At times do you feel like you are in a whirlwind? Not necessarily the devastation kind, but the kind where things just keep swirling with lots of commotion and activity. I think if my life story were to be written focusing on the past month it would almost be a comic book. At least I think I tried to take a little comic relief amidst the mayhem and not let the tidal waves of busyness drown me.
Tax Tornado or Turbo Tax
When I think of April I think of tax time….and that’s about all I want to say on the subject (grin) except that this season seemed to go on forever, especially with my computer issues. Ah, but every good storm has a silver lining. I was blessed with a new computer and after all the transferring of data, I actually filed my taxes on April 15th – even knowing the deadline this year was April 18th. And it’s behind me!Hallelujah!!
Yep, lest life gets too serious – enter Oscar! He’s my son’s adopted stray kitten that has stolen all our hearts. I love that he is an outdoor kitty with indoor privileges who takes advantage of the doggie door to pop in and say hello when he comes to visit me in the studio. It’s nice that they live next door!
Escaping the Vortex
Sometimes you just have to kick back and put your feet up! It’s amazing what a little fresh air can do to revive your mind so you can change gears and get back to work.
After the cyclone of taxes, I totally enjoyed making a baby quilt for one of my customers. We have been working off and on for over a year making memory quilts from her deceased father’s plaid shirts to share with her siblings, children and now her future grandchildren… this precious memory quilt was made for her daughter’s baby shower this weekend. Yes, they are eagerly awaiting the beginning of a 4th generation that will be wrapped up in “daddy’s shirts.” What a legacy!
Stop the Cyclone
When life gets full of activity sometimes it’s just best to stop the spin and do something fun. Like making Rice Krispie marshmallow treats with your son! Granted, we had planned on making these a week ago to share at the family Easter lunch, but making them a week late means we had more for ourselves! Unintentional selfishness I promise!
If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram you are already familiar with my habit of posting my “current world view” showing my feet propped up somewhere – if you don’t follow me, well, why aren’t you? (grin). Anyway, one of my favorite ways to relax at home is to put up my hammock in the backyard and take a short afternoon nap. Nothing clears my mind better than being outdoors, even if for just a moment. Seems I have needed to steal away for several of these moments lately. Especially following the recent big rains!
One definition of whirlwind is “something that is done very quickly and without a lot of thought as in a whirlwind courtship”. Well, nothing along those lines but sometimes I do get crazy ideas in my head and just “gotta sew something” and it’s usually done quickly and without a lot of thought. It generally adds “one more thing” to that already busy to-do list…but for me it is the calming in the mists of the typhoon. Nothing more relaxing than the hum of my sewing machine as I create something…
That said, I was looking forward to a retreat with the women of my church this past weekend and knowing I would be arriving early I planned a little downtime to sit by the pool to do some planning and perhaps design…A long overlooked goal has been to seek new recipes for a healthier lifestyle …. well….I didn’t want to be caught “reading” a cookbook beside the pool because those who know me know I don’t cook – so I came up with the idea of covering said cookbook!
And then I decided that my Bible could use a quick cover change too.
Quick as lightening these were done and I was packed and on my way looking forward to a little personal time before joining with my friends for a time of fellowship and fun.
Calming the Windstorm
The antonyms for all the commotion of strong weather words like whirlwind, cyclone, hurricane, or tornado are calm, peace, quiet, relaxation, even laziness. (don’t you just love a good thesaurus!).
Restfulness and refreshing describe this past weekend of the Women’s retreat. I arrived early to take advantage of that rooftop pool and did do a little “reading” in my cookbook.
My husband texted me the following photo, a gentle reminder not to take life too seriously.
A time of worship and Bible study was just what I needed to tame that dust devil of a busy life into a refocused life of choosing joy. A revival of the heart.
Clear Skies on the Horizon – Looking Ahead to May
Taking time to relax, refresh and reflect can be very inspiring. My busy brain is constantly in motion thinking ahead, looking for new opportunities, new ideas….even in the restfulness there is always inspiration if you look for it.
I’ve already got an idea for the Island Batik Ambassador May challenge “modern batik” inspired by my “current worldview” waiting on my friends for dinner prior to retreat…you will just have to wait to see where this leads! It is a little off the wall, so to speak, as I am planning a wall hanging! We’re finishing up the April challenge of Adventurous Applique so why not visit the other Island Batik Ambassadors’ blogs to see how they completed the challenge. You can find their links here.
