Last Tuesday around 6.15 pm I answered the phone at the Manhattan quilt store where I work to a woman with a Scottish accent. She told me she had a quilt that needed finishing for an auction to be held in Manhattan on Tuesday, 8 April. She continued speaking about the organisation she's involved with and asked if I knew anyone who could help her ... I heard my voice saying "I'll do it for you, how soon can you get it to me?"
How does that happen? When a voice comes out of your mouth without you knowing anything about it! I do remember thinking that this was meant to be especially as it was a New York/Scotland thing and of course, I'm in New York and my daughter, Flicky, is in Scotland so with an immediate connection, instinct just sort of took over.
By 6.45 pm the woman was standing in front of me at the store and this is probably a good point in the story to introduce her to you properly ... Amy, Amy Rew to give her her full name, and she is Global Lower Eastside Girls Club ambassador and founder of their partner group The Glasgow Girls Club. The aim of these two groups is to:
provide a place where girls and young women 8-23 can grow, learn, have fun and develop confidence in themselves and their ability to make a difference in the world. By delivering strong arts, literacy, science, health and leadership programs they provide girls with the vision to plan - and the tools to build - their future. Raising the next generation of environmental, entrepreneurial and ethical leaders.
Amy brought with her the blocks sewn by the girls at the Glasgow Girls Club back in March along with some incredible fabric donated by Timorous Beasties - Thistle Linen.
Here's a pic from GGC's fb page of the girls with their finished blocks, you can see more photos of the quilting day here on facebook.
So for the last 7 days, I've worked into the night to turn these
and adding a pieced backing and binding made from Robert Kaufman Essex Linen Ivory and Benartex Caryl Bryer Fallert - Essential Gradations Earthy Hues Earthy Spectrum so the back looks like this.
And here's where you can find the finished quilt for tonight only
then hopefully it'll be going to its new home and will have raised lots of money for the girls.
I have so many more photos to share - firstly close up detail of the sections of the quilt incorporating the girls' blocks. I'm hoping the girls get to see these and are incredibly proud of their part in making the quilt and can spot their own blocks here.
I've kept the pieces exactly as they were made by the girls - I've just added free motion lines around the raw edge appliques to hold them in place.
I've quilted either side of the ditch to support and strengthen the seams.
This block had pencilled faces on the circles - I've traced over the faces with an archival pen so they're a permanent feature of the quilt now.
I love these crystals sewn on the thistle spikes - can you see them, it's tricky against the white background?
Here's some detail of my quilting - I've free motion quilted along the stems of the thistle leaves and outside the main thistle image - all stitching is in white so it doesn't detract from the girls' work (unfortunately that makes it difficult for you to see!).
You can see the thistle quilting better on the back of the quilt.
As always I've added my label
and another label to document the quilt's history as I fully support the Quilt Alliance's SOS (Save Our Stories) programme.
Finally, I've hand sewn the bindings.
Here's some rolled and draped shots
And some final full shots
So now you heard all about it, me, the Glasgow Girls Club and the Timorous Beasties Quilt, do you love it as much as I do? It's funny that I'm not having difficulty giving this one away - all the time I was working on it I knew it wasn't mine and it's going to such a good cause it's given me quite a different perspective on the quilt. I'm excited to see how much money it raises.
If you can spare 1 min 24 seconds then check out this short trailer for the Club, you can see Amy with her fabulous pink bag and also images from the quilting session at the Club. Maybe you or someone you know would like to get involved too either in New York or in Glasgow? Please spread the word.
Have you ever answered the phone to something completely unexpected that changes the course of your week, year, life? When these moments come we should just grab them, I did :D
For details of other fabric, yarn, trim and notion stores that I've visited around the world along with the NYC stores I love, exhibitions and events I've attended and wonderful people I've been lucky to meet click the links below or in my sidebar :D
Disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only, no payment or commission is received on click-throughs and opinions are my own.