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Saskatchewan’s Joni Fraser shares healing through quilting

Joni Fraser began creating starblankets in 2018. Sharing images of her blankets online helped her overcome her social anxiety, finding healing in quilting. Joni is now teaching others to do the same.

Joni focuses on crafting elaborate starblanket designs with vibrant patterns using her sewing machine. The quilter from Pasqua First Nation, located 60 kilometres northeast of Regina, fulfills orders for the blankets from across Canada and the United States.

In 2018, Joni struggled with anxiety and wasn’t as confident in her abilities as she is today. Creating starblankets and displaying her work to others has been transformative for her. The Saulteaux and Cree woman from Pasqua First Nation overcame her social anxiety by sharing her artwork online. She now uses quilting to build community and confidence.

The online community that Joni has built by showcasing her work has helped her overcome self-doubt. People have shown trust in her work and inspire her to continue. Her work has gained her over 1,600 followers, and she feels grateful for the overwhelming support from people all over the world.

Joni creates starblankets for various occasions such as births, farewells, and funerals. She sees it as a way to offer comfort and honour others. Her father passed down the tradition of giving blankets as a gesture of gratitude, and now Fraser wants to teach others to do the same. She finds the experience rewarding and believes that making and giving blankets can be healing for both the giver and the recipient.