Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Of Hydrangeas, Quilts, and Future Events!

Periwinkle Blue has to be one of my most favorite colors.

I just LOVE blue hydrangea season!

It is in full swing in North Carolina – maybe not quite all the way up to Virginia yet – but it’s coming.  These beautiful balls of periwinkle just capture me.  And with those deep green leaves of summer as backdrop?  My eyes are doing the happy dance.

I remember as a small child being amazed at the old wives remedy of ensuring their blue color by planting pennies in the garden so they’d have enough copper mineral in the soil to be this blue.

Sprouting up along the edge of the woods in Wallburg.

Hydrangea blue.  Bliss!  These photos were taken on my Monday morning walk with Sadie before all the scramble to make the morning round of appointments began. 

And I’m glad I got out for that round of steps – it has poured and poured since I’ve been up in Virginia.  Yesterday the thunder rolled at 3pm, and taking the clue from the day before, pulled the shades, turned out the lights, and headed with Sadie to the truck.

Big fat ploppy drops were falling before I could even get her IN the car.  By the time we rounded the corner it was the heaviest downpour I remember driving tbrough – windshield wipers on as fast as they could go and they were of little or no help. 

We crawled the 4 miles to Grassy Creek Road to make our turn off to the cabin…..and it let up.  About 2 miles up the road it was barely a sprinkle.  When I got about 1/2 a mile from my drive – the pavement was dry.  Weather is sure weird in these Blue Ridge Mountains!

Safely inside I set in to continue working here – and then WHAMMO, the big storm was directly overhead again and I was breathing a sigh of relief that we had made it up the mountain road in dryness, not a downpour, and we were safely inside for the remainder of the storm.  Whew.  That was a close one.

Exciting things going on:

Aug 14-17, 2019 in Vicksburg, Mississippi

Wednesday – Saturday (August 14th-17th)
9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Wednesday – Garden Party from the Addicted to Scraps book 
Thursday- Serpentine Web shown on the cover of String Frenzy.
Friday- Emerald City also from String Frenzy.
Saturday- Wonky Wishes

There are still openings available – and August will be soon upon us.  (Not that I am rushing things!  I love summer and want it to slow down!) 

I’d love to have you join me for these workshops.  Find the contact info by visiting the Old Man River Quilt Fest page.

Empty Spools Seminars at Asilomar!  Registration OPEN!

I am happy to be teaching two back-to-back sessions of String Frenzy!

Session 2 is Emerald City from String Frenzy (shown on the cover!) March 15-20 and Session 3 is Straits of Mackinac also from String Frenzy March 20 - 25!

Two back-to-back weeks of quilting by the sea!

For more information email empty spools seminars. info@emptyspoolsseminars.com

Is this kismet or what?  I am channeling the periwinkle blue – check out the cover of the brochure and how it fades from periwinkle in the upper right.

Also – don’t forget to check out my upcoming international trips by clicking the tabs at the top of the blog.  I’d love to have you join me.

A bit of periwnkle (almost) in here too!

Exciting things are releasing this week – A couple of items TOO BIG to be easily shipped from the Quiltville Store, so please check your local shops or Amazon and other favorite online retailers for folks that ARE shipping these. 

Have your quilt and carry it too!

Cart your quilting fabric, books, groceries, and more in this sturdy and spacious 15.5" x 15" x 8"  bag that will become your new go-to carryall.

It features my Smith Mountain Morning quilt from Scraps & Shirttails II 

The environmentally conscious tote is made from recycled water bottles, also making it water-resistant. With double handles—one short, one long—you can carry it over your shoulder or on your arm as needed.

• Heavy-duty, over-sized tote bag with easy access opening, shoulder straps, and sturdy stitching
• Bottom panel reinforced for standing upright and carrying books, sewing projects, and more
• Gorgeous printed bag shows off scrappy detail and quilted texture  (retail: 9.99!)


It’s Puzzle Time!

My new Festival of Quilts 1000 piece puzzle is also something too large to carry in the Quiltville Store.  And you are going to want one! Or MORE for your quilty friends.

Please ask your local shop to get these in.  You can also find these on Amazon for under $20.00.

International customers, this also may be available by Amazon within your country so your postage shouldn't be crazy high - and for those with Prime - my how we love our PRIME!

If you are coming to any of my events in person, I WILL have these items available for purchase on site in limited quantity.  I won’t be able to have them in class this next week at the 7 Sisters Quilt Show in San Luis Obispo, California – there isn’t time to get them there. 

But they will be on hand for our Louisville KY retreat with the Cozy Quilter and at Quilt Odyssey in Hershey.  

Those attending my Quiltville Summer Series with Mary Koval’s Quilt Shop in Bedford in July – please let the shop know that you would like them available.  I am not supplying merchandise for that venue – the shop is.  (Logistics are crazy, I know!)

Oh look!  Hydrangea Blue! LOL!

I took the last few binding stitches in Garden Party table runner number 2 (blocks from the Addicted to Scraps book!) last evening!  You’ll be seeing a tutorial with info coming up on the C&T blog.  That is my goal today – to get that how-to written.  Note – you MUST have the Addicted to Scraps book to make the runners from my directions for that blog post.  I’m happy to send you a copy!  ON SALE in the Quiltville Store – and you also get a free pattern for my Wanderlust Table Runner at purchase.

And it gets mailed from the Quiltville Post Office in beautiful Mount of Wilson, Virginia.

Funny story - I was working away behind the reflective window film at the QPO (I'm getting tired of typing Quiltville Post Office - QPO it is for short!) and I see this SUV pull up...roll down the windows and start taking multiple photos of Quiltville Inn.

