Gail Garber Designs
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Priority Alzheimer’s

AAQI Little Quilts 2011

AAQI Little Quilts Made By My Group - 2011

I’ve been involved with the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative since it was founded by Ami Simms, whose Mom was afflicted by this terrible disease. Their main fundraiser is the sale of Priority Alzheimer’s Little Quilts — quilts that fit into a priority mailing envelope. Their goal was to bring 1500 little quilts to International Quilt Festival in Houston, and THEY DID IT! All sales go directly to fund research for Alzheimer’s Disease, which also afflicts my mom, who now lives in an Alzheimer’s facility.


Watch the video above to see some of the quilts that will be for sale this year in Houston.

Tiny Trees

Tiny Trees by Gail Garber

This is one of the quilts that I donated to the 2011 Priority Alzheimer’s Project. This “Tiny Trees” will be for sale in their booth on Row T of the main exhibit hall at International Quilt Festival, Houston.

Here’s a link to another of the projects undertaken by AAQI, “Alzheimer’s: From Heartbreak to Hope” Each of the purple rectangles bears the name of a loved one who was afflicted by the disease. My Mom’s name, Sylvia, is among them. The strips were taken around the country and people lined up in droves to add the name of their loved one. Each of the strips was quilted and bound to make this amazing exhibit.

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A Bear of a Year

Bear Cub

Emaciated black bear cub at The Wildlife Center, Espanola, NM

I don’t know if you knew that I also post bird and nature blogs at New Mexico Birds. I usually post a couple of articles each month, mostly about birds. But, my most recent installment is about Black Bears and the high number that are being found starving and injured during this record drought year. Wildlife and nature are a major part of my life, and I’d like to begin including links to those posts here too.

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Days For Girls


My small quilt group, Designing Women, has undertaken several charity projects, but Days for Girls was quite different than any of our previous endeavors. This worthy group collects and distributes women’s sanitary supplies to women in Third World countries, primarily Africa. Did you know that in these areas, girls must miss school and women must miss work due to their monthly menstrual cycle? It made all of us realize just how lucky we are to take these supplies for granted.


Days for Girls supplies four different patterns for pad holders, in different sizes, to meet varying needs. This is the simplest to stitch the diamond shape. The organization also insets all the snaps that are used to hold them in place, so we didn’t have to worry about that.


The Cutting and Organizing Crew: (l to r) Lisa Stewart, Pat Drennan, Mary Chappelle (who brought the idea to our group), Twila Bastian (our hostess for the day) and Debbie Caffrey.


Cathy Combs concentrated on making flannel pads that would fit into the pad holders.


So did Cynthia Figueroa-McInteer!


Five newbies joined our group for the “sew-in”, including two teens. All of them are part of Hawks Aloft, the avian conservation group that I also head. From l-r: Amelia Porter, Lizzie Roberts, Rhianna Roberts, Chellye Porter and Lindsey Porter.


Here Lizzie shows off the cutest pad holder ever!


Amelia’s pad holder is doubly cute!


Anita McSorley took on the task of top-stitching the pad holders.


Ta Da! And here is our finished pile of pad holders, 105 in all. All made from scrap fabrics from our stashes. We also made a pad to fit into each pad holder.


It was a great project, particularly meaningful for young American girls who learned more about the lack of basic sanitary supplies in some countries. Days for Girls supplies a goody bag that contains two pad holders, 10 pads, and also soaps and other hygiene supplies. Check out their website and think about have a sew-in with your group. You will be glad you did!

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“Sailing Away” by Jeanette Funk

Jeanette Funk of Grand Juncion, CO sent in this image of a terrific adaption of my “Sailing Away” pattern, published recently by Quiltmaker Magazine.

Hi Gail,

We did a challenge in out quilt guild that involved taking a printed panel and turning it into a quilt. I was having trouble figuring out what to do with it when I saw “Sailing Away” in Quiltmaker and thought maybe I could somehow incorporate my lighthouse panel in that design.  When I read that you had published the “Flying Colors” book I ordered it right away. Nothing would gel in my mind until I finally started working on the panel while I kept looking at your “Flying Colors”  book.  The final result is below. I won third place in our challenge but the most fun was the stretching I had to do to make the quilt come together.

Your book was so helpful and I would like to say thank-you for making it available to all of us quilters. Working on the quilt has given me more confidence to try different designs and move out of my comfort zone…slowly, of course!   Thanks again for your inspiring book and quilts.

Sincerely,

Jeanette Funk

 

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Quilting by the Lake – 2011

The QBL Class

The QBL Class


A fabulous class!

The Bag and me

The Bag and me


What a surprise! They hid my bottle of super glue so I had to dig around for it. That’s when the bright orange professional bag peeked out of my suitcase. Thank you Charles and everyone else in class at QBL!

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Tricksters at QBL

Imagine my surprise when, after returning from lunch, I asked a question and several sheepish faces stared back at me. Finally Joanne exclaimed, “Don’t ask me! I have the smallest head in the class!”. That really got my attention and I wondered just how it was that she knew that.

Measuring Heads

Measuring Heads


It turns out that they were busy using their flexible curves for another purpose besides drafting quilting patterns — measuring the circumference of each other’s heads.

Friday night was QBL Show and Tell, where each teacher and her class get up on stage to show the results of the week long class. Imagine my surprise when my class marched up on stage, flex curves in hand and then donned them as head ornaments!

Charles, Doris, and Paul at Show and Tell

Charles, Doris, and Paul at Show and Tell


We simply had way too much fun at QBL!

Show and Tell

Show and Tell


And, without a doubt, I had the best students in my class!

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The Very Special QBL Class

Nancy Sporn

Nancy Sporn displays her work in progress


It isn’t often that the chemistry among a class rises to this level. It ranks among the most fun class ever! Students were skilled, creative, and mischievous. We bonded almost immediately. Of course, the SuperGlue helped the bonding process.

Joanne Williamson

Joanne Williamson


Joanne Williamson created a sawtooth border effect through careful selection of background fabrics.

Linda Santana

Linda Santana


Linda Santana used rainbow geese to surround her star.

Charles Johns

Charles Johns


Charles Johns’ star features intricate edging to highlight each star point.

Sue Colwell

Sue Colwell


Sue Colwell’s design is growing beyond the circular design.

Drafting the Design
Drafting the design.

Paul Leger

Paul Leger


Paul Leger and his star featuring rainbow colors. This is part of a larger project focusing on a community celebration in his home town.

Sally Ickes

Sally Ickes


Sally Ickes got the prize for bringing the most fabric to class.

Amy Quinn Star

Amy Quinn


Amy Quinn and her star.

Kitsee Demeree

Kitsee Demeree


Kitsee Demeree took classes from me many years ago. It is thanks to her lobbying efforts that I was invited to teach at QBL this year. Thank you, Kitsee!

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QBL – Accomodations

Libby and hairdryer

Libby and hairdryer


QBL is held at Onondaga Community College in Syracuse, where the dorms are brand new and the rooms are arranged in suites. No traipsing down the hall to the communal bathroom. My Suite-mate was one of my favorite teachers, Libby Lehman. We had not been at a venue together for a long time — so many words, so little time. Libby has special travel accessories, like this Baby Bird blow dryer, so small it would fit into a nest.

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