Second best…

But it’s a really, really close second.

I think I’ve told you that my brother Mark reads this blog.  He likes to check my spelling and grammar – and he is my unofficial fact-checker.  Meaning that he’s welcome to tell me that I’m wrong in my recollection of some childhood event but I’m not going to change it – that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Mark made me a quilt frame for Christmas – it really is a frame, like you’d hang on the wall, except it has a rod at the top for hanging a quilt.


Please forgive the pictures – it’s big, the lighting was bad, it wasn’t hanging and it’s shiny!  I think that’s my reflection in the bottom of it.

The sides measure 1 1/2″ wide and the half-square triangles in the corners measure 3″ on their short sides.  The finished frame measures 36 1/2″ x 52 1/2″ –  the proportions are based on the Golden Rectangle.

(The Golden Rectangle is well-known ratio-proportion in architecture, art and math-geometry because of it’s structure and balance.)  (Yes, I had to look it up.)

He’s very proud of incorporating the Churn Dash element into the frame – he knows it’s one of my favorite quilt blocks.  Of course, as his older-wiser – brattier – sister, I had to tell him that with the proportion of the sides on the frame he’d built, it’s actually more of a Monkey Wrench.


It’s made out of stainless steel and it can be hung on the wall – there are hooks on the back at the top.  The rod has a bolt-nut-thing on each end, one of which unscrews easily so a quilt with a sleeve can be hung on the rod.  It’s been ground-polished twice and given a few more days, Mark would have given it at least one more pass.  No matter how many times I told him that I loved it exactly as it was, he’s a perfectionist.  (I have no idea where he gets that.)

Mark got the idea for the frame last September after reading a Cutting Table blog post.  It was to be his contribution to my Christmas present – what he likes to call the “second best gift I’ve ever gotten”.


I’ve often called Rosie my “best gift ever”, she was a birthday-Christmas present from my Dad.

So when Mark read about Luke Haynes and saw pictures of some of Luke’s quilts, he got an idea.  He contacted Luke and actually met with him in Houston during Quilt Market to discuss the possibility of a commission.  (Rather sneaky, don’t you think?)

Golden Retriever – Golden Rectangle.  Mark likes that kind of synchronicity.


It’s perfect.  I love the quilt – and I especially love the frame.

It might be my “second best gift ever” but it comes from the Best. Brother. Ever.

If you doubt me… when I went to Spring Quilt Market in Pittsburgh in 2014 and didn’t want to put Rosie in a kennel, Mark flew from Houston to Phoenix and stayed the week.  With my dog.

Best. Brother. Ever.

Hands down.

(Thank you, Mark!  If you see a comment from “aka Golden Child”, that’s him.)

Jump to Leave us a Comment

116 comments on “Second best…

  1. Nadja says:

    This is the most beautiful combination of wonderful things EVER!

  2. Caryn S says:

    Great story and Great quilt! Very nice brother!

  3. Brita says:

    Wow! Three times, wow!

  4. Marjory W says:

    The dog and her portrait quilt are both beautiful, as is the frame.

  5. MollieAgnes says:

    Oh my heart!

  6. Momma Lisa says:

    Wow! Brought tears, so very thoughtful!

  7. Colleen says:

    Absolutely the Best Brother EVER!!!

  8. Gale says:

    What a wonderful, thoughtful brother you have. I loved seeing Rosie, she was always a star in your old blog 🙂

  9. Nicole says:

    That is just the best gift. What a thoughtful brother you have! I wish you all the best in 2016. Love reading about your adventures at Moda.

  10. Susan says:

    Such a thoughtful brother!!!! So sweet!

  11. Cheryl says:

    Best brother ever I would say.
    The frame idea with the rod is brilliant…comissioning with
    Luke for the Rosie quilt…WOW. He’s the kind of brother weall want.
    Blessings to you both.

  12. Mayumi says:

    Very nice story and I love the quilt along with the frame. Wonderful!

  13. Jackie Roisler says:

    And your best ever brother is creative, love the frame! Stunning workmanship:) Rosie’s face is lovely!

  14. sunny says:

    What a totally awesome gift from a totally awesome brother! You WIN!!

  15. Helen says:

    Love the quilt frame. Love how your brother commissioned such a lovely quilt. Love seeing that sweet photo of Rosie again. Thanks for sharing all the special things your brother has done for you. He is the best brother outside of my family.

  16. Mary Kastner says:

    Perfect present! hands down perfect present! He did good! What would we do without our siblings.


  17. Loris Mills says:

    What an amazing and sweet gift! I hope you have wonderful memories of your beautiful girl ❤️

  18. Carolyn Sands says:

    What a thoughtful and awesome gift!

