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Thread: Christmas Gift Bag

  1. #1
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    Christmas Gift Bag

    Hello Everyone!
    I am new here. I joined to figure out a gift for my aunt who quilts. I have no background in sewing or quilting. I want to create a Christmas gift bag for her with some essential quilting tools. I have no clue where to start and how much to budget for the tools. Is $50-$100 a good price range to get her tools and what should I put in there? Do people even gift quilting tool kits? I know she will like something related to her hobby but where do I start?

    Thank You so much for any help/advice in advance.
    Alex

  2. #2
    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
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    she will love this! A nice pair of 4" applique scissors, some machine needles (find out what kind of machine she has and then check at a quilting shop--they can steer you to what she'll use), sharp, glass head pins, a new rotary cutter and replacement blades, perhaps a small cutting mat that swivels...I could go on and on, but if you go into a quilt shop they will be able to help you load a basket with some great "goodies"!

  3. #3
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    If she already quilts, she most likely has all the common tools that quilters use. You might want to contact her and see if there's something she really wants rather than buy her duplicates of what she already has.
    Patrice S

    Bernina Artista 180, Singer 301a, Featherweight Centennial, Rocketeer, Juki 2200 QVP Mini, White 1964 Featherweight

  4. #4
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    ​I think a gift certificate from her favourite quilt shop would be nice. You could also look into a gift certificate from Missouri Star Quilt co. since they do online sales.

  5. #5
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cashs_mom View Post
    If she already quilts, she most likely has all the common tools that quilters use. You might want to contact her and see if there's something she really wants rather than buy her duplicates of what she already has.
    This is what I was thinking also. I like the idea of a gift certificate, even though there are those who think it's impersonal and a "cop-out". For quilters I disagree.

    A few years ago, my husband gave me a gift certificate to my favorite quilt shop. It was for a significant amount and lasted almost to the end of summer - what an awesome gift! Any time I wanted or needed anything, I didn't have to consider whether I had money in my budget. Don't worry if you have a small budget, quilters appreciate any amount. Or, another thought, get with other family members and have everyone contribute.

  6. #6
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    This is a great idea. It is a little difficult buying things for people’s established hobbies since they usually have their basic supplies, but there are some consumables that I think would be good in a gift bag:

    *Marking pens/pencils
    *Double-sided fusible (like Steam-a-Seam and Heat N Bond) - this is used a lot for appliqué, but it has other uses
    *Elmer’s WASHABLE School Glue - this is a little jokey, but many quilters use it a lot, just make sure you get the washable glue - if you want another “in joke”, you could also buy her some freezer paper (availale next to the plastic wrap, wax paper, and aluminum foil at the grocery store)

    I know you said tools, but I would also consider buying some fat quarters -- these are 1/4 yard squares of fabric and cost about $3 each (varies from region to region, so don’t panic if they’re charging more than that). I think this is a little more fun as a gift than, say, the aforementioned marking pens, and I think the vast majority of quilters would love to get them as a gift. A dozen of these in different fabrics sounds like it would be within your gift budget.

    As far as non-consumable tools goes … maybe a specialty ruler? She likely already has a 6”x24” and some square ones. Most shops seem to sell the Creative Grids rulers, and they’re very good (non-slip). Maybe someone in a shop could recommend a popular one (I’ve heard a lot of people mention Stripology, though I don’t have one myself). The rulers run around $30 and up.

    If you can, I would really recommend going to a small local quilt/fabric shop and purchasing there. They’ll have overall better quality items than the chain stores and the employees are usually more knowledgable. Olfa and Clover and two good brands that make a lot of tools and that you’ll find many places.

    I hope something I’ve said here ends up being helpful!

  7. #7
    Super Member Doggramma's Avatar
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    I'm thinking of making some zipper bags for Christmas. I found a great bag site called Sew Sweetness. She has videos that show step by step how to do different bags, and she has some free patterns as well as patterns for sale. I just thought I'd mention this since you have limited experience sewing. Have fun!
    Lori

    *********

  8. #8
    DJ
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    I like the idea of new blades for her rotary cutter. Also fat quarters. If you know she uses batiks, those would be great … or in her favorite colors. Maybe you have an idea of the types of fabrics she uses in her quilts. Machine needles are also a great idea. Maybe some good quality thread in neutral colors (white/off-white/gray). Then include a gift certificate if your budget allows. A local quilt shop might allow for exchanges if she wants something different. She will definitely appreciate your thoughtfulness.

