Misc Quilting Posts

Quilting Notions

Some of you have been asking for me to share some of my notions! I have a lot, some I can’t live without, and some could probably walk out the door and I wouldn’t notice (maybe I should purge some of those then…the word hoarding comes to mind)

Obviously, you will need a sewing machine that can sew a straight line. You don’t need fancy for quilting. You are also going to need some space.

First things first, you will need a cutting mat. I have several sizes, my must have size is the Olfa 36×24. I have a smaller one that is 12×18, and I have a huge one that is 36×56 (not pictured).

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Second, and the reason you need a cutting mat, is because in quilting you really need a rotary cutter to ensure accurate piecing. I love my olfa cutters. Along with the cutters, you are going to need extra blades. I usually change out blades every other quilt, but my quilts are small. I labeled my bad blades so I don’t mix them up. This will prevent the blades from cutting open your trash bag. They are EXTREMELY sharp, so be very careful!

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To help cut the accurate sizes, you are going to need an assortment of rulers. The 6×24 is a must have. I also think 1 square is a must have, but I will leave it up to you which size square you prefer to use the most. I use the 15×15 to help in squaring up my corners of the quilt. The little square is nice to have to squaring up my quilt blocks. I generally have about 6″ quilt blocks, so I use this one a lot.DSC03104

If you do a lot of Half square triangles, you can get this little duo, it has come in really handy for me. It is a rotating mat & special ruler just for them. These are not must haves… just very nice to haves. 🙂

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Unfortunately for me, this is a must have… a seam ripper. Maybe you are awesome and don’t need one, but I have not quite gotten there yet!

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Next up, pins & pin cushion/bowl, lots and lots of pins! I have quite an assortment. The big tan flower pins are not my favorite, but they do well when I am trying to help label my rows, columns, and stacks. The colorful glass bead pins are what I use the most. You want them to be a very thin diameter to help prevent too much distortion on your fabrics.  I also have some tiny pins with no heads for when I am trying to reduce bulk if I need to sew near a pin I don’t want to remove. I don’t recommend sewing over pins. You will either ruin your pin, or the timing on your sewing machine, neither of which bring happiness. I keep all my pins in the magnetic bowl. I tend to spill them, so the magnet helps hold them in the bowl.

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Although most trimming is done with the rotary cutter, you will still need some good scissors. I prefer gingher scissors. I have a large pair, and then a tiny pair I use to cut threads. I consider both of these as must haves.

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Hopefully you have an iron on hand, because you are going to need it! I have been using a target Black & Decker iron, but I just upgraded to this Rowenta.

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Thread is a must have, and I say this because it needs to be good thread. I prefer Aurifil thread, it goes through my machine like butter, and doesn’t produce a lot of thread lint. Cheap thread will break or will wear out before the quilt does, and you don’t want that!

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When it comes to making your quilt sandwich, I recommend frog tape to help hold down the layers while you work on getting them stuck together. To connect the layers I use Spray adhesive, which is great when working with stretchy fabrics like minky, and curved safety pins. I added little plastic grippers to my safety pins, for more stability when pinning. I also use this wooden Kwik Klip to help keep my fingers from hurting. It takes a lot of pins to hold all the layers together properly. Those are both nice to have, but not required.

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When adding the binding, these clover clips work great to hold the binding in place while you sew it.

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You are going to need a measuring tape to measure your quilt to make sure it is square, and to determine how much binding you will need.

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When you go to quilt it, you are going to need something to mark quilting lines, chalk is perfect for that. I have a couple different methods depending on the fabric and fabric color. I use the pencil mostly on my half square triangles to mark where I need to sew.

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These other two things I use a lot, but are not must haves. These little rulers are great for measuring for the HSTs, ensuring you are keeping your scant 1/4″ seam, and trimming binding. The measuring gauge is used when you get to a binding corner to make sure you stop 1/4″ away from the edge. DSC03100DSC03115

These are the notions that I use the most. What notions can you not live without? What are some of your favorite things?

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Some other blogs on what quilters recommend see:

The Polka Dot Chair

Diary of a Quilter

Craftsy & Craftsy 2

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