And speaking of friends. I’m happy to say that Dianne, my church and quilting friend, will be joining me the first week of May as we fly to Arizona to be with the Lonesome Valley Quilt Guild where I will be speaking at their guild meeting on Monday, May 1st, then teaching a workshop on Tuesday, May 2nd.
So much to look forward to in May – but wait! We still have a week to navigate before we take flight! Can’t wait to see what is just around the horizon and in the studio!
Encouragement for Your Whirlwind
This song came on while I was writing my blog and I wanted to share some encouragement with you. We all go through whirlwinds, some whirlwinds of activity are good, some whirlwinds of emotions can be crippling. It is my hope the words of this song will help you not to feel alone in your hurricane.
Hurricane by Natalie Grant
You’re spinning out of control again
Your life feels like a sinking ship
You’re wondering how it came to this
Is it too late?
Is it too far?
For Him to reach you
And come to where you are
Step out on the edge
Don’t be afraid of it
And when you feel the rain
Call His name
He’ll find you in the hurricane
You’re in the wreckage underneath
Your hope is buried somewhere deep
You’re wondering how long it will keep?
It’s never too late
Never too far
For you to reach out
And take a hold of love
Step out on the edge
Don’t be afraid of it
And when you feel the rain
Call His name
He’ll find you in the hurricane
Don’t back down from the fight
He’ll shelter you tonight
Just hold on for the change
Call His name
He’ll find you in the hurricane
There’s a place, there’s a place you can run
When you fall, and it’s all come undone
You’ll be safe in the raging storm
So just let go
‘Cause you are held in His arms
Step out on the edge
Don’t be afraid of it
And when you feel the rain
Call His name
He’ll find you in the hurricane
And when you feel the rain
Call His name
He’ll find you in a hurricane
This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler, sharing the journey reminding all of us to chose joy even during the storms of life
Can you relate? Does your to-do list get crazy and you feel like all you can do is laugh to keep from crying? Do you ever feel like you just “gotta sew” even if it’s a whirlwind of a little project? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Once again I’ve asked my friend Irma to share her story concerning one of the quilts that I’ve made for her through the years. This is about her brother Jesse who would have been 55 today, February 11. Among other things, Jesse served his country and for that I would like to say a personal thank you!
So pour that second cup of coffee, settle in with your favorite quilt, sit back & enjoy this heart felt story of a sister’s eternal love.
The Making of Jesse’s Memory Quilt
This is my story about the various quilts that my friend, Karen E. Overton, has made for me – this one is specifically about the quilt she made for me for my brother Jesse using some of his favorite old t-shirts.
First, some background information…
My name is Irma Cortez, and Jesse Cortez is one of my younger brothers. Sadly, Jesse passed away unexpectedly in June 2011. He was only 49 years old.
As printed in his obituary, Jesse lived his life his way and only his way. He had many passions in his short life, some of which were: family and friends; working hard; playing just as hard; always having a good time; the Dallas Cowboys; riding motorcycles; collecting classic muscle cars; hunting; camping; drag racing; and joking & kidding around and making others laugh every chance he got.
Jesse’s Career Path included the U.S. Marine Corp
Jesse quit high school and never actually graduated, but instead enlisted into the Marines at the age of 17. My parents had to sign papers for him to enlist, but they proudly did, and he eventually received his GED while he was in the service.
While serving his country from 1980 to 1983 as a Proud Marine, Jesse could travel the world to places like Japan and Okinawa. After four years, he was Honorably Discharged with the rank of Lance Corporal.
Jesse Finds His Second Career with The Light Company
Once he arrived back home, Jesse got a job as an Apprentice at HL&P (Houston Lighting & Power). He eventually completed his apprenticeship, and continued to work for HL&P for a total of 28 years. To better explain what Jesse did at The Light Company, he was one of those men that you would see up in a big bucket truck working on power lines. He loved climbing those power poles and working outside.
During his years at The Light Company, HL&P decided they would stop using paid models or actors for their company promotions and commercials.
In 1997, HL&P sent out notifications to all employees that they would be using company employees for the upcoming new print ads and commercials and that any employees who were interested could submit their names to be considered for the new marketing campaign. Of course, my brother submitted his name, and the rest is history as they say.
During those years, HL&P went through several management changes and a few name changes – at one time it became CenterPoint Energy, and then it eventually became Reliant Energy.
