Crafting for a Cause – Angel Gowns

11 June 2014

Last week, as I surfed around Facebook, a single page kept popping up in my newsfeed.  My friends had been tagging it, sharing it and commenting on it … someone even sent me a PM about it.  It was Angel Gowns for Australian Angel Babies who have Grown their Angel Wings … yes, it’s a quite a mouthful, that title … but it tells you exactly what they do.

You see … they were looking for seamstresses, knitters and crocheters to create tiny little outfits which will be donated to families who are grieving their angel baby, as well as NICU and SIDS babies.  I may not be much of a knitter, but I am pretty darn handy with a sewing machine and a crochet hook … so I signed up to help.

At the moment it is all consuming.  I am working on a particularly large crochet order, aiming for 100 keepsake pieces by the end of this week (and I’ve already posted 100!).  At this point I’d like to say … thank you Spotlight for your 40% off coupon … the timing couldn’t have been better!  I have also made some teeny tiny micro-premmie bonnet & booties sets.  They are smaller than you think.

This is a task which carries a large swag of emotions.  There is sadness for the families who are enduring such sorrow and loss.  There is satisfaction in every piece completed, knowing it will go to a family in need.  There is pride in seeing a community of crafters come together to help others.  There is despair in knowing how many pieces we need to make.  I have participated in a similar program with the FDAA (Folk & Decorative Artists Association of Australia), with their memory box program.  Sadly, I have seen first hand what it means to these families to receive something hand-made, just for them, during these dark times.  Seven years ago my best friend passed away, and her unborn baby passed the next day … that kind of grief can’t be imagined, it can’t be soothed, and it can’t be hurried.  But I will never forget how touched her husband and MIL were at receiving that handpainted memory box.  It wasn’t the best paint-job in the world, but it was painted with love, and gratefully & humbly received.  A little kindness and thoughtfullness goes a very, very long way.

And so … this is why I am now crocheting like a crazy lady.  I am also glad to have some computer skills that are helpful to Sarah, the amazing lady who coordinates this Australia-wide effort.

On the seamstress side of things, Angel Gowns also gratefully accepts donated wedding dresses.  These are deconstructed by hand, every piece cared for and collected, and they are turned into beautiful gowns & suits for angel baby girls and boys.  Many people donate their wedding or deb dress in memory of their own angel baby.  You can read more about the organisation on their website HERE.

If you are thinking that you’d like to do something to help … that would be amazing!  There is a page on the website where you can contact them about donating a gown, or supplies.  You can follow the Facebook page HERE and keep up with the latest news.  Sometimes there is an auction, with funds raised going toward postage costs and materials needed by the volunteers (like ribbon, thread, etc), and be assured that this not-for-profit organisation does not pay its organiser or volunteers.  We do it because we just want to help.  If you would like to volunteer, send them an email or a Facebook PM.  Don’t sew, knit or crochet?  No problem.  You can spread the word, let people know what this organisation is doing, make a donation of cash, a Spotlight gift card or things like ribbon, thread, crochet cottons.  There are lots of little ways that everyone can make a difference.

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