My husband is from one of the most beautiful areas here in the United States: the Pacific Northwest. Humboldt County, with a population of roughly 140,000 sits almost 300 miles north of San Francisco and is less than an hour away from Oregon. Over half of the remaining old growth Redwood Trees are found here, and the twenty tallest trees in the world are all located in this beautiful area that has become like a second home to me. We truly enjoy our days up here, hiking through the forest under these mighty trees.
The trees truly are magical here, so it’s no wonder that this past summer when “[a]fter a multi-month search covering hundreds of square acres and thousands of feet in elevation, the 2021 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree from the Six Rivers National Forest has been selected.” (USDA, July 21, 2021) Each year, the selected tree is given an a name: this 84′ tall white fir was named “Sugar Bear”, after the state’s animal, the bear. “Selecting a tree to adorn the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol comes with a unique set of challenges in any given year, but especially with this being the second year the search and selection has been conducted virtually,” said Jim Kaufmann, Director of Capitol Grounds and Arboretum at the Architect of the Capitol. “Thanks to drone footage, comprehensive photos, compelling narration, and detailed notes and measurements, we were able to select a majestic white fir that very well represents the Six Rivers National Forest and the great state of California.” (USDA, July 21, 2021)
Now, what would a Christmas Tree be without a tree skirt? Enter the Moonstone Quilters guild, the Eel River Valley guild, and the Redwood Empire guild…a guild my mother-in-law has been part of for many years. Together, they created a 15′ tree skirt for the 2021 Capitol Christmas Tree, as shown below. Isn’t it gorgeous?
Each of the 24 wedges was created around a specific theme related to Humboldt by members of the guilds. Here’s a full list of each panel with the maker’s name and panel theme/title. If you look closely at panel #23, you *might* recognize one of my patterns…
Don’t you love it? Nancy Frost (my lovely mother-in-law) and her friend Kathy LaForge used the sand crab pattern, printed it at three different sizes, and created the lovely little five crabs shown in the panel below. It was such a joy to be up there this past summer while they were actively working on it!
Don’t you love it? They did *such* a beautiful job on it. I *so* appreciate how they took the crab pattern and completely made it their own. I also really (really) like the effect of the multi-toned squares that create the sand and water. The quilting is lovely, too – the sand appears to shift in response to the waves above it, and the curls in the water look like little rushes of movement all around the creatures and plants of the sea.
You guys, truly, this was such a gift to be included – in such a small way – in this huge effort! My little crab pattern made it all the way to the U.S. Capitol! Amen, a thousand times, to that.