My brother was very well liked at work by his managers and supervisors, and he was known to be a very hard worker, always very supportive of his company. He represented HL&P in many BBQ cook-offs at the Houston Live Stock Show and Rodeo with his team oftentimes winning top prizes.
Jesse was a stubborn free spirit that cared for others with his whole heart and soul – he was always there when you needed him. To me, my brother’s greatest asset was his great zest for life and his kind and gentle soul. Although physically, Jesse was a large, stout man, he was really just a teddy bear at heart, and he loved children. Because of his love for children he participated in various fun-runs or toy-runs for local charities, like the Shriners. Since Jesse was never married, nor had children of his own, he always volunteered to work the various holidays so that his married co-workers could have time with their kids and families for the holidays.
Jesse’s Extra Career – Advertising!
The first photo in this story shows my brother in one of the original full-page ads that appeared in the Houston Chronicle for the new HL&P marketing ads using real employees of the company. This print ad first appeared in the paper on 11/12/1997, and it was later reprinted several more times throughout the following years. It was interesting to note that even after the company changed names, the HL&P logo on his hardhat in the original picture was also changed.
Of course, Jesse had told everyone that would listen, including our parents that he had volunteered, and that he had been chosen for some of the ads or commercials, but he wasn’t sure when any of them would come out. He also told us that he had signed a release, and that HL&P would be able to use his name and his pictures for all time.
On November 27, my parents started getting phone calls from friends and family from all over. They had all seen the signs and the newspaper, and had recognized Jesse and everyone was calling our parents to talk about it. My parents were always very proud all their children, but during this time, they were extra proud of Jesse and they sure enjoyed the extra attention they were getting because of Jesse being in the paper. (Note: there will be more about this photo later in this story.)
After Jesse’s Unexpected Death Decisions Had to Be Made
After his death, I helped my siblings to clean out his house and the shop next door to it. Since Jesse had gained a lot of weight in the few years before he died, he had lots of clothes of the Big & Tall variety; however, all his clothes were so large that none of my other brothers wanted any of them. During the cleanup, I asked the family if anyone wanted any of his clothing, otherwise I was going to donate it all to the Goodwill. All my brothers told me they didn’t want any of it, so I proceeded to separate all the jeans from the shirts, and jackets, etc. While I was doing this, I noticed that Jesse still had several of the shirts that I personally had gifted to him during his life (albeit it some of them were torn and tattered), so I decided that I’d keep all those shirts and any of the ones that I knew were some of his favorite shirts, or that he had worn most often.
This is how and when I decided to make a memory quilt with his old t-shirts, and this is how Karen Overton comes into this story.
Time to Visit The Quilter Again
Since Karen had already previously made me two other quilts – a queen-sized quilt using my son’s high school spirit shirts that seldom got used because it doesn’t get cold enough, and a “lap throw” using my Mom’s old clothes that gets used very frequently, I decided that I wanted another lap throw using Jesse’s most favorite t-shirts.
Once I knew the size of the quilt that I wanted, I decided that I wanted to include those shirts that conveyed what I considered to be the four great passions of my brother – those being: the U.S. Marines; his job; Chevy Camaros; and The Dallas Cowboys of course!
The quilt I decided to have made was another 3X4 quilt (also called a 12-square quilt), meaning it was 3-squares wide and 4-squares long. Approximately 53″ x 70″.
During the planning time of making this quilt, I knew that Karen would need to know what color scheme I would want, and it was too soon to tell yet, but I knew that she would be working on the t-shirts first, cutting them into squares, etc., and that I still had time to choose the colors for the sashing, the cornerstones, and the backing.
Once I had chosen the theme of the quilt, which was to use only those shirts that I felt would emphasize his passions in life, I could already envision the final product in my mind’s eye.
Below is a photo of the completed memory quilt that Karen made using my brother’s old t-shirts. The finished product speaks for itself.
Each Quilt Block Tells Jesse’s Story
Each t-shirt square used in this quilt tells a story about my brother by itself, but pieced together with all the other squares, I think it paints the perfect picture of who my brother was. I’m very happy and pleased with the way it came out and I have this quilt on display on a quilt rack in my living room.
Although I had several t-shirts to pick from, and because I wanted to use only those that most represented the things that I felt were most important to my brother, I felt the theme of the quilt coming to life. In the end, we used one t-shirt for the square with a reference to Chevy muscle cars; and we used other t-shirts for the various squares with a reference to the U.S. Marines, Harley Davidson, and the Dallas Cowboys, which would create four of the needed twelve squares.
