Voices for Hope: Kyle Scott

 

I haven’t had a voice for almost four months now. I guess I should say I haven’t been able to sing. Because of something called a nodule on my vocal chords, I’ve been unable to push my voice without a good deal of pain. So I’ve kept quiet and tried to let the chords heal up. It has no doubt been a trying lesson in patience. Just days before the bad news from my doctor, I had finished making plans to record a new album, one which has been four years in the making. Months later, my disappointment still lingers.

But this disappointment has quite often led me back to my songbook. In it are words I wrote while working alongside the women of Sari Bari. I didn’t really sit down with the intention to write an album about the ladies. The music that came about is simply reflection, an outflowing of my appreciation for, and struggle with what the women have given me. The lyrics hold in them both the joy and hurt that I have seen in many of their lives. The song paths that I wander down are sometimes somber and angry, reacquainting me with many difficult memories, but they almost always lead me back to a hopeful place. For this musical inclination to hope, I can only thank the women of Sari Bari. I am so inclined because I have seen in their lives that hope is a choice they make each day. Seeing this choice played out in their lives, despite the many hurdles they each face, is as tangible a hope as I’ve ever witnessed.  I’ve been forever changed by the women of Sari Bari, and I remind myself of this each time I pick up my guitar and play these songs.

 

I am nothing more than sandy shores and you the waves…

I am not who went before, by your wounds I was reborn…

She is free, oh the foretaste, wet my tongue and left me wanting…

I swear by those sowing hands my strength is in the way you stand…

Rina, I will hold, like I said before, to see you dance once more…

 

I look forward to singing again sometime in the near future. But until then, being forced to merely sit down with my song book has served as a wonderful reminder of where my hope truly lies.

 

 

 

 

Voices for Hope: Calvina Nguyen

 

What does hope look like? Depending on where we’re standing, hope looks different to everyone. For some it’s far and unattainable, to others close and personal, then there are those who don’t even know it exists.

I’m a “the glass is half full” kind of girl. I grew up seeing the best in everything and the best in everyone. I want to believe there can a beautiful ending to every story. Needless to say, I grew up with a great deal of idealism. Shaped much by my upbringing, I picked up my first camera in high school looking for beauty and hope in the world. As my world got bigger and my artist eye slowly developed, my idea of beauty changed. Beauty no longer lived in perfection, but in imperfection. While hope is still something that enveloped me, spurring me on.

I took my first steps into Kolkata with a camera in hand and a still small voice that had been telling me for years that my purpose with the camera is to give a voice to those who do not have one. I knew there is suffering in India. Someway, somehow I wanted to give hope by bridging the gap that divided those who want to give and those who need to receive. I arrived at Kolkata’s front steps with hope in my hands.

Feeling awkward and unsure, it was like that ugly handmade Christmas sweater from that one year. You can admit it, we’ve all gotten one in our lifetime. Painstakingly made stitch by stitch with love, but no matter how great and loving the intentions, it never found a place in our closets. I was trying to give Kolkata a sweater that it didn’t need nor quite fit. No matter how beautiful it was in my own eyes, there was little use for it.

To create change and bring hope, I realize it cannot be done according to how it fits the giver. It takes the act of sticking around. It takes time to understand, to measure, to know. Like a garment, it needs to be fitted to every individual and community we reach. Sari Bari planted themselves in Kolkata and stuck around. They learned the language, learned the trade, and got to know in depth how they can make a greater impact in the lives of each women in need.

Tangible hope comes from making oneself available in spirit, mind and body. It’s a commitment that takes time to see people to the depth of their souls. It is taking them by the hand and showing them that hope is indeed attainable.

 

 

Calvina Nguyen

Calvina’s had a camera attached to her hip since high school. After spending years in the design industry, she found her way back to her first love and started running her own photography business. Now she photographs weddings, couples in love, family lifestyle, and commercial lifestyle. She recently launched Calvina Stories where she helps social enterprises create a strong visual presence for their businesses and giving a voice to those who don’t have one.

