Wednesday, November 1, 2017

150 Canadian Women Update, So Close!

I would have had all 150 blocks finished to show you, but a certain quilt for a certain mother took priority. You'll see that finish on Friday. My November OMG, which I'm linking up with Elm Street Quilts, is going to be finishing the top, as in getting this to a flimsy. That's a fairly tall order, but do-able with the chain piecing, leader/ender style of sewing I prefer to do. I haven't shown you any blocks here on the blog (but they've all been on Instagram) since September!
127 - Julia Grace Wales: pacifist, her work to end war led to the establishment of the United Nations; 128 - Yvonne Madelaine Brill: aerospace engineer who invented and patented the jet propulsion system used in positioning satellites, also worked on the rocket engine for the space shuttle; 129 - Nell Shipman: first Canadian woman to make a feature film, one of the few Canadians to make silent movies; turned down Samuel Goldwyn of Hollywood because she wanted to be an independent filmmaker, which hurt her career (she went bankrupt); made films about 'God's Country', Canada; a pioneer in filming on location as opposed to in studio. **See Karen's comment below for a PBS documentary about her airing this Friday. Thank you so much Karen!
130 - Aloha Wanderwell (born Idris Hall): first woman to drive (yep drive) around the world and an entire paragraph of firsts, including filmed the first flight around the world; 131 - Alice Freeman, aka Faith Fenton: investigative journalist, and Canada's first female columnist; 132 - Major General Tammy Harris: in April this year, she became the first woman to hold the post of deputy commander of the RCAF
133 - Eva Vertes: only 32, a researcher in Alzheimer's and cancer, and resident physician who, at age 17, won Best in Medicine at the International Science Fair for her work with brain cells; 134 - Karen Beauchemin: known for her leading work in reducing greenhouse gas emissions; I love that she used her prize earnings to establish a scholarship fund for women at a university  in Ghana; 135: Pearl 'Bandit Queen' Taylor Hart: colourful woman bandit whose final years no one knows for sure, but probably led a final quiet life!
I inadvertently discovered a twist on Eva's block which I quite like:

Her fabric reminds me of the DNA models and the woven grey matter of our brains. Making such a wide variety of blocks over the course of this past year has sure lit the embers of quilt possibilities!

136 - Jean M Rumney: suffered from polio but became the first woman to graduate from the Ontario Veterinary College in 1939, worked up to her death in 1975; 137 - Margaret Marshall Saunders: author of Beautiful Joe, written in 1983, the story of an abused dog, who she rescued. This was the first Canadian book to sell more than one million copies worldwide, and raised awareness of animal cruelty; her block has the paw prints and text fabrics; 138 - Clara Cynthia Benson: professor and department head of Food Chemistry at the University of Toronto, recognized for her work in Food Chemistry.
139 - Sergeant Karen Margaret Hermeston: only woman photographer during WWII; 140 - Ella Cora Hind: Canada's first female journalist and known as the 'oracle of wheat' because of her ability to accurately predict the wheat crops; her block has the wheat background fabric and text fabric; 141 - Abigail Becker, aka 'The Angel of Long Point' for her ability to wade into the waters of Lake Erie (she couldn't swim!) after ships wrecked and help guide trapped or marooned sailors to shore in the mid-1800s; amazing how many people she single-handedly saved. Note the water-themed fabric in her block, lowest, centre.
142 - Minerva Ellen Reid: in 1915 she became the first female chief of surgery in North America; 143 - Phyllis Jean McAlpine: was mapping genes well before the Human Genome Project, her legacy is the standardization in naming segments of DNA as well as regionally assigning a human gene to a specific chromosome region; 144 - Margaret Paton Hyndman: first woman lawyer in Canada, second woman in British Empire, established the beginning of Legal Aid.
I sewed Phyllis's block wrong but found it made an interesting block nevertheless:

I actually kind of prefer the 'wrong' way one!