Since Jesse had worked for HL&P for so long and because the company had changed names several times, and because he had acquired work shirts from each of the new companies, we were able to use a combination of smaller pieces of his various shirts for three more squares each representing the original HL&P, Reliant Energy and CenterPoint Energy to fully represent the entire 28 years he had with the company. This was important to me as I knew how proud he was for having had only one job his entire adult life.
Picking The Right Shirts Can Sometimes Be Challenging
As it turned out, this was not a simple project by any means. In fact, it turned out to be very complicated and tedious for both me and Karen. During the planning and preparation phases of this quilt, we encountered several obstacles that I feel the need to explain to fully appreciate Karen’s workmanship and the sentimental value I had already invested in this memory quilt.
One issue was that not all of his work shirts had large enough logos or artwork on them to be able to make one full square (this is important because all the squares must be the same size to make the finished product); however, because Karen is so experienced and knowledgeable in making custom quilts, and because she knows how to improvise so well, she was able to “piece together” the smaller logos from both the pockets and/or the sleeves of his various work shirts to “create” additional squares of the proper size.
Another issue was that I knew that we were going to need a total of twelve squares to finish the quilt, and at one point, we discovered that we only had eight full squares, which meant we were going to be short four squares to finish the quilt that I wanted. Luckily, as previously stated above, Karen could partially solve this issue by piecing together those smaller pieces from the same shirts to create two additional squares for a total of ten squares, which still left me short two more squares to finish the quilt.
By this point in time, I was at my wit’s end. I was frustrated with myself, and disappointed that may have to revise my theme and use other shirts that would not convey what I had imagined in my mind. Thankfully, Karen was not worried at all. She gave me time to mull it over, she told me to look around for more shirts – she told me that not all the shirts had to had specifically belonged to my brother, and not to stress too much about it – she was confident that it would all turn out.
This part is a little bit off-topic, but it serves as additional background. There is a local biker bar called, “Ronnie’s Hog Heaven” in town that is owned by some long-time friends of ours, and it was not unusual for Jesse to stop by there several nights a week to have a few drinks and visit with friends after work. As luck would have it, I had previously purchased a bright orange t-shirt from Ronnie’s bar that I thought could be used as one of the missing squares that I still needed for the quilt.
Persistance Pays Off
As one last ditch effort to find a t-shirt I could use for the last remaining square, I started going to local resale shops and several of the Goodwill stores around town looking for men’s t-shirts that might work.
It just so happened that on one of these trips, I came across a shirt that quite literally jumped out at me and I knew it was the exact shirt that I was looking for. My heart started pounding, and I was actually giddy as I was walking to the register to buy it, and I was grinning from ear to ear.
Finding this last shirt at a random Goodwill store is how and when I decided to use the Harley Davidson color scheme for my brother’s memory quilt.
Below is a picture of the artwork from that shirt that we needed and used for the last, center square to finish my brother’s quilt.
The Tasmanian Devil Utility Worker T-Shirt Reflects Jesse’s Life
To better understand and appreciate the significance of why I chose this shirt with this picture on it is to know the following things about my brother Jesse: 1) Jesse had a tattoo of the Tasmanian Devil on his back right shoulder and he wore a small gold Tasmanian Devil on a gold chain around his neck; 2) Jesse was a long time employee of HL&P and was therefore a “utility worker” for many years; 3) the photo that HL&P used of my brother in the newspaper in 1997 shows him wearing his hardhat and also with a roll of power lines resting on his shoulder; and 4) my brother used to carry his tools and wore a utility belt around his waist when he was working. Now, look at the Tasmanian Devil picture on the quilt again and then look at the first picture at the beginning of this story and tell me that you don’t recognize the uncanny resemblance!?
It was simply amazing to me that the Tasmanian Devil on this random shirt was posed and dressed as a utility worker, and it instantly reminded me of my brother, so that is why that very last square on this quilt means so much to me.
When I found that shirt, I immediately called Karen to inform her that I had the last two shirts that we needed for the quilt, and she let me come over to drop them off, and that was all she wrote… or in this case, that was all that Karen need to start stitching.
T-shirts and Clothing Are a Reminder of Those We Love
As with the other two quilts that Karen made for me, I was very pleased and thrilled with the finished product. The Harley Davidson color scheme came together after adding my orange t-shirt from Ronnie’s bar, and it was an easy choice to go with orange and black for the rest of the quilt.
