The idea for ‘Airedales Downunder’ was hatched in late 2009,
when three of us, American Anne Marie Serrano, and Australians Jenny
Patience & Sue Forrester, were having a ‘girls’ weekend’ in country
Anne Marie, together with her husband Fergus and their two
Airedales, had spent a year in Australia and our friendship grew
strongly during that time. It was during our farewell weekend prior
to her return to the States that the plan evolved.
We are all passionate about Airedale Rescue, and each of us has
Rescue Airedales. It’s where our hearts are. If we could help
raise some more dollars for so many needy, abused and neglected
Airedales in USA, how good would that be? We would offer a Bonus
Quilt to the Quilt Fundraiser that is held each year, culminating in
October in Montgomery, PA.
And so, in 24 hours, we had sketched, planned and visualized the
whole plot. To our delight, the Quilting Bee accepted our offer and
we were off and running.
Rather than a Quilt, we chose to create a Wall Hanging instead, as
it allowed us to incorporate 3-dimensional work. Appliquéd and
quilted on a fabric map of Australia divided into the States, we
would translate iconic Australian activities into Airedalean
moments. Moments which would be instantly recognizable given that
Airedales have the same high spirited, loveable sometimes devilish,
quirky, intelligent behaviour the world over.
Queensland, best known for the Great Barrier Reef, presents our two
SnorkelDales; they know that you must never dive alone. They are
enjoying swimming amongst the colored fish, coral and sea stars in
the warm waters of the Coral Sea.
Everyone knows the Sydney Opera House, icon of Australia. Not
everyone knows that Ms
DivaDale, she of the glorious voice, elegant
black frock and gleaming jewelry, often sings her heart and soul out
under the bright starry skies of the south. If you listen hard, you
are sure to catch her pure notes soaring through the night aire.
And who has not heard of
Waltzing Matild’Aire, the famous bushman,
swaggie, and outback wanderer of Australian folklore? Caught in a
moment of repose, he sits by his campfire near the billabong. His
little mate, the Jumbuck, looks on somewhat anxiously ~ there’s
something in the song about tucker bags and jumbucks and he’s not
too sure about that. The koalas watch from the nearby Coolibah as
the great moon rises over the water. Later, he’ll roll out his swag
for a good night’s sleep.
As we move to the wide heart of Australia, near to the giant rock
known as Uluru, here’s kindly Mrs Kanga’dale offering to give
MamaDale (UluruDale) a bit of a break from Joey, the Puppaire. She’ll take him
for a hop across the desert to see the sights of the Red Center, and
bring him home in time for Aire tea.
Far to the west is the rugged Kimberley and the wild west coast of
Western Australia. Famous around the world for its fine pearls, and
rich wildflowers, it is a magnet for travelers. Pretty Miss
PearlDale, lover of all things beautiful, has found a valuable
string of pearls lying in a Bower Bird's display bower, amongst the
flowers. So excited is she with her find that she pronks her way
across the landscape, showing off her treasure to everyone she
Further south, the waters of the Indian Ocean offer fine surfing for
SurfaireDale. He’s a strong handsome lad, accustomed to the big
breaks, and handles his board like a pro. Penguins natter and
potter amongst the rockpools; you never know when a tasty fish might
be there for the picking.
Way to the southeast,
TassieDale is not to be overlooked. His
bright shiny eyes and big black nose tell us that he loves his food
(what Airedale does not?). He wears a little red apple
identification disc, which shows he belongs to the Apple Isle, aka
Tasmania. Cute, huh?
It has given us great joy, half a world apart yet as close as
sisters could ever be, to create something very special ~ for
Airedales. Huge credit goes especially to Anne Marie for
shouldering the bulk of the work in assembling, quilting and adding
all the finishing touches that enhance its unique-ness.
We hope that our gift of
Airedales Downunder will find a
wonderful ‘forever home’, but most of all, we know that our beloved
Airedales ~ wherever they are in the world ~ will benefit from the
love, care and commitment that they receive from everyone connected
with Airedale Rescue.
Anne Marie Serrano
friends joined in love for our Airedales, and for the sisterhood we
have found in creating Airedales Downunder.
You Tube "Airedales Downunder"