Instagram | @badasscrossstitch

Crafty Woman Enlists 1,000 Volunteers To Help Complete Massive Quilting Project

What do you do when you come across a whole box of an unfinished embroidery and quilting project from an estate sale?

Why, you buy it and enlist 1,000 volunteers from social media to help, of course!

That's exactly what activist and needlepoint artist Shannon Downey did.

Twitter | @ShannonDowney

Shannon took to social media after she discovered a box full of an unfinished quilting project at an estate sale.

Without hesitation, she purchased the box for $6, determined to complete the deceased owner, Rita's, work.

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The box included 100 hexagons of beautifully designed states and patriotic stars to be embroidered, and while Shannon is very familiar with embroidering, she is not so well-versed in quilting.

Twitter | @ShannonDowney

That's when 1,000 lovely people in the community volunteered to help her embroider the hexagons, and a plan of 30 Chicago quilters, where Shannon resides, to sew the pieces together and hang it in the Woman Made Gallery.

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Before Shannon knew it, she was sending packages of hexagons to crafty strangers from all over the country.

Instagram | @badasscrossstitch

Even for 1,000 people, this project was no small feat.

Imagine if Shannon completed it all on her own?!

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The quilt was completed on December 21, taking over two months to finish.

Twitter | @ShannonDowney

And here is the finished product!

While the embroidery of the map of the United States in the middle of the quilt wasn't part of the original pattern, it fit perfectly with the whole patriotic piece.

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Shannon was overwhelmed by everyone's hard work and the product's culmination, to say the least. This quilt is definitely more than just a quilt.

Instagram | @noholzbarred

It's a beautiful story of community. While no one knew Shannon, or Rita for that matter, strangers came together and created something far more beautiful than the quilt alone. Each piece of this quilt has its own story attached to it.

It's amazing how social media brought a whole community of people together in the name of crafting, helping to not only complete Shannon's project of finishing an incomplete work, but to also bring Rita's own WIP (work in progress) to life and continue her legacy.

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