Thursday, July 28, 2022

Persimmons 2

“Persimmons 2” Copyright 2022 (30.75 x 14.25”) by Susan Brubaker Knapp. Wholecloth painted, free-motion machine quilted. White cotton fabric, textile paint, cotton thread, cotton backing fabric. 

Just finished this commission piece, based on the same photos I used as inspiration for the persimmon piece in my solo show at the N.C. Botanical Garden earlier this year. I love the color combination, and the way the echo quilting recreates the way the wind was vibrating the ripe persimmons on that October morning I took the photos at Lake Norman State Park near Mooresville, NC, about 10 years ago. 

For information on my wholecloth painting materials and techniques, please visit my blog post here:

Here are some detail shots:

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

Quilting Arts TV – Series 2900

After several years of craziness because of COVID, we shot the 2900 Series of Quilting Arts TV last week! I had to skip the last taping because I have some health issues that put me at higher risk for COVID. 

The shows will start airing on many PBS stations across the country, and will be available for purchase (as individual shows, series, or the entire QATV library) in October. (See more information below.)

This new series will features guests Lea McComas, Denise Labadie, Helen Parsons, Valerie Goodwin, Carolina Asmussen, Luana Rubin, Margaret Abramshe, Heidi Zielinski, Valerie White, and Barbara Yates Beasley. If you follow me on social media, you can see lots of photos of the guests and the projects and techniques they are demonstrating (July 18-22, 2022) here: 



We shot the show at Golden Peak Media Studios in Golden, Colorado, for the first time (Golden Peak Media owns Quilting Arts Magazine) with an entirely new production team, and had the opportunity to refresh the set, which features a more neutral backdrop that really makes the art and guests shine. There’s new lighting and camera equipment, and the light on set has a different quality, too. 

BERNINA machines – the 570 QE, 770 QE, and the Q 20 longarm – were on set, as usual. BERNINA has been our sponsor since the show began!

On TV: Visit your local Public Television station’s website to see if the show is available in your area!

Get access to all 29 seasons: Video Downloads or Stream All Episodes on Quilting Daily

Valerie Goodwin

Valerie White

Barbara Yates Beasley

Carolina Asmussen

Denise Labadie

Heidi Zielinski

Helen Parsons

Lea McComas

Luana Rubin

Margaret Abramshe


with Jeanne Cook Delpit


Friday, July 1, 2022


I’m so thrilled to be featured in Quiltfolk magazine Issue 23: North Carolina, which is out today! The photo above shows me at the North Carolina Botanical Garden in Chapel Hill with “Pink Coleus,” which I shipped off to the Sacred Threads exhibition today. It will tour with the traveling exhibition through 2024. The cover (below) features work by Kimberley Pierce Cartwright. 

Quiltfolk is a beautifully produced ad-free magazine that’s more like a book. They do four issues a year, focusing on traditional, modern, antique, and art quilters in an individual state. This issue is 164 pages of North Carolina quilting wonderfulness!

Use coupon code SusanQF23 for 20% off your purchase through Sept 30, 2022 at

The photo below shows me in the doorway to our house, with a miniature version of “I See the Moon” (the larger original sold to Karey Bresenhan for the International Quilt Festival Collection). 

Photography by Azuree Wiitala and Trevor Holloway. Writing by Meg Cox.  

Thursday, June 16, 2022

“Three Fishes #1”

I’ve been working on several series of small pieces to sell at the Orange County Artists Guild’s Studios Tour this fall. (I'll be opening my home studio to the public the first two weekends in November.) 

The piece above, “Three Fishes #1,” is the first in my small fish series, based on some of my fish drawings that I did for a huge piece (in progress) called “We All Swim Together.” This little piece is 11.5" square. Cotton fabric, acrylic textile paint, cotton batting, cotton backing. Wholecloth painted, free-motion quilted. 

