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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey
A story... (in proper thread form) I go estate sale shopping regularly and whenever I find an unfinished embroidery project I buy it and finish it bc there’s no way that soul is resting with an unfinished project left behind. One day I found this stunner for $5. The I walked
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
into the bedroom and found a box full of fabric. I opened it up and discovered it was a massive quilting project that was just begun. Every bit of the project mapped out and in this plastic tub. I sat on the floor and almost cried bc I knew I had to buy it and finish it but
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
it was a massive fucking undertaking and While I embroider, I don’t quilt. I bought it for $6. I took the address of the home and did a little research and learned that the owner was named Rita and it seems she died at 99. That woman STARTED a massive quilting project at 99...
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
Now I really had to finish this thing. So I asked my Instagram community if people would help me finish it. In one day, I had over 1,000 volunteers!!! Because people are amazing. There are 100 individual hexagons to be embroidered to make the quilt...
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
I made a massive spreadsheet and collected mailing addresses. I started preparing the squares to ship out to my new team. As I did, I discover Rita had stitched 2 of the states already! What a grand surprise. I’m not saying I cried but I’m not saying I didn’t.
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
I prepared all the packages and then went to the post office where I was handed three different types of stamps to put on each envelope. That’s 300 mutherfucking stamps. I am grateful I didn’t have to lick them...
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
As the stitchers waiting for them to arrive, some folks started doing research on Rita. They are excellent researchers. Found her husband, maiden name, that she was a Canadian immigrant, became a nurse and look - they found her high school yearbook photo!
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
The packages are arriving to my stitchers and they are furiously stitching their hexies. We are using the completed map that I bought (that we can reasonably assume was made by Rita) to try to mirror her stitching techniques and style!
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
We’ve got over 30 Chicago quilters lines up to handle the quilting phase of the project once we get all of the hand-stitched hexies back. Humans are amazing. Community can be built anywhere. You can follow along on Instagram —->
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Carol Smale Oct 23
Replying to @ShannonDowney
In the last year's of her life, my mother spent many hours quilting flowered hexagons. I have them but they need to be stitched together somehow. Wish I could find a community like yours. A sample:
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Shannon “Badass Cross Stitch” Downey Nov 6
Replying to @clsmale
Wow wow wow!!!! Those are stunning!!! I don’t know that they need to be stitched together. I could see them in beautiful frame boxes all on a wall! Each it’s own work of art but together a beautiful installation
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