Gadgets...have I collected gadgets! Some are great, some are OK, some are completely unnecessary, but when they come in pretty packages, or worse yet, I see a demo at a quilt show with my credit card in hand...well they just seem to come home with me. My quilting BFF and I have frequently gone back to our hotel rooms and dumped out our purchases on the bed, then looked at each other and said, "I don't even remember buying that"! LOL!!
It's a crazy frenzy, I tell you!
Everyone has different quilting styles and methods, so gadgets vary widely.
I'm sharing my top 4 my fav's...some won't even break the bank!
Back in 2016 I broke my wrist and was going through quilting withdrawal. A friend loaned me her cutter to try. On my goodness, it was awesome. I am right handed, but was able to cut perfect strips with my left hand. Thankfully I could still use my sewing machine thanks to the automatic bells and whistles. This cutter actually allowed me to keep my sanity, during the long months of recovery.
My number ONE gadget and tip to share!
I think it's faster than using dies to cut strips, too!
My project needed 76 strips, some as narrow as 1 1/2". That's a lot of cutting and I don't know about you, but the narrower they are, the harder it is for me to keep them straight using a traditional rotary cutter and ruler. With this cutter I was able to cut and sub-cut the entire quilt in record speed.
What exactly was I making with all these strips, you ask?
This is Dart.
It's a free jelly roll/strip set friendly pattern from Robert Kaufman.
You can download it yourself HERE.
This is done with "Island Batik" fabrics, using a Victoria and Albert strip set along with the cream background. You can find the Fiskers Cutter/Ruler combo HERE
Need a less expensive option? Just cut a piece of the shelf liner and place it under your ruler. It's amazing how much easier it is to cut straight lines. There is just enough grip to it, that it helps keep the ruler from shifting as you cut. It's nowhere near as fast as the ruler/cutter combo, but it's a good alternative. I have to give credit where credit is due. I took a class from Pat Speth, the "Nickle Quilt Lady" years ago, and this was her tip!
If you haven't heard me talk about her lately, she hosts a Facebook group where she posts free member appreciation blocks and sew along quilts all the time. If you grab them early, the patterns are free.
She has recently started a Contributors Appreciation Program, where you can earn free patterns, just by posting photos of your progress to the group! Win-win!!!
I'm in working on her "Somerville" quilt right now.
I haven't had a chance to layout all the rows yet, but here's a peek at a start.
Another tip I stumbled across, out of necessity with this quilt...
When my white marking pencil ran out of lead, I grabbed my grandie's white crayola colored pencil. In my opinion, they are almost useless to kids, but they work great for quilters! She will never miss it.
While I'm a huge Bonnie Hunter fan, and I love piecing her quilts, they can be overwhelming to many. Pat Speth's quilts are much easier to piece and they are all 5" (nickel) square friendly if you choose to go that route, and a great way to scrap bust. Check out her Facebook group HERE
Lastly, are you sick of those tiny little containers they give you to refill your iron with water?
That is, if you get one at all...
If your a cream in your coffee or tea drinker, this costs you nothing. If your not, it's worth buying and dumping it out. LOL!! Thanks to one of my quilt club girls for that tip. I absolutely LOVE it!
So there you have my gadgets and tips! I hope you find some of them useful to you.
Please visit my fellow bloggers and see what cool gadgets they are sharing today. Don't forget to leave them a little love with a sweet comment. We all love reading them.
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til next time...
Keep on Stitchin'