  19. Lauren says:

    What a “priceless” gift and a priceless brother! Love everything❤️

  20. Mary Andra says:

    I cried with this one Carrie. I know how much Miss Rosie and your brother mean to you. Family love at its finest. Your parents are so proud of the both of you that the heavens shine their stars upon us all. Wishing you and Matk a fabulous 2016. Hugs filled with love to you both.

  21. Sandra says:

    Love the frame!! Brothers are the best. Happy New Year

  22. Marian says:

    The commissioned piece captured Miss Rosie’s persona!!! I went out to your car to meet her at Painted Pony and Quilts where I worked. You were coming from Houston International Quilt market.

  23. Janice R says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever read a more heartfelt, touching blog post. Thank you for sharing all of it with us.

  24. Cath Brough says:

    now that is an awesome present!

  25. Judy says:

    Mark, you are the Golden Child! (Sorry Carrie) What a beautiful, thoughtful gift!

  26. Ellie P says:

    Brothers are the best. Mine were too.

  27. Kathy Bauer says:

    I have tears in my eyes. What a great group of people coming together to be even more awesome. And your brother is obviously a part of this group. Love, love this story and love the frame and quilt!!!!!

  28. Jocelyn says:

    You certainly do have the Best. Brother. Ever! I wish I had one 🙁 And I am so excited about your frame. My hubby is in metal fabrication, and I would LOVE, I said LOVE to have a frame like that 😀 The quilt is so beautiful! What a thoughtful and loving gift.

  29. Wendy says:

    What a great Brother you have. Cherish him – he is a rare breed. Lovely quilt and poochie as well.

  30. Sinta says:

    Awe, that is amazing! Her sweet face is perfect. You do have the best brother and best gift ever! How stinkin thoughtful was that?! Aren’t you glad you put up with him being your mom’s favorite all these years? ha

  31. Bren says:

    P.E.R.F.E.C.T.I.O.N. (& I hope I spelled everything correctly, because I’m looking at this through tears.) Love in a frame… in so many ways. Well done Mark & Luke!

  32. Carole S. says:

    Holy smokes! That is an amazingly thoughtful gift. You are so lucky to have such a sweet brother, and I know he’s lucky to have you, too!

  33. Susan K says:

    Could your brother talk to my two brothers? What an awesome and thoughtful gift!

  34. Jean Etheridge says:

    Awesome. Awesome frame. Awesome quilt, Awesome brother.

  35. Karen W says:

    WOW … that is an amazing gift! Your brother really thought this all out and knocked it out of the park. The quilt totally captures your sweet dog and the frame gives it the punch. What a winning combo. Carrie, you are one lucky girl. Happy New Year!

  36. Mutti says:

    There’s nothing like a great brother and you sure have one! That’s a beautiful story and a great frame and quilt!

  37. JuliaP says:

    What a wonderful brother!! The quilt absolutely captures Rosie’s spirit and the frame is stunning. Happy New Year!

  38. Teresa says:

    Misty eyed here for sure. What a stupendously wonderful gift this is from your baby brother! I always think of your Rosie whenever I read your Moda column. So glad you made yourself at home here in the Metroplex and wishing you a fabulous 2016!

  39. Wow! Definitely in the best brother ever category~ best idea too! Lucky you!

  40. Katy says:

    Simply wonderful. A very special gift. I also have a wonderful younger brother!

  41. Cathy Mc. says:

    Fantastic gift! So touching, what a thoughtful brother you have.

  42. Susan says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful story!!! You are so lucky to have such an amazing brother!!!

  43. Sherri says:

    What an amazing story…and yes you have a truly amazing brother!

  44. Judy says:

    That is such a wonderful story. The frame is beautiful as is that quilt. Your brother sounds wonderful!

  45. BJ says:

    Frame – awesome! Commissioned quilt – stunning!! A brother who isn’t a great guy just at Christmas – priceless, and it sounds like you know it :-). A wonderful story about a great sibling relationship.

  46. Margo says:

    OMG! I think I would have started crying! What an amazing gift! Kudos to your brother and thanks for sharing it with us. The quilt is just breathtaking. Our “Sam” is the twin to your’s. She’s up in heaven too! Think she has a new friend named “Rosie”

  47. arden says:

    Made me cry…..whatta guy!

  48. Susie says:

    This Is so wonderful in so many ways. It’s also great that you acknowledge it too. Well done golden child.

    • Golden Child says:

      Thank you EVERYONE! I sincerely appreciate all your comments – I am also humbled by everyone’s comments on the frame and my thoughtfulness (THANKS!).

      Honestly, I was reading Carrie’s September’s blog post about Luke and, after checking Luke’s website, the idea of commissioning a Rosie quilt just came to me. The ‘quilty’ frame idea came a few weeks later when I was thinking how to involve myself (beyond sending Luke some $$) knowing that gifts the gifter actually makes with their own hands/knowledge/experience are always better than simply buying a gift (a mindset that I am sure is shared by y’all making quilts).

