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Thread: Marking a quilt

  1. #1

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    I am a hand quilter and I really enjoy it. But, I really struggle with marking quilts. I usually just end up using masking/quilting tape to make lines. I have tried several different types of marking pencils with less then happy results. Either, I can't get the marks completely washed out, or I get so frustrated trying to mark a larger quilt, that I just give up and go back to taping a small area at a time. Any suggestions or words or encouragment would be greatly appreciated. I really enjoy looking at everyones quilts.

  2. #2
    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    I use the disappearing makers and only mark what I am going to quilt that day. or what is in my hoop. They work fine for me just do not iron them!!

  3. #3
    Super Member 117becca's Avatar
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    i use just a regular lead pencil. A magic eraser will erase any mistakes. I do mark just dark enough to be able to see what i want to do and most of it will disappear by the time i get down quilting.

    I had a bad experience w/ one of the blue markers - it would reappear after washing it.

  4. #4
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
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    On lighter colors I usually use a blue water soluble marker from Dritz and haven't had a problem with it washing out. Make sure you don't heat set the markings.

    On dark colors I use a white pencil which seems to work the best for me. I personally don't like chalk. I seem it get it all over myself. :shock:

  5. #5
    Power Poster dkabasketlady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Up North
    I use the disappearing makers and only mark what I am going to quilt that day. or what is in my hoop. They work fine for me just do not iron them!!
    Same for me too!! No problems either!

  6. #6
    Super Member gale's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 117becca
    i use just a regular lead pencil. A magic eraser will erase any mistakes. I do mark just dark enough to be able to see what i want to do and most of it will disappear by the time i get down quilting.

    I had a bad experience w/ one of the blue markers - it would reappear after washing it.
    By Magic Eraser do you mean the Mr Clean magic eraser or those white erasers that say magic eraser on them?

  7. #7
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    Have you tried Marking Magic? I have used it on several quilts w/o a problem.It is a spray and brushes and washes off.Karen

  8. #8
    Senior Member SewCraftyGirl's Avatar
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    I just saw this discussion the other day. It might be worth trying. It's a way of marking your quilt for hand-quilting without having to remove the markings afterwards.

    http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-89527-1.htm

    Good luck!

  9. #9
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    I use a water washable graphite pencil which can be found in art stores. They come in different hardnesses and are black (the ones I prefer). They wash out in a regular laundry load.

    I mark heavy enough so I can see the line well and it doesn't rub off as I move my hands over the quilt. Years ago I sold these at the register in my shop along with a very sharp little one inch square metal pencil sharpener. I had a piece of light fabric and a piece of dark fabric on the counter where anyone could try them out. The pencils worked on both. On the dark fabric they leave a shine that is easily followed, especially if the light shines from the side of your work rather than the top. Sold a ton of these things.

    Unfortunately the Berol Aquarelle Prismacolor brand I adored is no longer made - discovered this after an exhaustive search through England last summer - but there are other brands sold in the states. Just google "aquarelle pencils." You'd probably prefer a medium rather than soft lead.

    Jan in VA

  10. #10
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    2 handquilted quilts I marked in advance with a water soluble pencil and it worked very well for me. These were all marked on light fabric. I have used chaco liners to mark straight lines but I do those as I go. I also have a Fons and Porter mechanical pencil with white lead for dark fab. that brushes out fairly easy so I only mark as I go with that one too. Transdoodle transfer paper is a a chalky paper that you can transfer designs onto the quilt top. Again, this brushes out very easily. I usually end up going over it again the F&P pencil and only mark out a hoopful at a time.

    I have read many here use a sliver of ivory soap with excellent results. I have yet to try that one. I have to agree with Jan though, those water soluble graphite pencils are great. And first wash I do not use soap. The instructions on my current water soluble pencil mention that some laundry detergent and even mild laundry soap may contain chemicals that can interact with the graphite and make it not come out all the way. So first wash plain cold water then I carefully inspect to make sure all marks came out before drying.

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