News Archive

Memory Crafters Create (More Than) Good Will

18 November, 2003

Mahwah, NJ – Of course, the 40 members of the Memory Crafters Club in Fairfax, Virginia use their Janome Memory Craft 10001, 10000, and 9000 embroidery machines to create beautiful projects. But more importantly, they create good will because their projects are made to benefit others.

The club, which meets at Fairfax Sewing Center in Virginia, has completed three major charity projects this year. The first was for the Salvation Army Christmas Stocking Program. Each year the Salvation Army Alexandria Chapter provides local groups with Christmas stockings to fill with T-shirts, toys, and basic care items.

Last year the organization distributed more than 2,000 stockings to needy children in the area.

The Memory Crafters stitched out hundreds of embroidery designs to appliqué onto the T-shirts. The project proved so popular, the group ended up with many more designs than needed for the 175 T-shirts they had purchased. So, they decided to incorporate the extras into quilt blocks for baby blankets.

Club President, Jean Smith contacted Nancy Gordon, a social worker at the INOVA Pediatric Center and OB/GYN Clinic at the INOVA Fairfax Hospital for Children.

“The clinic patients come from El Salvador, Sudan, Somalia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and India,” says Smith. “Many of these women and children come to this country to escape wars and poverty. They have little if any education. These women do not qualify for help from other programs for needy moms.”


The inspiration for the Club’s third major charity project came from a special seminar on English paper piecing and quilting techniques taught by Olga Fisher. She challenged club members to each make a baby block for a large quilt, assemble them, and raffle the finished quilt for charity. The club took up the challenge and sold more than $1,000 worth of tickets. The winner, an 86-year-old-gentleman, turned around and donated the quilt to the Shriner’s Club Silent Auction Charity for Needy Children at Christmas. The money raised by the Memory Crafters has been used to purchase gifts and necessities for the Salvation Army Christmas Stocking Program. And the quilt will continue on another journey for charity.

Smith asked Gordon if the Club could make baby blankets to be distributed to these women and children. Gordon gave an enthusiastic yes. A few weeks later, she was presented with 25 baby blankets at the Memory Crafter’s meeting.

True to their club's name, all 40 of the Memory Crafters sew on Janome embroidery machines. Last year, about half the group was sewing on MC10000 machines. Now they're up to almost 90 percent. A few members upgraded to software Version 3.0, and soon everybody else with a 10000 followed suit. One club member has Janome's fastest Memory Craft, the 6500 Professional, which she has used to make large orders of home dec items for craft shows.

“Our club would not exist without the support of Patty and Skip Whitmore (owners of Fairfax Sewing Center),” says Smith. “There is so much these Janome machines can do and so many levels of talent to combine. We continue to teach each other." The Memory Craft sewing machine line includes the most advanced Professional-Style Embroidery machine on the market, the MC10001, and the first embroidery-only machine from Janome, the MC300E. Demonstrations of these and the other new Memory Craft machines are available at participating Janome dealers’ stores. More information on all Janome machines is available on our Machines & Accessories page.

Janome (formerly The New Home Sewing Machine Company) is an industry leader in innovation, having produced the first programmable computerized sewing machine and the first computerized sewing machine to offer Professional-Style Embroidery. Janome sewing machines are recognized throughout the industry for their ease-of-use and unsurpassed stitch quality.