Prayed-over pillows provide comfort, joy

Published 3:58 pm Friday, July 24, 2015

PORT NECHES — What started as a “funzie craft,” for Port Neches resident Sandra Beaugh has turned into something more than a unique way to gussy up one’s home.
Beaugh’s pillow creations, crafted from rough-hewn burlap, have a softer side, one that spreads the love of God while offering individual words of comfort.
Beaugh, 52, first started sewing her signature burlap pillow when the fabric enjoyed a surge of popularity a few years back, moving from the feed store to the home as a unique decorative item.
Emblazoned on the front of each pillow is a simple embroidered inspirational message such as “blessed,” “pray always,” or “scatter joy,” just to name a few.
Those messages, combined with a sprinkling of holy water and a prayer sent up with each loving stitch, make the pillows special, Jill Murphy-Wills, owner of Jillsuzanne, a Port Arthur arts and antique store, said.
“She has a lot of pride in her work and she blesses every pillow; you can carry that into your home,” Murphy-Wills said.
Beaugh’s pillows are featured at Murphy-Wills’ Magnolia Street location, and at antique shows in Warrenton, Texas, where they quickly sell out in four to five days.
“What’s she’s doing is an art; she has a talent,” Murphy-Wills said.
Beaugh admits being “crafty” since her childhood when her mother every summer found a project for her to work on.
Whether it was latch-hook rugs, embroidering a work shirt, or making Barbie doll clothes, her mother introduced fun projects to wile away summer days while instilling an early appreciation for making hand-crafted items.
When burlap was introduced a few years back as a new decorative fabric for the home, Beaugh said she fell in love with it, and fashioned three pillows with embroidered sayings.
She took the pillows to a women’s conference at church, where they were a big hit with the ladies.
“Everybody just loved them,” she said.
Beaugh began to make her special to give as gifts, and now sells them.
“I’ve given away as many as I have sold,” she said.
What makes them unique is they are blessed, not as a sales gimmick, but from a spirit of thankfulness, and sprinkled with holy water before they leave her house.
“I pray I am thankful to have the skills and ability to sew and make pretty things. I always pray that God be glorified, and pray for that person that gets the pillow. I ask God that it will help them, or bring a smile to their face,” she said.
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