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Thread: What next???

  1. #1
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    I am breaking out of my box and need help. My normanl quilt is a baby quilt with a SID being the only quilting. I want more on this one. I have completed a 3D pinwheel top and want to quilt in the solid blocks. Do you do all the stencil work before or after everything is sandwiched together? My research wasn't really clear. Also what is the best thing to use for marking. I have a "quilters pencil" from years ago but I am sure they have come out with somthing better since then.

    Thanks for all your help.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Kristin in ME's Avatar
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    Hi there, good for you on breaking out of your box! : ) I usually mark my quilt top before I sandwich it because I thought that it would be easier to mark if the top had a hard surface right behind it- then, on my current full-size top, after I spent three days marking the entire thing, I sandwiched it together, started quilting and... all of the light marks had completely disappeared! I was so frustrated. Now I'm marking a section at a time as I go and it's working fine. Now that I've said all that, I was going on the assumption that you are hand-quilting it? That's what I do; I don't know if it matters if you're machine quilting it.

    As far as what to mark with, after that fiasco I asked around at my LQS. They recommended the Sewline fabric pencil. You can get both dark and white leads for it. It worked great until I lost it. :p Oh, well. Basically, it's just a mechanical pencil with marking leads. It was a bit pricy (about $15), though the clerk mentioned that she thought you could just buy the lead refills and put them in a mechanical pencil of the right size. I compromised by buying one, and switching the leads in it, lol.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Kristin in ME's Avatar
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    Oh- and the quilter's pencil you have may work just fine. Just test it on a piece of the fabric first and make sure it washes out ok.

  4. #4
    Senior Member momcpo's Avatar
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    Also try spray starch or sizing first. Makes it easier to wash out.

  5. #5
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    I am going to hand quilt. I find hand quilting so relaxing and my DH just finished making me a quilting frame. Nothing fancy but it is just what I need.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Kristin in ME's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazylady54
    I am going to hand quilt. I find hand quilting so relaxing and my DH just finished making me a quilting frame. Nothing fancy but it is just what I need.
    That's wonderful! What a good guy. :) Enjoy!

  7. #7
    Senior Member Sunflower Girl's Avatar
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    You might try the new Frixion pen by pilot. They are pretty cool! They come in red, blue and black and the markings disappear when ironed. I'm getting ready to quilt one I'm making for my brother-in-law and I too am ready to climb out of the box and will try to do something other than SID. I've stippled on table runners but have not attempted it on an actual quilt. Wishing us both luck!!! :thumbup:

  8. #8
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    I've marked before sandwhihing; after sandwhihing; completely and as I go. I've decided that I prefer as I go so the marks don't disappear. Working on a frame you might not have much of an issue with that as there is less handling? I use a hoop in my lap so I suspect that has more friction over the entire quilt thus erasing most markings. I use a plain old mechanical pencil with #2 lead and have never had an issue with it not washing out.

  9. #9
    Super Member Rose Marie's Avatar
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    I like the blue pen that washes out and the dissapearing ink also. I do pounce sometimes.
    The best way to learn FMQ is to do only the borders. This way you are not shoving the quilt thru the throat of the machine. I buy simple stencils like leaves or hearts and mark around the quilt after sandwiching.

  10. #10
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    I, too, have been there with what to use to mark the quilts. I've not had much success with the stuff I've tried, but being a total newbie, it may have been my fault. Blue pens work great as long as you can see them and remember not to ever iron over them as that makes them permanent or semi-permanent. I tried soapstone, but it was hard to see. Chalk worked great on dark fabric, but the point gets dull quickly and it's a pain to sharpen. Mechanical pencils (the normal kind) work great but you've gotta wash the quilt when you're done.

    I ordered some Frixion pens from JetPens and managed to add enough stuff to get free shipping. (They were fast to ship, btw.) I ordered some lighter colors to try out on the next projects, a group of lap quilts for a nursing home that my quilting group is doing as a service project. My local Staples also has them in either black or a trio of black, red and blue. The Frixion pens come in a lot of colors, just not white.

    I've read a lot of comments from people concerned that the Frixion pens ink reappears when the quilt is at or below about 14 degrees. Personally, if it's that cold, reappearing lines on my quilt is not something about which I will be worried at that time. I'll be worrying about keeping my tush warm and the water pipes not being frozen! :lol:

    BTW, I played with the Frixion pens a few weeks ago just for kicks during our last heat wave. The lines will start to disappear when the heat index hits triple digits. Just giving a heads up.

    Good luck!
    M&M

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