Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to limit the colors of the baby booties to black/white/gray?

Please do.  This is called  The Project is about uniting to mourn and right a tragic wrong; my instinct tells me bright or pastel colors just don’t connote that.  That said, if you have some beautiful black yarn or fabric with a tiny red thread or dot (for instance), and it ‘reads’ black, feel free to include that in the Project.  Use a  variegated white-gray-black yarn or fabric if you like.  Your artistic contribution will incorporate these colors in a unique combination with a pattern and fiber of your choice. Embellish to your heart’s content.  Just be sure to mail all baby booties to Mary Vaneecke, 2000 South Hermosa, Tucson, AZ 85713 by Mothers Day, May 12, 2019.


Can I make a pair of booties in memory or honor of someone?

Yes!  Make a note on the donation form and write it in permanent fabric marker on a white ribbon, strip of fabric, interfacing, Tyvek, or other durable paper or fabric.  Stitch the ribbon or strip together with your pair of baby booties.  This donation checklist has a diagram.  Please mail all baby booties to Mary Vaneecke, 2000 South Hermosa, Tucson, AZ 85713 by Mothers Day, May 12, 2019.


I don’t know how to sew, knit, or crochet.  Do I have to hand-make the baby booties?

My vision for is that each of the 23,000 babies lost annually will be remembered by a unique, handmade, heartfelt little ‘elegy.’  If you do not sew, knit, felt, or crochet, consider asking a crafty friend to help.  Sewing a simple pair of booties can be done in about an hour.  Your gift does NOT have to be technically perfect or lavish, though you are welcome to make it as fancy as you like.  What matters is you care enough to make this little elegy.  As an alternative, you could purchase a black/gray/white pair of infant booties and embellish them yourself with contrasting white, gray, or black marker, paint, sequins, lace, etc.  And of course, advocacy is a critical part of this project.  You don’t have to be creative or crafty to write a letter or contact an elected official, arrange an exhibition, or make another donation to the project!  Please mail all baby booties to Mary Vaneecke, 2000 South Hermosa, Tucson, AZ 85713 by Mothers Day, May 12, 2019.


Can I make a pair of baby booties anonymously?

Yes.  Just note that on the donation form.


Do you know where I can get a nice free pattern?

There are loads of free patterns online.  Click here for links to some of my favorites.


Does it cost anything to be a part of

There is no application fee.  I am asking each maker to consider contributing $1 for each pair of baby booties made.  While I take no salary as founder of the Project, I expect to incur costs related to shipping and exhibiting the installation.


What are you doing with the money you collect?

I will donate any time I spend on the Project.  I do expect to incur significant costs related to the ultimate art installation, website design, storage, postage, appropriate shipping containers, insurance, travel and other costs related to  I am seeking grant funding, and possible sponsorships to cover these costs.   Right now, I am requesting that baby bootie donors consider making a donation of $1 for each pair of booties they make.  This will allow me to take advantage of exhibition opportunities as soon as they present themselves, and plan ahead as much as possible.  Any monies left over at the end of the project will be donated to (named charity–possibly the March of Dimes).  Once the baby booties start coming in, I will be able to put together a budget for the project.  

When do you need these baby booties?

Please mail all baby booties to Mary Vaneecke, 2000 South Hermosa, Tucson, AZ 85713 by Mothers Day, May 12, 2019.


What are you going to do with 23,000 baby booties? 

I will create an art installation to draw attention to the problem of infant mortality in America and advocate for policy changes that can save babies’ lives.


What will the final art installation look like?

Good question.  I am working on that.  The full installation will be large. I won’t be able to estimate how large until I have collected a thousand or so booties.  For that reason, each exhibition will probably vary by venue as space allows.  The work will have to be durable enough to travel and economical enough to ship and reconstruct.  These are just a few of the things I need to take into consideration, but each installation will be respectful and in keeping with the spirit of the Project.   Please mail your baby booties to Mary Vaneecke, 2000 South Hermosa, Tucson, AZ 85713 by Mothers Day, May 12, 2019.


Where will this art installation appear?

Once I have an idea of the size of the installation, I will submit proposals to venues across the U.S.  Do you have a suggestion for an exhibition venue?  Contact me at   Follow my blog, Facebook page, etc. to find out where the exhibition will appear.


What will you do with all those baby booties when the Project is over? 

That’s another good question.  I expect the exhibition schedule will cover 2-3 years.  Some of these baby booties–particularly those made in memory of someone–may find their way to elected officials as part of an advocacy campaign.  Some may be donated to charities serving infants and children.  It’s possible some portion of the Project may become part of a museum collection.  Whatever happens, final disposition of the baby booties will be in keeping with the spirit of the Project.  Do you know of a charity or museum that would be interested in receiving these items?  Have another idea about how they will ultimately be used?  Contact me at

Have another question not answered here?  Email me at


Mary Vaneecke



Comments (2)

2 Responses to “Frequently Asked Questions”

  1. Evelyn Uyemura says:

    Hello, Mary,
    Our mutual friend Deborah Weir infomred me about this project, which I whole-heartedly support. At her suggestion, I posted it on, which has over 6 million members of knitters and crocheters! In the thread that I started, some folks were asking if you would join so that they can ask you questions directly. It is free to do so, at and then the thread is at
    Thanks for considering this!

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