Olallieberry Ice Cream Quilt

comments: 108


I put the sewing machine on the dining-room table. The chair was right in front of the vent where the coldest air blew the hardest and froze my legs, which made me happy. In that spot, I sewed 676 three-and-a-half-inch-square patches together, one by one by one by one. The majority of the patches were a pale, icy gray-pink, exactly the color of vanilla ice cream with a few of these special berries thrown in.


I have no idea what possessed me to stop doing virtually everything else and start making an enormous patchwork quilt in four days. I'm almost finished sewing the binding on. Must have been all that sewing talk. I've now done nothing — and I mean nothing — but sew for four straight days, since I refuse to leave my vent. Even though it only got up to 106 yesterday, and not 107, after all. Record-setting. My friend Shelly called in the afternoon and said, "You must have air conditioning. You're the only person I know who hasn't called me." She has a beautiful in-ground pool. She said she'd had twenty-three people over at her house in the past four days. A constant pool party. She said the place looked like a frat house, with more beer in the fridge than food. I told her I would love to come over except that there was just no possible way I could, because I cannot leave my vent. I can only get up to go into the second-coldest room in the house (the bathroom). I ran to my next-door neighbor's at some point to bring the iced tea, dropped it off, and immediately hot-footed it (paws on fire! Paws on fire!) back across the frizzed-out, burnt-up front lawn, back to my vent. We're going to Pickathon tomorrow, and I'm already having severe separation-anxiety about leaving my vent.


I love you, vent.

***The quilt pattern is available here.


Evelyn in Maine says: July 30, 2009 at 07:07 AM

Gorgeous quilt, Alicia.

I love this post.
A woman and her vent.
The quilt is lovely too.

i was recently in Dallas (temp 107) so i feel for you! i was only there 3 days, but it was the 3 hottest days. Love your house and especially your backyard pictures!

Lovley! Glad you survived the heat wave!

Do you have any tricks for piecing quilt squares? I just started one for my daughter and none of the rows lined up. I think it was just small inaccuracies in seam allowance and/or cutting but I couldn't recover and turned it into a stacked coin instead! Is there a secret or do I just need to be more precise?

That quilt is beautiful!

If sitting by that vent helps create such wonderful designs (and in just 4 days!) keep sitting by that vent and who knows what you might create.

And...I love your new banner!!

Love the quilt! In New England we are NOT having a heat wave...we are having rain-and lots of it! Happy venting to you!

My son is going to get a kick out the title... he'd walk a long way to eat Olallieberries! What a lovely heat driven creation you are making!

What a beautiful quilt :) I love hot weather and am not a fan of AC at all, having grown up in Atlanta, but 107 sounds boiling even to me!

Yesterday it was a sunny 106 there in Portland and a rainy 89 here in Dallas... and which one of us is making a quilt?

I can understand... even though it's only been in the mid-80s here in the Northeast, the humidity has been choking these last few days. I'm having a bit of vent love, myself. We're building forts near the ac, big fun for little boys!

Wow...WOW 676 3.5 inch squares. Wow.

Not that I love a/c vents the way you do, but I am wishing I didn't have summer school homework so that I could either finish a knitting project or get my Mom's sewing machine and start on a tanglewood bag... something pretty and creative and more interesting than business administration. (Mom said I could have her sewing machine! It's in her attic turning to dust! I'm so excited! Look what you've started!)

I love the colors...cool and creamy... so inspired by your icy perch next to your favorite vent.

That quilt is lush, four days well spent, I say x

You remind me of the time when my hubby and I lived in a tiny old house (it was a yellow house with white trim), in the country (I am a city girl really) ) and it only had two window units. Being in TX it gets HOT, so we would plant ourselves in front of the one in the dining room as long as possible. I loved that little house, but not the lack of AC.

Glad you have your vent and such a lovely, lovely quilt! Oh! and love the new banner! :)

I find it quite funny that you're making a quilt during a record heat-wave. :) And yes, we in TX love our air-conditioning vents, too.

What a lovely quilt! I went to college in San Luis Obispo, CA where they also grow ollieberries. Oh my goodness, I love those berries. There was (probably still is) a local bakery that made the most amazing ollieberry pies, muffins and scones. Yuuuummmmm.

LOVE the quilt....where did you get these fabrics...which designers? Love the tiny flowers!!!

lovely!!!! I love squares too!

it sure is lovely! ps: reading 'the guernsey literary and potato peel pie society" right now too. it's so lovely.

Now I want to keep my eyes open at the farmers market for ollalieberries...or maybe, since I found out that I can ride the bus out to Sauvie Island, see if I can find a U-pick place.

I wish I was so productive during our heat wave; over here in North Portland it was 108+ yesterday, and with no AC at Acorn Cottage I was pretty much flattened by the heat yesterday. (hoping to get some sewing done today though)

OOOoooohhh,... I cant wait to see it finished!!

You are a woman possessed! I'm cracking up that you decided to make a blanket during a heat wave...a blanket! Can't wait to see the finish product.

love the quilt.
hate the heat (i feel for ya, i do).
thank goodness for a/c and ice tea.
yay for pickathon! my hubby's band is playing there -- dehlia low, coming to oregon all the way from asheville, nc -- have fun!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at aliciapaulson.com