The Kindness of Others

This week I had one of those moments that reminds you that there are so many nice people in the world. Here you go.

You might remember that last December I did a custom order for a woman from New York. (Story posted here.) This was my first custom order and it was really fun to work with this particular customer. She was so friendly within the confines of our email conversations about her order.  For the first time, I used a wax print, Ankara fabric to make her Chemex cozy. We chatted a bit and I told her how much I liked this gorgeous fabric. She told me she buys wax prints at an open market in New York.

Time passed. (Lots of time, seven months!) Last month, she emailed me and said she would be going to the marketplace soon and would I like her to pick up some fabric for me. It is really a good price there. I had looked on-line to buy some and wasn’t thrilled with the pricing. I have to be fairly careful with what I spend on fabric for my Etsy shop or my already meager profits become even less.  All about the profit margin, right.  😉  I jumped at her offer.

When she got to the shop, she texted me pictures of about seven or eight pieces she thought I might like. Jamie explained I would have to buy them in three yard pieces as they are pre-cut to this length. It was a tough choice but I settled on two. It was amazingly easy to be texting with this virtual friend and picking fabrics out based on a few quick iPhone photos.

As I wrote her a check and popped it in the mail it came to me that some might consider this a bit of a risk. I didn’t have any hesitation about sending the money. I knew the fabric would show up. It appeared that she didn’t have any hesitation purchasing the fabric for me and she even mailed it prior to receiving any sort of payment from me.

I received the fabric a few days ago. It is so gorgeous. Made by Vlisco, these wax prints are manufactured both in Holland and in Ghana. The company was founded in 1846 and has served a vast African market over the years. Their process reportedly consists of twenty-seven steps to achieve these prints and is a highly guarded secret. Because many textile companies attempt to create counterfeit Vlisco fabric, they are quite bold with printing their name along the selvedge and putting these (nearly impossible to remove) adhesive labels on the fabric.


If you look closely at the label, you might notice that this piece was actually six yards, not three.  Both pieces are huge, six yards each. Jamie was mistaken when she told me she was sending three yards of each. At $20 per piece, this was a steal.


This blue and purple piece has more of an African look to the pattern. It is really bold. I chose it because I want to utilize the curve of those spirals when I cut the curve of the Chemex covers. But now that I have six yards of it, I need to think of another project to use some of it!  The fabric is 48″ wide. Lots of fabric here.


This red piece is my favorite. I love the birds. Do they look like a peacock? I think so but I’m not sure. It has a green border running the length of the piece. It is just gorgeous. I have several ideas for projects to use this piece for so I need to make some decisions.


What most impressed me was that this was just an act of kindness. She had no compelling reason to do this, other than to be a nice person.  Yep, there are so many really kind people out there and she is certainly one of them.

Linking to this week’s Sunday Stash.


10 thoughts on “The Kindness of Others

  1. Yvonne @Quilting Jetgirl

    How awesome! After having successfully completed a transaction with her for a custom order, I would have totally trusted her, too. It is awesome to make connections like that, and I think you got some great deals there!

    1. Bernie Post author

      I think that one of the biggest benefits to blogging and having my shop on Etsy is meeting the people that come through to me via either path. So many truly nice people, yourself included. ? It has been a blast so far!

      Take care,

  2. Linda

    What gorgeous fabric! Is it like canvas or is it just as soft as cotton? Either fabric would make a pretty quilt as is. I went back and read your post about opening an Etsy shop then got interested in another post you mentioned about a trip to Amish quilt shops. What fun reads!
    As far as trusting you as your customer did, you are just that kind of nice person Bernie – it comes across through your posts. 🙂

    1. Bernie Post author

      Hi: The fabric is cotton. The wax print process is similar to making batiks but more sophisticated patterns. I love them! Glad you enjoyed some of the older posts. Nice to have someone going back and looking through them! When I find a blog I like, I usually read through older posts. It is fun to get to know the person that way.

      Take care Linda,

  3. Sandra

    My youngest daughter, and my brother, and my sister (!!) all keep telling me to open an Etsy shop…still haven’t jumped in. Yet. However, I certainly DO know the kindness of the vast majority of people in QBL (Quilting Blogland) and in the world, in general. I’ve experienced similar stuff. Love these fabrics; the red reminds me of Provence fabric. (um, which I still have sitting waiting….to grow up!)

    1. Bernie Post author

      You are so right. Many, many kind people out there.
      The Etsy shop is fun. Not a huge money maker but it is satisfying to work with people and make them something that they will enjoy.

      See you later alligator,

    1. Bernie Post author

      I love the red fabric as well Deb. I almost wish I had more of it. I am already making things with it and it is so pretty!
      Thanks for coming by.



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