The technique I’m using to create these pieces is outlined in my article in the summer 2022 issue of Quilting Arts magazine. It’s on newsstands now, and is also available at

“Reaching to the Light”

Just finished this new commission, “Reaching to the Light.” It is 43.25" x 65.5". Cotton fabric, acrylic paint, cotton thread, cotton batting. Wholecloth painted, stenciled, free-motion quilted. 

Thursday, June 9, 2022

Small Buddhas

These Buddha pieces are some of the small pieces I’ve been working on to sell at the Orange County Artists Guild’s Studios Tour.  It will be held the first two weekends of November, so mark your calendar now! The dates are Saturday and Sunday Nov. 5-6 and 12-13. My home studio will be open to the public then, and I’d love to meet you. 

Details about the studio tour will be available on the OCAG website by the end of the summer. Last year, more than 100 artists in Chapel Hill, Carrboro and Hillsborough participated at more than 80 locations. 

Each of the Buddha pieces will finish at about 11.5" square and will be priced at $175. They are hand painted and free-motion quilted.  

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

A Commission: Peony #1

This small piece was commissioned, and is headed off to its new owner soon! “Peony #1” Copyright Susan Brubaker Knapp. 8x10" White cotton fabric, acrylic textile paint, ink, cotton thread, cotton batting. Wholecloth painted and sketched with ink, free-motion quilted. 

Want to know more about my wholecloth painting process? Check out my blog post here:

Festa Della Terra 2022

What a wonderful afternoon! My friend, realtor Natalie Marrone hosted visual artists and a musician for Festa Della Terra at her home on April 23, and invited the public to stop in and drop off food for PORCH, a local hunger relief organization. This was the second Festa Della Terra. Visitors strolled through the woods and enjoyed art and music, had a beverage, and contributed to a great cause. 

Thursday, April 21, 2022

“For Ukraine”

“For Ukraine” (2022)

Copyright Susan Brubaker Knapp. 21.75 x 17.25"

White fabric, acrylic textile paint, cotton thread, cotton batting, cotton backing fabric. Wholecloth painted and free-motion machine quilted. 

I started this piece as Russia started its brutal war on Ukraine. As a former journalist, I find that I am glued to the television coverage when something big is happening. As my stomach churned, I turned to painting a sunflower – a symbol of Ukraine – to help me focus and calm. 

For information about my wholecloth painting process, please see my blog post here:

I’ll be teaching this process May 5-10, 2023 at Empty Spools Seminars at Asilomar in Pacific Grove, California. Students will work from their own photos and learn how to paint on fabric. Details here:

Here are some detail shots:

Sunday, March 27, 2022

“Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”

Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
Copyright Susan Brubaker Knapp 2022
36" x 46.5"

I started this piece just as Putin began his war against Ukraine, and it helped me stay busy while I watched the horror unfold on the TV. I had begun the section with the orange strips about 3 years ago, and it was in my "to-do" pile. 

When I posted a photo of it in progress on social media and asked for names, it was interesting how many people linked the war to what they saw in this piece. I got lots of suggestions with things like “Incursion,” “Escape Routes,” and “Before the Seige.” 

I decided to call it “Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” which is a nod to the Mister Rogers song that he used to open his children's TV show. (I grew up in Pittsburgh, and actually met Mister Rogers when I was four years old.) The title refers to an idealistic view of the world, in which people want to be good neighbors, and is in direct contrast to what Putin is doing to Ukraine. I believe that the good people of Ukraine and the good people of Russia want to be good neighbors. It is a dictator, his cronies, and his war machine that make it impossible. Bombs have destroyed beautiful neighborhoods where people lived, loved, and played with their children. 

Here are the lyrics to Fred Roger's song: 

It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood
A beautiful day for a neighbor
Could you be mine?
Would you be mine?

It’s a neighborly day in this beauty wood
A neighborly day for a beauty
Could you be mine?
Would you be mine?

I have always wanted to have a neighbor just like you
I've always wanted to live in a neighborhood with you

Let’s make the most of this beautiful day
Since we’re together, might as well say
Would you be my, could you be my
Won’t you be my neighbor?