Quilt Story Saturday – For Elise

Orphan Block Unite
My Colorful Past

Welcome once again to Quilt Story Saturday, it’s a cool morning here in the Texas Gulf Coast, so join me for that second cup of warm beverage and spend a moment as I ramble about the quilt  My Colorful Past, a quilt made from leftover parts and pieces of previous quilts or orphan blocks.

For Elise

blocks from For Elise are included in My Colorful Past Quilt by The Quilt Rambler
Small section of My Colorful Past quilt

Today I’d like to share a section from a quilt I called “For Elise“.

Around the turn of the century (I love saying that!)  I worked weekends at Quilts By The Bay in Galveston trading time for fabric. My favorite part was when the new lines of fabric would arrive – we’d almost attack that UPS man to be the first to get to the boxes! One weekend several boxes arrived with this beautiful collection of blue fabrics! Fabric love at first sight! We had recently purchased our current home (2005) and I was in the decorating mode. Since we had a blue sectional couch in the living room this collection of blues would be perfect for new curtains and of course a wall quilt! Being a fat quarter queen I took “one of each please” and then had to make the choice of which blue would be perfect for my curtains (I can’t recall but I think I bought the whole bolt of that print!)

My Colorful TRASH – many quilt books and magazines were victims of Hurricane Harvey

In addition to feeding my fabric habit while working at the quilt shop, I developed a healthy appetite for new books and of course the latest specialty rulers! I wish I could remember the name of the book for reference – it’s either packed away since Hurricane Harvey or among the ones on the bottom shelf that had to be discarded…regardless, it was a book that taught a block unit generally called Shaded Four Patch. There was a gallery of photos among the patterns that were included for inspiration. The layout I chose for my quilt didn’t have the cutting or piecing instruction nor a layout guide. Just a photo. But I was determined! I used the author’s technique and made what seemed like thousands of shaded four patch units!

For Elise is a quilt made of blue and yellow shaded four patch units
Shaded Four Patches can be arranged in thousands of ways to produce a pleasing outcome

Then came the photo guided layout to produce a similar result. I love scrap quilts! The hardest part for someone who likes balance and control is the layout – hours and hours of rearranging to get “the look”. I try to have only one rule, no identical fabrics can touch each other…but sometimes rules just don’t apply to quilting!

What Is Old Is New Again

In looking at the close up I notice that my points don’t always match. Sigh. Part of that is inexperience – after all, I made this back in 2006 and I’ve gained a lot of experience since then. Part of it was the technique. I’m so thankful that Studio 180 Design tools and techniques have come into my life. If I were to make this quilt again I would use Deb’s Technique Sheet Shaded Four Patch and her Tucker Trimmer to achieve better results. Live and learn!

For Elise is a blue and yellow quilt make by Karen Elise Overton shown in the photo
For Elise, pieced and quilted by Karen Elise Overton, The Quilt Rambler, 2006

The Rest of The Story

We’ve been in our current house since 2005 and I redecorated the living room at least three times with various colorways, curtains and of course quilts to match. I’m actually looking forward to a totally new look once we have completed our Harvey reconstruction. But that’s a story for another time!

So what about For Elise? Are you curious as to where that quilt is now? I am too! Let me explain…

We support a ministry called All Things Possible Ministries lead by Victor Marx. Victor has a very unique personal testimony of being an overcomer – I urge you to watch The Victor Marx Story or read his book. He’s been told by experts in the field that it’s a miracle he’s even alive after what he has gone through in his life! His ministry includes films about trauma and recovery, just recently he released a documentary called Triggered that pertains to PTSD – having been in special forces himself he has a true gift of relating to his audience.

When we first met Victor as a guest speaker at our church he was primarily ministering in juvenile prisons giving incarcerated children a hope for a better future. Currently, he is in the middle east on high-risk mission trips rescuing children from the horrible grip of ISIS. On one such visits to our church, Victor shared that he was collecting blankets to take to the middle east…well, to this quilter blankets translated to quilts! I quickly sent a boxload to his home office for distribution. For Elise was among those sent.

Quilt Story Saturday

I’d like to think that somewhere in the world a young woman haunted by the cruelty of living in an inhuman world can feel the love of this quilter as she wraps herself for warmth – more importantly, the love of Jesus. Quilters are a generous bunch – I am always amazed at the number of quilts that are donated in times of need. Truly it is more blessed to give than receive.

As mentioned, my living room is no longer blue (it’s still shiplap brown at the moment) and truly someone else needed this quilt more than my living room wall. I am thankful though that I kept a few blocks and made My Colorful Past as a testimony of God’s goodness in my life as well as a reminder to pray for those truly in need all over the world.

Thanks for joining me for Quilt Story Saturday….there will be more next week!

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler, thinking that a cup of hot chocolate would be just wonderful this morning!









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4 thoughts on “Quilt Story Saturday – For Elise

  1. Brenda A says:

    Thank you for sharing. What a blessing to be able to give the love and warmth of quilts and God through helping others. I am getting ready to start a quilt for a raffle to help support my church’s mission trip to Haiti this summer. While I am not physically able to go myself, I know what ever I can raise with the quilt will be well used to help those in need in Haiti. Thanks for the inspiration, Karen!

    • TheQuiltRambler says:

      There are those who can physically go on missions and those who are called to financially support those able to go or perhaps one is called to be the prayer warrior! God uses those who allow Him to do so! Sounds like He’s given you your ministry to use your quilts!

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