Patchwork landscaping causing distracted-driver collisions

Bothell, WA—The Washington State Department of Transportation has undertaken a highway beautification project, asking local businesses for assistance in improving the roadside landscape that drivers view during their commutes on Interstates 5 and 405.

Martingale-logoBothell, Washington quilt-book publisher Martingale has volunteered to help with the highway beautification project by donating miles upon miles of patchwork quilts to drape along the hills and valleys of I-5 and I-405.

“Our business is devoted to making the world a prettier place,” says Jennifer Keltner, Martingale’s Publisher and Chief Visionary Officer. “When we heard about this opportunity to enhance Washington’s already stunning beauty, we put our pedals to the metal—sewing-machine pedals, that is.”

Distracted drivers, entranced by the new quilt-laden scenery, have caused a number of fender benders along both highways—an unfortunate and unintended consequence of blanketing Washington roads with patchwork quilts. Fortunately, it’s been a soft landing into fields of cotton batting for drivers veering off the roadway.
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Patchwork landscaping
An aerial view of I-405 near Bothell, Washington.

The Highway Beautification Act, passed by Congress in 1965, called for control of outdoor advertising, including removal of certain types of signs, along the nation’s growing Interstate Highway. It also encouraged scenic enhancement and roadside development.

The response to the Washington project has been so positive that Martingale is encouraging other quilters to get in touch with transportation departments in their states to offer beautification assistance.

If you know quilters who would like to participate in the beautification of highways in their home states, please send them a link to this post. And don’t forget to mention this:

😄 Okay, it’s a pretty far-fetched story . . . but it would be beautiful, wouldn’t it?

Judy HopkinsThe photo of the “quilted highway” above comes from the cover of a classic Martingale book, Down the Rotary Road by Judy Hopkins. Judy passed away in 2011, leaving much of her quiltmaking legacy in our care. She published 17 books with Martingale, including the perennial bestseller 501 Rotary-Cut Quilt Blocks, which you can read more about in this recent post. We think she’d enjoy this little patchwork prank.

Click a cover below to learn more about books by Judy Hopkins.
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Did we pull the wool (or, um, quilter’s cotton) over your eyes? Tell us in the comments!

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