genuine human need.  I follow the saying, “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.”  A comforter is different from a quilt in the way the two layers of fabric with batting in between are held together.  A comforter is knotted with crochet thread about 5 inches apart, whereas a quilt is done with finer thread making very small stitches often in a special design, which takes much, much longer to complete one item.

What is the destination for your project?  We deliver our finished comforters to the Mennonite Central Committee’s Material Resource Center at Ephrata.  Their slogan is “In the Name of Christ.”  Each shipping container is prayed over that it will arrive safely and bless the people who will receive the blankets, canned meat, school kits, hygiene kits, etc.

Do all your projects go to the same place?  From there they are shipped to war, violence, and/or disaster areas in Jordan, Iraq, Iran, Syria, etc.  MCC representatives or organizations associated with MCC in those countries distribute the warm covers to the people, many who are refugees.  In the past we have given some comforters to fire but we generally give them to foreign relief.

Janice Hess and Gabriela Yeakley  

2 comments:

  1. That you for that post, Gabby! Beautiful quilt and what the ladies do is just as beautiful!!!

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  2. What a lovely thing to do, on everybody's part!! Fabric Mart's generosity with fabric scraps is multiplied at each step of the way in joy and fellowship, with the finished quilt finding its way into the hands of people who really need them.

    Outstanding!

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