Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Look What's Growing in my Grandma's Basement

My grandma's basement is:
1) a treasure house of books, dolls, fabric, metal toys, paintings.
2) storing a ping-pong table on top of a pool table.
3) a study in psychology.
4) a visual representation of 7 people's hobbies.
5) messy beyond belief.
6) referenced as a way to measure one's own messiness, as in "my closet is almost as messy as Grandma's basement, but not quite."

Now that my grandmother is living in a nursing home, my mother and her sister have undertaken the monumental task of sorting through this basement. It's a process.

A few months ago, my mom dropped off a gigantic bag of fabric from my grandma's basement. Here are some of the sweet swatches I found.

Despite the charm of the fabric, I was not inspired to make anything special. That is, not until I was invited to this grandmother's 90th birthday celebration in Traverse City this past weekend.

I also happened upon this book:

And I had to get myself to the sewing machine. And fast.

I decided to make a fast, mini, memory quilt on a pillowcase.

After the first step, I had a beautiful winter tree.

And after the thing was finished, the tree was old-fashioned and timeless, similar to the creativity that I believe my grandmother passed to me.

The birthday weekend was colorful and beachy.

The party was a beautiful tribute to my grandmother, Ruth Schiller Fabis, her life, and her artwork.


  1. Keri,
    You are a beautiful woman -- inside and out. Thank you for putting this altogether in the midst of your ever-changing schedule. We made lots of memories that glorious weekend. Love, Mom

  2. Keri, that pillowcase quilt is gorgeous!