Crystal Lake…

Crystal Lake by Laurie Simpson of Minick & Simpson

As I was getting the quilts and patterns ready for this collection, it was summer in Michigan, and it was heating up in my studio. Polly and I are both Michigan girls and we love our home state so many of our collections have that theme.

Image from of Crystal Lake and Lake Michigan from

Crystal Lake practically abuts the much larger Lake Michigan and it is well, just beautiful. Clear blue water and and an endless horizon shaped by golden dunes.  We hope you like how this beautiful part of our beloved Michigan inspired our new collection.  

As we shared in our Blue & White book, I love blue and white quilts, especially when they are a very scrappy mix of blues, creams and whites.

These quilts are all shown in the book. They are clockwise from upper-left – Austin Bluebird in Blue / Irish Chain Variation / Martin Place / Blue Garden. 

The three shades of blue in Crystal Lake – ranging from a mid-range blue through to dark Indigo – show the variety of value I love.

While many antique two-color quilts were made with just two fabrics, I’ve always thought that the most successful scrap quilts need variety.

The tans and creams in the collection help me achieve as the variation in the density of the print, an the colors used, provide a range of options.

 As always, these creams and tans mix beautifully with the lights from other collections, including Farmhouse Reds.

This is Rolling Stars – the twelve big stars make a statement!  The star is pieced in segments attaching a circle piece to a star point, and it can be done by hand or by machine. The large circle that is then appliquéd to the background, also by machine or by hand.

Rolling Stars finishes at 76″ x 86″.

Cobblestones features what I like doing most with quilts, a pieced center surrounded by an appliqué border.  With this quilt, the birds and flowers are large-scale and in a folk art style. 

This quilt is fat-quarter-friendly and measures 56″ x 74″.

The two mini quilts I made for Our Best Friends are made in the opposite way – an appliqué center surrounded by piecing. Both the dog and cat are included in the pattern.

This is Sweet Kitty. 

And this is Good Boy.  (Aka Gibby.)

Both Our Best Friends mini quilts finish at 20″ x 20″.

I hope you enjoy Crystal Lake as much as we do.


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23 thoughts on “Crystal Lake…

  1. I am currently making a quilt with your Charlevoix collection and love, love, love tour fabrics. I was born in Michigan, perhaps there’s a connection

  2. What beautiful quilts and fabrics. I’m a huge fan of all your designs. Cobblestones and the star quilt are amazing!! Something for everyone.

  3. As a Michigan girl whose favorite color is blue, I cannot help but love this collection of fabrics!! I’ve been displaced to the Southwest desert and I miss my home in the Mitten so much. In fact, I’m visiting family right now in February. Friends back in Phoenix could not believe I’d actually want to go back this time of year, but I love winter!
    Looking forward to making something special to remind me of home with the Crystal Lake collection.

    1. How funny – as I am looking at this collection and being a true Michigander, and being misplaced in the south (TN) and missing Michigan at this time of year so much – and then reading your post – it is as if I wrote it. Now the biggest thing – Campbell is my maiden name. And my friends shake their head when I tell them how much I would prefer snow to cold rain and wish I was back in it. We vacationed in the Crystal Lake area last year and will be in Petoskey this summer (get out of this heat!)

  4. Fabulous color ways–especially the paisley prints! Great pet appliqués! Sizing and curves are great. Very inspiring!

  5. I am a resident and the fabric collection reflects the beauty of our area…will need to do something with this collection!

  6. Laurie, the Crystal Lake collection is fabulous! I, too am a Michigan girl and in fact my dad lives near the lake by Crystal Mtn. so I recognized the picture. Wow, that Cobblestone Quilt is so pretty and Rolling Stars looks like fun.A great quilt to star gaze on in the summer. Your fabrics are what make these quilts. When will they be in the shops or available for purchase?

  7. Love the pieced center and applique bordered too! Also the colors chosen really make the design pop!!!!

  8. This collection is GORGEOUS! and those quilts show off the fabrics beautifully!

  9. I love Crystal Lake as it has special memories for me. When I was in my early 20″s my family had special friends that had a summer home there. I made several fall leaf trips there and when I was on my honeymoon 47 years ago we spent several days with them. It is truly a beautiful area and that something for someone who grew up on Lake Erie to say. I have a plan to make something from this new line of fabric.

  10. Do you think this grouping of fabrics would coordinate with Moda’s Grand Traverse Bay line of fabric? Thank you.

  11. The Crystal Lake Collection is just beautiful! Can’t wait to buy some. And the picture of the dog is beautiful too…..what kind of dog is he? Bet he likes that new mini- quilt!!

      1. Gibby has soulful eyes. Beautiful dog. And of course, beautiful quilts and fabrics! Love all things Minick & Simpson!

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