Sun and Sea • New Pattern

How long do you keep owing someone a favor? Do you give up after a month? A year?
About FIVE years ago, Michael contacted me for a pattern for one of my quilts: an older one called Sun, Falling Into Sea.

He didn’t say exactly what he liked about it, but he wanted a pattern for this quilt just as it was. I am not completely flakey: I had sent him the blocks for the center, but last month he contacted me (such patience!) again asking for the pattern. Those of you who know me long-term won’t even blink when I say, well, I should do a couple more different versions. First up is Happy Valley.

Happy Valley, with its limited spectrum of colors and a black background, is named for the place where I grew up. We all called it Happy Valley because it seemed like nothing wrong could ever happen. Or if it did, we’d deny it to our death.

I recently visited my childhood home, and that name was just floating around in my head, as I drafted the pattern in the car the long way home from that place. Ignore the red garage with the antlers. When I lived there, the garage was a falling-down thing in the back. My bedroom was one of those two upper story bedroom windows; there were seven children and we traded around a lot. We were the furthermost house up the hill, with those glorious mountains behind us. I could go on and on about my little childhood stories, but we’ll leave it here.

For this quilt, I dipped my toe into Reels on Instagram and had fun making this little movie. (Sound on!) It’s also on my feed a couple shots back, if you would rather see it that way.

This coloration is called Summer Snowcone, because — of course — with its red, white, navy and sky blue it just says summer fun. I added a different kind of border around this one, and you can make this as large (add more blocks and more border blocks) or small as you want to. I chose this size to be a little table cover for us this summer.

I posted this pattern up on my PayHip site, and within minutes the ever-patient Michael had purchased and downloaded it. I hope it works out for him, and that it was worth the wait. Those of you with sharp eyes may have noticed I set up a little discount for anything in my shop, with the launch of this pattern. Use this code to get 15% off:

I did put this up on my Index of Quilts, but it’s kind of cheating, I say, if its not quilted. Well, it will have to be a place holder until I do get it quilted. And that’s another reason to celebrate: Happy Valley appropriately puts me at the significant milestone of 250 quilts. Summer Snowcone is coming in at #251. Cheating, yes, but I couldn’t resist!

Here’s to your Happy Valley, and to the first Summer Snowcone. But let’s do a giveaway or two, too!


The first giveaway is a free Sun and Sea pattern from my pattern shop. If you are the winner, I’ll send you a coupon just for you to use to get your free downloadable pattern, plus, I will send you a gift card to Pineapple Fabrics, so you can pick up 1 1/2 yards of white Painter’s Palette Cotton Solids to help you get started on your Summer Snowcone quilt.

The second giveaway is a free Sun and Sea pattern from my pattern shop. If you are the winner, I’ll send you a coupon just for you to use to get your free downloadable pattern, plus, I will send you a gift card to Pineapple Fabrics, so you can pick up 1 1/2 yards of black Painter’s Palette Cotton Solids to help you get started on your Happy Valley quilt.

(If you head to my pattern shop to the Sun and Sea Pattern, you can click in the upper righthand corner to download a Preview file that gives an overview of the three different flavors of Sun and Sea quilts, plus yardage requirements.)

To enter: tell me your favorite memory from your childhood that involves summer. I love reading what you write, so enter to win!

(Happy Grandchildren)

26 thoughts on “Sun and Sea • New Pattern

  1. Please don’t enter me in your giveaway- I have been a recipient of your generosity before. But one of my favourite summer memories is having two weeks at the beach, long days in the sun and fun nights at the carnival riding the Cha Cha!

  2. One of my favorite childhood memories is the whole family going to the public beach after a long hot day of work on the farm.

  3. My best summertime childhood memory is having 3 families together up at the cottage and everyone having to go for a swim (early) to the raft and back before breakfast! As kids this was quite a challenge, but lots of fun!

  4. My favorite childhood memories are going to NASCAR races with my Dad. It was always just us and one of the only things I did with just him. We would go to Indianapolis and Michigan International Speedway in the Irish Hills of Michigan. The Irish Hills are one of the most beautiful areas in the country if not world.

  5. One of my favorite summer memories is a family trip to Colorado and Yellowstone. It was the first time we took my cousin along and we had so much fun! We usually took family trips to visit family, so this was an adventure!

  6. My favorite childhood memories are of playing in the backyard with my sisters. We had a big swingset and even a set of uneven parallel bars, all of it built by my dad, the plumber, from plumbing pipe! My sisters and I are all quite tall, but in the backyard we imagined we were petite, skilled gymnasts!

  7. One of my favorite childhood memories is of going to the local park to swim in the wading pool and doing crafts with the summer students they hired to supervise us. I think I lived at the park most summers!

  8. One of my favorite childhood summer memories is hiking up to Timpanogos Cave in your “Happy Valley”. I loved when they turned out the lights in the middle of the tour.
    I grew up in the valley just north of Happy Valley but now live in the state that is 2 north of you.
    My parents just returned (before COVID) to my childhood home after a mission to “City Beautiful”.
    I love your blog!

  9. One of my favorite summer memories would be where three families of cousins and aunts and uncles rented cabins at a lake. It must have been so much work for the moms, but it was heaven for the kids.

  10. What a cool pattern! It looks so different in each of your colorways! My favorite summer memories are of outdoor play all summer long in our neighborhood. Four square and kick-the-can were my favorite games, and we even occasionally put on circuses for our patient mothers. I also fondly remember the freedom we had to roam our mid-sized town, home to a large state university, via bicycles.

  11. As always, I am stunned by how different a pattern looks when color and value are changed. That summer version would never make me think it the same pattern as the other two!

