Gulf Shores Alabama

Every few years when our family returns to the U.S. we inevitably make a trip from Texas to Florida to visit my parents. A little more than half-way there we  stop in to see my husband’s Aunt Ellen and Uncle Bob in Gulf Shores, Alabama.  After a tired day of driving we are so thankful to be greeted by family and Aunt Ellens’ amazing hospitality. Her beautiful beach-theme decorated home sits on a quiet street near the river Bon Secour which means safe harbor.   Uncle Bob has taken us on a boat tour and he traps blue crab which Aunt Ellen puts into a Cioppino (Italian fish stew). The stew includes up to 7 kinds of seafood. Sometimes she makes a Low Country Boil whi...

Traditional Turkish Peshtemal Towels

At Soft Line Design, we sell traditional Turkish "peshtemal" towels that have been used for centuries in Turkish baths because they are both absorbent and dry quickly. That may surprise you since they don't have the classic "terry cloth" feel of a regular bath towel. But most people who try them find that they are just great for the pool, the beach or your bathroom!   For centuries these towels have been woven with 100% cotton on hand-operated looms. We decided to go to the source, to the villages where these towels have been traditionally made, in the province of Denizli, Turkey. We sat down to drink tea with the families who have been passing down the trade for generations. These days,  mechanical looms have largely taken the ...