Since my brother was also an avid supporter of the local football team, I used one of his Dickinson Football shirts as the last corner square on the quilt, and the photo below shows the monogram that I had put on it.
My brother was cremated, and in my house, I have a small urn engraved with his name containing a small amount of his ashes in a cubby hole that I keep as a small memorial for him. Inside that cubby hole is also a U.S. Flag and a copy of the photo that I took and used in his obituary. Coincidentally, the black Marines t-shirt that he is wearing in that picture is also on my quilt. I miss and think of my brother every day. This memory quilt is the final piece of the puzzle that I was missing, and it is proudly on display on a quilt rack in my living room for all to see and admire when they visit.
The photo below is an updated copy of the original picture published in the paper. Notice that the original “HL&P” logo on his hardhat was been changed to “CenterPoint Energy” in this copy. I found this copy one day at work on the back of an old Directory for the Hispanic Legal Association for 2013. When the new directory for 2014 arrived in the mail, and I was going to discard the 2013 directory until I noticed his face on the back of it. Wow!
This concludes my story of all the quilts that Karen Overton made for me. I have a sneaky suspicion that I will find a few other projects for us to work on in the not too distant future.
That’s all, folks! Irma Cortez
Once again, thank you Irma for sharing your stories with us, and for being such a faithful customer!
If you missed her other guest blog appearances click here to read of her mother’s memory quilt and click here to read of her son’s t-shirt quilt.
This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler Telling YOUR story one quilt at a time.
As always, we appreciate your comments and feedback.
It’s time to pour that second cup of coffee and snuggle deep in your lap quilt to sit back and enjoy this touching story by guest writer, Irma Cortez for The Quilt Rambler…fair warning, you may need tissues….Karen
This is the first of my stories about the various quilts that my friend, Karen Overton, has made for me – this one is specifically about the memory quilt she made for me using my mom’s muumuus.
First, some background information…
My name is Irma Cortez, and my mother is Lucy Cortez. She was a quilter. She lovingly and meticulously made quilts by hand. My mom was affectionately called, “Lulu.” It was what the first grandbaby pegged her with, and it stuck.
I remember that my mom would sit at her quilting rack for hours and hours, for weeks and weeks, and months and months as she would work on a quilt and stitch and sew endlessly while watching her favorite soap operas on TV.
My mom first started out making baby quilts one by one for all of her grandchildren. My parents had eight (8) children. Little did she know then how many grandchildren she would eventually have when she first started, but quilting soon became a life-long obsession of love and passion for her.
In between making baby quilts, she also began making quilts for various friends and family members, especially each of her children. She would have various quilt projects in process, working on them simultaneously depending on which patterns she felt like working on at any given time. When each quilt was finished, my mom always hand-embroidered either her whole name or her initials on each of her quilts. If one quilt happened to take longer than a year to complete, she would always be sure to put both the year that she started that quilt and the year that she finished making it. If she felt like it, or if we were lucky enough, sometimes she even stitched the person’s name on it that she had made the quilt for, which has helped us to identify our quilts through the years.
My mom’s quilts were very well made and became very popular. She was a perfectionist and each stitch was carefully and lovingly sewn and stitched with exact precision. There were plenty of times she would not like some stitches, and she’d take them out, and re-do them if needed.
More often than not, Lulu made her quilts as a token of love and would gift them to special friends and loved ones. She would start a new quilt for family when she heard that a new baby was coming; however, sometimes she made quilts for people that wanted to pay her for her baby quilts.
When she was getting paid, it was not unusual for her put all her personal quilt projects on hold to start and finish those quilts for “paying” customers. My mom’s thinking was that the more quilts she sold to paying customers, the more quilting materials she could purchase and stockpile for future projects. And there were lots of stockpiles!!
In 2008, my mom suffered a massive stroke, and she was unable to quilt during the time she was hospitalized or while she was recovering in rehab. It took the entire year before she was able to resume her love of quilting again.
Sadly, Lulu suffered another massive stroke in July 2009, and she passed away on 7/23/09. At her memorial service family members decided to showcase just a small selection of her many handmade quilts displayed amongst various family pictures and photos of her grandchildren. All who attended were astonished at all the beautiful quilts she had made and expressed high praise for them.
Following her funeral family members gathered to help clean out our mother’s house and decided to distribute her personal belongings to those that wanted them.
