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Thread: Broken wrist

  1. #1
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    Broken wrist

    I broke my left wrist in April. Thank heavens that I am right handed. I am currently bored out my of wits. I usually do a lot of sewing, quilting, and machine knitting, but I am not up to most of that. I have experimented with some paper piecing, and the sewing part is going well.

    My biggest problem is cutting. I can't use my left hand to hold down a ruler. I tried a bit yesterday assembling a paper pieced block, and I am hurting pretty bad. I have been trimming those nice little interior pieces with scissors, but am having trouble squaring up the block.

    I wonder if any of you have any ideas. I am really getting bored and frustrated. I am doing my PT, but I have a long way to go until I am better. I need some ideas for using pre-cuts that won't take more cutting, or some place to buy some pre-cut quilt kits.

    While I have been laid up, I was on jury duty for 9 days. Suffice it to say that it was a case that no one wants to hear, but we found the molester guilty. I would really love to make some charity quilts for our center for abused kids, but I am at a loss.

    I would appreciate any ideas that you may have.

    Thanks!

    AJRed

  2. #2
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    I'm sorry you broke your wrist - I hope you recover quickly and completely.

    Have you tried holding the ruler down with your left elbow? or left forearm?

    How is your over-all coordination? For some, if one thing more gets out of kilter - it gets more difficult to do ordinary tasks.

  3. #3
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    Man, you must have have broken it very badly. I broke my right wrist a few months ago, 30 day supply of pain pills, no pt. It didn't hurt that bad at first but now arthritis has set in it does hurt.

    So much info online. Look on Moda's website for pattern. Ck google and youtube with "quilting with precuts". That should get you lots of info.
    aka Gale

  4. #4
    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    If you lay your left arm from wrist to elbow down on ruler and press, it should hold perfectly still for your cutting, I’ve had to cut that way due to an injury and it worked well for me. No problems.
    "Be yourself...everyone else is taken."
    Strong people don't put others down...they build them up."
    "Remember that your instincts are more important than rules"

  5. #5
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    Sometimes you just have to ask for help. I was in too much pain to cut but didn't want to miss my weekly sew-in and my husband stepped up and I told him how to and what I needed cut. Is there a friend or even better a quilter that can spare an hour or two to help. They would sure understand.

  6. #6
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    I was going to say elbow! I broke mine too and had a metal plate and screws. works fine now. do not over do it!

  7. #7
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    I feel for you having broken my right (dominate hand for me ) wrist and somehow managed to keep on teaching thru the 26 week recovery process. I just plain got good at asking for help - not my usual attitude of I'll do it myself. Then that pebbly shelf liner became my second best friend. I had pieces of it all over the house and classroom. This stuff holds with relatively little pressure, can be wrapped around things that can then be held against you oror pressed against a surface to steady something or wrapped around to enlarge whatever your trying to hold so that it becomes possible to hold more firmly. You can also train yourself to do tasks that hurt with the other hand and in some cases that helps. Example the heavy school doors can be opened with the other hand quite easily and painlessly - just had to learn to reach with my left.

    Fast forward fifteen years and a pit bull chewed up my dog and the same right hand. Now I had two broken fingers and three sliced open fingers. Somewhere in the six to eight week range I got so bored I just had to figure our how to sew. I had to learn how to feed the material differently to keep the finger that no longer bends from getting knocked around by the little thing that sticks out and bobs up and down. Then I reverted to to the pebbly shelf liner to enlarge handles etc. Then came cutting and I glued (contact cement some tiny pebbly squares to the under side of my ruler) eventually just used dots of contact cement directly on ruler. Then I invested in some straight handled rotary cutters
    where I could put the pressure on it from the palm of the hand. Sewed a bazillion 4 patches == no idea of what I was going to do with them BUT I WAS SEWING. Eventually when you lose the cast you will get a brace and wearing it when doing cutting will ease some of the tiring - even when you are no longer using it everywhere else leave it out in the open in the sewing room. I do this to this day when cutting anything that will take longer than 5 min. And lastly use the smallest ruler possible for the job at hand.

