Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Mini-Project 1: IBOL!

When the Slapdash Sewist posted on her blog about participating in IBOL,  it really struck a chord with me. Since you may not be familiar with IBOL, it is short for Iraqi Bundles of Love.

After years of economic sanctions and then war, cloth and other sewing supplies are a scarce commodity and the women of Iraq struggle to clothe their families. IBOL is one man's effort to help, by organizing others to send sewing supplies to Iraq. So, basically, each participant creates a bundle (or more) of fabric, thread, buttons, needles, etc., ties it all up with ribbon, and ships it to an APO address ($12.50 is the flat rate).  Right now, IBOL Guy (the organizer) is amassing a 500 bundle surge for an outreach project in Baghdad. All details can be found at his blog.

It made me happy to pack up my own bundles - two of them. I knew I had fabric in my stash that, although of good quality, was just not likely to be sewn up any time soon. So, over the weekend, I reorganized my fabric and notions, looking for goodies to help fill out my bundles. And my mom, who is a do-gooder, contributed $20 for some spare pieces. (Thanks, Mom!) So, I bought needles, thread and a bit more fabric, and now my bundles are on their way. Here they are:

This is the lighter colored bundle - ecru, pink, and light blue fabrics bundled in a cotton khaki shell.
This is the darker colored one: black, blue, grey and green fabrics bundled in a black cotton shell.
I think I balanced out the notions between the two boxes a bit better before sealing.

One happy side effect of this project is that the Craft Lounge is now a much more organized place. It's funny to look at the things that you amass once you begin sewing. I hadn't realized how many buttons, zippers and pins I had built up over time, plus random items like a box of navy blue thread bobbins. I had three different blue and white striped fabrics (broadcloth, seersucker, and light weight shirting), two of which are in the bundles. Who knew I was drawn to blue and white stripes? I certainly didn't realize it.  Anyway, this whole exercise is a good reminder that my problems - like where to store my growing fabric stash - really aren't problems at all. Having more than I need is a luxury.

All bundled up in their cotton khaki shells.

Anyway, I can't help but think about the woman or women on the other end who will receive these packages. Who is she and what will she create? Will she pool this fabric with her neighbors to make something that will help many people? Will she make a blue and white striped shirt for her husband or son? Will her daughter feel pretty or special wearing a pink dress or skirt? What will the lime green ribbon become, and did the vivid color make her smile? These thoughts make me very happy. And doing a little bit of good makes me feel happy, too.


Karin said...

It's a lovely thing to do. I am sure your kindness will be appreciated.

The Slapdash Sewist said...

So glad you're participating! It is such a cool project.