Finding her dream in Australia
Jeltje grew up in The Netherlands as did her parents and grandparents. In 1948 Jeltje’s grandmother followed her husband to Australia. Jeltje’s mother Ruth and her sister Edith stayed in Amsterdam because they were engaged. At age 17, Ruth missed her parents a lot. The first time she saw her parents again was in 1969. Jeltje was 14 years old when she met her grandparents Jim and Nanna for the first time. The second and last time was in 1978 when Jeltje was pregnant with her first child Marjolein. It feels good to be with them, talk and laugh with them, celebrating and feel the family ties all over again.
After Jeltje's father Henk died in 1984, Ruth went to Australia each year for several months. She stayed with her family, her sister Marjorie, brothers Hans and Jaap and lots of nieces and cousins. In 2005 Jeltje went with Ruth to Australia. This was the now or never moment as Ruth had Parkinson and was in the early stages of dementia.
Jeltje had always been working in high power professional jobs and had never been inside a quilting store. She discovered quilting in 2005 when her aunts and nieces showed her around in Toowoomba and Brisbane, Australia. With “memory lane” fabrics from her aunt Marjorie, she started her first quilt top, quilting it in the plane on the way home!
Then patchwork quilting became her passion. She loves to make “real life” things, which you can feel, take and show to your friends and family. She also enjoys using her creativity. The work she did as a ICT consultant, managing processes and building workflows in SharePoint, she could not show to her family and friends, but quilting is a different story. She is an outgoing person and loves to share her passion.
In 2007 in order to change from her professional work and live the quilting dream, Jeltje built her own webshop called Quiltwebshop.nl using her IT skills. The next step in the journey was buying a tiny house in an A1-location. In 2008 the “Quiltshop 100 roses” opened in the Walstraat in Deventer, The Netherlands. In the same street, three doors away from her first shop a soon to be refurbished house became available. After 6 months of hard labour of her husband Henk, son Roel and neighbour Pieter, the new Quilt shop was at last a reality! From 2010 the shop was completed with plenty of room for Jeltje’s biggest passion - Quilting. She became a fulltime entrepreneur, surrounded daily with quilt friends with plenty of ideas for lovely quilts.
Since 2020 Jeltje moved to Wilp and her atelier is in the centre of this tiny village.
Quilt related publications and other media stuff
2011 Interview at TV Max Koffietijd Dutch television channel
2012 Interview TV Oost, Regional television channel
2013 E-book Dear Kaffe in Dutch and English, project book
2013 Interview by Eric Hartman, Dutch television channel
2013 Agenda 2014 in Dutch
2015 Catalogue and Agenda 2016 in Dutch and English
2015 De Schaapjes Quilt in Dutch, childrens book with quilt pattern
2016 Curator of "The Dear Jane" exhibit in Sainte Marie aux Mines, France, with Kim Caskey
2016 International teacher at Patchwork Europe Meeting
2017 Curator in Verona with "A Dutch pallette of quilts"
2017 6 quilts go to Mora, Sweden