Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative

Posting an email I received today from Ami Simms.  Her efforts have done a great deal for Alzheimer research.

Hello Bloggers,
Please consider helping the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative by blogging this news:
Thank you!
Ami :)
The Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative will most likely reach the $1,000,000 mark in money raised for Alzheimer’s research some time in 2013! The work of your hands and the compassion in your hearts has brought us to this milestone. I will be forever grateful to each and every one of you for your support and dedication.
AmiMommy Ami and her mother, Beebe, in 2006 shortly after the AAQI began.
What began as one person’s response to sorrow and frustration has grown into a national charity embraced by a large portion of the quilting community. More than 13,000 quilts have been donated, turning sweat equity into over $883,000 for research so far. For many donors these quilts were healing works of art which helped them grieve as they stitched for the greater good. Hundreds of thousands of people have seen the AAQI’s two traveling quilt exhibits about Alzheimer’s. Through this artistry came the realization for many that they were not alone on this journey of heartbreak; others understood, perhaps for the first time, what a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s really means. Together quilters have funded 11 research studies at six universities and a medical school. Three more studies will be funded this month and hopefully more throughout 2013. Because of the AAQI, scientists know a little bit more about Alzheimer’s than they did before. Hopefully this understanding will bring us all closer to a cure.
When I created the AAQI back in 2006, I never expected it to become so successful! I also never imaged how much work it would take to keep it going. As the AAQI blossomed, board members and core volunteers have had to increase our hours and pace to keep up. While I find enormous satisfaction in nurturing the AAQI, I much prefer sewing to administrating. I miss just being a full-time quilter.
For this reason, 2013 will be the last year of fundraising for the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative. I hope you will help the AAQI reach our goal of One Million Dollars for research and then at the end of 2013 celebrate with everyone who made this tremendous achievement possible. Please review the important dates below:
February 15, 2013: All bookings for the traveling exhibit “Alzheimer’s Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope” must be finalized.
March 1, 2013:  First online auction of quilts from “Alzheimer’s Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope” traveling exhibit. Twenty-six Name Quilts will be auctioned during the first 10 days of March, April, May, June, July, August, and September. Payment will be required at the conclusion of each auction with shipping in October 2013 after the exhibit retires. The 54 Priority: Alzheimer’s Quilts from the traveling exhibit will be auctioned during the first 10 days of October and December.
July 2013: Last month to participate in the Quilt-A-Month Club.
August 1, 2013: Last day to register Priority: Alzheimer’s Quilts. Quilts delivered to scanners after August 20 will be refused.
October 29 – November 3, 2013: International Quilt Festival. We hope to be invited back one last time to sell quilts in Houston, TX.
November 1-10, 2013: Celebrity Invitational Quilt Online Auction
December 30, 2013: Last day Priority: Alzheimer’s Quilts can be purchased online.
December 31, 2013: Quilts For Sale and Donation pages will be removed from the AAQI website and all solicitations will cease.
2014-2015: The Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative will monitor research grants awarded in 2013. The AQQI web page will be left intact for at least six months. Any funds not needed to sustain the AAQI’s final expenses will be donated to research. Remaining assets will be disposed of according to IRS regulations after which time the corporation will be dissolved.
There is still much work to this year as we sprint to the finish line. I hope everyone who reads this will join in, either as a seasoned veteran or a first time quilt donor or quilt buyer. We will continue to make a difference until the very last quilt is sold. Let’s make 2013 the best year ever!
Thank you for your support,
Ami Simms
Founder & Executive Director
Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Quilt Classes with Bonnie

I was so fortunate to get to attend a lecture by Bonnie Hunter, ,on her scrap saver system on Thursday evening.  My friend, Teresa, from McKinney and I took Bonnie's Virginia Bound class on Friday and on Saturday we took her Bricks in a Barnyard.  Now just to get those quilts finished.  Both are a lot of work but great fun!  I only bought some solid red for the Bricks quilt and a couple yards of some plaid fabric.  All the other fabric came from my scraps and smaller yardage.  You know - those strips you trim after quilting a quilt and that extra you bought of a color to make sure you had enough!  Bonnie has these patterns in 2 of her books and she suggests ways to recycle men's 100% cotton shirts for the fabric.  I did have a few of these in my fabric.  My friend Teresa searched thrift shops and found some great shirts to use in her quilts.  I'm trying to use up some of what I have.  That's what I love about Bonnie's quilting patterns - you can use all sorts of fabric and turn it into something pretty.  As she often says, "If it's still ugly(fabric), you didn't cut it small enough".

The Virginia Bound comes from her book, Scraps and Shirttails. Here are some of the block parts that I finished.  They are pieced on paper foundations.   

This shows how the 4 parts of the block go together to make the block.  I think I remember the blocks are to be 15" finished.
This shows how the secondary pattern is formed when the blocks go together.  I didn't sew any of my blocks together yet as I want to be sure I have good variety in the 4 parts and I try to use up a strip when I pull it out.  So the same strip my end up in several of the block sections. I want to have a bunch to mix and match.  I just sorted my fabrics by lights and darks.  

The Bricks in a Barnyard comes from her book, Scraps and Shirttails II.  Again I sorted lights and darks but in this quilt I used beiges to tans for my lights and did not include whites.

Each block has 4 sections and depending on how you set them you can get variations.  I'll probably go with her setting but add another row at the top and one at the bottom to make the quilt center 12" longer.
  This is the beginning of 2 sides of the border.  I was using them as leader/enders for each other.  I've always wanted to do a braid quilt or border but didn't quite get my mind around it but directions in class were great.  The sections will be trimmed straight on the sides just before being sewn onto the quilt center. My fabrics on these are actually darker but the camera flash lightened them.

I will leave you with a few pictures of our daughter and pets under the Christmas tree.  Although she is an adult, we've always taken pictures of her under the tree with the pets.  There is also one of Lucy(middle doggie) out in our Christmas snow.

Our beautiful Emma!  I imagine next year she will be in her own place with her own tree.

 Duchess is still rather bouncy and loves to play!

Sophie loves her picture taken but likes to bark at the camera.

Duchess thinks she is being really good.

Lucy does not like her picture taken with a flash!
Lucy figured out how to roll the ball around in the snow and get it coated and then she could eat the snow off of it!