Sunday, May 12, 2019

Mother’s Day With Mackinac Memories

Isn’t this room lovely?

This is not my room – but Mother’s Day weekend is a HUGE event at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, Michigan and I am sure someone is waking up in it this morning – stretching and yawning and just about now sauntering themselves down to Salle ala Manger to treat themselves to a sumptuous Mother’s Day breakfast – or perhaps room service is knocking on the door with breakfast delivered – just to enjoy this lovely room a week bit longer.

This room was at the end of our h all, and all week long I kept trying to get a better glimpse inside, but dang it – there were always people in the way.

With our later departure on Friday morning, I was able to poke my head (and my speedy phone camera!) in through the door while housekeeping was busy in the bathrooms and take a quick shot.

Just take a look at how colors are combined in this photo!  The carpet is green with red. That floral wallpaper screams loudly!  The quilts are yellow/white, but the canopies are floral/peach.  The chairs are aqua. It’s a scrappy confection!

Ohhh!  A fancy suite!

And I caught housekeeping in the corner!

This room reminds me of my Grannie.  Especially that vintage lamp with the crystal teardrops.  She furnished her house like this – with heirlooms from her own parents and grandparents.  Things that brought them to mind every time she walked past them.  The colors in here?  Do you see that bold purple at the end of the bed?

Purple, rose, green, aqua, raspberry and the deep warm tones of that armoire. Heavenly!

The last time I taught at the Grand Hotel Needle Arts Seminar (3 years ago) Mother’s Day happened while I was there teaching – and the attendees all agreed – it was the best way to spend Mother’s Day!

And some mother’s got to spend the week teaching with their daughters assisting!

Fellow C&T author and designer Rebekah L. Smith was at the Needle Art Seminar teaching her fabulous wool folk art techniques and I popped in on her before we checked out to say goodbye.  It was so great meeting her and her daughter – they are such a fun team! How neat that they got to spend the week before Mother’s Day together in this fabulous space.

We all envied this class room!

It’s at the end of the dining hall through beautiful French doors and the windows look out over the hotel grounds, to the town and Lake Huron below.  Wouldn’t you love to be stitching here?

So lovely and quiet in here – no machines required!

I could so get into wool applique!

And then my brain tells me “Beware of the slippery slope – you’d need to build a whole ‘nuther stash!”  LOL!  But I love it – I love the texture, the peaceful stitching, the colors – everything!

Here they are putting together a little book, and many of them did the “front” appliqued block at home as homework before coming.

Pam Beal and her class -

Carrying on the tradition of “Liberated Quiltmaking!”

These gals were next door to me -

And I had fun peeking in from time to time to see what they were up to.

Melinda Bula and her class!

We all giggled that she could blend right into the wallpaper in that green sweater!

Busy with her beautiful Iris quilt pattern and technique.

Her work is STUNNING – it truly takes my breath away.

Her evening presentation on Wednesday was so very inspiring!

This is a fusible applique technique with machine quilting – not a watercolor!

How she does this with fabric boggles my mind.

(I think I’ll go into the corner and play with my triangles and squares now. LOL!)

I am so grateful to have spent a week in the company of these women that I admire so much.  I even got to jump into the action and help out a bit -

Before my own presentation -

In Mary Elizabeth’s words: “The grand reveal and international (Mary Elizabeth is from Canada!) presentation of my “Grand Feathers” quilt happened this past Sunday night at Grand Hotel’s 10th Annual Needle Art Seminar Opening Reception.

An antique quilt in the hotel spoke to my soul and I just knew I had to make this quilt. I wanted to use lots of bright colours as a nod to the wonderful riot of colour in the Grand’s interior, designed the wonderful Carleton Varney of the acclaimed Dorothy Draper & Co., and nothing could have been more perfect for this on this 10th Anniversary than Kaffe Fassett’s fabrics since Kaffe was the very first instructor at the Grand Hotel Needle Art Seminar.”

Are you jealous?  I got to TOUCH this beautiful quilt!

But evidently I forgot to put my FRONT arm down and the BACK one up!

So much for my OWN Quilt-holding Etiquette! LOL!

Mary Elizabeth – it is truly GORGEOUS!

I am in serious awe.

“And one last shot of my Grand Feathers Quilt on location at Grand Hotel, where the idea for this all started." Photo by Martha Mckenzie Jager.

Happy Mother’s Day to these fabulous inspirational instructors.  I am so happy to have had the honor of teaching with you.

Our own Show & Share from within my classes was a BONUS!

I knew it would be hard for anyone to bring extra weight – so many were flying in, and EVERYONE had to take the ferry over from Mackinaw City to Mackinac Island, so I knew even the chance of anyone bringing a quilt to share would be slim.  

But these ladies did not disappoint!  Click to Play:

Beautiful just beautiful! Thank you to everyone who thought to bring something to share with all of us.

Flowers from son Jeff for Mother’s Day.

Thank you son!

As I accepted the bouquet from him, took it to the sink to trim the stems, place them in an old glass milk bottle and tie it all up with a yellow bow (A 2 1/2’’ strip from my own Scrap User’s System!) I couldn’t help but think back to Mother’s Day Week of long ago.

