Sunday, September 16, 2012

Bonus Challenge from Susan Brubaker Knapp - Part 1

In August, SewCalGal published the second Bonus challenge in our year-long Free Motion Quilting Challenge.  Susan Brubaker Knapp is our very talented quilting expert for this Bonus, which focuses on finding quilting inspiration from simple objects in your own environment.  Part one of the challenge was to grab your camera, find the Macro setting (what, I have a Macro setting on my little pocket Sony - who knew?!), and go out and just snap photos of everything and anything that strikes your fancy.  Sounds easy, and fun, and it was!  Now I just have to choose a design or two from all the possibilities in these photos:

So many possibilities, now to choose just one or two or three to stitch up for my September stand-in challenge piece.   I think I have it narrowed down to two or three at this point.  Stay tuned for further developments.

Thanks Susan Brubaker Knapp for the great inspiration!  You can find Susan's blog here.  This Bonus challenge should be loads of fun!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Piecing Marathon Complete

The past six weeks have been a whirlwind of activity, harvesting and freezing the last of the raspberries and blueberries, a few quarts of the wild Himalayan blackberries on the neighboring lot, apples picked from my sister's tree and turned into 18 pints of yummy applesauce for our winter dinners.  Our tomatoes are finally reaching the nearly ripe stage, and barring an early freeze, we may yet have a harvest worthy of home-canned stewed tomatoes and salsas.

In the sewing room, my free motion quilting practice has been set aside in order to finish piecing three twin-sized quilt tops and backs - the last of this year's intended Christmas gifts-to-be.  The last quilt back was pieced yesterday, and bindings for all three now cut and set aside.  Whew!   This morning layered and pin-basted the first two, now ready for free motion quilting.  At last, time to move the cutting table and the new little auxiliary folding table into position in the quilting corner.   I feel like I'll be starting from scratch again with FMQ, it's been so long since I've even practiced for 5 minutes - the last FMQ was the little Jesters Hat sample for SewCalGal's August FMQ Challenge.  I do love the Jesters Hat pattern and plan to use it as an all-over design on at least one of the three quilts about to go under the needle.

Here's a sneak peek at the most recently pieced top, as the last strip of blocks was being sewn on.  After piecing the first two quilt tops on the new Janome, my vintage machines were calling out to me, so this one was pieced on my 1950s Singer 301A fondly dubbed "Casey Jones" since it reminds me so much of the old locomotives  of my childhood.
Now, back to the machine for some sorely needed FMQ practice!