Christmas 2017 Part 1: Inspiration from Devils Tower

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It’s been so long since I’ve added to this blog! I guess I must blame it on making projects for Christmas presents, which is as good an excuse as any, right?

In any event, in the summer of 2016, Tom and I took a trip out west to geocache, see the sights, and experience the magnificence of wide open spaces. Naturally, our car is trained to stop at all needlework and quilt shops along the route and stop it did!  I found some of the most unique ideas for quilting! The patterns were amazing and very different from those in our area.

Wyoming proved to be a gold mine for quilting ideas. One of our most memorable stops here was a National Park called Devil’s Tower. The rock formation is breathtaking. We spent about two hours hiking, exploring the area, taking pictures, and watching those climbing the incredibly steep tower to get to the plateau top.  I was personally moved by the prayer bundles and cloths that are found hanging from the trees at the base of the tower. This tower and the surrounding land is sacred to six tribes of Native Americans. Sun dances, sweat lodges and other ceremonies are still practiced on this site. The prayer bundles and cloths are placed as an offering, a request, or a remembrance and must be left undisturbed by those visiting the area.  I have great respect and admiration for Native Americans so this area held me spellbound. I think this and the Badlands were the most memorable places we visited! You can learn more about the history of the Native American at Devils Tower by visiting Devils Tower: A Sacred Site to American Indians.

While at Devil’s Tower we stopped in the gift shop which had one of the most unique quilt wall hanging ideas I have ever seen.  Maps of various National Parks and the United States were printed on fabric with instructions on how to add borders in the colors of your choice and create a quilted piece with the map in the center. Our daughter Sabrina and her husband Dale, along with their two boys Soda and Cooper, are huge National Park enthusiasts so I picked up the US map that had every National Park numbered and listed on it. I had no idea how I was going to use it but I could not pass it up! To see all the available maps check out  Old American Antiques: American Quilt Blocks.

Life got away from me, as it often does, but this past summer I pulled out the map, read the directions, and put together this unique wall hanging using batik fabrics to match Sabrina and Dale’s décor. We found out that if you go online you can purchase little National Park pins for each park so we added a box full pins for the parks we knew they had visited already.  You can find any park pin you need at eParks.com . My plan was to make this a Christmas present, which I did, but that meant that I could not blog it until AFTER Christmas!

US National Park Quilt Map

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Coming up next? Christmas 2017 Part 2: French Roosters in Wyoming

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