Back in the day when son Jason was just a small tyke, (and Jeff was still in the "before his grand debut" period likely watching from his little blue cloud somewhere waiting for his time to arrive!) I worked at The Flower Trunk in Ontario Oregon while The Hubster was working at finishing up his college degree at Boise State. He also worked evenings part time driving pizza delivery to help us make ends meet.

As the saying goes - Those were the days!

Looking back, these were extremely tight times, but it didn't feel like it. I got to be creative with floral design. I LOVED IT! The fragrances, the colors, the textures - and God bless the flower shop owners - They allowed me to supplement my meager wage by letting me sell my dolls, country animals and other creations by placing them in and amongst the arrangements in the front of the shop adding to the décor, and helping greatly to pay my bills. This was the beginning of my designing days - Circa 1986.

But most of all I remember the whole week of Mother's Day being a furious FRENZY of late nights, of fast arrangements, of orders coming in faster than we could make them, of delivery driving, of potluck dinners in the shop as we worked late into the night to get everything done and out to the recipients on time.

To anyone working in the floral industry – I feel and remember the long hours, endless days, nights of minimal shut-eye and the excitement of happy faces as flowers were carefully delivered.  Some of that gift of giving love rubbed off onto all of us.

Where did my mountains go??

I filled all of the book orders that came in while I was gone in Michigan and around 6pm loaded up the van and headed for the cabin.  There is much going on here this week.

The kitchen/bathroom counter top replacement begins tomorrow (Bye bye ugly blue Formica!) and the drywall guys should start the ceiling fix in the Quiltville Post Office.  It’s going to be a busy and messy week – but so very exciting at the same time. 

I will head home next Sunday after all is said and done – and I have a friend coming to help me behind the scenes while this is all going on.  Irene from the Cozy Quilter in Louisville is coming to play for a couple of days.  Yippee!

And that takes me to now.

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Quiltville Quote of the Day.

Happy Mother's Day! In my eyes there is no heroism greater than motherhood. To all those who mother - be it their children by birth or adoption, or simply through those children you have taught and influenced by your example and gift of your time.

Mothering is a full time job. And often that also includes full time fathers who have taken on the roles of both sides of parenting.

This day is for you with love and gratitude for the great gift of life you brought us into and the encouragement all along the way to be who we are, sometimes in spite of ourselves!

I think Abraham Lincoln put it best when he said "All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother."

Thanks Mom! I love you!

Have a wonderful Sunday, everyone!


  1. Happy Mother's Day to you as well, Bonnie I hope you take some time today to play in the scraps!

  2. ..............and a Happy Mothers Day to the 'Mama of all my favorite quilts' Thank You for what you do for all of us...each and every day !

  3. oooh yes that floral wallpaper is gorgeous....and that princess feather...oh my! my fingers itch just looking...will have to make at least ONE block...can i stop there???

  4. Happy Mother's Day to you, Bonnie! Enjoy your beautiful mountain home! This past Weekend Sew Melody was sewing on sand strings for Sandcastles and I was making that fun border on Box Kite. We sure do love you and your quilts! Cherry Boom in North East, PA

  5. Happy Mother's Day Bonnie! I'm traveling this week and only have my cell phone with me but I'm looking forward to seeing this post on my desktop when I return home so I can see the photos on a larger format and look at all the beautiful detail in each one.

  6. Happy Mother's Day to all!

  7. Happy Mom's Day. Surprise your mom this year with these unique mother’s day gift ideas and watch her smiling. That would be the most beautiful moment I can bet.

    Helen, pacsun free shipping code for all

  8. happy mother's day!

  9. I simply must ask about the string quilt shown 24 seconds into the show and share. Is her border a fabric print or did she do a postage stamp border? If it's the former, I am in disbelief at how long that must have taken! It's beautiful.

  10. Happy Mother’s Day Bonnie, I loved your blog today and by the end when you spoke of your mum tears were coming bless you Bonnie for your love and all you share with us.
    Love and quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  11. Happy Mother's Day to you also. Thanks for all the inspiration!!!!

  12. What a beautiful picture of you and your mom.

  13. The apple sure didn't fall far from the tree. You two could be twins. Beautiful and I hope you had a marvelous Mothers Day.

  14. Hi Bonnie and Happy Belated Mother's Day!
    I am trying to figure out where the "Flower Trunk" shop is/was in Ontario, OR. I know the town pretty good, being my cousins/foster family lived there, and I still go back every year or every couple of years. Of course, Andrews Seed company and the quilt shop, P.O. are some of my main haunts while there.

    Happy Spring, or almost summer for you folks!

    Kasilof, AK
    Where the sun is shining today, but it is quite breezy.

  15. What a great place for a class. Be it quilting or wool applique or any of the other wonderful ways we all entertain ourselves. Speaking of wool applique, I was lucky to have taken a class with Rebekah L. Smith and met her daughter too! So much fun and I just love my table runner. I am so happy that I found your blog Bonnie - many thanks to Mary Etherington of Country Threads, just love her blog too!

  16. What an absolutely lovely place for a quilt class! Looking forward to your next quiltcam!


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