Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Force of Fortrel

Ahhhhhhh.

That's the sound of me being all blissed out on 5 days of relaxation. I'm home from our annual Blind Bay retreat on the gorgeous Shuswap Lake in south central British Columbia. Pretty close to heaven (and possibly the closest I'll get to it!). There is much to report, but I thought I'd start with these fabulous quilts.

Fence of Fortrel

On Saturday night, we attended a really fun fundraising BBQ for a team of 20 women who will run a 24-hour relay to raise money for cancer research. Thank you Princess Maidens of Shuswap (ahem, PMS for short) for a great dinner! The event was held on a stunning property in the hills above Sorrento, B.C. The hostess provided these quilts for picnicking, and to keep the late-night-after-the-sun-goes-down crowd cozy.

Fortrel fabulousness

I was introduced to the wonders of Fortrel. Previously known to me as only humble polyester, my companions spent several minutes educating me on the super powers of Fortrel. They reminisced about Peter Pan collared dresses, pant suits, slacks and maxi skirts. A seasoned Fortrel aficionado announced that these quilts WILL NEVER DIE. They were made by the family's grandmother years ago with only recycled fabrics from old clothing and thrift shops (for a present day fortrel aficionado, please visit this fabulous place)

Fortrel fabulousness

When I turned the quilt over, the deal was sealed. This quilt indeed will never die.

Fortrel + Vader = a quilt for the ages

The Force is with Fortrel.




18 comments:

felicity said...

Fabulous indeed! I'm soooo jelly of your awesome getaway!

Live a Colorful Life said...

Less than a month until my quilt retreat of four of us, in a cabin, close to Yosemite National Park. Pure bliss. My friend has a spiral staircase from the upper level of the cabin where we quilt, to the lower level where we (eventually) sleep. We hang our quilts over the railing. Can't wait to see more of your weekend. And I have a completely polyester quilt made by my grandmother. Which will never die. And I can't bear to get rid of it because it was made of a lot of scraps from my homemade clothing from the '70s.

Wow, THAT was a hard confession to make...

Lynne (Lily's Quilts) said...

That pic of the quilts lined up on the side of the cabin just makes me so wish I could come next time.

Amy said...

Oh, I love the first the photo so much!

badlandsquilts said...

Thanks for the tidbit of info, Fortrel...I've always known it as polyester as well. And yes, those quilts never die...we have a few old ones from when my grandparents were in the nursing homes AND the local church groups still make them.

Brenda said...

ah, the wonders of Fortrel, the fabric of my childhood. all those wonderful textures and patterns....and we can enjoy them forever in blankets and quilts. I've got some over here of the same vintage. thanks for sharing this.

My Sweet Prairie said...

No WAY, lol NO WAY! omg My mom still has a white dresden quilt from the '70s made of that stuff! wow. lol

(can you tell I'm getting a kick out of this?)

LOVE the shot of quilts on the fence.
~Monika in Saskatoon

Terri said...

Love the picture of all the quilts on the railing. Fortrel makes the best beach blankets, they dry fast and the sand doesn't stick to them. When I make them I don't add any batting to them so they are nice and light. My beach blankets stay in the car all summer for those quick trips to the beach here in the sunny Okanogan!

PinkGranny said...

I love it! Is the back of the quilt a sheet? It reminds me of something I have seen before! I'm glad you had a great time, thanks for sharing the quilts.

Flo @ Butterfly Quilting said...

HaHa...too funny!!
I have a fortrel (oK even spell check doesn't like that word!!) quilt made by my mom too...they NEVER wear out!!

--ginger. said...

Oh my gosh I've never known what to CALL it I totally want to call those ladies and get a POLYESTER TUTORIAL. Thanks for the link up there (I think it's dead, though--hmm.) You are just GREAT GREAT GREAT for thinking of me and snapping those shots. I am also just absolutely blown away that you got to spend 5 days just being with friends and making. Holy toledo that sounds good to me. :)

What Comes Next? said...

Sounds like a great time was had! Can't wait to hear more, although I think I'm seeing Sandi tonight, so just could get some more info! Ah yes - Fortrel leisure suits and pant suits, now that brings back memmories...

Heidi said...

Love them! The quilts I have from my Grandma have polyester in them. She used to go to thrift stores for all her quilt fabric. Corduroy too!

Dianne said...

OMG Fortrel - you haven't lived until you have danced the night away in a fortrel hotpant outfit!! LOL You know for sure that a fabric that has to have a crease stitched in will last forever!!
It looks like you had a great time and the weather was much better than here!! Welcome home :0) Congrats BTW!!!

Vivian said...

Oh I have two fortrell quilts in my home. Ugliest fabrics you've ever seen and yes, they will last forever. One however, the flannel backing is wearing away so that will have to be fixed, but it's flannel, not the front. One of the quilts has a beautiful hot chocolate stain that will never come out, it just adds to the piece.

Silverthimble said...

Now the secret is out and we won't be able to find Fortrel at garage sales anymore! LOL

I have been collecting Fortrel from older relatives (who in days gone by used it for making "fashionable" clothing) and from garage sales. I don't believe you can buy Fortrel anymore in the stores.

I have been collecting for this long to get enough variation in colours to duplicate a quilt that my grandmother made many years ago that my brother currently has in his possession. My brother won't part with the original so I need to make a duplicate.

Great post!

rubyslipperz said...

This is such a COOL (not girl-ee) quilt. It's really nice/refreshing to see a more masculine quilt with such GREAT colors!
hugZ,
annie
rubyslipperz106.blogspot

Unknown said...

Can you make rugs out of fortral?
I received a trunk full of silk and satin as well as all colours of fortral
And I mean many many meters of it. From an old auntie attic
What to do with the fortral as I,m 77 years old I have quilted with fortral in the past cheers and thank you Myrna
B.c Canada