Peace Circle creation brings tran-quilt-ity to Elizabethtown Inn

By: Chrysta Carroll - Bladen Journal

ELIZABETHTOWN — For the last 17 years, one of the most profitable items to be sold at a local church bazaar has been kept in relative obscurity. Recently, however, one of its creators was delighted to see where it wound up. You might even say she was in stitches.

Each year for nearly three decades, the four ladies’ circles of Wesley’s Chapel United Methodist Church would spend the better part of one year planning for and creating an item for their circle to sell at the annual bazaar. In 2001, the 12 to 18 ladies who were members of the Peace Circle did what many groups had done before them — created a quilt.

Elizabethtown’s Jane Ross was one of the ladies who worked on the colorful creation.

“My mother was a quilter, so it’s something I learned through the years, and a lot of the members in the church were quilters,” Ross explained. “It was a lot of fun to work together on something like this.”

Given an idea or color scheme — reds, blues, tans, and whites in floral or solid prints — each woman was responsible for embroidering triangles, rectangles, or squares of fabric and piecing them together. Many of the 10-inch by 10-inch squares were sewn on point, or at a 45-degree angle to the border, a design that requires careful piecing, lest the bias be stretched and the quilt distorted.

When the quilt was completed, it sold at the auction for one of the highest prices paid for any quilt sold at the church’s bazaar. The fortunate recipient was Chris Adams, who would go on to open the Elizabethown Inn and use the quilt as wall decor for an upstairs bedroom. The blanket still hangs there today.

Having transitioned hands, the Inn was recently the site of an open house, courtesy of new owners Nico and Christine Maraise.

“I just love this quilt,” Christine said on a tour, while running her hand along the fabric. “There’s something calm and peaceful about it.”

Not knowing what awaited upstairs, Ross, downstairs, was trying to decide whether to make the trek up the steps to see the bedrooms she thought would be familiar to her. Ultimately, she decided to head up, and was very pleased that she did.

“I walked in that room, and was just thrilled,” she recalled, shaking her head. “Just thrilled. So much love goes into a quilt, you know. All that needlework, all that handwork — any quilt that anybody makes is an act of love. It thrills me to see it being used this way.”

“We’re very fortunate that Chris left this here,” Maraise said. “Quilts tell stories, so I’m excited to see how this one’s story turns out.”

Chrysta Carroll can be reached by calling 910-862-4163 or emailing

Chrysta Carroll

Bladen Journal