  8. #8
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    Maybe someone with a die cutter could cut the pieces for you.

  9. #9
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    I don't know if using a wooden cutting board that you could use clamps over the wooden edge and on the ruler to hold it down on the fabric would work? You would need to put wood blocks underneath the board so the bottom of the clamps had someplace to go. I am sorry you broke your wrist and hopefully it will heal up soon.

  10. #10
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    Thanks for the ideas - keep on writing!!

    I broke the darn thing 3 days before my 63rd birthday. First broken bone. I also killed my car in the process,thinking I had room to make that left turn, but the Yukon coming towards me said different. I had repair surgery on May 1. I am doing pretty well. I can about everything I need to except hook my bra. I also have a hard time with waistband buttons, thank God for pull-on pants! And my beloved cuts my meat for me. I am just tired of being limited by it. I really pushed it too much yesterday, and I am paying for it today! I got for PT Friday morning, so I am resting it today.

    Thanks again!

  11. #11
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    Without knowing your age - but knowing you are going thru PT - that is the good news - sometime healing just takes time and the older we get the longer it takes. But you might ask your doctor to refer you to on occupational therapist. They can evaluate what you want to do and help you do it. I used to arrange it when I handled Workers' Compensation cases and sometimes it was life changing for some of my clients. Some even learned to drive again after having severe hand injuries.

  12. #12
    Super Member SuziSew's Avatar
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    AJ, I'm sorry about the break...but still welcome to the Quilt Board!

    Cutting: you've already been given advice on how you might hold down the ruler but I second getting someone (spouse, child, friend) to help with some of the cutting. I've helped my step mom as she has arthritis and can't do a lot of cutting. Another suggestion would be a cutting machine if you can fit it into your budget, again stepmom got one of these to help.

    Pre-cuts: Go to YouTube and search for Missouri Star Quilt Co (MSQC) tutorials. Jenny is famous for providing simple patterns using pre-cuts.

    Donation quilts: It's wonderful that you want to quilt for those less fortunate. You don't mention where you are located but you should see if there are local guilds or local quilt shops that can point you in the right direction. Or you can google to look for organizations that provide and distribute the quilts.

    Again, welcome to the QB and I hope you continue to heal quickly to get back doing the things you love!
    Sue

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    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    and connecting threads has clearance on their pre-cuts!!

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    Thanks! I ran a chiroprator's office for 15 yrs! I also have fibro, which usually takes 3 time as long to heal. My mum used to say that I make the "Princess of the Pea" sound like a tough old broad. I could not tolerate my brace, even after I lined it with molefoam. I am supposedly getting OT, but so far am not so sure the difference. Tomorrow will only be my second session, though. I have been thru PT with various other parts of me. Someone is always happy to try to help my pain for money. Never seems to work, though. I really appreciate what OT and PT can do. I am just too grumpy right now. Bored!! Been watching old movies on TV and reading, but that is getting to me as well.
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 07-12-2018 at 09:22 AM. Reason: remove shouting/all caps

  15. #15
    Super Member Irishrose2's Avatar
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    My massage therapist did more for me last year when I broke my foot than anyone else.
    Pattern: MSQC Falling charms - a baby quilt takes a charm pack and part of a plain jelly roll. By the time you get to borders, you'll be cutting. The only cutting in the quilt would be across the 2 1/2" jelly roll strip periodically.
    https://www.quiltingboard.com/pictur...l-t270672.html

  16. #16
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    I would use this as an excuse to invest in an Accuquilt Go! Big (electric) die cutting machine and one or two dies. It would allow you to cut pieces for a quilt without pressuring your left hand. I would consider it therapy for my mental health. Plus it provides opportunities for Christmas gift lists for years to come.

  17. #17
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AJRed View Post
    .........And my beloved cuts my meat for me. I am just tired of being limited by it. I really pushed it too much yesterday, and I am paying for it today! I got for PT Friday morning, so I am resting it today.
    Thanks again!
    The solutions are nearer than you think ....

