Make a Square for the Climate Quilt


Images from the Climate Quilt

The hardy pioneer women started quilting out of necessity; using every little bit of left over and worn out fabric to make covers to keep them warm in winter. Sociability was part of it too: the quilting bee was a chance to get together with other women and chat and create together.

The quilting phenomenon continues to this day, as a hobby and a communal effort. Only now quilts are often made for a cause, with many people contributing squares on a particular theme. The National Plastic Quilt had squares made of plastic to emphasize recycling. This one, the Climate Quilt, is for children and is being prepared for Earth Day in you can still get involved with it.


The quilt on t.v.

The Climate Quilt Campaign is an international initiative to encourage youth worldwide to get involved with protecting the environment. It was recently on display In Copenhagen, and now it is headed back to the US for Earth Day.

Students around the world have designed "pledge patches" from recycled materials with their own individual promise telling how they will preserve the future of the planet. In some schools the students were given a swatch of recycled fabric and sewed a circle in the center to represent the earth. Then they decorated it with a pledge. Others were more free form. All the squares are sewn together to make a quilt. It's a community effort; entire classes can contribute and everyone is involved in it together.


The children are of all ages, so the sophistication of the pledges and the squares varies, which is nice. "I pledge to save water", "I pledge not to eat meat", "I pledge to turn off the lights as often as possible" are examples of the expressions.

The project has been organized by two women, an Australian and an American so it was initiated at a school in each country and then the quilt started gathering momentum. So far 7,000 squares have been collected which is pretty incredible.

Volunteers are stitching together quilts, each one with 200 patches. So putting together the whole thing, 3,500 square feet, will be some job. And will have an enormous impact.

The plan is to put the patches together in time for Earth Day on April 22, 2010. The deadline for all patches to be submitted is Feb. 22, 2010. So there is still time to get your school involved.