Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Buddy Pillows for Kids With Chronic Illness: Parents, I Need Your Input!

I am pretty lucky that I can honestly say that my friends have some of the cutest kids around.  I mean that seriously and with my whole heart - I love these little people.  I have made some pillows for my friends kids.  Some pillows were made for free as thank you gifts, some were paid custom orders.  But, I enjoyed these projects so much since the pillows were going to people I care about.

Back in December, an old high school and college friend asked me to be a Santa's Helper and make a few pillows.  How could I say no?  We worked together to pick fabrics and we ended up with a set of Dora and kitty cat pillows.

Dora for a "little girl."
Kitty cats for a "big girl."
Fortunately, when Christmas morning arrived and both girls received their pillows, they were happy girls.  I in turn was a happy seamstress.  I know that as time has gone on, the pillows are still in use and the girls are still enjoying them.  That makes me happy.  However, there is more to this story than just decorative throw pillows.  The kitty cat pillow has become much more.  This is where I need some help and input.

The "big girl" that received the kitty cat pillow suffers from a pretty horrible case of asthma.  It is scary and dangerous for the poor kid.  It is also pretty stressful and worrisome for her family.  And from what I understand, her own cat plays a role in her asthma - he doesn't make it worse but he often knows when an attack is coming.  Late night trips to the doctor/ER (any trip to the doctor) and breathing treatments are no fun.  But, for some reason, the kitty cat pillow has become her buddy and she swears the pillow helps her with her asthma.  It gives her comfort and something she can hold onto when she is sick.  This started a conversation between my friend and I - how about marketing pillows from kids who are sick a lot.  Asthma buddies?  But then again, kids have diabetes, cancer, all kinds of unpleasant stuff.  The kitty cat pillow I made is a 16 x 16 pillow.  But maybe the pillow should be smaller, rectangular.  Easy and comforting to hold but also small enough to fit in a backpack to transport back and forth from doctors and hospital visits.  These pillows could be made in bright, soft, and fun fabrics.  I would make them at covers (just need to find the right insert size) so they can be easily washed.

Now, this is where you come in.  I know a decent number of people read this blog.  I know a lot of you either have kids or know kids who might benefit from something like this  So give me your input.  Anything!  Let me know what you think of size, design, or any ideas you might have for this project.  Leave a comment on here, Facebook, or even message me privately.  I really want to know what YOU think.

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