    Teach your beloved to cut your fabrics!
    Yes, I know you don't want to ask him to do more, but I bet he would and could!

    The second .... Discuss with your PT as to how your ability to sew is critical to your overall mindset.

    While this person may not understand quilting etc., knowing where your heart is, will help them address specific concerns. On another visit, you could take in your tools, to show him/her what you need to re-build to be able to do.
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  18. #18
    Senior Member Three Dog Night's Avatar
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    You could do a charm quilt or jelly roll race quilt where you wouldn't have to cut pieces except for border and bindings as others have mentioned. I would definitely check out MSQC tutorials for patterns.

  19. #19
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    Hi AJRed, and welcome from North Carolina. I'm sorry that you are in pain and bored. I hope you can use some of the suggestions you received. I don't have any bright ideas for cutting fabric, but you could discover some other quilting chores, like organizing your fabric stash, looking for new patterns, just hanging out with us here. There are several threads that you could check out. We love to chat!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by gigi712 View Post
    Man, you must have have broken it very badly. I broke my right wrist a few months ago, 30 day supply of pain pills, no pt. It didn't hurt that bad at first but now arthritis has set in it does hurt.

    So much info online. Look on Moda's website for pattern. Ck google and youtube with "quilting with precuts". That should get you lots of info.
    Pre cuts was my first thought. How about charms or jelly rolls.

  21. #21
    Super Member wesing's Avatar
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    I use a 5# weight on the far end of my ruler to stabilize it. Maybe that would help? I learned that from watching Jordan Fabrics on YouTube.

  22. #22
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear of your troubles. I have a dear friend who is going thru the same thing - she broke her wrist after slipping on ice. Needed surgery, had a plate and 7 screws implanted. She's currently going through PT and they told her it could be as long as 2 years before she's fully recovered. She's feeling somewhat depressed about her prognosis and keeps offering to sell her longarm to me. I told her it wasn't time for that yet, although I will come over and quilt some stuff on it for her, if it makes her feel better. I still have hope that she will recover full use of her arm, even if she doesn't.

    I have done this, so it might work for you:

    Use clamps. You might end up needing to use a couple different cutting mats and rulers, but you can do a lot of straight cuts if you clamp both ends of the ruler. You might also ask around your friends and guild to see if there is an Accuquilt or some other kind of fabric cutting system available for you to use temporarily.

  23. #23
    Super Member ArtsyOne's Avatar
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    I have no solutions for you, but do have a lot of sympathy. I broke my left wrist and had the same problems. Living alone and not being able to even use a can opener was humbling. One of my coworkers (female) jokingly offered to come help me put my bra on every day and I lived in pull-on pants for 6 weeks. I did learn how to roll out of my bathtub rather than using my hands to lift myself out, so I'm calling it a learning experience. Thinking of you and wishing you all the best.
    A fabric stash is always missing that one fabric needed to finish the quilt on which you're working.

  24. #24
    Super Member Weezy Rider's Avatar
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    see if someone can make you a version of the Quilter's Slidelock or buy one. Your arm would be well away from the fabric. Or see if a quilting friend with an accuquilt or sizzix would cut some fabric for you.

    I had surgery on a wrist/thumb and I was able to use my slide lock. I also bought a Martelli Quilting Halo. I could just hold the gripper between thumb and first finger and was able to play with free motion quilting.

    If you lived close enough to me, I'd help you cut.

  25. #25
    Super Member Tiggersmom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99 View Post
    I would use this as an excuse to invest in an Accuquilt Go! Big (electric) die cutting machine and one or two dies. It would allow you to cut pieces for a quilt without pressuring your left hand. I would consider it therapy for my mental health. Plus it provides opportunities for Christmas gift lists for years to come.
    This is exactly what I would suggest. The electric one is wonderful. I bought several dies through Amazon and saved some money too.
    I hope you heal soon.
    Jennifer: Organized in my dreams.
    🌷RIP dear Tigger....you are missed!
    Buddybear's Mom ...Yorkie Fur Baby

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