Saturday, July 9, 2016

Get to know the QQQ's: Elsie from Quilts by Elsie

I'm Elsie Vredenburg and my shop is Quilts by Elsie

How did you come up with your shop name?
I think my shop name came about many years ago when I received a piece of mail addressed to “Quilts by Elsie” (people have a hard time with my last name).  At the time I was just starting out, and that sounded like a good business name.

 Where do you live?
 Michigan, where we have 4 seasons

apple tree

winter pine
When did you start making quilts? Or, when did you become interested in quilt-related items (fabric, patterns, etc)? 
My dad’s mother lived with us when I was in high school.  She made quilts and thought I should make one. 

Tell us about your first quilt or other important first in your sewing life.
That first quilt was from a pattern from the Michigan Farmer Magazine pattern service.  Grandma and I each made one, pieced by hand. 

My first quilt
What inspires you?
I like to do challenges and mystery quilts.  Nature inspires me.  Fabric inspires me. 

Do you have any other hobbies?
I have a garden.  Occasionally I delve into my roots by doing some genealogy, although I have most of the easy stuff done.  I like to read.  I’m active in my church.  I’m involved in the Quilt Barn Trail movement, putting large painted wooden quilt blocks on barns and other buildings.  This one is on a historic home in my cousin’s family.

quilt block on house

Do you do any charity sewing?
My quilt guild, North Star Quilters of Cadillac, Michigan makes quilts for local charities, especially for the women’s shelter and the hospital.

Running an Etsy shop means you wear many hats in one day. How do Etsy activities impact your other life activities, such as work, family, other activities?  
I admit that I’m really bad at promotion and don’t do nearly what I should to promote my shop.

How do you plan your projects?
At this time, most of my work is quilting for others on my Tin Lizzie longarm quilting machine.  I divide my day up by quilting for a while, piecing, doing what needs to be done around the house or yard, etc.  I live alone so it’s easy to make a schedule I can keep, though I do keep one of my great-grandchildren overnight on Saturday nights and take them to church on Sunday.

Etsy Shop: Quilts by Elsie

Follow me on:
Facebook: Quilts by Elsie


  1. wow, that is some first quilt, and by hand too! Love the painted quilt blocks on houses!

  2. Elsie! I can't imagine ever make such a beautiful and big quilt as your very first one. No wonder all your quilts are so amazing! Thank you for sharing your story with all of us. Now I feel like I know you better.

  3. Wow Elsie! That's an amazing first quilt done by hand! Love the painted quilt block on the house. Thank you for sharing your story.

  4. Lovely read, "Michigan, where we have 4 seasons" made me LOL everyone is right your first quilt is a real beauty!

  5. At the risk of repeating ... AMAZING that you quilted that lovely first quilt by hand. And I love that you and your grandma each made one - that is quintessential quilting :o) The painted barn blocks are quite inspiring. Great story Elsie.

  6. What a nice quilter's story. How wonderful that we are talking about your grandmother! The quilt the two of you made is wonderful and I'm glad you still have it! Beautiful Etsy Shop!

  7. Beautiful first quilt, as are all of yours!! I too am very active in doing genealogy- it's very addictive! Great job and thanks for letting us get to know you more. :)