Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Apron Naming Giveaway: Round Three!!

Remember just a few weeks ago when you all had the chance to name a couple of the beautiful new aprons in the Scarlet Threads' Fall Line? Well, those aprons now have the perfect names to go along with their beautiful colors and styles…the "Evelyn" and the "Jennie Mae"!

In case you missed your chance to enter, or didn't submit the winning name, how about another round? Our friend and affiliate Andrea, over at Mitchael Journey, is hosting a naming giveaway for another one of our new aprons! This one is the perfect size for the little girl in your life, and is full of bright colors and ruffles to match. Will you help us find the perfect name for this cute little apron? Can't wait to see what you come up with…

Head on over to Andrea's post and comment with your favorite name, and you could win this apron for yourself! I mean...for your sweet little one, of course! What do you think?? Is she a classic name? A spunky name? Give it a go! Let's see what she'll be!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

A Brave Heart


“Why heart defects? Why orphans?”
Friends and family asked me these questions over and over again as I advocated for children with broken hearts, and tried to raise funds for their surgeries. Even more incredulously, they asked, when I moved from Iraq to China and everywhere in between to help provide heart surgeries for critically ill children. Over and over again I answered:

Because. Of. Brooke.

I met Cai Wei, or “Brooke” (her given English name), while interning for a special-needs orphanage in China. She was 18 months old, and, on my first day of work, I was assigned to work one-on-one with her.

Immediately, I fell head-over-heels in love.


She, however, was not so quick to love—distrustful and guarded due to emotional trauma in her past. Born with only half a heart—along with four other complicated defects—Brooke arrived at this orphanage, an incredible place called New Day Foster Home, when she was only 10 months old. She was very blue and very sick, desperately needing a surgery to survive. Soon after, she received her first open heart surgery, and this truly saved her life.

People that I will never meet this side of heaven donated funds to give my Brooke a chance to live. They gave her a priceless gift that can never be repaid. She was given a future full of beautiful hope.


As the summer wore on, she gradually began to trust me, and we eventually became the best of friends. However, I still worried every day about her physical heart, knowing how much she needed another surgery. I left China and “my” Brooke Cai Wei at the end of the summer with my own heart broken, and returned home resolved to find her a family.


Only God could orchestrate the events that followed in the months after returning home, but 8 months after saying goodbye to Brooke in China, my family was on a plane headed back to bring her home- forever to be ours. Brooke and I were waiting for them to arrive in China...and the moment I placed my baby sister is my mother's arms for the first time is a moment that will   never, ever be forgotten. 




Life was a whirlwind with our new little one, but 7 weeks later, we placed Brooke Cai Wei into the arms of her capable surgeon, as she went in for yet another lifesaving open-heart surgery. While Brooke’s heart can never be “fixed”, this surgery gave her incredible hope. It gave her a chance for a future.

Because of Brooke, I see hope for children all around the world with heart defects, waiting for their chance at life.



I remember too vividly the despair that is felt, knowing the child I loved needed a miracle to survive. While in Iraq, I hurt with each family, as they bravely handed their precious children over for surgery, not knowing the outcome. When I hear that a child's repair has been successful, I can almost feel the beat of Brooke’s newly repaired heart under my hand. I know in my soul the relief that is felt when these families see that their children have been given a hope for life.



YOU can join me. You can bring hope to another little one, desperately needing a chance
This precious one is another sweet boy, needing heart surgery, just as my Brooke waited for hers. This little one's name is Eli, and he lives at New Day Foster Home, outside of Beijing, the same organization that cared for my Brooke and quite literally saved her life. Eli has incredibly complex heart defects, and needs his second open heart surgery that will cost $15,000. Expensive? Yes, incredibly. But his life? Friends, his life is priceless.

For me, heart defects are no longer just a statistic, just another medical condition. Brooke Cai Wei has given them a face, and her heart-story has rewritten my own.
You can make a tax-deductible donation to Eli's surgery by following this link. He is worth it, friends. Please help us make his broken heart whole.