      And you are welcome Carrie – the best sister ever too!


  49. Ramona Chester says:

    I’m crying new tears over Rosie. She was captured perfectly and will live forever in many of our hearts. You are a very fortunate woman to be loved in so many ways. I agree – best brother ever!

    • Linda H says:

      I agree. Tears. I wish I had had the kind of relationship with my (late) brother as you do with yours. I so wish that but it wasn’t to be (on his part). VERY happy for both you and Mark … what a truly, truly beautiful gift. Miss Rosie so much!

  50. Lisa W. says:

    I’m crying! What an amazing gift and an incredible brother!

  51. Pam says:

    Literally … tears in my eyes.

  52. Joan says:

    What a great gift and wonderful brother!

  53. Ginny Worden says:

    Wow!!What a lucky girl.

  54. That is the Best. Brother. Ever and the Best. Dog. Ever. Awesome gift and beautiful quilt. One wonderful Christmas I think!

  55. Brothers are just the best!

  56. Betty Harden says:

    Precious is the first word that came to mind. That gift is absolutely wonderful, and Golden Child is the BEST brother ever, but his sister is pretty darn amazing too. Your parents must be so proud. It looks like Rosie is going to step out of that frame. Makes my heart feel so warm and tender, Bless both you and Mark. Cherish all of your special moments. They are so precious. Thank you for sharing, oh my!!!!! Happy, Happy New Year to both of you.

  57. Clair Becker says:

    Oh my what special gifts,it was so wonderful to see Rosie again. Special brother indeed.

  58. Marianne says:

    Sweetest. Post. Ever.

  59. Cathy Burk says:

    Pretty awesome! I’ll bet you were speechless when you opened that gift! What could have been more perfect? You are indeed blessed in the brother department.

  60. Beverly Van Oostrum says:

    Ohh, I love this story! I was admiring the frame and was thinking to myself, ” I wonder what Carrie will display in this special frame someday?” When I scrolled down to see the quilt I gasped. It is all so gorgeous. What a wonderful gift and tribute to Miss Rosie. I miss her.

  61. Dawn Jones says:

    Beautiful gift, beautiful thought. I’ve never met you, but of course I know of Rosie. This post made me cry

  62. Norine says:

    Love this story! Made me cry! It takes a special person to give so much thought and planning to come up with such a special gift that will be cherished forever!.

  63. pamelaquilts says:

    What a special gift!

  64. AmandaA says:

    Great gift, great quilt, great subject, great frame – great brother!

  65. Jean Jankovich says:

    Lucky you to have such a thoughtful and loving brother !

  66. Hildy says:

    That’s so so sweet! Yes, you have the best (little) brother ever (I have an older brother and he is the best big brother … most of the time;-) and the best gift ever (after Miss Rosie)!
    Wishing you and your brother and the whole Moda family a Happy 2016!

  67. Carol says:

    Oh Carrie that is the BEST! So special! Sweet Rosie and what a wonderful brother ❤️

  68. sogalthoughts says:

    Wow! That’s phenomenal. I have a sister so I missed out on the brother/sister relationship. But I enjoy watching my children develop that relationship.

  69. Vicky says:

    Best gift ever from the best brother ever —- to the best sister ever. I think Mark would agree with that!

  70. Cindy says:

    The quilt is beautiful! The idea is amazing! What a gift! Your brother is so thoughtful and sweet. You’re a lucky girl!

  71. Karen Sikes says:

    Beautiful, and what a tribute to Rosie!!! So glad that you and your brother have a great relationship. My sister’s and I have that same relationship. Wouldn’t trade family for anything!

  72. Leota Krantz says:

    As I was scrolling down this blog and admiring the beautiful frame, I never in a million thought I would see Miss Rosie. Every day, I read this blog and every day, I go to your blog and say good morning to Rosie. You are right, BEST BROTHER EVER. Definitely a keeper.

  73. Gail says:

    Wow! What a guy. So thoughtful. I, too, had a golden named Rosie. They are the best dogs EVER! Thanks so much for sharing such a sweet, tender, thoughtful story. Your brother is really special.

  74. laurie simpson says:

    Best Brother Ever Indeed

  75. Mary Ann says:

    Such a beautiful Christmas story and the lovliest of gifts from the Golden Child! And Luke captured Rosie so well!

  76. Kim says:

    What an amazing gift from an amazing brother!
    I have a 16 year old golden named Brandy who looks exactly like Rosie ❤️

  77. Pam P. says:

    This is all kinds of wonderful! What an amazing gift!

  78. Patty says:


  79. Miriam says:

    How can anyone top that!!! What a special gift… lucky you!!!

  80. Roseanna Jakubowski says:

    In tears… I have not read or seen something that beautiful in a long time. Thank you for sharing that. What a lovely brother you have. Best wishes for the coming New Year!

