Announcing the 2014 Banned Books Week Challenge!

Woot woot! It's time to engage in a little nonviolent protest again. And we get to do it with quilts!

Although I fully support everyone's right to determine what they and their children will read, I also support my right to do the same. Banning books from libraries does not protect freedom, it restricts it. Books are open pathways to ideas, meaningful discussions, and growth--even if (even especially if!) one does not agree with what's inside the covers. Besides, I was an English major in my undergrad years. Hence, I support Banned Books Week in celebrating literature!

Tanesha of Crafty Garden Mom podcast and blog and I are once again hosting the Banned Books Week challenge (and giveaway--whee!). And this year we're giving you a little more heads-up than in the past--ain't that just grand?

The 2014 Banned Books Week Challenge

  My 2012 BBW challenge, "Alice's Spider," based on  Go Ask Alice  by Anonymous.

My 2012 BBW challenge, "Alice's Spider," based on Go Ask Alice by Anonymous.

Banned Books Week is September 21-27, 2014. You will find lists of books that have been banned or challenged and other resources on www.bannedbooksweek.org or the American Library Association website at www.ala.org. They also give a lot of ideas about ways to observe Banned Books Week in your area.

For our challenge: Create a small wall quilt that somehow represents a book from the banned/challenged book list that you have read and particularly loved, found meaningful, or otherwise want to celebrate. How you choose to represent the book is up to you—it could be a scene from the book, words from the book, or just represents the book in some way.

Please be aware that book cover images and illustrations in books are copyrighted art. You would need permission from the publisher/artist to depict those images exactly. You may, of course, use them as inspiration for your own artwork!

  My 2013 BBW challenge, "If You Walk By," from  The Color Purple  by Alice Walker

My 2013 BBW challenge, "If You Walk By," from The Color Purple by Alice Walker

The Deets

  • Create a mini-quilt based on a book on a banned/challenged book list that you read and enjoyed. The quilt can be any size, but "mini" keeps it manageable. You can do a mug rug if you want! No specific sizes required.
  • Use any type of quilt techniques you enjoy, any type of surface embellishment you choose--whatever flips your switch! 
  • Starting the week of September 21: Post pictures of your completed quilt(s) in the Flickr group for this challenge. We're using the same Flickr group as previous years, so please clearly label your post with "2014" in the title so we know what the new ones are!
  • Include your artist's statement in the description of your photo in the Flickr group. (Or, should you be a blogger, just include a link to your blog post about the quilt in the description. ) The artist's statement should include the title and author of the book, why you chose that book, and anything else you want us to know about your mini-quilt.

During Banned Books Week, Tanesha and I will be blogging/podcasting about the entries and there will be...yes!...prizes!

I did this last year, and I'm doing it again: I offer this same challenge in my quilt guild, and with the help of Kate, a guild friend who's also a librarian at our town's public library, for the second year in a row we've arranged for the library to display during Banned Books Week quilts from our guild members who participate. Why don't you ask your local library if you can display your finished project there?

  BBW quilts on display at my local public library. Unfortunately I didn't write down what each represented--sorry!

BBW quilts on display at my local public library. Unfortunately I didn't write down what each represented--sorry!

Tanesha and I will both be posting about BBW over the next several weeks to help motivate and inspire you, and have some fun to boot. We'll also be posting about our own projects as we're so moved. So stay tuned!