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Thread: What's the best way to mark quilting designs?

  1. #1
    Super Member almostfree's Avatar
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    What's the best way to mark quilting designs?

    I know this may sound elementary to many of you more experienced quilters, however, I struggle with this. I have a 2-sided pen that I can use to mark designs, but one end disappears too quickly and the other end seems to be a pain to get out. So then I have tried chalk, like the kind I used to use in 4-H to mark patterns years ago; but that doesn't come out easily either. I would appreciate any guidance you can give me. Happy New Year everyone! :-)
    My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

  2. #2
    Super Member kathdavis's Avatar
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    I really like the new gel frixon pens. The line disappears when you iron it. It will come back if it gets to about 14 degrees, but then it will iron away again. The orange shows up on black.
    Kathleen

    Remember, people will see your quilts long after you are gone....NOT your housework!

  3. #3
    Super Member DebraK's Avatar
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    I mostly use tailor's chalk. My quilting methods have changed through the years, but I always have a use for tailor's chalk. I freehand rather than stencil, but need marks for guidance, so this is what works for me. You can buy inexpensive flat triangles of chalk, or use it in a mechanical pencil. Works great.

    I'm probably not explaining this well, but if you google tailors chalk, You will see what I'm talking about.

  4. #4
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    i design or trace a design i like then put a large sewing needle into my sewing machine, set for a med-large st length and sew around the designs with no thread, piercing the paper. If the pattern seems to be a good one or one I especially like, I cover both sides with clear contact paper to make them last...and of course, in that case, you have to sew after the plastic application. Then you buy chalk powder or (use what you have, like me, and clean out your pencil sharpener and sharpen all the white chalk to a powder), ... put pattern on square, use makeup brush to get the chalk in the holes and go...the chalk will be such a small dot that most of it will disappear while you are quilting. I have never had any luck with colored chalk as it does not come out easily... but a friend recently told me that she mixed one light blue stick of chalk with 2 whites and it showed up enough to use on white but still came out. play with your patterns, use a piece here and a corner there... and then make a line of them ... they will all blend well that way...

  5. #5
    Super Member LivelyLady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kathdavis View Post
    I really like the new gel frixon pens. The line disappears when you iron it. It will come back if it gets to about 14 degrees, but then it will iron away again. The orange shows up on black.
    That's my preference too!! I'll have to try the orange on dark.........I tried the pink but didn't show up. Kudos to the person on the board awhile back who said she uses slivers of soap. Works wonderful on dark fabric!
    When you sleep under a quilt, you sleep under a blanket of love.

  6. #6
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    I like the Fons & Porter pump chalk pencil/pen in white for dark fabrics. I still mark lightly because the quilt needs to be washed to remove the chalk. I also like the blue pens that the mark erases with water on light fabrics. If it is staight quilting lines I use painter's tape as a quilting guide. I use the Frixion pens for small projects but not on quilts. Be aware that using them on dark fabrics can sometimes leave a light bleach? line.
    If it's machine quilting, some people like the Golden thread paper that you stitch through. Some use tissue paper to stitch through. You can also mark the design on Glad Press & Seal that smooth that over the quilt square to quilt through. All of the paper/plastic have to be gently removed after the design is stitched. A lot of people use free motion quilting like Leah Day does on her website and the designs are not marked at all. There are as many ways and preferences as their are quilters. You will need to try several to find what works for you. ALWAYS try new methods on scraps before marking your quilt.

  7. #7
    Super Member Caroline S's Avatar
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    Slivers of soap work the best for me on dark fabrics. I have a BIG collection of marking pens and pencils. And horrors, don't tell the Quilt Police but I have been known to use ball point pens to mark cutting lines on light fabrics.
    Sweet Caroline

  8. #8
    Super Member QuiltnLady1's Avatar
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    I use powdered chalk and a sponge brush (not the pounce pad) for marking stencils. I have used micron pens and sharpies when the lines won't show -- I like the silver chalk pencil for many fabrics.
    QuiltnLady1

    When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

  9. #9
    Super Member Gramie bj's Avatar
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    I still have my tailer chalk from my old days of dress making. It stays untill I wash it out. I tryed the gel frixion (sp?) pens do not like them. used it on a throw that was destoned for a car, Ironed out great, quilt went into car, got down into the 30's that night, The lines came back, who want's to Iron quilts? not me! LOL

  10. #10
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    Lately I have been using Crayola washable markers. Just besure to not use an iron and to wash it two times on hot with soap. At times I also use special pencils but they tend to break.
    Anna Quilts

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