It should be noted that quilting was not my mom’s only passion. She also loved and collected Hallmark ornaments, Coca-Cola ornaments and collectibles, and also ceramic roosters of all shapes and sizes.
There were so many Christmas ornaments – literally hundreds and hundreds of them, that we were each able to selected those ornaments that were sentimental to us for various reasons.
By mutual agreement, we decided to donate the majority of her clothes to the Goodwill or a women’s shelter. However, while we were separating and packing her clothes, I noticed her large collection of “muumuus,” and at one point, I started separating those that I knew had been her favorite ones.
This is when and how I decided to make a memory quilt from my mom’s favorite items of clothing, and this is also how Karen Overton comes into the story.
Luckily, I’ve known Karen Overton from attending the same church for years and years. I knew that she was a quilter, and I told myself that I’d call her one day to discuss making a quilt for me.
I took all of my mom’s “muumuus” that I wanted home with me, I washed & dried them, and then I folded them and put them in a plastic container where they stayed for almost two years. I wasn’t sure why it took me so long, but, the old saying, “out-of-sight, out-of-mind” probably had something to do with it, but once I was ready, I contacted Karen to ask about making a memory quilt.
After our initial phone call, I met with Karen at our scheduled time, and it was then that I learned what it takes to make a memory quilt. Admittedly, I was thrown aback when Karen informed me that I had to decide what size quilt I wanted, what pattern I wanted, which colors to include in the quilt, etc. I never knew all the decisions that were required to make a quilt, and the attention to detail that is required.
Fortunately for me, Karen had a nice little studio set up and she showed me plenty of her own quilts, and some of the projects she was currently working on. She was very helpful and informative in explaining the various parts of a quilt and how the quilting process comes together. Even though it had been 2 years, I was very emotional at our first meeting, and Karen recognized how tenderhearted I was with my mom’s clothes. She didn’t rush me for decisions, instead, she let me take the time I needed to decide what I wanted.
Once I decided that I didn’t actually want a full sized quilt to put on a bed, we discussed the various sizes for a lap throw quilt instead. With Karen’s help and assistance, I finally chose a 3 X 4 quilt (also called a 12-square quilt), which means it has 3-squares across and 4-squares down, measuring approximately 53” x 70”.
Since I had plenty of muumuus to pick from, Karen made sure to ask all the right questions that helped me better decide which of the muumuus I would use for the quilt, i.e., which were Lulu’s favorites? did any of the muumuus have stains or tears on them further indicating being her favorites? were there ones which could provide a more sentimental touch to the quilt? which one’s did I like most? what colors did I want to use, was there a specific room I felt I would use it in? etc.
With Karen’s help, we went through all the muumuus again and I picked all the ones that I knew my mom had worn the most – and it turned out that I had photos of my mom wearing some of them!
My mom was always a happy person, I recall she always had a smile on her face, and she always eager to sit down and talk and visit with friends or anyone anytime. With Karen’s guidance and assistance, I knew that I wanted a cheerful and bright quilt, one that would make me feel good and happy each time I used it, and that would always remind me of my Mom.
As luck would have it, the muumuus that I had selected had a variety of bright colors in them – pinks, yellows, greens, and blues. So, I opted for a bright yellow trim for the sashing, and a bright pink for the cornerstones and the backing.
I ABSOLUTELY love, love, love this Memory Quilt!!
It is the perfect size to curl up with on the couch or on top of my bed while I’m watching TV. I use it all the time, and I get a warm, fuzzy feeling each time I use it.
I love how Karen helped me to color-coordinate the trim (binding) with the back of the quilt to match the squares!
Once Karen contacted me that my quilt was finished, I went to pick it up and I cried. It was such a sentimental moment for me to see my mom’s favorite muumuus all together, in one place on a memory quilt.
Karen Overton has made three (3) quilts for me – one was a queen-sized quilt for my son using his high school spirit shirts, and two others which were both memory quilts – this one for my Mom and another one for my brother.
I knew that I wanted to have this quilt monogrammed and chose a bright pink thread to match the quilt and it turned out beautiful.
Long story short, my Mom graciously and lovingly made many quilts for me throughout her life for various occasions, i.e., several baby quilts for my son, a blue & white king-sized quilt to match my blue & white bedroom, the first quilt she ever made me was a red twin quilt with boats on it, etc.
I am very warm natured, and I don’t generally use quilts to sleep with at night, so, all my quilts have almost always just been stored in closets and only used when the weather changes.
