Through their generosity, quilters have donated countless handmade blankets to support charity projects and individuals in need. Quilting for charity is a beautiful way to give back to the community, while still practicing the art of patchwork and growing your skills.
We’ve been inspired by the charity quilting projects shared by some members of the online quilting community!
Bluprint member Jennifer O. led a quilt-along for her Project of Doom quilt, based on a Harry Potter mystery quilt series. She then raffled off the quilt, earning almost $800 in individual donations for her favorite charity, the Linus Connection, which provides security blankets to children in crisis. This just goes to show that creativity and a little teamwork can really make a great impact when it comes to quilting for charity.
Melissa Smith makes small quilts and blankets for a friend’s charity, Jack’s Day, which provides memory boxes to families that have lost a baby. “Since they are for tiny babies, they are small quilts, sometimes no bigger than fat quarters,” Melissa says, adding “every baby deserves their own quilt. It’s not only a good cause, but a good chance to try out new techniques and blocks on a small scale.” Volunteers sort the donated items and pair them with teddy bears, photo frames, knit booties and other mementos for families to treasure, helping them during a devastating time.
Kelly at Sew Crafty Cat began quilting in college when she made a simple quilt pieced from squares. When she read about Downy’s Touch of Comfort program, which provides quilts to children in hospitals, she ordered a free charity quilting kit from Downy and got to work! “This is the first time I pieced a quilt and machine quilted it,” she says. “I hope this has put a smile on a child’s face and provides some comfort!”
Bobi Lemon loves working on charity quilting projects with her quilt club, Loose Thread Quilters of Peebles, Ohio. “We make quilts for the children’s home each year, and last year we made 50 quilts for the kids,” Bobi says. “The kids get to pick out their quilt and keep it when they get their forever family or move to a foster home.”
Charity quilting resources
If you are interested in quilting for charity, there are a number of great organizations you can connect with online and in your local community. We also invite you to peruse and download Bluprint’s free quilting patterns to help you get started on your next charity quilting project!
Finished “do. Good Stitches” quilt by Flickr member TipToeTango
- do. Good Stitches: This modern charity bee offers a great way to connect with other quilters online and do good in the community. The group accepts new members as there is enough interest to fill current “circles” or start a new one. You can sign up to be a quilter, or you can simply to make and mail blocks to the quilter for that month.
- Project Linus: A charity quilting organization that began in 1998, Project Linus is supported by quilters donating handmade blankets to children in need. Why not donate a quilt to a local chapter or get together with your quilting guild and host a quilt drive?
- Quilts of Valor: If you want to support servicemen and servicewomen returning home from active duty, consider joining the efforts of Quilts of Valor. Formed in 2003, this group accepts quilt tops and volunteer longarm quilters interested in serving their cause.
- 100 Quilts for Kids: This annual charity quilt-along is hosted each fall by the D.C. Modern Quilt Guild. Considering donating a quilt to one of the several charities, such as Margaret’s Hope Chest or Bumble Beans Basics, and you can enter a photo of your donated quilt. In 2013, nearly 200 quilts were donated through this charity quilting drive!