My Annual Quest for Crimson Clover

One of my favorite things about spring around Portland are the farm fields filled with crimson clover. And today I headed west to farm country on my annual quest to get my fill of it.

Crimson clover is used as a cover crop that adds critical nitrogen back to the soil and as forage for livestock. Oregon is the largest producer of crimson clover in the US. And the bees who love it and pollenate it make fantastic clover honey.

I still remember the first time I saw a field of Crimson Clover when I moved to Oregon. I had never seen anything like it. It was one of the most beautiful things I’d ever seen.

And as you stand in the clover you can hear thousands of bees buzzing.

I’m just going to overload you with photos.

It was another gorgeous day here in Portland. It finally feels like spring is really here. I started the day with a nice 4 mile walk with the boys and then I lost a few hours somewhere.

We hurried home after our clover quest and got to Costco before it closed. Then we grabbed some dinner and had our evening walk as the sun was going down.

I had a spurt of productivity after our walk and actually trimmed up that quilt backing that’s been giving me fits this week.

I measured very carefully before cutting! And now it’s all ready to go off to my long arm quilter…. after I make the binding. I’m waiting for some Kaffe strata in red to be delivered later this week.

Then I sat down and started pinning, pinning, pinning to start sewing on the hat I cut out last night.

Any time you’re sewing a straight piece to a curved piece you need a lot of pins. And then you have to sew slowly and adjust your fabric often. If you do these things it all comes together pretty well.

A couple of people have told me they’re confused by the patterns when it comes to sewing the two halves of the hat together. The pattern has you sew the lining crown to the brim, and then sew the main fabric crown to that. But it’s vague on just how to do that.

So, here’s how you do it. You have to turn the lining wrong side out and tuck the brim down into the crown lining.

And then make sure your main fabric crown is right side out, and put it down into the lining crown.

Then pin the two pieces together, matching the side seams and the center points of the brim pieces and the crowns. Pin like the biggest pinning fool that ever stuck a pin in anything!

There’s that neat little package with the brim inside. And that opening that I’m showing will allow you to turn the entire thing right side out.

Here’s the finished hat.

I’m happy to say that this one fits pretty perfectly! So it only took me three hats to get the fit right. And this is why I don’t make a lot of things that have to fit any body part!!! But hey… I’ve got three hats and some mad hat making skills!

Another fun combo of fabrics. I’m thinking these hats are a great way to use up a lot of 1/3 yard pieces in my stash.

Back to work tomorrow after my sad little vacation spent in my house.

42 Replies to “My Annual Quest for Crimson Clover”

  1. Loved the gorgeous clover photos, what a sight that must be! Thank you so much for the hat tutorial , much needed. Your hats are gorgeous, on my agenda for today! Thanks again for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Love the pictures of clover, beautiful! Thanks for sharing. Glad you are feeling better!

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  3. I guess that tells my age. When I first saw Crimson Clover I thought of the song Crimson and Clover that was popular a very long time ago. The fields are beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. We let the white clover grow at our place till it’s spent and then mow, love the red clover! Good job on the hat. My head is apparently larger, doesn’t fit one size fits most, so will try enlarging the pattern too. Thanks! ☺️

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  5. The crimson clover is spectacular. Thanks for sharing all these beautiful pictures. Love the bucket hat and I think one in Aboriginal fabric might look awesome too! Hope you have a nice easy work week.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The photos pretty outstanding.. of the flowers.
    This hat perfect. Thanks for sharing the instructions so thoroughly. Vacations can sometimes disappoint. Do a weekender to make up for it.. back to the Salt Mines for me as well.. in Arizona.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, the good thing about being sick is that I didn’t have to burn it as vacation… I was able to take some of the days as sick leave. So I will need to start thinking about another vacation. Thinking about two weeks around Labor Day.
      Anne

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  7. Crimson clover grew in abundance in two of the places I lived years ago. None here in coastal SW Florida so I really appreciate your gorgeous photos! Thanks for the tips about making the hat. It’s going to be awhile until I can sew but I’ve put your three posts regarding the hats in a separate mailbox where I can find them easily later. Even with your messed up vacation, you managed to stay positive and creative and that’s helping me with this crazy injured had situation I’m in!