Every child, like Brooke, deserves the gift of hope.
Now that I have seen, I am responsible. Because of Brooke, I am here. Because of Brooke, I will fight for every child with a CHD to have access to hope. Join me in praying for Eli and help us heal his heart!


Monday, November 10, 2014

Apron Giveaway - Name Announcement

The names are in for two of our new aprons. And, contests for the three remaining are soon to begin! Scarlet Threads has become a community socent (social enterprise) and we really enjoy sharing our successes with you. Thanks for taking part in our naming contests, for sharing our button, for buying our products, for commenting on facebook, and everything else. This isn't just a two-person project, this is our mission together.

First off, we are thrilled to announce the name of our gorgeous adult Ruffled Apron - selected by our partner Mommy's Kitchen. Girls grow up, but they don't have to grow out of ruffles.

Meet Jennie Mae!

Based on our popular Priscilla pattern, this ruffled apron for adults is sure to bring some sunshine into your kitchen.  The bodice is made from a delicately embroidered floral fabric in a swirl of colors on a bright pink fabric, while the accent fabrics in a small ocean-blue check fabric and a bold floral print that repeats some of the same patterns and colors as the embroidered fabric make the apron pop.  One of our most beautiful creations yet, this cheerful and elegant apron has fully adjustable waist and neck ties.  Handmade by Deng Jie. - $36

Next up are the results of our own naming contest. Thank you to everyone who participated! We received so many beautiful names, and it was quite a task to narrow it down to please our 3-person selection committee. But in the end, we settled on a classic and elegant name...

Meet Evelyn!

A modern fabric perfect for autumn in shades of brown, tan, gold, and orange... all the beauty of Fall in an apron.  With orange accents and fabric-covered buttons at the neck and pocket, this apron is ready for you to make the season's first pumpkin pie. Handmade by Deng Jie. - $25

Again, a thank you to everyone who supports us! If you are currently sharing our blog button, consider becoming an affiliate and directing traffic to our apron shop instead. We would love to share our success with you with a 5% commission. :)

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Thrifty Thursday: The Vivian Apron!

Starting your Christmas shopping early? We have another beautiful apron on sale for you this week! The Vivian apron is 50% off, down to just $16.00! It has beautiful grey and blue floral fabrics, paired with a gold ikat patterned fabric. It definitely makes a statement, and has two pockets…absolutely perfect for your busy baking days!

Isn't it just lovely? Get your order in today before they're gone! The sale will run until Wednesday at midnight! And don't forget to stop by and check out the orphan care fundraiser we are holding this month! Would you help us raise the funds to heal Eli's heart? We already have a great start! If you would like to donate, all funds will be going directly towards his surgery and are 100% tax-deductible. Read here for more of his story…and share with your friends! Let's bring hope this holiday season!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Eli's Brave Heart

It's officially November, and we are so excited to kick off our National Adoption Month focus with the story of this precious little boy! As I mentioned in our "Five for Friday" post last week, Scarlet Threads has a huge heart for the orphan, and has made it a priority to include orphan care and adoption ministry as a very real part of our daily mission and vision.

This month, we want put our vision into tangible action, and help raise the funds for a precious little boy to have the heart surgery he so desperately needs.

Meet sweet Eli. He's just seven months old, and was born with a severe congenital heart defect. He is cared for at New Day Foster Home, and is just the sweetest, most tiny thing. His perfect, though broken, little heart has sustained him for the first seven months of his life, but New Day is preparing him for the surgery he will receive that will give him a chance at HOPE! It's his very first intervention, and he is very complex, so it will not be an easy case, but we are praying for surgeon's wisdom and for Eli's little body to be strong and fight over hard through the weeks and months to come!

Photo from New Day Foster Home

Will you help be a part of Eli's miracle? The heart surgery he needs is close to $15,000, and he is so absolutely worth it. Your donation is tax-deductible, and will be designated directly to Eli's surgery fund….won't you join us?

Photo from New Day Foster Home

Go HERE to donate to Eli's surgery…your donation goes to Legacy Charities, New Day's parent 501c3, and will be completely tax-deductible. If you aren't in a position to give, maybe consider telling your friends…sharing with your family. His life is full of so much hope. What a beautiful thing!

