ELLSWORTH — The Penobscot Community School Sewing Club delivered a dozen handmade quilts on May 5 to Marden’s, which will send them to Project Linus.
Project Linus is an organization based in Bloomington, Ill., that collects blankets, which are given to children in hospitals, shelters and group homes.
Sewing teacher Susan Varnum, with the help of parent and community member volunteers, teaches students how to use sewing machines as well as how to hand-stitch.
The group learns math skills by measuring and using a tape measure. The girls hone their fine motor skills by learning how to pin fabric. Varnum said they also learn about planning ahead with a project. No one likes making a mistake and having to undo what’s already been sewn.
Parent and school secretary Jennifer Jacques said with the quilt donations, the girls learned about children in need.
Added volunteer Judy Brenton, “It’s good to create, but it’s good to give back too.”
The sewing club currently consists of all girls. However, boys are welcome and Brenton’s son had participated before graduating from the school.
Varnum said one year a boy made a vest, another one designed and made a dress for his mother to wear. Another boy made tutus for his sisters.
The 10 club members — ranging from second to fourth grade — were able to choose fabrics while at Marden’s to make more quilts.
But first, there will be a fashion show at the school this week. Each student made her own skirt using patterns each had made using newspaper.
Project Linus welcomes donations of blankets. Each state in the United States has a chapter, and Marden’s leads the charge for many donations in Maine.
The Ellsworth store alone collects 400 to 500 blankets for Project Linus each year, according to Marden’s co-manager Laurie Wunder. Marden’s collects and donates 5,000 blankets annually among its 14 locations.