Last Wednesday, my boyfriend and I returned from a week vacation in Florida! It was amazing – we spent time with family, enjoyed 3+ mile walks on the beach every day, took a day-trip to Sanibel during peak shelling season, ate like royalty, and visited two quilt shops!
The first quilt shop we visited was StitchCraft in Boca Raton! I had been there once before with my parents a couple years ago and I was very much looking forward to my return! My boyfriend, who accompanies me on my quilt shop journeys, was in for a treat. StitchCraft is well-lit, overflowing with bolts of gorgeous fabrics, has an area designated for male companions, and so friendly! My favorite thing about visiting quilt shops when I’m out of town (which I always do, it’s important to snag a piece of fabric that will remind you of each vacation you go on) is that typically the selection of fabric is much different from the tastes of the Pacific Northwest. The colors in StitchCraft are very Florida. I’m not saying that Oregon quilt shops carry drab, dark fabrics because it’s always raining, because that’s not true – although there always seems to be a nice selection of gray fabrics, Oregon quilt shops love to brighten it up with bold colors. But StitchCraft had plenty of summery cool colors (teals, aquas, and a great selection of lavenders)!
And so it happened, my boyfriend went off to explore the quilt shop and was immediately sucked into the Kaffe Fassett section (I’m telling you, he has my heart)! This experience was different though. He picked up a bolt of fabric and couldn’t put it down!! Oh, Kaffe stripes, how unbelievably irresistible you are!! And then it came, “Do you think we could make a new table runner for the dining room table out of this?” He’s got the fabric bug, bad!
So we picked out three coordinating shot cottons to accompany the stripes and I got down to business the Sunday after we returned. To be fair, my boyfriend chose the block design (a wonky nine patch), the layout of the runner, the quilting, the color of thread used for quilting, the sashing (that required an extra trip to cool cottons – we sashed it with a shot cotton named ‘Coal’ and I’m so in love with it – it’s warmer than a solid black), and the binding. However, one of the coordinating shot cottons we picked up in Boca didn’t make it in the runner. Our house is much more dim than StitchCraft, and two of the shot cottons were too similar in value and color to be effective in the wonky nine patch. After a run through my stash, we found a couple ‘maybes’ but nothing was really singing to us… Until I laid my eyes on my special reserve stash of hand-dyed fabric given to me by my friend, Britt. Yep. It was just perfect (the hand-dyed fabric we used is in the top left corner in the photo below and you can get some hand-dyes of your own here)!
We caught up on episodes of the Colbert Report last night while I finished hand-sewing the binding and now it’s on display on our dining room table! I have to say I’m impressed with my boyfriend’s ability to design all aspects of the table runner. He already asked if we could make something else together!! I’m so excited to see what we make next!
This table runner is going to be a daily reminder of our amazing trip to Florida in January 2014. I’m so in love. So so happy in love.