Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Spiritual Care Quilts

Providence Spiritual Care Center offers unique support for their dying patients in the form of small 24" comfort quilts.  Patients of all ages find the size, thin batting and tactile quality of home-stitched quilts reminiscent of being cared for.  Later, these quilts are given to the family in memory of their loved one. 

Several Anchorage Log Cabin Quilt members have been providing many of these hand made quilts throughout the year.  Last weekend I completed two scrap quilts specifically for female patients.  There is an unspoken connection that occurs between quilt maker and recipient regardless of whether the two ever meet.  In my case, I like to pray for the dying person and their family during quilt construction.  No matter what your beliefs are, there is an undeniable spiritual realm we can choose to acknowledge and function in.  People who are facing death or know someone who is, understand the need to release the physical yet hold onto the spiritual.  A quilt can't replace a loved one but the comfort a small quilt offers can help bridge that transition.

Both scrap quilts pictured above display subtle differences in my quilting and finishing choices. One quilt is straight stitched along the seam lines and diagonally across the solid blocks, the other is wave stitched over the seams and around the border.  I folded the backing fabric to the front to form a pink binding on one and the other I didn't edge at all.  It's a nice comparison of how stitching and binding techniques influence the outcome of nearly identical projects.

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