I met a wonderful woman from the Netherlands named Merel at QuiltCon in Padadena in February. I met her very tall boyfriend who volunteered with me during set up on Wednesday, too (he could hang the quilts flat footed – I was impressed!). Merel was just aglow with joy and it was a pleasure to get to meet her. She had pre-made blocks and was getting new in-person acquaintances to sign the blocks with permanent marker so that she could go home and make a keepsake memory quilt of her time at QuiltCon. I thought that was a rather brilliant idea. I started following Merel via Instagram, and it was a delight to see LA and the US through her eyes as she and her boyfriend got a chance to explore a bit before returning home on the long flight

Today while I was browsing Instagram, I saw a post by Hillary @Entropy Always Wins looking for help making blocks for a quilt for Merel. My heart flopped and I scurried to read as much as I could. I am not sure how I missed it in my feed (yes, perhaps the new Instagram feed algorithm, but life does happen and I can’t see everything all the time)… but Merel suffered some spinal cord bleeding and she currently has limited movement of her legs.

Hillary has done amazing things (like sending Merel flowers!) and has organized a wonderful community quilt idea. I immediately changed my plans for the afternoon and made a block that I will place lovingly in the mail and hope that Merel receives a quilt that brings her comfort, love, and peace.


If you would like to learn more about how to create a similar block to send to Hillary to place in the quilt for Merel, please visit and read her post Fly Merel Fly:: A Community Quilt for Merel van Looi.

8 thoughts on “#FlyMerelFly

  1. janequiltsslowly says:

    Your little birds are great! I’m sure they will cheer Merel. I saw Hillary’s post, too. Will be working on this tonight. Thanks for the link to Hillary’s blog.

  2. Cindy says:

    Your birds look great and plans can change especially for such a deserving cause.

  3. Renee says:

    Do you ever wonder if something bad happened to you if the community would come together like this in your name? I wonder that for me, though I prefer not knowing and being healthy over something happening and finding out. Although I think there must more people going through hard times than receiving special quilts from the community, so it really comes down to a friend putting in the effort to organize it. Anyway…since I have yet to figure out a to-do list for the week (despite my subconscious nagging at me about…hmm…something…) I’ll be whipping up one of these cute birdy blocks!

  4. Those are adorable little birds (that look a bit like airplanes too!). That’s great that you were able to meet Merel and have the real life connection.

  5. Lara B. says:

    It’s wonderful that you and Merel became instant friends Yvonne. And very startling what happened to her. I hope it is not a permanent condition. Your bird block is very joyous and I hope the quilt brings her much comfort.

  6. Kaja says:

    I hope Merel recovers quickly. I’m sure this block, the quilt it goes into and the friendship it represents will mean a lot to her.

  7. Your block is beautiful. I love it!
    I follow Hillary and missed everything entirely. How did that happen? I blame March madness.
    Poor Merel. I hope a full recovery is possible.

  8. Sally says:

    That block is very uplifting, which sounds perfect for the situation, I hope Merel is doing better now.

I really appreciate the time and thought you take to comment, and I look forward to conversing with you. :)