SUPPORT GEE'S BEND QUILTERS

Mary Margaret Pettway
Image courtesy of The Philadelphia Museum of Art
As a third-generation Gee's Bend quiltmaker and Board Chair of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation & Community Partnership, I have witnessed first-hand the global recognition of quilts created here in the Bend by my friends and relatives. 


My mother's quilts (Lucy T. Pettway)—ones that I slept under as a child—are on the walls of some of this country's finest museums including The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.


As a lifelong resident of Gee's Bend, I have also seen that the traditions that have earned my community such acclaim have not resulted in economic advancement for the majority of quilters and their families.


The average annual income here is under $10,000, and well over half of the residents live in poverty. Some live without proper electricity and plumbing, and most do not have internet access in their homes. These challenges have significantly limited Gee's Bend quilters’ ability to connect with a global audience and market their quilts beyond the local quilters' collective.


To address this, Souls Grown Deep and our partner Nest are working alongside Gee's Bend quilters to develop direct-to-consumer channels for the sale of Gee's Bend quilts. Establishing an eCommerce presence will for the first time allow for us to sell our quilts outside of the Bend, and lay the groundwork for sustainable, long-term economic success of quilters, our families, and our community. In order to do this, we need your help.


Contributions to this project will go directly toward:


The Souls Grown Deep Resource Center, providing free computer and Internet access to quilters and the Gee's Bend community.


Training for quilters on marketing and sales strategies, business development, cooperative development, branding, logistics and other business disciplines.


Marketing campaign to ensure visibility and increased exposure for the makers and quilts.

Regular fine art studio photography of quilts provided at no cost to quilters.


Recruitment, hiring and training of a Gee’s Bend community member to serve as the local lead for the project.


Please consider making a donation.


With heartfelt thanks,

Mary Margaret Pettway

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      Contributions to Souls Grown Deep Community Partership, Inc., a Georgia-based 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization, are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law.

      Donor Wall61

      Lili Todd | $75

      This is on behalf of many donors. Money raised by Lili Todd. Thank you! We love you!

      Tanya | $26.27

      Best wishes, many thanks.

      Adina Sterling | $40

      Making this donation on behalf of our Aunt Cherise, in celebration of her birthday. She introduced us to your wonderful community!

      Mary | $104.15

      Create and sew on...

      Deborah | $52.23

      I love your mission of keeping art alive!

      rel robinson | $100

      I wouldn’t be able to make the art that I make without the inspiration of the Gee’s Bend quilters. I stand on the shoulders of giants. Thank you for your inimitable contribution to American art.

      Leslie Wade

      I am grateful to the women of Gees Bend for inspiring quilters and quilt lovers around the world. I’m thrilled about this project.

      Leeanna | $52.23/Q

      Nancy Rushton

      I’ve been a fan of the inspiring quilts from Gees Bend for years! I am delighted to help!!

      Sara Davis | $104.15

      Sending so much gratitude to the Gee’s Bend Quilting community for their resilience and creativity which inspire me and so many others.

      Marybeth Urbin

      Here is my commitment to sister quilters

      Noah Hirsch

      Tracy | $26.27

      Cynthia

      Happy to support these talented quilters!!

      Terry Simeone | $26.27

      The creativity and resilience evident in the work of the Gee’s Bend Quilter’s is so inspiring to me. Thank you! I hope you reach your goal and will be able to support many more Quilter’s in the future.

      Susannah | $26.27

      Your work is important and beautiful.

      Wallace Wilson

      We have a beautiful quilt for our bed that we later learned was inspired by the designs of one of the quilters of Gee's Bend. We wanted to give back directly to the community. We hope to visit one day. Thank you!

      Barbara | $52.23

      Your work is truly inspirational, enjoyed hearing you speak in Vancouver Bc. Thank you for the beauty you share with the world. Barbara Macleod

      Woolly Originals | $26.27

      Thank you for sharing your inspirational creativity.

      cady

      Thank you for the ongoing inspiration!

      Sue Greene | $52.23

      I hope this donation helps to achieve your goal.

      Irene | $104.15

      KNITSONIK LTD.

      The Gees Bend quilts are legendary and have inspired people all over the world. It is wonderful to see initiatives like this which ensure that the communities who have produced this outstanding work can reap the benefits and rewards of its renown.

      Krista Hennebury | $104.15

      Thank you for years of inspiration! Attending your talks and a workshop at Maiwa in Vancouver & having many of your signatures in my books are true highlights in my own quilting journey. I appreciate all of you. Wishing you great success with this important project.

      Heather | $104.15

      Lauren | $26.27

      Tegan | $26.27

      Kelly

      Francine Antoinette-Sterle | $104.15

      Thank you Sherri Lynn Wood for writing about this. I am pleased to make a donation.

      Kianga Jinaki | $26.27

      I am inspired by the work of the Gees Bend Quilters. I hope my donation helps in some small way.