    As to summer memories, the farm setting reminded me of family friends we would visit a couple times a year; they had three girls. On one visit we were wading through a culvert, probably under a driveway, and I was sure we’d get in trouble. Of course we didn’t. But I was a city girl, and it seemed like an off limits thing.

  12. One of my favorite summer memories is also of beaches in Cape May New Jersey with my parents, siblings and grandparents. I would get up early and walk along the beach collecting shells before anyone else was awake. I loved the quiet.

    Another is of my other grandparents’ farm in Ohio – I would eat nothing but fresh juicy peaches, fresh corn and ripe tomatoes every day for lunch and dinner as long as we were there. We took the dogs for walks down the dirt roads between rows of ripe corn. We made dolls from hollyhock blooms and tried to sell them by the side of the road. No one came down our country road to buy one.

  13. Another beautiful pattern Elizabeth. No wonder Michael waited so patiently for you to publish it. 😉
    My childhood was filled with many adventures and memories. I had contracted polio so once I was recovered and we moved to Europe (my Dad was in the Armed Forces) we often spent time travelling and outings often contained locations where I had to walk a lot. The best memory was of being out and about on a hot summer day to some historical site where my siblings ran ahead up a tower, but my Dad stayed with me. He held my hand as we climbed the stairs in the cool stone tower. I’ll always remember the warmth of his hand and the feeling of being “safe” as we climbed those many stairs in that cool, stone tower that echoed our footsteps and my brothers and sisters laughter and cheers as they reached the top tower room.

  14. My favorite summer memory was the year my parents allowed me to wear a two piece swim suit. My dad was VERY strict and this was such a big deal! I think I was 14 and I felt so sophisticated and grown up.
    As always, your patterns are beautiful, Elizabeth!

  15. I absolutely love the original version and those batiks just make it. And hooray for Michael and his patience!!! And after staring at the pic for a bit I finally figured out the blocks 🙂 No need to enter me in the drawing, but here’s my favorite summer memory: both my parents had a sibling each who lived in Florida. So every couple years we would drive from Virginia to both Jacksonville and Miami and stay with each for a week, sometimes taking a grandparent along. Cramped car, motels with pools along the way, spending time together at their homes and many days taking in the sights – in the old Florida. I think our best photos are from those trips! Thanks for the opportunity to take a trip down memory lane 🙂

  16. What a fun prompt! I can’t wait to read all the entries. I immediately started flipping through the rolodex in my head–leaving the kid we were babysitting at the beach (so many kids to count!), playing hide and seek in the dark, watching the Disneyland fireworks, flip-flip-flip…but my favorite is a very introverted memory, oh-so-sweet. I return to often, in some adult form, which may be why it is still quite vivid. I remember climbing up onto the fire hydrant that was in between our house and our neighbor’s, holding a book in one hand and a big plum in the other, and getting settled on that perch, on a cool, quiet morning (it must have been June), ready to read. We moved from that house when I was six, so I may have been just out of kindergarten, already fully in love with books and selfish about my solitude. We moved to a house with many trees and I took to climbing into them and reading among the branches.

  17. It was fun thinking of summer memories! We used to go on picnics beside the Davidson River, and the girls would all push each other around until one or more of us “accidentally” fell in the river. So refreshing!

  18. Your pattern is lovely. I plan on buying it because I’m intrigued to discover how the blocks are made.
    There are many summer activities I remember but a special one came every year on a weekend near July 4th. My dad’s siblings, parents, and all my cousins would gather at my aunt and uncle’s home for a noon to dark potluck, games of all sorts in the HUGE side yard, sparkles and firecrackers at dusk. I am so happy all the cousins got to know each other and the family ties are still strong today.

  19. Congrats on the wonderful new pattern Elizabeth. I really enjoy seeing all the variations . . . the red, white, and blue fells so summery and patriot. A good 4th of July quilt. One of my favorite summer memories was being in 4-H and participating in the county fair year after year. Just discovered my 4-H ribbons recently as I was cleaning out boxes in the attic. Please don’t enter me in the drawing . . . I’m in over my head all ready with projects.

  20. It was fun to read all the memories! I, too, played endless games of kick the can, and made hollyhock dolls. But my favorite memories are of the years we rented a house on Balboa Island in Southern California, with my Dad’s twin brother who lived in Texas. We were there for a whole month, and all my Dad’s brothers and sisters visited us. Lots of beach time, and endless games of pinochle.

  21. My favorite time in the summer was my annual visit to my grandparents’ small farm. I was a city girl and it was such an adventure to milk cows, gather eggs, walk in the woods and gather wild blackberries to sell to the feed store! Thanks for the giveaway and great job on all 3 versions of the pattern!

  22. A summer memory that is foremost in my mind right now is when I was about 7 I was at my grandparents’ house for 4th of July. My slip was scratching me under my sundress (it was the 60s; we dressed up more then — lol). Then I remembered I wasn’t wearing a slip. It was a cicada crawling up my back under my dress! It’s not a favorite experience, but I still cherish the memory. The 17-year cicadas are back in force in southwestern Ohio right now. I’ll need to be careful when I’m wearing a sundress outside!

    1. My best summer memories are all the times I got to spend at my grandparents farm, everything from helping pick tomatoes and cucumbers for the market to candleing the eggs every evening in the cool cobblestone cellar, again getting them ready for the farmers market in the city. My grandparents had several hundred chickens, so you can imagine the number of eggs! This was in the 1950s. Good times!

  23. Best memories were summers spent with family gatherings with aunts, uncles and cousins at my grandparent’s farm.

    That’s a great pattern. It looks so different in the different fabrics. Cute pic of the grandchildren in the pool too.

  24. The quilt design looks so different in each version! Best summer memories. Hmmm. Not much of a summer person, but I always enjoy a good fireworks show.

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