 

Contact Calvina…

On the web:

calvinaphotography.com

calvinastories.com

Twitter: @calvina

Facebook: facebook.com/calvinaphotography

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/calvina/

Instagram: http://instagram.com/calvina#

Sari Bari Quilt Auction & Raffle: 2013 Quilter Review

 

Freedom Quilters: Cat Sherrill, Leann Barczi, Julia Clemens, Ricarda Downs, Jennifer Gehling, Kim Huenink, Jennifer Kyes, Naomi Layne, Amanda Holley, Dana Russell, Jaime Stevens, Elizabeth Snyder, Rachel Thrasher, Erin Ward, and Umaporn Zivan  / Boston, USA

Cat Sherrill met Sarah Lance in Kolkata, India in 2002 when Sari Bari was an idea in the making. In continuing to support Sari Bari over the years, this year, she decided to sign up for the quilt auction. Being aware of her sewing limitations, Cat solicited church friends “with a sewing machine” to help. Our quilters range from novices working on their first quilt to experienced seamstresses and quilters and all of us attend Christ the King Church in Cambridge, MA. We met several times to discuss a quilt pattern, cut fabric, piece the individual blocks and sew together finished blocks to make the final quilt. Once it was ready, quilting services and batting were donated by Laurena MacDermott at Laurena’s Longarm Quilting in Burlington. We had a wonderful time working on the project and are thrilled to be able to contribute our small part to help the women of Sari Bari raise funds for a building purchase.

Sari Bari Quilt Auction & Raffle: 2013 Quilter Review

 

Michele Cais / Tucson, Arizona, USA

Michele retired to Tucson, AZ in September 2011 from Buellton, California in search of blue sky’s and comfortable living. While in California she worked as a Clinical Services Coordinator in the medical services industry, based in Santa Barbara.  Michele and her husband were well known hikers and climbers who pioneered many new adventures in the rugged backcountry of the Los Padres.  Now they enjoy a change of pace from California chaparral to the Sonoran desert with hiking and photography in the mountains around Tucson.   Hobbies include fitness, hiking, biking, climbing, sewing, and training our wild weimpet (weimeranier/whippet mix) – Phoebe.

 

 

 

Casey & Maddie Johnson / Twin Cities, Minnesota, USA

Casey and Maddie are sisters and best friends!  They enjoy doing sewing projects together, so this quilt was fun to create.  This is Maddie’s second year participating in the Sari Bari quilt auction, and Casey and Maddie both feel that this quilt was even more fun and turned out even better than the first!

Sari Bari Quilt Auction & Raffle: 2013 Quilter Review

 

Freedom Quilter: Patti Coppock / Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA

Hello, my name is Patti Coppock.  I have been sewing for 51 years, but quilting only the past 17 years.  My mother taught me to make my own clothing when I was young and a few years ago I received a diploma in Apparel Technologies while living in Minneapolis, MN.  Before that, my college education was focused on art.

Quilting became interesting to me when I began to see it as an art form.  Repeating patterns and beautiful designs have always caught my attention.  I am most happy when I am working on a quilt project I love.

 

 

 

 

Freedom Quilter: Ann Olson / Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, USA

I am passionate about free-motion quilting. There is so much creative expression in the thread work designs that can go into each quilt as each quilt top is unique. I love doing quilting for other people. They provide the palette for my artistic expression. My quilting style is a freehand drawing style, meaning I hand guide my longarm quilting machine in the pattern I create much like drawing on paper.  So with my passion and love of quilting I now run my own Longarm Quilting Business, Ann’s Quilt N’ Stuff.  It is wonderful to have a career I love.

Sari Bari Quilt Auction & Raffle: 2013 Quilter Review

 

Freedom Quilter: Amy Garro / Indiana, USA

My name is Amy Garro and I’m a stay at home mom and quilter. I graduated from Notre Dame in 2009 with a Theology degree and do some light writing, but for the most part, I fill my time with giggles and stitches. I have two sons under two, and my husband does a great job making sure I have crafty time. I love designing quilts and would probably rather do that than even sew – but someone has to make everything I sketch! I started crafting at age 4 and sewing (on the machine) at age 7, but mainly sewed garments. I started focusing on quilting in 2011 and haven’t looked back since!