145 - Cairine Reay Mackay Wilson: in 1930 she was appointed Canada's first female senator, in 1938 she persuaded a reluctant prime minister to accept 100 Jewish orphans from Germany, in 1949 she was Canada's first female delegate to the United Nations, first female Deputy Speaker of the Senate; 146 - Riel Erickson: fighter jet pilot, first female to win the Top Gun award, currently Chief Flying Instructor at 2 Canadian Forces Flying Training School; 147 - Winnifred Frances Roach Lueszler: an incredible swimmer (her block has the pink starfish fabric) at age 25, she was the first to complete the first attempt, the first Canadian, first mother of 3 to swim the English Channel, then in 1957 became the first female baseball umpire, established the Learn-to-Swim programme as well as the first Handicap Swim Programme.
Are your eyes wider at reading these amazing accomplishments of such determined women? Are you just a little tired, LOL, but a whole lot impressed? I know I am, and I've already read about them each week as I've made the blocks.  Three more to do when I get home and then start putting this quilt together. I have waffled from making one 150-block quilt, to two 75-block quilts, to now one quilt. I want all 150 blocks in one quilt, to celebrate these glorious women, of this glorious country of mine.

I keep forgetting to announce that my pattern, Ribbon Stars, that I did for the 'Meadow Dance' blog hop on Sew in Love With Fabric, is up for free download in my Craftsy store (affiliate link).

I guess a lot of you have already checked because as of this morning, it has been already been downloaded 168 times! And just so you know, I did donate this quilt to the Mosque and School of Ehlul Bayt a couple of weeks ago for them to sell. They are raising funds to send to help the Rohingya people, nearly a million of them now, being ethnically cleansed by Buddhists out of Myanmar.

Linking up with
Sew Fresh Quilts
Quilt Fabrication


  1. What an accomplishment to do them all! I stalled at 90 blocks, at this point I don't know if I'm going to do more or not.

  2. Way to go Sandra! It's fun reading about them.

  3. Some amazing women in all that history! How interesting to read through them; thanks for sharing this! I like the twist on Eva's block very much!

  4. That's going to be an awesome quilt!

  5. Yes - You have some AMAZING women in your beautiful country!! I can't decide who I am most wowed by. Maybe Eva. Because earning that honor at 17?! Dang!
    This is going to be one fabulous quilt!! (and it really should be just one quilt - how on earth would you decide how to split them up??)
    Happy sewing, Sandra ~ Tracy

  6. Nell Shipman Serendipity. I'm new to your blog so only just became aware of your 150 Canadian women quilt blocks. WHat a fabulous idea. I recognized the name "Nell Shipman" then the next email in my inbox was from my local Public Television Station, announcing the completion of a documentary about Nell Shipman.

    1. Hi Karen, and thank you for telling me of this! I read the link and will look for it on our Detroit PBS. I will go back in and add a bit about her; it's hard to condense a page of info into a sentence or two here! She's forgotten because she is Canadian but worked in the US, so Canadians 'ignore' her, and Americans 'ignore' her because she's Canadian. So unfair and ridiculous.

  7. Those are really pretty blocks - love the colors and the fabrics! Thanks for sharing them on Midweek Makers.

  8. Your amazing Canadian women blocks do make me tired! But in a really, really good way :) I'm impressed with them all, and with you for sticking with the project and documenting it each week. It will be one (or possibly two!) lovely quilt!

  9. I don't remember when you started these blocks but I certainly admire your persistence and they are all lovely. I couldn't even manage to make all 15 blocks in a Christmas quilt along.

  10. It is already looking like Christmas in your workshop. Looks like a million candy canes shattered everywhere - sweet, minty and refreshing. I am looking forward to the quilt(s).

  11. What an achievement, Sandra, to have made this collection of blocks. They are beautifully made and will be a real keepsake.

  12. Wow, your blocks are so fabulous, and you are almost finished with them. I, too, like the wrong block better. What a happy accident. I'm absolutely shocked to hear that Buddhists are engaged in genocide! I would never have imagined that would happen with what I know of the religion. That's a beautiful quilt you donated, and I hope it helps many. Thank you for the pattern, too.

  13. Great looking blocks. Kudos for keeping up with them. Thanks for the pattern.

  14. These are wonderful blocks. Thanks for linking up with Elm Street Quilts One Monthly Goal and good luck on your project.

  15. You have some amazing blocks. Such interesting women. It's definitely going to make a great memory quilt.

  16. One very proud Canadian woman here is awed by these others

  17. I wasn't aware of the 150 project, though I've certainly been aware of the sequicentennial. What a great history lesson, with a commemorative quilt as well!