As you might have seen in a recent post, I started working on a new foreclosure quilt for Cleveland last week. I've learned so much recently about the bigger picture of foreclosures happening in the US. First off, this is really about the mortgage crisis that results in foreclosures. Cleveland is referred to as 'ground zero' of the crisis. This might end up looking like a very different piece than my others because of the layers of destruction that have happened here.
Cuyahoga County is doing an incredible job trying to save the town of Cleveland. The foreclosures started back in 1999 or even sooner as factories closed and jobs were lost. The County has been trying to deal with the empty homes and continuing foreclosures by enacting new laws to protect homeowners and surrounding residents. It seems those pesky major banks find ways around the new laws. And they're still at it! If you want to listen to a good interview about it, click here for an interview by Terry Gross with Fred Shulte of the Center for Public Integrity.
As in Detroit, there have been a lot of demolished homes but what the County has done with some of them is an uplifting and hopeful story. There are now over 200 community gardens in Cleveland. For a population of 244,000, that's quite impressive. I'm trying to figure out a way to share this in my next quilt.
This will be one of my largest quilts to date, almost five feet high. I'm still working on how it will come together.
|Cleveland Foreclosure Quilt test study|
That underlying print fabric is called Forest Hill which is what led me to the Forest Hill neighborhood in Cleveland. It seems the quilt is almost making itself. I love it when fate seems to intervene, you just have to follow.