PITTSBURGH – Jennifer Gooch's mission was to create a simple Web site where people could go to find their lost gloves. Even if no happy reunions ever took place, she was just content to spread a little goodwill.
But just a month since www.onecoldhand.com went live, the Carnegie Mellon University art student is busier than ever. She's reunited four gloves with their owners, is working on similar sites for cities around the globe, and is planning a book to showcase her found gloves.
The first glove match was made about a week ago, when a CMU intern from Germany heard about the site and checked it out for her missing beige glove. She found it on the page, under the description "woman's leather glove with bling."
Sarah Altmeyer said she bought the gloves a few years ago in Germany, but later lost one at Carnegie Mellon's Simon-Newell Hall. She heard about the Web site Gooch created and thought she'd check it out.
Much to her joy, she found the missing glove there. "It was a very popular glove. I was actually kind of happy it was our first reunion," Gooch said.
Gooch's Web site got 55,000 hits in the 10 days after stories about her project ran all over the world.
"It's been amazing. Once the surprise kind of waned, I realized that it's something a lot of people can relate to, and for different reasons," Gooch said.
More than a dozen businesses and other offices in Pittsburgh now have drop boxes where lost gloves can be placed. Gooch gathers the gloves, photographs them and displays the picture on her Web site with information about where the glove was found.
Gooch's site has grown from 21 gloves to a collection of 75. A site started soon after, www.onecoldhand-nyc.com, had three gloves posted online as of Thursday. Sites are also planned for Manitoba, Milan and Philadelphia after Gooch was contacted by strangers who wanted to spearhead similar efforts in their cities.
At the end of April, Gooch plans an art show with the photos of her gloves, along with an accompanying book.