Friday, October 14, 2011

All of 2009's hot new quilting tools - now being used in my studio

If there is one thing you hotties all know, it is that I am borderline proud of my lack of technical skills on the computer, don't own a smart phone, have never texted, and (here's a new confession) two of the three phones in my home still have cords. Yep. I'm way cool. 1988 ruled.

But I always considered myself a little bit more hip and now when it came to quilting. I'd never call myself a gadget guru by any means, but I love new products that make my quilting life easier and I will happily watch demos and probably buy them. I cannot resist an embellishment, and own more Angelina fibers than I know what to do with (quite literally, too, as I have yet to use any of them). I'll try new things and if I love them, you will hear about them incessantly until you try them just to shut me up (Jewel-it, anyone?).

So imagine my surprise this week when in the midst of my pre-market sewing frenzy, from which I am currently taking a much needed 30 minute break, I discovered two fantastic new tools which are both far from new. How did I miss these gems? And how can I prevent the rest of you from missing out? Well, I can write a humorous and informative blog post about them, that is how.

The first tool is this little chalk marking doodad from Clover. I'm pretty sure it is circa 2002 or even earlier, and also that I am last person on earth to discover it, but after using it for one millisecond I was hooked. I've long been a user of those basic blue markers for marking (when I even mark, which is about one time in 25), and just last week was bragging to my friends Judy Damon and Terri Sontra that I was pretty sure my blue marker was 10 years old and was never going to dry out. Yeah, it heard me from 50 miles away, and two days later I went to use it and it was dead. Well, lucky for me I had some of Judy's notion stock in my garage from a show NEQDC had done that weekend, and I had only to walk 40 feet to replace my marker with this chalk liner. It has a tiny little wheel on the end reminiscent of those carbon paper wheelie markers from back in the day, and is just a basic tube filled with chalk dust and seriously marks like a dream. I bought mine in bright red so that I couldn't lose it and with pink chalk because hey, a girl needs things to be pretty, but they come in other colors too. Check out that mark. Smooth and perfect and GONE once you sew on it.

  1. The chalk can also be rubbed off easily so as to redraw your lines when you do them too quickly and they suck, as seen here.

  2. 2. No, my hand is not really pink.

    The second tool making my life perfect right now is aptly named "The Binding Tool", which I bought immediately after Terri Sontra of Purple Moose Designs demoed it at our booth last weekend. It was copyrighted in 2009, but it's new to me. I've stolen Terri's photo off her website not only because it is better than what I could take, but also because I want you to check out her online shop because she has some fabulous wares at very reasonable prices. And she includes chocolate in every order.

Holy revelation in continuous binding glory. No more will you make your binding just a bit too big or a bit too small at the meeting point! No more will you twist the tales and swear a blue streak! As Terri promised, I did have to look at the photo tutorial on her site the first time I used it on my own, but the bottom line is it worked and I could not be more thrilled with this purchase. I'll never be a fan of binding, but this tool may make me less inclined to dread the entire event.

Finally, I've discovered a cool new fabric this week as I have been furiously whipping up a sample of my "Winter Whites" pattern for a silk vendor. That fabric would be Teflon.

Just kidding. It's silk, of course, and it is a bear and a half to keep from raveling, especially when you decide to ignore all advice to cut it on a dry day and instead wait for the wettest day in a week to start your project, but a little interfacing helps with that. Isn't it nice of me to have left some of the raveling in this photo so you could see for yourself? You cannot beat the richness of color and the sheen and it is making this project look like 8 million bucks. Lucky for shoppers, it's only $9. Doesn't it seem like a bargain now? Here's a sneak preview of the awesomeness of the silk colors. I'll post a photo of the finished project later this weekend.

Okay, it's back to sewing now. Please pray for me that Greta naps this afternoon so I'll have more to show for my day!

1 comment:

Beth at Quilting Hottie Haven said...

Tales, not tails. OMG. UNH is going to retract my English BA yet.

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