I’ve always loved my baby blanket. My blanket had an elephant print on it and I called it “elephant-pei” (“pei” meaning blanket in Chinese). That’s where Ellie Fun Day came from – it’s an alliteration in honor of my beloved baby blanket! I really LOVED my blanket and it gave me a sense of warmth and security in a scary and unassuming world. When I was a kid, my mom would wash it, hang it on the line and I would go outside, grab the corner of the blankie and wait for it to dry. That’s how attached I was to my “ellie-fun-pei”!
In recent years, I’ve been dreaming of designing a product that would be a pathway for empowering under-resourced people. I didn’t want to just contribute to the endless sea of consumer products; I wanted to design something that I loved and a product that would make a lasting change in the world. I thought of my baby blanket, but I didn’t know how it would be a pathway for change.
Two years ago my husband and I were in India, serving with an organization that worked among marginalized untouchable caste people. One day we were touring the organization’s facility and noticed that they had a room full of sewing and embroidery machines. As we learned about their desire to start a work program for local untouchable women, we knew our being in India was no coincidence.
It was then that the dream became more of a reality and I could see how my “ellie-fun-pei” could change the lives of under-resourced people around the world.
– Sarah, chief blankie crafter