However, throughout the years, I have since purchased and/or acquired several quilt racks from garage sales or resale shops, and now I have some of my favorite quilts that my Mother made me proudly hanging in my home.
I will always cherish these special quilts, and I will pass them on to my son one day, and hope he will care for them and cherish them as I do.
Thank you Irma, for sharing Lulu’s story with us. Irma will be sharing her stories of her son’s t-shirt quilt and her brother’s memory quilt in a future blog.
*As a special notation – at the time of commissioning this quilt the option to monogram was not available. The Quilt Rambler now offers this service on all Memory Quilt.
This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler, helping to tell YOUR story one quilt at a time.
Please leave a comment below we’d love to hear your thoughts.
Exciting things have been under wraps in my colorful quilting studio this past fall just waiting for the first of the New Year to officially announce!
Are you holding on to your computer mouse with sheer excitement eager to scroll down to the big reveal?
Drum role please…..or better yet … let me hear the rattling of quilting pins in that cute decorative bin or the clanging of bobbins in your bobbin case or to be really celebratory raise those rotary cutters and clink them in the air while imagining joining in with the cheers of your quilting buddies…..wait for it….wait for it….
Here it is!!!
After being known for 13 years in the quilting community as Quilts ‘N Kaboodle, professional longarm quilting services, I’m announcing a new name and new focus!
Okay, maybe not that new as I’ve previously had another blog with a similar tag line….(that was a huge hint in case you weren’t aware!) but new as far as Uncle Sam is concerned. And that’s about as officially new as you can get!
Are you turning on and off your Daylight Table Lamp or flicking on and off the light on your sewing machine with anticipation….come on now – join me in the news of the year!
Quilts ‘N Kaboodle has officially closed the doors and the doors are being opened wide for The Quilt Rambler!!
Yes, that’s the new me… well, it’s the same me… Karen E. Overton ( or as some know me “Karen O in TX”) …but the new me professionally.
I’m so excited! I’ve had such a difficult time keeping quiet…truth be told, I haven’t been that quiet…after all, I am a self-proclaimed rambler! Those that have known me throughout the years within the quilt community know my gift of gab when it comes to all things quilty. Did I mention I’m excited! So excited I’m chasing down so many rambling trails right now…..focus Karen, focus…
Okay…So why the name change you ask? Just to do something different. A little rebranding. An excuse for a new website and a new blog…and perhaps just because it’s easier to spell!
Actually, as hinted to earlier, I’m transitioning into a new focus with my quilting while the same time kinda staying the same…
Through the years I have been privileged to quilt some of the most beautiful quilts, all with a story to tell. I’ve celebrated with you when your quilt won a ribbon, or the best compliment of all -when you shared photos of your quilt being embraced by that special loved one you made it for. I’ve been blessed to have some of those quilts published in magazines and books or equally as important shared at guild meeting show and tells. Being a part of your quilts through longarm quilting as been pure joy. And I desire to continue to serve you in this area.
Some of my greatest joy has been in telling your story through the creation of a memory quilt or a t-shirt quilt. Nothing speaks louder of a life well lived than clothing well loved. It is so exciting for me to assist you in going through your child’s twelve years of t-shirt or sports jersey collection to make a special graduation gift. Or reliving your college days with you as you decide which treasured t-shirt should be the one to make the center of your quilt. So many of you have had wonderful collections and I have enjoyed being able to tell your story with a quilt.
Many of you have asked me to tell the story of a cherished loved one. I understand the memories of daddy’s shirts, mother’s muumuus, or a husband’s ties. Gathering these reminders and incorporating them into a quilt that can be wrapped around you to remind you of their love….well, all I can say is it just touches my heart to be able to be a small part of helping you tell your story.
So that’s the new focus – T-shirt quilts, memory quilts, quilts made from baby clothing….you name it! Making memories and telling YOUR story, one quilt at a time.
And because I love all things quilty my blog will be updated weekly with stories of your quilts, tips on being a better quilter, techniques to help you grow in your quilting, a tutorial every now and then, and reports of news-worthy products and happenings in the quilting community. I can hardly wait for this new year to begin, a new adventure, a new chapter in my quilting rambles. So join me on Facebook, and other social media (currently being developed so stay tuned!) It may only be a “name change” but its going to be the start of something wonderful!
Bring it on 2017! The Quilt Rambler is ready to ramble on!!!
Telling YOUR story, one quilt at a time! Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler!
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