We are always honored when our customers tell us stories about the people, places, and moments that are represented in their memory quilts. Leslee Friedman shared the story of how her Project Repat blanket symbolizes the things that have been most important in her life,
“My life is really about my connection to others and the act of creation; whether it is creating something tangible or being part of a movement, or effecting forward motion and change. Because I spend a lot of my time in writers communities--and much of the blanket is about that-- I tend to think of creation and caring and community as inextricable. For me, the blanket is a visual representation of that.”
Leslee's memory blanket a symbol of her personal beliefs and acts as a time capsule of important friendships. Her beautiful blanket is all the more special because it is made from t-shirts that have significant stories and emotions behind them.
“Some are very dear, there's a shirt with a homemade iron-on that was made by my first girlfriend and shared with my group of friends. One friend was Tianyu, who became part of the group when I introduced him to my friend Amanda. They eventually were married and I was in their wedding.
There's a transformer shirt in the blanket as well. Tianyu loved Transformers so much that Amanda put Megatron on his headstone after he passed away. It is darkly hilarious, but the guy who was creating the headstone clearly didn't recognize what he was working with and on the first mock-up Megatron came back upside down.
There's also a shirt with the “Enter the Haggis” logo on it. ETH is a Canadian indie Celtic Rock band. I went to their first concert in Florida during a St Paddy's Day fest while I was visiting Tianyu and Amanda in 2004. I've been a fan ever since.
One of the AIDS walk shirts lists my uncle as one of the people we were walking in memory of. Another one has a picture of John Keets, who was a contemporary of mine who contracted HIV through a transfusion. He was a hemophiliac before blood banks knew to screen for the virus. He was three years older than me, and died at the age of 20.
I put one of my LLS shirts in there, because I've recently returned to the world of training-fundraising, and am currently raising money for blood cancer research while training to do a triathlon, and it felt like an important shirt to include.
No matter the story, every shirt included is representative of my activism and connection to friends past, present and future. Interested in preserving your own memories with Project Repat? Find out more about how to create your own memory quilts