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After reading the posts, I would say all of the above except the go baby. I have had the studio (heavy, takes quite a bit of space, more expensive dies). I love my little go baby for special items like flowers, circles, robbing peter to pay paul (can't think of the other name). Basic squares and half square triangles etc. I use those to build my stash precuts.
I think my vote goes for speciality rulers. The only specialty ruler I use ALL the time is the salem one for perfect right angles It folds up and has long legs to put along the fold line for getting a perfect straight edge. Sorry I don't remember the name of it. Costs around $30 and worth every penny.
Sally Dolin -The Lazy Quilter
Rock Island, IL
i've loved reading the comments here! i need to admit...i bought a flynn frame and have never used it (but bought it on craigs list for 75-) and i did buy an altos quilt cut two-used from another quilter on a newsgroup. BUT, i have to say i LOVE the quilt cut 2....so to me, it's been worth the money. I also recently bought the big rectangular bebas rotating cutting mat. only used it once so far,,,,so we'll see how that goes.
I also love buying books and magazines. If it provides inspiration, and for me, stress relief in looking at pretty pictures
...i'm all for it!
I have so enjoyed reading this thread. What staggers me is the number of items mentioned that I have never seen or heard of! I had to look up things like June Taylor, Flynn Frame, etc to see what you were all talking about. Perhaps it is because we don't have large chains of speciality stores like Joanns or Hancocks here in the UK, that we don't see these kinds of products here. Or maybe that because our quilting shows are much smaller, large American companies don't think it is worth coming over to promote their products.
To be very honest, I am not impressed with gadgets and slick marketing. I will only buy something that I can try out for myself, and any promoter at a show or trade fair that won't let me try it out on the stand, doesn't get much of my time, sympathy or money, but gets my suspicious mind working: WHY can't I try it out? - what is wrong with it? - won't it work when I get it home?, etc, etc.
The AccuQuilt system is a good case in point. I use a Sizzix machine for other things, and quickly worked out that Sizzix dies will cut fabric too. The AccuQuilt dies are obviously designed with cutting shapes for sewing in mind: I took two of my sizzix dies with me to a show to compare the width and size of the Accuquilt dies. The demonstrator told me that I couldn't try it out on the stand with my own dies, unless I bought a cutting machine. As I (and several others) were drifting away, she caught me and whispered that I could use the Accuquilt dies in my Sizzix, just not to tell anyone at the show as she was trying to sell as many as she could: I now just buy the dies I want (dresden plate, Jack and Jill, tumbling blocks, hexagon) and use them in my exisiting system.
I tried out the Simplicity binding machine which I had a fancy to buy, at a show recently, and just fell about the place laughing. I managed to break the demonstration model - complete waste of time and money in my opinion. I much rather do it with an iron - a little more slowly perhaps, but more accurate than the machine, which needed repressing afterwards as it didn't really press the creases tightly.
The only really big waste of money I can think of that has got to me, is purchasing fat quarters. I wish someone had told me not to bother with this way of purchasing fabric - it is not accurate or cost effective. I purchase fabric where I can see it being cut in front of me, so that I know it is accurately cut, and I buy the quantity I need.
The most useful tool I ever bought was a telescopic magnetised wand - used initially by my husband at work for picking up small screws, etc, but invaluable for picking up pins off the carpet without bending your knees. Wonderful!
Last edited by bigbrownowl; 12-27-2012 at 07:00 AM. Reason: bad spelling...
If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There's no point in being a damn fool about it.
Watch for a refurbished Grand Quilter (18 inch) if you purchased a Gracie Queen Frame.
Definitely love my Accuquilt Go. Had to make 640 1 inch finished half square triangles and this machine cut them all out in a half hour. The next quilt called for 161 1 and 1/2 inch strips -- all done in 15 minutes. I love it but wish the dies were cheaper. Love the 2 1/2 strip cutter for binding. Always accurate.
Now for the big wastes of $$$$$ - Surprised no one said fabric. Have at least 1000 yards I know I'll never use but the price was so cheap. Also the Martello ergonomic cutter and binding system and Flynn Frame. Also loads of books and rulers. Now that I'm retired I'm less inclined to splurge. I do love kits but have way too many of them. Sell them at my guild's annual rummage sale. Also a couple of years ago, there was a slider called CPA where you had to cut a square out of the center where your throat plate was. Never worked right.