 

 

 

 

Freedom Quilters: Linda Fasules & Lynne Mackay-Atha / Washington, DC, USA

Linda, a pediatric nurse, and Lynne, a science teacher, are both experienced quilters. They met through the DC Modern Quilt Guild and always are interested in a new challenge. We enjoyed playing with the vibrant colors and intricate patterns and borders on the saris and hope you will love our quilt.

Sari Bari Quilt Auction and Raffle 2013: Quilt Preview

Sari Bari Quilt Auction & Raffle 2013: Quilter Review

 

Freedom Quilter: Ann Cook / Sunnyvale, California, USA

I found out about the Sari Bari quilt auction from my daughter in Boston, who is participating as part of a group from their church. I had just finished a quilt for our newest grandson and was looking for a summer project, so the timing was perfect. I opted not to join their group, but instead make one of my own, since I live in California. I spend most of my time as a university accountant, so quilting and sewing fulfill my need for some creative activity. I have been quilting since I was a teenager. I love to sew, and have done everything from furniture upholstery to wedding dresses. My mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother all quilted. My daughter is a talented and creative seamstress/quilter, and maybe someday her daughter (pictured with me) will be too. I am happy to be able to participate in this wonderful opportunity to contribute, in a small way, to improving the lives of women who do not have access to the same opportunities that most of us take for granted.

 

Sari Bari Quilt Auction & Raffle: 2013 Quilter Review

 

Freedom Quilters: Stephanie Kapadia & Jenn Rodriguez / Greater Baltimore Area, USA

Steph and Jenn met through a mutual friend and discovered shared loves of reading, gardening, craft, sewing and tea! Steph is a third generation quilter. Jenn is first generation quilter from a very creative family. She uses her creativity in her day job as a Landscape Designer for a commercial landscape maintenance company. Jenn’s love of plants and wacky design aesthetic spills over into her quilts with many floral themes and use of novelty fabrics.

Steph is the queen of research, both on the net and off and can find a solution for any creative problem! She’s a crafty librarian and shares her love of books with her husband and Dobby the House Hound.

 

 

 

 

Freedom Quilter: Kristin Perret-Gentil / Aurora, Colorado, USA

My name is Kristin, and I have lived in Colorado for almost 8 years.  I have a husband who is going through grad school right now to finish two master’s degrees, and while he is busy with that I stay home with our two kids; Aspen who is 4, and Beckett who is 2.  They keep me very busy and on my toes, but during my free time I love to quilt and sew clothes for my daughter (and every once in a while my son).  I loved the design of this quilt, and how the colors of these beautiful saris popped against the white background.  I really enjoyed making it and learned some new techniques along the way.  I hope you all enjoy it as well!

Sari Bari Quilt Auction & Raffle 2013: Quilter Review

 

Freedom Quilter: Debbie Hinkle / Smyrna, Tennessee, USA

I am a wife, mother of 4, physician assistant by day and “quiltaholic” any spare minute possible. When our oldest son (now 32)  went away to college, I started quilting. In 2010, our oldest daughter went on a mission trip to Calcutta, India. While there, she was able to meet many of the ladies who make the Sari Bari quilts and other handcrafted treasures.

I enjoy taking various pieces of fabric that are often castaways to make quilt. I am often reminded when quilting how people are often considered “too damaged” or “worthless” to be considered useful. When we put ourselves in Christ’s hands, he binds us together and makes something spectacular and unique to be used for His glory. Quilts made of used material when pieced together provide comfort, warmth, hope, beauty and love.

When Michelle, my oldest daughter, told me about the quilt auction fundraiser, I was so excited. How could I refuse? I get free material, a reason to make another quilt to give away and recruit new quilters through the Sari Bari program. I consider it a privilege to help my sister Sari Bari quilters to have ongoing opportunities for freedom, healing, recovery, hope and new beginnings.

Thank you for this opportunity.