Quilting Tips and Hints
These tips were presented at the February 5, 2021 meeting of the Grand Strand Quilters.
Quilters, be aware of SABLE syndrome:
S - Stash
A - Accumulation
B - Beyond
L - Life
E - Expectancy
Use large zip lock bags to organize scraps by color
Use a floss cleaner brush to clean bobbin area, Q-tips for cleaning machine, Old toothpick container for holding needles
Lay white on white fabric on your pants to find the right side of the fabric. Works with any color pants.
If you are a scrap quilter, at the end of a project, cut down the remaining fabric to 2 1/2 inch squares, 5 inch squares, and 10 inch squares to get it out of the way.
When attaching binding by machine, roll the binding loosely around your fingers and put on the unused spool holder (if your machine has two spool holders) Pull the end off and under the needle – it feeds perfectly as you sew.
When sewing binding by hand and you need to put the project down, use a spring clothes pin to mark you spot. Put the needle under the clothespin to save your fingers when looking for the needle.
Go to the Dollar Store for quilt gloves (rubberized garden gloves) paper scissors, plastic and cloth bins and lots and lots of other things.
If your sewing machine does not have an automatic needle threader, put a white paper or anything white behind the needle and it will enhance the eye for easier threading.
Use a magnetic Bingo wand for making it easier to pick up dropped pins
Use a large vent cover with side magnets to catch pins and needles while working
I use a plastic spice jar with holes in the lid to put my used needles and broken pins in. Keep it by your sewing machine.
Add a straw to the spool holder on your machine to help keep thread from popping off, especially when using larger spools of thread
To keep track of time spent quilting, I keep a notebook in my sewing room and record each day the time spent on a project.
Keep your husband out of your sewing room!!
I put a small wastebasket at the end of my ironing board when I iron binding. I let it fall into the wastebasket, and then I put the wastebasket between my feet when putting the binding on the quilts. No tangles.
When ripping out a seam, cut every 5th or 6th stitch and then just pull the seams apart
Mary Lou Zerby
Be sure to backstitch at the end of your border seams so when the quilt is long armed the seams don’t pull open making extra work for the longarmer.
Get chenille pipe cleaners at Walmart. Put one through a coffee stirrer from McDonalds. Fold over the end of the chenille pipe cleaner and use it to clean all the lint down inside your machine.
Put a spool of thread with matching bobbin in a snack bag to store. Super easy to find the matching color when you need them.
Sew a large bag open at the top. Keep by sewing machine; add small scraps to the sewn bag. When bag is full, sew end closed. Donate to pet shelter as a dog bed.
Project Box. I make a box with everything I have for the project including pattern. I number the box and have a written index so I can go straight to the correct box.
Betty Jean Dessingue
Get a glass picture frame and use an erasable marker to keep a list of to do projects. This wipes up easily when project is completed.
Keeping track of your gift projects: I keep a notebook with items I make for gifts. List color or theme of fabric used and the recipient, date given, etc.
Save clear plastic pill bottles and use for your bobbins.
Use the self-adherent wrap nurses use to hold gauze on your arm to wrap on spool to keep the thread from unraveling.
I have found that the best product for raw-edge applique is “Steam a Seam 2”. It has the right amount of adhesive. You can stick temporarily or permanently.
Before adding your quilt label, sign and date your quilt using a Micron or other permanent pen. Then if the label comes off or the quilt is stolen, your name is always on the quilt.
When joining binding strips or border with a diagonal seam, instead of drawing the line, press the corner of the top strip to form the stitching line.
When sewing a seam for two pieces that should be the exact same size but one varies a little, allign the pieces on the right side so the misalignment is hidden in the seam.