eight enigmatic table runners
By Patricia Belyea
SPOILER: At the end of this post, you’ll learn how to win the eighth table runner.
SEATTLE WA In early January, a mysterious package arrived on my front porch. In the box was a letter from a stranger and eight hand-printed indigo table runners.
Sonia Jensen from Wyoming wrote:
This is a shot in the dark!
The enclosed fabric was a gift to my mother from her brother who lived and traveled extensively in the Orient (China, Japan and Korea) during the 1940’s and 1950’s. He worked for the American Red Cross but had previously been an antique dealer in Chicago.
Sonia asked me to find a home for the fabrics. I chose to gift the table runners to seven individuals who truly appreciate textiles.
On the next day I was leaving for Japan so I took one to Amy Katoh of Blue & White in Tokyo (below L). Amy, a champion of Japanese traditional crafts, didn’t recognize the fabric as Japanese. “Likely Chinese,” she said.
Once home, I visited Kathy Hattori of Botanical Colors (above R). Kathy commented that the fabric probably contained some hemp or wool.
The next recipient was my dear friend and yukata cotton patron, Gloria Pfeif (below L). Gloria is mad about everything indigo so I knew she’d love the runner for her Seattle home filled with arty treasures.
I mailed a runner to Joe Cunningham (above R) in San Francisco. Joe, a quilting pal who leads the Hood Canal retreat with me, is a man who enjoys eclectic fabrics.
Ann Darling (below L), a clothing designer from Tacoma, was the fifth recipient. Ann has traveled the world extensively, collecting textiles for her projects and stash. The gift of the table runner was a little like bringing coals to Newcastle.
At her Spring clothing design retreat in Gold Bar, I gave Lorraine Torrence (above R) an indigo table runner. Lorraine, a non-stop industry leader, is a quilt and clothing designer, purveyor of global fabrics and co-leader of Seams Like a Natural Fit Seminars.
Kathleen Kox (below L), the curator at La Conner Quilt & Textile Museum, graciously accepted the seventh table runner at StashFest 2014. I was emphatic that the runner was for her, not the Museum collection!
Here I am holding the remaining table runner (above R). If you write a comment below, you’ll be entered into a drawing to win the runner on Tuesday, June 10 at midnight PST. I look forward to hearing from you!
Postscript: After this blog was posted, Sonia wrote: Your handling of the indigo fabric strips has brought me so much pleasure. I can’t begin to thank you. The blog story is wonderful, the pictures of the recipients warm my heart. Thank you again.