The Dragon Appeal

The Dragon Appeal
The Dragon Appeal

Be part of Wales's largest craft project: The Dragon Appeal. Ty Hafan, the Children's Hospice in Wales is appealing to all hobby enthusiasts to pick up their needles and craft supplies and create a square, or a number of squares, for the charity's giant Welsh Dragon blanket. To be made up of 108,000 individual squares, the blanket will form an enormous picture of a Welsh Dragon when completed, and is so big, it will have to be assembled on the pitch of the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff. Crafters, community groups and school children from across Wales and beyond have joined the epic patchwork appeal and submitted squares of every textile craft imaginable. Squares can be created using any craft technique possible such as knitting, patchwork, cross stitch, appliqué, weaving and fabric painting, which will come together to produce an amazing effect.

Part of the Dragon's Eye completed
Part of the Dragon's Eye completed

Project co-ordinator, Liz Rundle, said: "The response to the project has been overwhelming and it is fantastic to see some of the unique and extraordinary squares created by our supporters. So far we have received some really remarkable work, with squares produced by crafters as far as Canada, USA and Bermuda." If you would like to be a part of this amazing craft project, contact Ty Hafan now to apply for your squares. The charity asks for a minimum donation of £1 per square. Ty Hafan will issue you a colour or colours for your squares; however crafters are encouraged to be as creative as possible using different textures, patterns and embellishments to create a one of kind addition to the blanket/quilt. Once completed, volunteers will stitch together sections of the Welsh Dragon as individual quilts/blankets to be auctioned off or sold to raise further funds for the children's hospice. All money raised will go towards the free and vital service Ty Hafan provides to over 165 children with life limiting illnesses and their families. The Hospice also continues to give support to another 100 families who have sadly lost their children.

To apply for your squares, contact Liz Rundle on 029 2067 2060, email Liz Rundle or you can apply online at www.tyhafan.org

Journal Quilts For Alzheimers

Journal Quilts by Avril Horn and Lyndsay Godel
Journal Quilts by Avril Horn and Lyndsay Godel

Sharon Garrick is organising a show of Journal Quilts later this summer to raise funds for the Alzheimers Society. The event is not taking place until July, so Sharon hopes many of you will be able to make her a small quilt which will be sold during the show to help her reach the target of £2000. Journal quilts are usually A4 or letter sized quilts and are often made by quilters in a similar way that a poet or writer would keep a diary. They can be a visual record of your year. Some American quilters make one a week. In the UK, some members of the Contemporary Quilt group made them last year and these will be on display at Sandown and other shows across the country during the year. You can add a binding as usual or make using the bagging out method, sewing round the edge and then turning through and slip stitching the gap closed. As they are quite small they are quick to make and ideal for using up workshop samples.

Journal Quilts by Gay Jenkins and Madeline Chant
Journal Quilts by Gay Jenkins and Madeline Chant

The journals do not have to be works of art, they can be traditional blocks. Shown here are some of the journal quilts already donated to the appeal. They will be sold/auctioned to raise funds during the event in July. To take part, contact Sharon Garrick or post your completed journal quilt by 1st June to Sharon at 25 Old Meadows Walk, Salisbury, Wilts SP2 8PA

Project Linus

Last year, hundreds of you made alphabet blocks to be assembled into quilts for children. This year, the theme is "All that Jazz". The blocks are to be 9 1/2in square before they are sewn together. You could use a selection of music prints or bright prints. I am sure almost "anything goes".

JAZZ spelled out in flags by Pat Meara
JAZZ by Pat Meara

This selection comes from Greta Fitchett's class. The evening class meets in Chaddesden, Derby and began in September based on the current Linus theme. The group made a colourful joint quilt, and most members of the class decided to make their own quilt to an original design, so they ended up with quite a lot! Some of the quilts are explicitly musical and others which are less so. I love Jazz Flags, signal flags and patchwork is a great combination!

You can see more of the groups work, including the group quilt in Greta Fitchett's Linus Quilts in the gallery. The patterns and instructions are available for 3 quilts if anyone would like to have a go at any of the designs. Contact Greta or see more about her work, judging and teaching by visiting her website Heatherlea Design for further details.

For details of your nearest co-ordinator, look at Project Linus or email Lyn Antill or post your blocks to the national co-ordinator Lyn Antill, 10 Larch Close, Underwood, Nottingham, NG16 5FA, and she will pass them on in groups to be assembled into quilts for children across the country.

Post pictures of your Charity Quilts or Blocks in the forum at Helping Hands