Care© is a bittersweet project very near and dear to the hearts of many smocking and
embroidery guilds around this country and in Australia. It is our community service
Quite a few years ago (and I'm not exactly sure who gets credit for starting this
project); someone realized the need to supply hospitals with very small
smocked/embroidered baby gowns. There is a great need for families whose babies are born
very prematurely or stillborn to have clothing available to fit these tiny little babies.
Sometimes these gowns are used as burial gowns for the babies who do not survive and
sometimes they are kept by the families as keepsakes. Each family makes that very personal
decision. These gowns are also occasionally used for families in great need who simply do
not have something new in which to take home their precious newborn. For a family
suffering the loss of their child the worry of finding clothing to fit is an added burden.
It is a small but welcome comfort to them to have a beautiful gown for their child and to
have the life of that child recognized and valued by others. We have received very
personal and heartfelt thank you notes from several families.
Cactus Cablers' works in conjunction with the Neo-natal unit at University Medical Center,
which is a teaching hospital associated with the University of Arizona and also with
Tucson Medical Center. Because of the association with the university, UMC gets more high
risk pregnancies and has a great need for gowns. Our guild supplies UMC and TMC each with
approximately 80 gowns a year in two sizes - small and extra small. This project is a
great way for someone new to smocking to learn the stitches as the gowns are very simple
and easy to make and also give something back to the community.
Please feel free to print and use our patterns and directions in your own chapter for your
Wee Care© Program. However, please do not reprint them anywhere without our permission and
please give written credit to Cactus Cablers.
45 Wee Care Smocking Designs
in one of our past newsletters