Here we are in Portland, OR!

Here we are in Portland, OR!

Saturday – Day One. . . . . .

My husband and I flew from Virginia to Portland, OR on Saturday. I will have a booth at International Quilt Market when it opens on Friday, so we’re having a few days of fun before we get to work. After we arrived around noon on Saturday, we dropped our bags at the hotel and started out to explore the city. My husband had heard that there was this great donut shop (Voodoo Donuts) that is open 24/7 so we headed over and had ourselves a couple of really delicous donuts. Evidently there is always a line outside the building, but the donuts were worth the wait. Here are a few photos:

Voodoo             Line at voodoo            Voodoo box

We ended the day by going to the Saturday Market on the waterfront followed by dinner and an early bed time (it was a long day with a 3-hour time change!).

Sunday, Mother’s Day -Day Two. . . . .

We got up early (mostly because of the 3-hour time change) and headed to the northern coast of Oregon. First stop, Astoria, which is situated near the mouth of the Columbia River. It was named after the American investor John Jacob Astor. His American Fur Company founded Fort Astoria at the site in 1811. Today it is bustling with tourists – there were three cruise ships there on the day we visited. We had a great lunch at Clementes before we headed south to Seaside, OR. There we walked on the beach and put our feet into the Pacific Ocean. Our final stop on our day at the coast was our favorite – Cannon Beach. It was absolutely beautiful. If I ever come back to this part of the country, I would love to spend time exploring the picturesque surroundings.

Pacific Ocean behind the sign in the center of Seaside.

Pacific Ocean behind the sign in the center of Seaside.

                                                                                                                                                    

Monday – Day Three. . . .  Our day started out by doing a little shopping for the booth at quilt market – candy to keep the customers happy, snacks for the booth to keep us happy and a step stool (cheaper to buy one than to ship the one we usually bring).  Then we headed south a short distance to Lake Oswego where we visited what I feel is the best shop I have ever visited – The Pine Needle. It was bright and fresh and full of gorgeous fabrics, many of which I have never seen. There were so many beautifully samples displayed very tastefully among widths of fabrics. The owner, Geri, greeted us as we entered the store and made us feel very welcome. [This is one of the few shops I have visited that carries Marcia Derse fabrics. I’ve recently fallen in love with these fabrics and have used them to make a number of quilts for my new patterns. You can see the fabrics on her website (www.marciaderse.com).]  If you ever have the chance to visit The Pine Needle, you won’t be disappointed.

The Pine Needle quilt shop in Lake Oswego

The Pine Needle quilt shop in Lake Oswego

Quilts showing Marcia Derse fabrics.

Quilt display showing Marcia Derse fabrics.

 

View from the front of store.

View from the front of store.

 Next we headed to the Pearl District, an area of Portland formerly occupied by warehouses, light industry and railroad yards and now noted for its art galleries, upscale businesses and residences. We had a delicious lunch at Deschutes Brewery, walked around the neighborhood a bit, then went to a movie when it started to rain.  Another early-to-bed night.

Tuesday – Day Four. . . .

Today we went to the Portland Japanese Garden, a traditional Japanese garden occupying 5.5 acres, located within Washington Park in the west hills of Portland. It is one of the most authentic Japanese gardens outside of Japan. This place is so peaceful. The colors are incredible, the waters are soothing, and Mt. Hood dominates the background! Once we left we headed to Nob Hill  for a great lunch at Papa Hayden’s.

The Japanese Garden - Strolling pond garden.

The Japanese Garden – Strolling pond garden.

 

Japanese Garden - bridge in the strolling pond garden.

Japanese Garden – bridge in the strolling pond garden.

Well, that is what we did for our first four days in Portland. This was the vacation part of our trip. Tomorrow (Wednesday) we set up our quilt market booth. I’ll post pictures in the next few days and hopefully show you some of what goes on at Market.

Laura

Welcome to my blog!

This is something I never thought I would do. What would I talk about? Would you be interested in anything I have to say? Well, I’ve decided that I do have a few things to share and I would love to connect with those of you with similar interests.

Just a little background. . . .

I am an avid quilter; so much so that my life revolves around it. Just ask my family. It has been that way since the first time I picked up a rotary cutter – about 28 years ago. A few years later I started working and teaching in a local quilt shop. That’s where I met Sue and my life was changed. Sue had a connection to a new fabric company that was looking for a quilt designer for their fabric collections. Sue suggested me since I had been designing a few quilts for the shop. That was the beginning of my life as quilt designer. (Thanks, Sue!) I have been designing quilts for that same company for over ten years now, as well as a number of other companies. It is challenging and takes you out of your comfort zone, but I love it. I also started my pattern company – Plum Tree Quilts – and attend Quilt Market twice a year to show my new designs. Quilt Market is a trade show (not open to the public) where quilt shop owners go to shop for the newest goodies related to quilting.

So that’s me in a nutshell!

These past few weeks have been very hectic since Spring Quilt Market is next week in Portland, Oregon. I’ve been busy making new quilts, writing patterns, doing quilt photography, getting things ready for my booth and shipping everything to Portland.

Here’s a photo of the quilts that I shipped to Market (only 6 of them are new):

Spring Market Quilts

We finally got everything for the booth packed into boxes. Here they are waiting to be picked up by UPS:

Spring Market Boxes

The “we” I referred to above is really my husband. He helps me out with my business, doing most everything that is non-creative. I couldn’t do what I do without him. He comes to Market with me and its fun to hear him explain to customers how the quilts were made. We’re going to Portland a few days early to do some sightseeing since we’ve never been to the West coast. I can’t wait to get there! Watch for postings from Portland in the next few days.

Here are two of my new patterns:

 Pattern-Covers-Spring

You can see more of my designs on my website: www.plumtreequilts.com .

Until next time,

Laura