Quilter’s Response to the Boston Marathon Bombing

Patriot’s Day is observed on the third Monday of April each year in Massachusetts – and Maine for some reason. It commemorates the battles of Lexington and Concord near Boston in 1775. It also is the day each year that the Boston Marathon is run. This is such a largely attended event that many businesses in Boston encourage their employees to stay home and not add to the “congestion”.

I grew up in the Boston area and went to college there. My daughter, niece, cousin and his family all live there now. I was horrified on April 15th to learn that two bombs had gone off in the crowd watching the marathon. I’ve read that the most recent statistics are that 3 people died and 264 people were hurt.

I know that similar events happen in other parts of the world – perhaps everyday. I know that the harm that was done in Boston could have been far worse. Somehow, though, this event has affected me because it happened in my “neck of the woods” – even though I do not live there now. I made sure that my family was safe and then watched in wonder as the story of the suspects unfolded.

Soon after this tragedy took place, I started to read online that the Boston Modern Quilt Guild is coordinating a collection of quilt blocks “to make quilts for those directly affected by the bombing”. The guidelines for the Quilts for Boston are listed here. Basically they are asking for blocks that are 12-1/2″ tall by any width and made up in the marathon colors of blue, yellow, white and grey. I made this block today:

Block for "Quilts for Boston"

Block for “Quilts for Boston”

This paper pieced pattern is a free pattern called the Rockrose paper pieced block by Craftsy designer Cyrille. The directions are for a 10″ block with directions for printing the templates at different percentages to make larger and smaller sizes. I decided to make the 10″ block and add straight pieces onto the edges to make it 12-1/2″.  I believe this will make this heavily pieced block easier to sew to the other blocks around it.

Paper pieces

Paper pieces

The pattern is made up of 6 separate sections. They are all a little different in size which made it more enjoyable to piece than if they were all exactly the same.

Ready to be sewn together.

Ready to be sewn together.

If you will notice, there aren’t any straight lines across the pattern. Sewing this together involved Y seams. The directions were very good and I left the papers on until the whole thing was sewn together (which I do not usually do).

Removing the papers after the whole block is sewn together.

Removing the papers after the whole block is sewn together.

I was relieved to find that the block was perfectly flat (and square!) when I pressed it.

Finished 10" block

Finished 10″ block

There is a flickr group that has pictures of the blocks that people from all over the world are making and sending to the Boston MQG to assemble. The deadline to get them there is May 24, 2013. I was glad to make this cheerful block today. I hope it might bring a smile to someone to know that many of us care about what happened to them that day.

There is another large sewing effort which is being coordinated by the Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild called “To Boston with Love”.  More about that tomorrow!

To Boston with Love

To Boston with Love


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3 responses to “Quilter’s Response to the Boston Marathon Bombing

  1. Jan Gavin

    What a wonderful, cheerful block. I looked at the quilt blocks and they will make some terrific quilts. I think a quilt is such a comforting gift.

  2. Sandy J. Selig

    Beautiful, and a lot more work than it looks!! Good job for our city!

  3. Pingback: To Boston With Love | I Finally Have Time

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