Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Mary Ellen Hopkins–RIP

I found out last night that Mary Ellen Hopkins died yesterday.  She was a special person and I owe much of my quilting expertise to her.  In 1999 my sister Robin and I decided we wanted to go to a workshop/seminar led by her and found one in Las Vegas.  It had been going for 12 or 13 years at that point and we signed up.  Apparently the attendance was at a low point.  Here is the photo of that first time in Las Vegas.

I am leaving on Friday for Las Vegas and several of the women will be there, along with many more. I think it is the 27th or 28th annual seminar. Behind me in the yellow is Aggie and she has attended every one of the seminars. She is the only one who has attended them all.

Mary Ellen is the little one in front – what a wonderful teacher and friend.  I believe she was 83.  About 5 or 6 years ago, she had a car accident on her way to Las Vegas from Southern California.  Since then we have continued the seminar but without her, since she was mostly retired after that.  Instead of her teaching, four of us each take a day and teach a project.  Robin will be teaching on Tuesday and I have Thursday.


A couple of years ago she came up for the evening to celebrate the 25th annual seminar.  Here is a photo at that time.

0711 Mary Ellen Hopkins

We will all miss her – she had a unique way of looking at quilting and was so very creative.  I am pleased to have spent time with her and consider her a friend as well as teacher.  We will all have a glass of white wine in her honor – she loved white wine.  We will miss you Mary Ellen!



  1. Just as you are headed west again. I'm glad you'll get to see the crowd in your life who might best want to celebrate the gift that Mary Ellen has give many quilters. Yes, I'm thinking you might have a drink to honor her. :)

  2. I just pulled out her books for a little research and wondered how she was doing. So sorry to hear of her passing. She had a gift and shared it with many.

  3. Well said. She has certainly been my biggest influence in quilting. I can't imagine where my life would be now had we not gone to the first Las Vegas seminar so many years ago.


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