Crafting provides Sanctuary

vicky-warnes-quiltI’ve always enjoyed being creative, but sometimes life is just too busy and it’s so easy to let things get in the way and take over. ‘To do’ lists, important things and even time wasting things can stop us doing what makes us happy, what helps us to relax or what gives us joy.

I’ve been made to be creative. It is something I need to do and not suppress. I decided recently that I wanted to spend more time sewing, as it’s something I can lose myself in, a real passion and a way of relaxing. Sewing has become my sanctuary. So much so, I’ve started a group known as the Craft Sanctuary, where a few friends and I meet up at my house regularly to sew, or knit, time to chat and time to relax. Oh and to eat cake too!


Quilt SOS project

So when I heard about the Quilt SOS project, I was really excited. Alice Caroline Fabrics were asking for volunteers to make quilts to be sent to SOS Children’s Villages in Romania, a charity which provides homes to orphaned children. Alice Caroline would sponsor the Liberty fabric for the quilt top, we would supply the rest of the materials and design and make the quilts.

vicky-warnes-quilt-2I’m self taught apart from my A level Fashion and Fabrics years ago, so I know that my quilting techniques and processes might not be perfect, but I’ve made two quilts before and as I love Liberty fabric, which is a joy to sew with, I knew I wanted to be involved. The thought of a quilt I had made going to an orphan in Romania was an exciting possibility. We can feel very helpless when we hear about the awful things going on in the world that we can do nothing about. But here was one small thing I could do to help one precious person. I have three grown up children whom I love dearly and I thought that if my quilt could help an orphan feel loved and feel cosy in their bed, I would make one. This was a perfect project for my own personal Craft Sanctuary!

An added incentive was that Alice Caroline would first be taking the quilts to be displayed in the vicky-warnes-quilt-4Liberty store in London – if we were able to complete them in time for the initial deadline in less than two months. Imagine! I knew there were some very talented and experienced quilters out there and my last quilt took four years to make! Would my quilt be good enough? Would I even finish it in time?

I needed to design something very simple to be in with a chance of completing it. I chose to use fabrics in rainbow colours, as the colours and fabrics themselves would make a simple design look effective and appeal to both boys and girls. Who doesn’t like a rainbow?

My quilt was made with love

I would pray for the orphans and volunteers as I sewed.  And I had vicky-warnes-quilt-3time to think and contemplate. Bliss! During what was, for me, a very stressful summer, I found moments to escape into my own craft sanctuary and enjoy my creative time.

So you can imagine how pleased I was to visit the Liberty store and see my quilt on display, along with other, truly beautiful, creations. I am not alone with my love of quilting! Mine isn’t perfect, but I’m very pleased with it and delighted to have completed it in time. It reminds me that perfection isn’t always necessary! ‘To do lists’ and striving aren’t always the answer, it is important to find time to have fun, rest, play and do the things that make us happy too. The process of making is as important as the end result.

Vicky Warnes

The quilts are due to arrive in Romania in November and we look forward to an update from Vicky!

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