The folks didn't get out of the car, but evidently they SAW the "private drive STOP signs" on the drive and backed up, got back on the road...and crawled slowly while taking more photos as they made their way past the house.  

I stood and watched from inside and giggled.  I could see their flashes going off.  I thought to myself "Quilters?!"  If only they knew that I was watching them.  LOL.

Oooh, lookie!  Black and white photos mean????

Oh, how I love the beginning of something truly mysterious!

It’s that time of year.  And I’m grateful to have the time up here to get a good leap into this year’s upcoming Quiltville Mystery.  Are you going to play along?

Be looking for Title, background story, colors and yardage info to happen around Halloween.  From there it is full steam ahead to Black Friday.

(Yeah.  Can we just slow this year down a bit please?!)

I’ve also got something fun in the works that HOPEFULLY may work as a trial run later today from the Quiltville Post Office.

Guess who found a 50ft ethernet cable?  So I can hardwire the laptop and the external camera to the modem?  And see if we have enough high speed in these rural parts to DO a QUILT-CAM!?

As it is just a test run I’m not putting in an exact time per-se but I’m thinking around 3pm.  Facebook Live.  If it works I’ll embed it here tomorrow and we will be all systems go for future Quilt-Cams to happen from the Post Office.

Fingers crossed – and if you are hanging around Facebook you’ll see my live notification pop up within your news feed.

Let’s get this day started so we can DO IT!

Quiltville Quote of the Day.

Vintage hexagon quilt shared by Debi.

Learn the art of saying no. Don't fib. Don't make excuses. Don't over-explain yourself.

If it doesn't fit your life, just simply decline.

(Except when it comes to offers of free fabric.  LOL!)

Have a wonderful Wednesday, everyone!


  1. Will be seeing you in Kenya! ❤️

  2. Welcome to the wonky weather of Virginia mountains!! Trying to figure out how many of your fabrics (in black and white) that i have in color —- problem is manufacturers make the same design in many colors. Guess I have to wait!! Have a great day!!

  3. My mother loved hydrangeas too. She always poured pickle juice on the ground to increase the ph level. It seemed to work. Loving the updates Bonnie. Thank you for all you do to provide us with great resources and activities. Some day I will get to take a class. Maybe at Quiltville Inn.

  4. So exciting looking forward to this years mystery I’ve done the last 2 and really enjoyed them.
    Have a wonderful day and I’ll try and catch you on live stream later if it works.
    Love and quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  5. i have a 50 ft ethernet cable...LOL...always tripping over it....love the bag!

  6. It is so fun that you used that particular quote today! It popped up in my FB memories and I reposted it today, I'm going to take credit for the whole "great minds think alike" ;-) I start my mornings with your blog faithfully!

  7. I'll see you in Vicksburg with my sister-in-laws. I'm also keeping my fingers crossed that I'll be able to make the Ireland trip with my sister-in-law.

  8. Learning to say 'no' without feeling i needed to offer an explanation was so liberating. Just wish it hadn't taken me so long to learn this bit of wisdom.
    "No", I said and when coercion ensued my reply was, "No, I don't want to." It was exhilarating! Thanks for sharing this ♥

  9. We've got masses of blue hydrangea blooms in central VA. They love the rain we've been having.

  10. I was always able to keep my hydrangeas in Northern California blue by sprinkling a handful of rusty nails around them while they were dormant in the winter

  11. Beautiful flowers.
    I think the weather has been awful all across the world. We haven't had summer yet - a few late spring glimpses and promises but the rain! So much rain! What to do when you can't get out in the veg plot? Sew stash dating before year 2000 into trips around the world! Coming on nicely, almost ready for a border as I've two rows left to join up. Love it love it love it! Thank you.

  12. Hydrangeas were my mother's favorite flower. I have a bedroom with a hydrangea wallpaper border but I have never had them in my garden. Bonnie, do they approach you about teaching or do you approach them? Have you considered Madeline Island School of the Artsor Sievers School on Washington Island? Both in Wisconsin.

  13. Bonnie I ordered the tote in May and it is back ordered until July.

  14. I, too, love blue hydrangeas. They take me back to my childhood, visiting Grandma. She had two large bushes outside the kitchen window. I always called them blue snowballs -- didn't know the true name until after my husband and I bought our first house and I went looking for "blue snowball" bushes. I pick up hydrangea fabric anytime I find it, but can't bring myself to cut into it. I pull it out to "pet" when I'm missing Grandma.

  15. I ordered my tote bag several months ago it was on preorder. Imagine my surprise when I got it in the mail today. Love the idea it is made from recycled plastic!

  16. We love hydrangeas, too! We have white, blue, purple and pink. Great job on your new tote bags.

  17. I love Periwinkle blue also. I have two Hydrangeas in my back yard blooming beautifully all dressed in Periwinkle blue. I love Hydrangeas and and have a couple white ones in the front yard and one that blooms in a sort of lime greenish color. Oh so pretty.
    I live in Montclair, Ca. about 30 min. east of L.A. Getting ready for a HOT summer. We had a taste of HOT summer a couple weeks ago when the temp. was at an unusual 104*. That kind of temp keeps me inside during the heat of the day. Gardening is done early AM or PM when it cools off. I love your web site. One of my girlfriends told me about you. I shared with a fellow knitter who is also a quilter. She was so happy to learn about you.

  18. Love the Hydrangeas! So many happy memories of my grandparents' garden.

    I WILL BE SEEING YOU!! My neighbor and best quilting road trip buddy and I will be taking your class at Asilomar! A Bucket List item for sure!!


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