Mary Mashuta is one of my favorite quilt book authors; I own several of her helpful and inspiring books - including Foolproof Machine Quilting, the 2008 precursor to Foolproof Walking-Foot Quilting Designs. She started quilting in the 1970s when quilters traced cardboard templates and used scissors to cut out pieces. After 20 years of hand quilting, she made the jump to machine quilting on her domestic sewing machine. Since then she has shared her techniques through workshops and her books.
The author’s easy-to-master technique is a no math, no marking method using simple shapes she cuts from paper, draws on freezer paper or shelf-liner contact paper, and cuts out. The shapes stay on the fabric well and are reusable. Using a walking foot with the feed dogs up, she sews around the shapes to create interesting designs to complement her quilts. Other useful tools include painter’s tape, an attached walking foot seam guide, purchased stencils to facilitate drawing shapes, and sewing machine decorative stitches. The methods are all demonstrated on colorful quilts with clear instructions, illustrations, and lots of photographed close-ups of stitching.
Foolproof Walking-Foot Quilting Designs is a terrific resource for learning to create designs for blocks and borders and stitching them with a walking foot. I am eager to add this book to my quilting library and inspired to apply Mary Mashuta’s techniques. The section on designing and sewing sashiko patterns is of special interest to me - I am currently enamored with Japanese taupes and have some projects just waiting to be quilted.