Living This Creative Life

I have two favorite quotes. The first one is by Emile Zola, "If you asked me what I came into this world to do, I would tell you that I came to live out loud". I don't know who the second one is by, but it goes like this, "If you're not living on the edge then you might as well jump". Both of these sentiments sum up my personal philosophy of this experience we call life on earth. Enjoy!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Block #53 in the Machine Quilting Challenge

Good Morning,
Hope you are all enjoying a beautiful Memorial Day. Always a great time for picnics, hiking, and BBQ. I spent a few moments this morning thinking about all of the people in my life who have moved on to another plane and sending thanks out to them, where ever they are for the gifts they each imparted to me. It's nice to take time to remember the gifts of friendship and love.
Today's stitch-out is the last in the flower series (don't worry, we'll do more flowers later on). I almost didn't use this block because the flowers don't show up very well against the background quilting. But then I decided it's a great way to show you "what not to do"! In the machine quilting design classes that I teach I always warn my students that too much of a good thing is simply that... too much! Here in this block, the curvy, wavy flowers are almost lost in the curly, wavy background stitching. It is always a good idea to switch up the positive and negative spaces. If the positive space features curvilinear designs then the background space should have straighter lines and vice versa.
The flowers are still great though. Click on the photo for a larger view. Remember to doodle these babies out before you begin stitching. There are four varieties of the same flower shown here. The top left shows the basic flower with "stones" center and wavy edged petals. The top left is the same with one long wavy vein in each petal. The bottom left has three short veins in each petal and the bottom right has additional petals added between and behind the original petals.
To stitch the basic flower, start where you want the center to be and make a tiny circle (about 1/8" across) surround this center circle with two to three rows of similar sized circles until you have formed a circle of circles that is about the size of a nickle. Now begin making petals. My flowers have six petals, you can shoot for that number or any number you like, just make it consistent. The petals are wide at the base, have wavy sides and end in a point.
Add interest to the basic flower by adding veins in the petals (two varieties are shown) or by doubling over the existing petals and adding another petal in between.
I hope you've enjoyed these floral stitch-outs,
Till tomorrow,

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