When a community suffers a tragedy, we turn to making. Making to comfort, making to process our own emotions, making to work through grief, especially from a distance. Making to heal.

The events that unfolded in Nova Scotia over the weekend of April 18-19, 2020 were horrific, never witnessed by our community and even our country ever before.

So we turn to making.

The Maritime Modern Quilt Guild is running a quilt drive — completed quilts in blue and white for victims families, first responders and community members directly affected by this event. Please consult the guild’s website for best practices in quilt making during this period of physical distancing.
I have put together some scrap designs that you can do by yourself, or with just a few people — the fewer the better in this time. The MMQG website has suggestions for other designs as well.
These are striped blocks that are 8.5″ unfinished, 8″ finished in different tones of blue from my scrap bin. I thought that they evoke the waves of the ocean. Either prints or solids will work just fine. This is a great design to work on collaboratively (please keep physical distancing measures in mind during this time).
They can be improvised widths of stripes, like mine above, or they can be more precise. I use 4-5 stripes for each block varying in width. The renderings below picture (4) 2.5″ x 8.5″ strips stitched together to make each block. 
The traditional rail fence pattern is used here as a base. The “woven” feel of this pattern makes me feel like a part of a bigger community and also makes me think of our beloved tartan. If you want to test out some other colour possibilities, check out PreQuilt’s digital colouring page!
This rail fence heart finishes at 64″ x 64″, using 64 blocks. The darker blocks are used to make the heart stand out.
Number of blocks:
  • (34) Light
  • (20) Dark
  • (10) Light/Dark HSTs: These half square triangles to make the diagonal edges of the heart. To make these HST blocks, pair a 9.5″ stripe block with a light toned 9.5″ square. Follow the instructions here to make the HSTs. You will need 5 pairings, which will yield 10 HST blocks.
Here is a more abstract arrangement of the blocks finishing at 48″ x 48″ — 36 blocks in total:
Another great pattern with hearts is one from Cluck Cluck Sew, which finishes at 42″ x 44″. I’ve rendered it here in blue and white and all blue.

Cluck Cluck Sew, Free Simple Hearts Quilt in blue and white

Cluck Cluck Sew, Free Simple Hearts Quilt with blue background

Don’t forget to label your quilt with: “Quilts for Nova Scotia”,  Your City/Province, Your Name (optional), 2020

Make to grieve. Make to comfort. Make to heal.