Friday, July 29, 2011

Blue person, hand quilter

Eleven hours from the door of my home in Rolla, Missouri, to our hotel in Snowmass Village, Colorado—tiring, especially for my husband, who did the driving legs from home to Lambert Airport in St. Louis, then Denver to Snowmass. The views along I-70 in Colorado are spectacular, but the traffic is definitely not! Anyway, I’m finally here for a week with my walking shoes and hand sewing projects. First, the view from our hotel room balcony:

Yes, we did pay a little extra to be on the mountainside of the hotel, but I don’t come to Colorado that often, so who wants to look out of the window at a parking lot? We ate at a delicious Italian restaurant, Il Poggio, last night. I had very tender veal with gnocchi and Jim had duck. The pizzas there looked good, too, and I may go back for lunch one day. A good night’s sleep was a lot harder to come by than a good meal, though. The altitude here is 8,000 feet, and I tossed and turned for hours. My task today is to walk around and try to acclimate. I know that really getting used to the altitude takes months, but I have to try, and I want to explore the village.

When I need a break from walking at 8,000 feet (and I will), I will be quilting. I brought with me three hand-quilting projects. The first is my abstract “Roman Ruins on Lake Garda,” which is blue, blue, blue:

The next is “Water Wheels, No. 3,” which is also blue, but darker. This is the third in a series of Water Wheels quilts I’ve made. The first two are owned by my daughter Anne, and the fourth is the largest and has yet to be quilted.

Finally, here is a “Postage Stamp” in reproduction fabrics, which always make me happy:

As you can see from two of these quilts, I may be in a blue phase right now. This morning I was reading one of the blogs I follow, Forty-Two Quilts at, and Jenifer asked, “What’s your favorite color?” From childhood, my favorite has always been red, and I do use it frequently in my quilts. However, I would never buy a red car (too much of a radar target), and I wear red clothing sparingly (too tomato-like). I never thought I was “a blue person,” but now I’m sort of craving blue. Maybe it’s the influence of all the travel I’ve been doing—blue sky, blue water—or maybe I’m seeking the calming, soothing feeling that a beautiful blue always brings.

Hand quilting is calming, too. I never thought I would be one of those, either, but here I am, blue person and hand quilter, down to the borders on these three quilts. First, I need to get my mountain legs, so I’m off to explore with my camera. At 9 a.m., Snowmass Village is still silent and the intense mountain sun beats down. Covered in sun screen, mountains, here I come!


  1. From a friend who e-mailed this comment to me:

    Blue? Blue is calming. Blue is pure. All the great bluesmen will tell you that singing "the Blues" makes them (and those that listen) feel better. Blue is good. So many of the best artists have a "blue period", BB King, Joni Mitchell, Picasso, Clapton, et al.; you are in good company. So, go ahead, be "blue" and let it take you to another color. You have earned it. The mountains have much blue, and green, and brown, and russett, and purple, and salmon, and turquoise, and more than the rainbow shows.

    Take care, B.

  2. Do what makes you happy! Your Roman Ruins and Water Wheels are stunning and the wall, lap, or bed that ultimately await their final destination are lucky indeed. Quilt a memory that will last longer than a snapshot a postcard or in my case, a demylenating memory ever could. Quilt just how you feel now - blue or not - a feeling or palette that evokes Feltsy image that can be shared with Danica or relived as a little mental escape from RollaMo when Capri, Rome, Snowmass or any place you've visited can be be relived when dishes, laundry, yardwork pile up. Looking at a lovely, deeply earned creation - your little quilted escape - will bring you or those you love back with you.

    Your talent is enviable.