One of Tillamook’s greatest undiscovered treasures is the Latimer Quilt & Textile Center, located just off Wilson River Loop Road. What used to be an abandoned schoolhouse surrounded by blackberry bushes and birds nesting in its rafters has been beautifully and carefully restored to preserve and promote creation of, and education in, textile arts. Now it’s a vibrant museum where the textile arts are not only preserved but created on a daily basis, giving the building a living, breathing identity that radiates with energy.
Inside you’ll discover a magnificent collection of antique and modern quilts like no other in the Pacific Northwest. These stunning pieces of art date back to the 19th century, along with antique clothing pieces and textile tools, crochet work from as early as the 1930’s, and even handwoven textiles. The striking handiwork of olden times is both awe-inspiring and a positive impact on textile enthusiasts and newbies alike. Even if you’re not familiar with the tradition of quilting and other textile arts, the dramatic color schemes and patchworks are sure to leave you breathless.
The Center hosts six gallery exhibits each year, highlighting different eras or aspects of the textile world and often featuring vintage textiles or contemporary fiber and textile art made by local and nationally recognized artists. Demonstrations and classes on weaving, spinning and other textile arts are also available for both beginners and seasoned sewers. A rich array of items for sale in the gift shop includes antique fabric, textile pieces and hand-made goodies.
The Center was also the home to the first of many monumental murals that are being painted around the Tillamook area. The mural shows that it takes many different stories, people and places to create a single quilt, and it details the rich quilting history of the Tillamook Coast.