Today, Saturday, April 2nd I am joining together with thousands of others across the world to #lightitupblue in honor of raising awareness for Autism. World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) is observed on April 2nd and was adopted by the United Nations in 2007 to shine a light and bring awareness as a growing global health priority. Across the United States and around the world there will be thousands of famous iconic landmarks, skyscrapers, schools, businesses, public buildings, etc. across the globe uniting to shine a bright blue light in honor of the millions of individuals who are affected by autism and in honor of their families.
Today I am excited to team up with several other members of the May Arts Design Team to bring our own awareness of this important health issue to our blog readers.
Each of us have designed a unique item to help bring about Autism Awareness. For my project I desired to create an item that would help parents spread the word of what they wish people would say to them as an encouragement to them in their journey with having an autistic child. After researching and talking with different parents of autistic children I created a "hope filled album" of 10 things that these parents wish that they would hear as encouragement.
To create this album I started by cutting off the front and back of a light blue photo album that I found at the store. I loved the light blue color but didn't want the whole album so I simply used an x-acto knife to cut the front and back apart from the original photo album.
After doing this I punched holes in both the front and back of the album after covering the "rough edges" with the beautiful blue ribbon from May Arts. I attached this ribbon simply using double-sided acid free tape. On the cover I removed the picture that came with the original album and added in a blue doily. On the front of the cover I added an additional blue doily and added the word "hope" with the letter "A" that I had altered by adding some of my favorite ribbon that I had used inside the album.
As I mentioned I had researched and talked with several parents of autistic children and had wanted to create tags with the top 10 things that these parents wish that they heard from their families, friends, and loved ones.
For my inside pages I used some "cotton fabric book pages" as my base and then hand-stitched several different combinations of blue ribbons on the five cotton fabric book pages.
I then attached two blue doilies to the pages and then spent time altering 10 tags that i was going to use with ribbon that matched the hand-stitching on the book pages.
Some people love using their machines to sew the ribbons into their projects which I love, but many times I take the extra time to hand-stitch so that it gives my project a little added "altered" look.
If you are interested in the ribbons I used I have listed them for you here:
Light Blue 1/8 Solid Stitch Ribbon - 3 feet
I love how the final project came out and truly learned a LOT through my conversations and my research. While my extended family has walked the journey of autism I didn't know as much as I should. Taking the time to research this and create this album has truly taught me a lot. I hope that in the future I can support those who have autistic children and encourage them in their journey.
I hope that through this global campaign and awareness of autism that we as a community can better encourage and honor those with autism and their families and remind them they are not alone and are not forgotten.
I mentioned earlier in this post that several members from the May Arts Design Team are showing support for Autism Awareness. Check out the line up here:
Rebecca VanDeMark -------> You are HERE!
And an exciting announcement! One lucky winner will receive a prize of THREE 5-yard rolls of blue ribbon of the winner's choice!!
Happy Saturday friends! Go #lightitupblue today and encourage someone!