Ocean Park – The Story Behind the Cloth
Hey there, thought I better formally introduce to you to Ocean Park here on the blog. I have been mentioning it in Instagram posts quite a bit in the last few weeks, but no mentions of it here. So for today, I thought you would like this little story that tells the tale of the cloth – the inspirations and thoughts and dreams behind my second line of Batiks with Banyan Batiks. Later this month (hopefully!) I will talk about the individual “tjaps”.
But for now…..
Welcome to the sweet little seaside town of Ocean Park, where tourists admire the gardens, architecture, waves, and ocean breezes and the residents love the peaceful, rhythmic calm of the beach in the off-season. Here you will find charming shingled houses in shades of seashell pinks and glowing golds. Aqua pools surrounded by picket fences, windswept gardens, and tidy sidewalks. There are quaint coffee shops and more than enough gift shops selling pirate paraphernalia, tiny treasure boxes, thousands of seashells, and mountains of salt water taffy. The beach is long and sandy, plenty of space for long walks discovering jellyfish, sand dollars, and starfish. Driftwood fences line the streets year round, decorated with fishing nets and buoys and the occasional wooden and real seagulls.
Come along and meet some of the townsfolk of this peaceful little village. The colorways of the Ocean Park collection are named after the streets where some of the most interesting residents abide.
West Beach Road
Marie Nelson who lives on West Beach Road in a quaint little golden cottage where she spends her days in the garden or walking her Corgi, Tasha Tudor. In the evening, Marie can be found watching shows like “Murder Most British” on the TV or beading small wonders and embroidering up a storm. Marie would rather be sketching flowers from her garden than cooking, but she will take time to clean; her home is tidy as can be and filled with blue and white china and pastoral paintings.
Sea Urchin Alley
Old Man Richardson who lives in a violet and green tugboat moored permanently on Sea Urchin Alley. Although he does yell “Hey you, get off my lawn!” far too often, he is a softie deep down inside. He has been through many hardships and since Mrs Richardson passed away, he just hasn’t been the same. He listens to old time jazz and takes particular care of Mrs. R’s roses to make sure he never forgets the love of his life. If you bring him some lemon bars or pumpkin pie, he sweetens right up and will talk to you for hours about his life growing up in the Midwest where the ocean there was fields of wheat and corn.
Natalie Westburg floats in and out of her brilliantly pink carriage house on Mermaid Avenue just as if she was back in the “theatre” where she played every noble lady in the book. She arrives to every party decked out in flowing gowns, tunics, and scarves, sprinkled with beads and feathers. ‘Frou-frou’ is her go-to look for every ensemble and “more is really never too much” is her motto. You can hear operatic arias as well as Fleetwood Mac tunes floating through the air over on Mermaid Avenue thanks to Natalie. You can often smell sandalwood incense drifting through the lace curtains fluttering in the breeze through her open windows when you walk on by.
Paul and Margaret Mckenzie host the local book club every other Tuesday night in their modern aquamarine bungalow out on the edge of town out on Tidal Trail. Paul is an avid runner and runs the Trail daily. Margaret teaches Zumba every Thursday evening at the Community Center. Both of them are into Yoga, Kombucha, and Macrame. Well, Paul is not really that much into Macrame, but he IS in love with Margaret so he does it just to be with her. Secretly Paul wants a rock tumbler for Christmas. Maybe this year he will get one?
Philippa Abernathy dwells in her bleached-out driftwood log cabin out on Sunset Boulevard. Philippa is an avid Quilter. She is constantly working up variations of Log Cabin quilts for her extended family and the neighbors. Even Old Man Richardson has one made from Mrs. R’s clothing after she passed away. Philppa is a good neighbor and always greets the new neighbors with a pile of chocolate chip cookies and of course a small quilt to say welcome. She has been recently been exploring the process of creating small art quilts as the sunsets from her deck have always been an encouragement for her to delve into less traditional quilting adventures.
Ocean Park is being sold to Local Quilt Shops now. Make sure you tell them to pick up the line. YOU will be able to get these modern batiks this coming September (2019)
I am looking forward to seeing what you can create with Ocean Park as you dream of the ocean or really just about anywhere you call home. Go forth and enjoy the wind in your hair and the roar of the waves encouraging you into new Quilting and Sewing Adventures.
Keep Sewing, Keep Happy,