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Rising Star Quilter

Linda Ali – Standing on the Shoulder of Our Ancestor

Linda Ali

Linda Ali is a charter member of the Great Lakes
African American Quilter’s Network as well as a member
of the Hartford Baptist Church Wednesday Night
Quilting Sisters. Quilting is a large part of her
life and spiritual journey.

She shared her love of quilting and African American
history with her first quilting teacher Judith Busby.
Quilting ties us to our history, all the way back to
our motherland, Africa. It has sustained us through
times of struggle, tragedy and turmoil.

When our ancestors were in bondage, they had to work
from sunup to sunset, service the master, feed and
support their family, and then find the inner-strength
to create a work of beauty and strength. She poured
out her problems and toils of the day into the cloth.
That healing cloth, gave her a respite from the rest
of the world.

During an especially difficult time, Linda faced the
trials of caring for sick family. Her daughter took
suddenly ill of a mysterious illness out-of-state.
She just had time to pack and grab a project she was
hand quilting. Linda quilted her prayers into the
quilt as she waited at doctor’s offices, the hospital
and sick bed. The experience deepened her spiritual
faith. The quilt holds special place in the family’s
heart, who named it the Healing Cloth. The quilt was
presented to her daughter last year.

Quilting is a legacy passed onto us from our
ancestors. I feel I am standing on the shoulders of
the women who came before me. If they could create a
quilt, after the emotional and physical stress they
lived through, how can I not persevere through my
life’s trials? No matter how bad things were, they
could still quilt.


Rising Star Quilter

Julie Baker - Artist and Quilter

Artwork is by artist Rebeka Walker

Julie Baker came to quilting from a painting background. Quilting allows her to paint with the fabrics she enjoys.

A quilt exhibit at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History opened Julie's eyes to the craft. Among the African American quilts, she found the quilt, "Windows and Doors" by Pearl Cook, especially inspiring.

Julie carries her hand piecing with her on her daily tasks. She shares her quilting and inspires new quilters.

"I like being around positive, creative people. That is why I am a member of GLAAQN & Hartford Quilting Sisters."

For Julie, quilting is an art form. She talks through her artwork. A mixed technique quilter, she looks for words on fabric plus writes her own words. She now uses fabric in her paintings. "I have a hard time picking material; all colors are my favorite." "Since 2002, I have completed 4 hand pieced and quilted baby blankets for the Kiwanis Club, and machine pieced and hand quilted twin and full sized bed quilts."

"I am a cancer survivor. I ask everyone to, please, do monthly, standing and lying, breast self-exams, and to get a yearly mammogram and pelvic exam. Also, remind the man in your life to get checked for prostate cancer."

Shirley Talley, Project Winner - July Meeting

The Show and Tell portion of our meetings is always fun and inspiring. Your completed projects continue to shine and bring "ohs" and "ahs." Attendees at each meeting vote for their favorite completed GLAAQN project in the Show and Tell. The winner receives a $25 prize.

Shirley Talley won the prize for her "Caroline" quilt. Shirley portrayed her in beautiful teals and tans. Her dressy lady is wearing a straw hat, made with real straw and handmade earrings that match her skirt.

"Caroline" is one of two Carolyn Bunkley custom designed, quilt applique patterns highlighted at the GLAAQN January meeting. Designer Carolyn was on hand to personally lead the workshop.

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