  81. Nancy says:

    What can I add that has not already been said. TWO Golden Children in my opinion.

  82. Lisa D says:

    Wow – that has to be the most amazing present ever! I love what he did for you, that’s a sweet brother!!

  83. kshackabq says:

    Oh my. That is truly the Best. Brother. Ever! So fun to see a picture of Rosie again. Amazing quilt. Amazing frame. Amazing siblings!

  84. Karee says:

    Best. Post. Ever. It captured love, love demonstrated, love shared. We are included in all of it. Thank you for sharing the depth of your brother’s love for you as it so tenderly captures what drives many of us to do what we do. Demonstrate love with fabric fulfilling its destiny.

  85. Charlotte says:

    Your post brought tears to my eyes.

    Happy New Year,

  86. Sharon says:

    Just the BEST POST EVER. I love the Rosie quilt and the frame. I wonderful, and possibly the best Christmas present ever.

  87. I love this so much!!! (I think there’s a draught in my house, it seems to have blown dust into my eyes…) Bravo, Mark and Luke! *stands up and applauds* *wonders whether a hug would be too much*

  88. Laurel says:

    This post is so touching. I can feel your sibling love flowing right through the screen. What a thoughtful, loving gift you received.

  89. Deb says:

    Both are absolutely gorgeous! Two very thoughtful gifts.

  90. Nancy Stone says:

    WOW! This post brought tears to my eyes and love in my heart. What a wonderful gift.

  91. Karin Vail says:

    Oh, as if the frame wasn’t enough, when I got down to the custom quilt by Luke, I started crying! BRAVO brother-of-yours, bravo!!! You nailed that Christmas present, what an amazing gift!!!!

  92. Nancy Z says:

    Amazing post. Thank you!

  93. Cleone Levos says:

    What an amazing gift and even better-what an amazingly generous and thoughtful brother!! Happy new year, Carrie!!

  94. SarahZ says:

    Sweetness, total sweetness…and sneaky!!!!!! Awesome frame, amazing quilt…all of it just uber sweet! You two obviously make a great team 🙂

  95. Gretchen says:

    Oh Carrie. I bawled when I got to the end of your post and saw Rosie. You are so lucky to have Mark.

  96. KyQltr says:

    Wow, what a story! Beautiful! Just warms your heart and makes you smile. Thank you for sharing.

  97. Sandy A in St. Louis says:

    Beautiful presents from a beautiful soul! Made me tear up a bit when I read it. Thank you for sharing this with us!

  98. Absolutely fantastic!! I love the frame and especially love the quilt featuring Rosie.

  99. Oh, Carrie! This is all so wonderful! The quilt, the frame, Rosie’s beautiful face! What a wonderful gift from your sweet brother.

  100. Helen LeBrett says:

    What a truly beautiful gift!! You really are a lucky sister!! Blessed beyond words!

  101. I think Mark’s carefully selected, utterly beautiful and thoughtful gift is actually this…love personified. How very blessed you are.

  102. Michele says:

    What a wonderful gift. I was teary even before I spotted Rosie on the quilt.

  103. Tracey says:

    Oh my goodness, I’m wiping my tears. Beautiful story and quilt!!

  104. Ellen Simmons says:

    So. Very. Special. yep, made me cry.

  105. Kathleen loSapio says:

    Such a wonderful brother. And what a sweet looking Golden. We have had 4 and they are the best breed there is!

  106. Wow! I would like your brother to give my brother some tips! What a wonderful and thoughtful gift. Could it be any more perfect? Yep…you better keep him! But maybe you would share – please ask if he would consider adopting me as a second sister!

  107. Edie says:

    Wow! What a wonderful brother you have! The quilt of Rosie at the end was such a breathtaking surprise. It brought tears to my eyes.

  108. JanetF says:

    What a wonderful gift … and what a wonderful relationship.

  109. darlynn says:

    As a golden retriever lover, I have tears in my eyes. If i was still menstruating, I would totally blame that!
    Love both gifts. You are a blessed woman,

  110. kathyinmn says:

    Carrie you have the best posts! What a great story,mthanks for sharing it and the great quilt and frame.

  111. Both the frame and the quilt are just amazing. But I have to ask why make the quilt removable, how could you ever take Miss Rosie down? Unless to put her on your bed I guess.

  112. thimbleanna says:

    Ohmygosh — when that quilt scrolled across the screen, I got tears in my eyes — what an amazing gift! WOW! Definitely best. brother. ever. Beautiful!!!

  113. Ann in NC says:

    Seeing Rosie’s sweet face brought a tear to my eye, and then the quilt, well, that was it! What wonderful gifts and memories. Thoughtful!!! So glad you are posting so frequently here! Keep up the good work!

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