Sewing Smiles

Join The Giving Quilt, Inc. for a sew day to support Upside Downs, a group that delivers baskets of love and information to parents of newborn children with Down’s Syndrome.

Saturday April 29 at 9:30 AM
St John’s United Methodist Church
9375 Highland Road, Baton Rouge
Corner of Highland and Gardere

Kits will be provided, bring normal sewing items , ie machines, bobbins, thread, scissors Small mat and cutter, small ruler and pen to make half square triangles. Irons and boards will be provided

Lunch will be provided and Door prizes!

The baskets contain other small items. If you would like to contribute to the basket donations of the following would be appreciated: Teething toys, socks, hats, wash cloths bibs, burp cloths, infant books, small toys , diapers and baby wipes.

For more information on the group we are supporting visit UpSIDE-DOWNS.ORG

Volunteer Spot Light on
2017 Bridge Over Troubled Water

The Giving Quilt is proud to shine the spot light on two extraordinary local quilters, JoPaula Lantier and Renee Hoeprich, for their tireless efforts to collect and coordinate donations of fabric, notions, books, tools, and sewing machines for the many quilters who lost their sewing rooms and quilting supplies in the Great Flood of 2016.

It started simply.  Quilters who had not flooded began volunteering to wash quilts and fabric rescued from the flooded homes of those who had.  After ten days of marathon washing, JoPaula and Renee found themselves instant messaging late at night and wanting to do more. But what?

A conversation with New Orleans quilt shop owner and Hurricane Katrina survivor, Denise Taylor, pointed them in the right direction and Bridge Over Troubled Waters was born. By mid-September collection bins were in place in quilt shops from Slidell to Shreveport and donations were pouring in. A storage unit was donated to house the rapidly rising river of donations, but ultimately 3 storage units were donated and the overflow landed in the Lantier and Hoperich homes.

As donations grew, they collected the names of flooded quilters from quilt shops and quilting guilds and mailed out 146 letters inviting these quilters to a day of free shopping on April 1, 2017.  By then 10,000 yards of fabric, 90 sewing machines and numerous tools, notions, books and patterns - many donated by national vendors - were all waiting to go home with the special shoppers.

On April 1, hugs, tears, and numerous words of thanks were the order of the day as 120 quilters arrived at Highland Presbyterian Church in Baton Rouge to pick up the donated sewing machines and supplies.  An army of volunteers was also on hand to help with the distribution, including several who had also flooded but were glad to help other quilters.  

Quilters are by nature generous and Renee says this “sharing quality” is one of things she likes best about being a quilter.  She grew up helping her mother with various community service projects and always endeavored to do the same. A quilter for 28 years, she feels the art provides her with a unique opportunity to try a wide variety of techniques, add her own special twist, and still provide a useful finished product that combines art and utility. Renee is currently president of Gulf States Quilting Association and past president of River City Quilt Guild in Baton Rouge.

JoPaula grew up around quilts but didn’t start quilting until she retired from LSU in 2008. Since the BOTW event she has received numerous thank you notes from the recipients and is overwhelmed by their gratitude. She is constantly amazed by the spirit of the quilting community and feels honored to have been able to do what she could.  A former president of River City Quilt Guild, she would also like to thank the many quilters of the area for their generosity and support.