It's time to "quilt pink" for a cure.
The Quilted Crow in Lehighton is looking for quilters to complete block kits for its "Quilting Pink for a Cure" project. Each quilt will be raffled off to raise funds for the American Cancer Society.
"Right now, we have enough blocks to make one quilt," said Cindy Mengel-Smith, co-owner of the Quilted Crow, who noted that each quilt includes 25 pink and white blocks featuring the familiar pink ribbon that symbolizes breast cancer awareness.
"We're hoping to get at least 25 more volunteers to make a second quilt. If we have even more interest, we'd love to make more than two quilts."
The first completed quilt will be raffled by Relay for Life to raise funds for the American Cancer Society. The Lehighton Lionesses Club has agreed to raffle any other quilts that the shop is able to provide.
This year's project has special meaning for Mengel-Smith, fellow co-owner Jane Heckman, and many of the Quilted Crow's customers. "Quilt Pink" is being done in memory of Brenda Smith, a friend and supporter of the shop, who died of cancer this spring.
"You never know when cancer will affect you or someone that you love," said Mengel-Smith. "The sooner we can find a cure for this horrible disease, the better we all will be."
While the shop completes an annual breast cancer awareness project, it is also active in the community throughout the year and places a high priority on all service projects. The Quilted Crow has hosted projects such as "Quilts for Kids," which provides quilts to children with life-threatening illness, "Quilts of Valor" for American servicemen and servicewomen, and a "little dresses" project that benefited children in Africa.
"From the beginning, we wanted to offer service projects. We've done something for breast cancer awareness every year since opening," added Heckman.
In their first year of business, the Quilted Crow hosted a finished block contest. Customers were asked to create their own quilted block using breast cancer awareness-themed material. Finished blocks were displayed at the store, and customers could vote for their favorite blocks by making a donation. All funds raised were donated to breast cancer research.
Last year, customers could design and complete a breast cancer-themed block to be included in a quilt. Customers could again vote for their favorite blocks, and the finished quilt was raffled off by the Lehighton Lionesses Club.
Each block kit for this year's quilt will cost $5. The cost will cover the kit's fabric and batting and backing for the finished quilts. Donations and any money left after the quilts have been assembled will be donated directly to the American Cancer Society. The cost of quilting each piece has been defrayed by the Quilted Crow's customers, who have volunteered to complete the quilts once blocks are turned in. All quilt blocks must be returned to the store by Thursday, Nov. 15.
Heckman noted that the pattern for the "Quilt Pink" blocks is fairly simple and should be a fun project for quilters and sewers of most skill levels.
"If they can read a pattern, they should be able to complete these blocks. They don't take much time to put together," she said. "Most people have picked up multiple blocks. Many are picking up one of each."
Every quilter who completes one or more blocks or makes a contribution to the American Cancer Society through the Quilted Crow will have a chance to sign a signature block. This signature block will be added to the back of the completed quilts.
For more information about the "Quilt Pink" project or to pick up a quilt block kit, contact the Quilted Crow at (610) 379-4700 or stop by the store during business hours. The Quilted Crow is located at 179 Interchange Road in Lehighton.