Monday, November 29, 2010


Snow Squall
by Susan Brubaker Knapp (2010)
20" x 16.5"
Baby, it’s cold outside! Here near Charlotte, North Carolina, where I live, it is starting to get chilly, just in time for December. So I thought it the perfect time to share with you my latest piece, Snow Squall. This piece is featured in the current issue of Quilting Arts magazine (the December 2010/January 2011 issue).

We don’t get much snow here, just about 5" a year. I grew up in Pittsburgh, Pa., where we got a lot of snow, and I miss it. This year I’ve been writing a series of articles on thread sketching for Quilting Arts magazine, and when I needed to make a piece about creating movement with thread, I stitched myself up a flurry!

I started with a dark blue batik fabric that was mottled all over, and used a mechanical chalk pencil to trace some snowflake designs and swirls onto it. I pinned the fabric to interfacing (Pellon 910), and thread sketched the swirls using varigated blue Aurifil Cotton Mako 50 thread, and for the snowflakes, the same weight thread in solid white. Then I highlighted a few areas with a bit of metallic acrylic paint. Doesn’t this look frosty?

Snow Squall (detail)
After adding batting and backing fabric, I quilted around the swirls and snowflakes to make them come forward, and quilted the background to accentuate the sensation of movement. 

If you want to stitch your own snowflake, you can download the design for one of these snowflakes on the Quilting Arts community website (go to Free Stuff, and then Online Extras). If you want my snowflakes instead, this piece is for sale. You can find all the details on my website.

Snow Squall (detail)