We have an amazing retail partner - Seven Hopes United - who has offered a gift certificate for use in their shop to each donor. Hint - they sell Scarlet Threads Aprons! Email info@ScarletThreads.org for the code!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Five for Friday Series: The Scarlet Threads Story

As we were working and preparing for the upcoming busy season here at Scarlet Threads, we began to discuss the purpose of the work…reasons why Scarlet Threads exists as well as the reasons it should continue to. We narrowed our conversation down to five purposes…five succinct statements that embody who we are and why we do what we do. We wanted to share the heart behind Scarlet Threads with you all, so we have put together a "Five for Friday" series, which will continue each Friday over the next several weeks. Our first installment was from Carrie, taking you back to the beginning of Scarlet Threads, and our first purpose of empowering artisans through employment! Meredith is sharing today about the our heart for orphan care and the ways Scarlet Threads works towards that, especially this month. Check back next Friday for our third "Five for Friday" post!

Purpose #2: Orphan Care

It seems so natural to me, so fitting, that orphan care is included in Scarlet Threads' mission. Knowing the history of Scarlet Threads, the hearts of women behind it, and the close connection with a special needs foster home very near and dear to all of us, the choice to include orphan care in Scarlet Threads' vision just made sense. We will talk more about our commitment to adoption, through our apron fundraising kits, in the weeks to come, but as November is National Adoption Month, we wanted to highlight this special part of our mission. 

Our founder, Carrie McKean, and her husband Jacob lived and worked at New Day Foster Home, a special needs foster home outside of Beijing, for four years. Scarlet Threads was started in that same village during the time they were there. I was an intern at New Day several years back, and after completing my internship, my family ended up adopting a sweet little girl with a severe congenital heart defect, who was cared for and loved by New Day. As is more than apparent, we have very close ties with New Day, and are committed to working with them as much as we are able to help them in their mission to bring hope to the hopeless and the fatherless home. Many of their children have severe medical needs, and New Day is committed to providing surgeries, medications, and therapies needed. We have partnered with them for the last several years to help raise funds for surgeries or medications. Last year, you all helped us raise $7,580.00 to cover the cost of anti-rejection medications for 2 children for several months. The year before that, our little community was able to raise $5,000.00. We have plans to do the same and MORE this year! 

The story comes full circle. Last year, two children needing anti-rejection medications were very very sick. This year, they are doing incredibly well, both are matched with forever families of their own, and will be joining them soon. We want to be a part of continuing this circle of hope. Joining the orphan care movement does truly make a difference. Lives are impacted and hope rises. 

This month, we will be featuring guest bloggers discussing all sorts of topics within the orphan care/adoption realm…from special needs adoptions, to mission trips, to orphan prevention programs. We would love if you would follow along with us this month and discuss with us some of the prevalent issues surrounding orphan care! If you have a topic or idea you would like to bring up or see discussed, please email meredith@scarletthreads.org and we will fit it in! 

We will also be hosting a fundraiser for New Day Foster Home this month! This year, we want to raise the funds needed so a sweet little boy named Eli can get the heart surgery he needs! He is oh so precious and oh so blue…and we would just LOVE to see those little lips and toes turn bright pink! We will be launching that on Monday, so stay tuned for details! 

Photo from New Day Foster Home
Orphan care is so important, and it is truly at the forefront of Scarlet Threads' mission and business. We want to be wise in the way we approach and discuss it, and want you all to join us in the mission. Will you? Let's fight to make a difference together. 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Thrifty Thursday: The Nora Apron!

We have another amazing deal for you this week! Our Nora apron has been marked down to just $12.00…what a steal of a deal!! The Nora is one of our classic half apron styles, and is made from a bright, beautiful turquoise patterned fabric and a big red ruffle. It's so fun and adds that perfect splash of color to your kitchen! It can also be ordered in the full apron style, but just a few are left! Order quick…don't miss out! This sale will run until Wednesday at midnight.

Which products of ours are some of your favorites? Is there that one certain apron you have been hoping will go on a Thrifty Thursday sale? Let us know in the comments! It might just show up sometime…