Thursday 1 December 2016

Free Motion Mavericks - Week 117 - Creation, Day Three

Now finished and in the annual 12 x 12 exhibition at Midsomer Quilting, which runs from the 2nd to the 19th December, is my interpretation of this year's challenge.  After spending months without any inspiration on how to tackle the theme of Mystery, Myth or Magic,  I decided to dive straight into the Book of Genesis for the biggest mystery of them all - Creation.

The third day looked the easiest one to try, but having stitched landscapes in the past, this time I had a few interesting dilemmas and limitations.

Firstly, how should I depict the sky, referred to in Genesis as the firmament, a great dome that separates the waters above and the waters below?  A rainbow seemed to be the best solution, giving a natural arch, and by breaching the cloud it puts some water above it.  The sky above the rainbow is a single shade of dark blue, whereas below it I gave myself a free rein to use atmospheric sunset shades above a misty sea.  I wasn't going to let the fact that the sun wasn't created until the fourth day prevent me from using these colours; after all, light was created on Day One.

Next, I had to think about the land and the newly created plants.  I decided to keep the hills relatively bare, with just a hint of green to suggest grass, and put the emphasis on a few plants in the foreground.  Having used a rainbow in the background, a symbol of God's covenant in the Old Testament, the choice of plants was obvious.  The wheat and the vine symbolise the New Covenant, and the red flowers are there for just for the sheer delight of adorning the scene.  They are the lilies of the field.

All the free motion quilting was worked in Gutermann's Sulky Cotton 30 in variegated colours, using my 1945 Singer 15K treadle.  To give a little relief to the trunk of the vine and the wheat stems, I used my 1888 Willcox and Gibbs Automatic.  This is a chain stitch machine, with the chain appearing underneath the work, so I had to sew from the back. 

Because there is only one thread, the colour of the variegated thread changes more frequently than along a line of stitching made with a lockstitch machine.  This gave an interesting effect in the colours of the bark.

For the ears of wheat I sewed on tiny straw coloured beads, and added stitches for the spikes on the grains.

I bought beads in a nice plummy shade for the grapes.  These little bunches took only a few minutes to sew on.

The lilies of the field are each made up of three tiny dark red beads, which make me wonder whether they are in flower or have already gone to seed. I honestly don't know, but does it matter?  Let the viewer decide.

So that's my interpretation of Day Three.  I have also made a second quilt for the exhibition, representing Day One, and which I shall show next week.  All I shall say at this stage is that is completely unlike this quilt.

blogbutton photo peacockfmq025_zpse5bceb10.jpg

Here goes for week 117...

A big vote of thanks to LeeAnna for interrupting her Thanksgiving weekend and linking up her beautiful quilt of autumn shades   If you haven't seen her blog post yet, nip over now and see more photos.

If you love free motion quilting, whether you are a beginner just taking the plunge, or you have reached the stage where you can do ostrich feathers with your eyes shut and still achieve perfect symmetry, then please link up.

Remember, FMQ is FMQ, whether your machine was made last week, or it is older than your granny.

Here are the very easy and slightly elastic rules:-

1.  Link up with any recent post, ideally from the last week but within the last month, which features a free motion quilting project, whether it is a work in progress or a finish.

2.  Link back to this post in your own post and/or grab the linky button for your blog's sidebar.
3.  Visit as many of the other participants as possible and say hello in the comments box.

4.  The link up will remain open for four days, from midnight to midnight GMT for the long weekend, Friday to Monday.

So far quilters from the USA, England, Wales, Australia, Canada, Germany, Holland, New Zealand, France, Macau, Russia, Ireland and Brazil have taken part.  The first participant from each new country will get a special mention the following week.

Linking up to Sarah's blog Confessions of a Fabric Addict for Whoop Whoop Friday
and Nina Marie's blog Creations... Quilts, Art... Whatever for Off The Wall Friday
and Amanda Jean's blog Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Up Friday.


  1. Thank God for day three! Nice work, Muv!

    1. Far less stressy than Day Six, I can tell you.

  2. This is a beautiful piece. I never thought about doing lots and lots of FMQ with the lines close together to make texture. I'm going to have to try that.

    1. Thanks Deb. The fascination is in the way the variegated threads work together and build up shades of colour. It is a bit unpredictable.



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