The holiday spirit came early this spring for master Hawaiian quilter Patricia Lei Murray. Following the incredible success of our collaboration on the first Hawaiian quilt designed by Patricia for Coco Moon, a dream led her to a new design. “I thought it would be nice to create something extra special for the holiday season that represented Hawaiʻi in a unique way,” she shared.
After careful deliberation, Patricia decided to innovate the idea of a Christmas wreath and instead represent a Hawaiian lei as the focal point of this quilt. “Christmas is a time for families to gather in love and hope, so I wanted this lei to embody that feeling of aloha that we share here in Hawaiʻi,” she explained. To bring her vision to life, Patricia gathered flowers and ferns to haku (weave) a lei of her own which became the inspiration for the lei depicted on the quilt. Using the same detailed stitching design that we used in our Ulu Nani print, she decided to lay the lei atop the stitching design utilizing some of her favorite blooms. From ʻawapuhi (ginger) and bougainvillea to hibiscus and palapalai, each floral detail is reminiscent of lei poʻo (flower crowns) often woven here in the islands.
Patricia framed the lei in red to distinguish the heartfelt design, choosing to wrap a lei of maile around the edges of the border with floral details of cheerful holiday poinsettia reminiscent of traditional holiday decor. “In Hawaiʻi we bring the outdoors in—a concept that I love—and wanted to depict in this quilt with natural elements like these lei. I just imagined a baby being wrapped up in this cozy quilt during the holiday season!” she said. In the spirit of Christmas, Patricia adorned the piko of the quilt with a festive Christmas star, as gingerly as she decorated the tree in her living room and finishing it with a star. For Patricia, the imagery in this quilt represents culture, tradition, and the nostalgic holiday memories of home that make this time of year so special.
We are so grateful to Patricia for sharing her talent and inspiration so freely with us and helping to create special memories for every babe who is wrapped up in an Aloha Kalikimaka swaddle or quilt this Christmas!