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    1. While you wait for your hand to heal is a great time to organize some ideas and projects. Then, when your hand is ready, you can just take off on the project that has you the most excited!
      Anne

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  8. Sorry your vacation turned out to be such a bummer. Especially after all your planning and prepping. Not fair.
    The crimson clover pix reminded me of the song as well. I had no idea it was a real thing. I visited my sister once who used to live in Portland. Saw Cannon Beach but never saw the clover. Wrong time of year I guess. She’s in Washington now but thinking I need to revisit Oregon anyway.
    This new hat combo works really well. What is the outside fabric, please/thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I love the hats, can you include how to get the last size you were satisfied with pretty please? I made a few of these long years ago for toddlers but I would love to try a few old lady ones for me! Aren’t the starfish gorgeous? The purple and orange ones, I remember the first time I saw those colors and they are still amazing! Have a great week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. the pattern for the hat I finished last night was printed at 105%. the pattern is a pdf file and you should have that option on your printer. If not, you might be able to enlarge it on a copy machine. I’m going to make the 100% size next. I want to see how big it is. Plus, I’m having fun!

      The starfish are so amazing. Purple and orange both get a bad rap but are both amazing colors!

      Anne

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  10. Your hats are wonderful! I’m not a “hat” person, but they look great on you. Isn’t it funny how we jump from one series of a project into another? I’m currently working on a Japanese Rice Bag. For some reason they absolutely fascinate me. Don’t know if I’ll be able to do my hand stitching for embellishment, but I’m certainly going to give it a try.

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  11. Good morning from Cabo! I have been following you since last summer! So much fun and inspiration! And, I did manage to make one Frankenbag before leaving for here. I Love the pattern, and expect to make a few more when we arrive home the end of June. Also, the hats! Love them and have many a grandchild who would love to have one I am sure. I read all of your posts and enjoy them, keeps me focused on being creative when away from my “happy place”, my sewing room!

    I especially loved the photos of the crimson clover fields! I never knew they even existed!😳😳😳 it immediately brought me to the words in the song! Lol, now it’s going over and over through my mind.😏😏 I also paint as well as quilt so I manage to stay out of trouble that way, and today I will paint to “crimson and Clover”. 🥰

    Thanks for keeping me entertained and inspired. Maybe I will be inspired to go for some much needed walks as well! Enjoy your day and stay happy!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow! Thanks for reading Shirley!

      If you want to make hats for your grands, check out the Red Poppy pattern because it has adult, child and toddler sizes.

      Enjoy your stay in Cabo!

      Anne

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  12. I absolutely LOVE crimson clover!! Farmers here in Middle Tennessee grow it as a cover crop for its nitrogen-fixing properties most often and cut it for hay. I don’t see huge fields like you show, but I always love seeing it and seeing even little patches on the side of the road where some seed escaped.

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    1. We do see HUGE fields of it here. There are some hillsides that are completely covered. You can see the patches of red from miles away.

      It’s such a lovely treat every spring!

      Anne

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  13. Thanks for the pictures of the clover. I was born and raised in Oregon but now live in Southern California. I hadn’t realized I missed seeing it – and smelling it – until your photos! As a child we would suck the little florets. Also, thanks for the info and tips about the hats. California girls need LOTS of hats!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I just love being able to take a drive and see the red clover every spring. I know I’d really miss it if I couldn’t see it.

      You should try at least one hat! It’s fun to make something that has all that form!

      anne

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  14. Wow, I thought Crimson and Clover was just a song. Absolutely beautiful!! Thanks I also was confused when making my head up that last step. Now I am going to do another had the correct way! Thanks again!

    Liked by 1 person

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