One of my favorite conversations to have with fellow quilters is about the products they love and couldn’t live without.
Here are few of my favorites that definitely make my deserted-island-quilt-studio list! I bet you’ll love them too.
Electric Quilt – Quilt Design Software
Way back when, EQ became my best friend. This great design software has never replaced my passion for graph paper, but it is my go to as soon as a design grows past the idea phase. I draft on paper and then head straight for my computer, pencil-smudged patterns in hand. I draw the blocks, assemble the quilt, play with colorways, and double check my math.
Through the years, the folks at Electric Quilt Company have continued to develop this software so it stays cutting-edge and stable. EQ8 ups the game giving me more control over fabrics, easier block recoloring (I’m always changing my mind and switching between drawing and coloring a block – that used to be a hot mess! Now it’s a breeze.), and puts all the fancy tricks right at my fingertips.
Most quilters who love Roxanne’s Glue-Baste-It use it for applique, and I do too. But applique is not why I fell in love with it. I use it far more for basting situations rather than applique. Anytime I need an extra hand, I grab Glue-Baste-It. A dot of this glue is like a celestial finger holding everything in place. For someone who sees pin holes as their personal enemy, this glue regularly saves the day!
Not only is the glue amazing, the applicator is pin-point accurate! I can get a teeny tiny dot of glue exactly where I want it. What quilter doesn’t spend hour dreaming of such miracles?
Clover Chaco Liner Pen
This insanely brilliant device serves as my main marking tool. Whether drafting pattern pieces, making alterations, labeling parts, or marking measurements, this little spiked wheel of chalky happiness never fails. But it’s worth it’s weight in gold when trying out quilting designs. Grab a straight edge and a Chaco Liner, then go to town. Mark lines all over that top. Change your mind? No worries – tap, tap, tap, and off you go again. j
Clover Seam Ripper
Personally, nothing says love like a seam ripper. After all, to a seam ripper, mistakes don’t matter! My only regret regarding this seam ripper is that it doesn’t come in a 12-pack. I stash them everywhere.
The handle is the perfect size and shape. I can rip and rip for hours and never get tired.
Fine Quilting Pins
Oh, these pins! They are slim, sleek, and sharp. The length is perfect, and the little glass heads not only withstand heat, but come in two colors so I can mark my seams to denote flipping direction. If I want the seam to flip the wrong way, I mark the spot with a red pin and know I need to flip it before the feed dogs hit it. Green means keep going.
I also mentioned previously that I abhor pin holes, so super sharp fine pins are a must and these babies do the trick!
Snip-Eze Embroidery Scissors
I never knew about the incredible world of Snip-Eze until I started quilting my own quilts. The curved blade is perfect for getting close to the surface and snipping a thread like you do a zillion times when you are quilting. But adding these little gems to my creative space made me wonder how I had lived without them! I use them for all my snipping needs.
I love them at my sewing machine for chain stitching, at my serger for rethreading or other machine messes I make, at the ironing board for cleaning up tails, in my sewing basket for tailoring and repair work…I could keep going. These little guys are handy!
Karen Kay Buckley’s Perfect Scissors
Talk about perfect! These scissors live up to their name. This set includes three of my favorite scissors in the world. The purple handled one is 7 1/2″ and is the work horse of my studio. They haven’t met fabric they don’t glide through. The handles are so forgiving. They let me contort myself into whatever strange position I need and still cut perfectly. They don’t chew, gnaw, or slip.
The red handled one is a curved blade. I love it for applique and anything with layers.
The green handled one is 4″ and is down right mean when it comes to fusible applique. The serrated blade give me all the control I need for tight curves, sharp points, and narrow channels.
All of these scissors are sharp to the point…a point that is not lost on me!
Sewline Fabric Glue Pen
Me and fabric glue sticks have always equaled a huge gummy mess! Then something crazy happened. I met this fabric glue pen. I never knew how much I needed this glue pen in my life. It all started with an English paper piecing project. I’ve always sew basted because of the aforementioned sticky disasters, but I was in a tight spot and needed to do a quick mock up. Enter my new hero – the magic fabric glue pen! Not only did I have instant success, but I fell in love!
My fabric glue pen and I have been discovering all sorts of things we can do together and to this day, this treasure sits on my desk at work, ready for whatever fabric/paper adventure I dream up next.
It’s cliche, but I’ve saved the best for last. Meet the Wonder Clip. I’d love to shake the hands of the team of engineers who came up with this beauty. From perfectly placed measuring lines to a flat side for riding along while sewing, they thought of everything. I love them for binding, piping, pillows, applique, and just about any project where I wish I were an octopus so I could hold everything at once.
They are truly the minions in my sewing room.
So what are the tools and notions you love? Share them in the comments! We’d all love to hear.