In May, I was at Heritage Park’s Festival of Quilts and came across a sweet little quilt called My ABC’s. It was displayed on a wooden rack in a side yard across from the Wainwright Hotel. I was drawn to it immediately.
Turns out, the quilt was made by Charla MacPhee, a novice quilter, mother of four and previous member of the Calgary Modern Quilt Guild. For a novice quilter, Charla has made an amazing number of beautiful quilts. Recently, she and her family made a major move across Canada back to her native home. Before she left Calgary, Charla graciously allowed me to photograph some of her quilts in the surroundings of beautiful Waterton National Park, located in southern Alberta. I was so happy that she trusted me with her beauties!
My husband and I set out for Waterton on a Friday night. It was 10 p.m. when we arrived. The elk were grazing on the horizon as we turned into the Parks’ entrance.
Saturday, we awoke to a cloudy day and a Park that was not at all crowded. We stayed at the quaint Bayshore Inn which was built so many years ago on the shores of Waterton Lake. Heading behind the hotel, I drank my tea sitting on the large rocks on the banks of the Lake. What a way to start the day!
Walking around the teeny tiny town, we came across this Mama Deer and her two little fawns grazing in someone’s backyard.
Just off Main Street is a rustic little church with an old wooden signpost; the perfect place to hang Charla’s Hello Darling quilt. She made this one using a background of Kona white solids and a jelly roll of fabrics designed by Bonnie & Camille for Moda. The colourful, pieced blocks are set on point, which makes this quilt look to me like a modified log cabin pattern. Very striking and very pretty.
After a few hours, We headed out of the Park towards our land – maybe a 25 minute drive or so. Rain falling, the bridge and the majestic Rockies made for a stunning backdrop for my quilt, which I call Summer.
Along the way, we found this deserted, tranquil rest stop.
My ABC’s made by Charla for her children from free Moda letter patterns is the quilt of hers I fell in love with at Heritage Park. I find it utterly charming.
Wildflowers are abundant in this “neck of the woods”. Beautiful fields of flowers grow undisturbed.
Cartwheels, another of Charla’s quilts hangs on the fence surrounding the perimeter of our property. Chief Mountain, which is actually located in Montana, looms in the distance. She used another Moda jelly roll in the construction of this project; designed by Corey Yoder.
I am grateful that I met Charla before we she moved so far away, and even more grateful that I got the opportunity to photograph a few of her quilts. She’s a lovely lady and I wish her and her family all the best in the East!
Next Wednesday – Quilter’s World magazine – Young Ideas, New Traditions. How this article came to be.