  9. #9
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    I have all the basics I need or I wouldn't be able to quilt. I would rather have a gift card to a quilt store then have someone choose my quilting items. A gift card to a quilt shop is personal. It can't be used for anything other then quilting.
    I believe giving what I can will never cause me to be in need.
    Being cheap is not a badge of honor.
    My heroes are working people, paying their own way, taking care of their children and being decent human beings.

  10. #10
    Super Member redstilettos's Avatar
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    Very nice thought of you, Alex.

    If she already quilts, like others have said, she probably has some of the basics. So what about finding a pattern that screams "Aunt Thelma" and then buy the pattern and materials to go with it?

  11. #11
    Super Member SuziSew's Avatar
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    What a wonderful niece you are! I was thinking more of a combination of what others have suggested. Throw in some consumables, i.e. rotary blades, marking pens, glass head pins and add a gift certificate to a local store. That way she has something to open but can use the gift card later for something special.

    Another thought, if you know where she shops, they may already know about what things she might need or like.

    One last thought, a gift to both of you would be to ask her to teach you how to quilt!
    Sue

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    Thank You all for such great ideas. I have done gift cards earlier, so I was thinking of going a different route this time. Gift cards are definitely easier to do and I realize that she has most of the stuff she needs. I like the ideas presented here. Here is what I have gleaned from from all of your suggestions: Pins, rotary cutter, marking Pens, Double-sided fusible, fat quarters, specialty ruler, Machine needles, good quality thread in neutral colors . I will be spending some time on Amazon to find products in these categories (and also ask my aunt if she has any preferences). Also, will try to figure out a local quilting store, I have never been to any place other than Joann. Thank you so Much for your time and suggestions!!

  13. #13
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    I would also recommend gift cards, preferably from a local shop but if you aren't local there are many wonderful on-line shops as well. I'm sure we can give you some recommendations on those if you want!

    There are always a few things that I'd like to get but cost is keeping me back, but I truly have everything I need for what I do. And while some people truly do everything, I think most of us have a comfort zone or a point of view and so while one person may rave about something, another person (like me!) would have absolutely no use for it even if it is the best thing since sliced bread.

    I know my non-sewing friends and relatives think I "sew" but really I only quilt any more and that is more accurately described as machine sewn piece work. I don't do hand work or applique or garment construction or a bunch of other things like embroidery any more either.

    I think the greatest thing you can do is share your appreciation and interest in what she does. A lot of hobbyists (no matter what you do) are not well understood by the people they love especially since they get to see the failures as well as the successes. I've been trying to get my son and DiL to give me some ideas for more than a year now on what to do for the quilt I'd like to make in honor of their wedding (wedding was in June). Sure, I can make up my own mind about what to do for them (and I already have the wedding themed fabric I'd like to use for the back), but I'd really like a little input on colors or design or something to make sure it's something they like as well.

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    Yes! Learning to quilt is on my list. But! before going there, I have to learn to work my new sewing machine :-)
    I was so excited when I bought it.....still have to bring it out of the box and learn to thread it....
    Now only if a day had more than 24 hours.

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    I recommend a gift card too. Several years ago, one on my daughters who does not sew ask me what I needed--nothing really but said Pins---I still have enough pins to last me a lifetime ! She is a sweetie though.

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    A bespoke quilt!! What a wonderful gift idea!!

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    :-)
    How many pins are enough pins for quilting though?

  18. #18
    Super Member SuziSew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex06 View Post
    :-)
    How many pins are enough pins for quilting though?
    How many it depends on the person, but they do wear out. The question should be what kind of pins.

    Glass head, flat head, and curved basting pins are staples for most quilters.
    Sue

  19. #19
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    I also think that a gift card to her favorite quilt shop would be best, that way she can get whatever she wants.

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    I would also suggest a gift card, attached to a bag of good chocolates.

  21. #21
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    My son often gets me a gift certificate to Joann Fabrics. I love it! I use it mostly for batting, thread, zippers, and other notions. If your aunt is a seasoned quilter, you might pick a color (her favorite, if you know it) and buy a variety of fat quarters or even yardage, depending on your budget, in that color. My mother does this for me now and then, and it's among my favorite gifts.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex06 View Post
    Thank You all for such great ideas. I have done gift cards earlier, so I was thinking of going a different route this time. Gift cards are definitely easier to do and I realize that she has most of the stuff she needs. I like the ideas presented here. Here is what I have gleaned from from all of your suggestions: Pins, rotary cutter, marking Pens, Double-sided fusible, fat quarters, specialty ruler, Machine needles, good quality thread in neutral colors . I will be spending some time on Amazon to find products in these categories (and also ask my aunt if she has any preferences). Also, will try to figure out a local quilting store, I have never been to any place other than Joann. Thank you so Much for your time and suggestions!!
    My first thought was blades for her rotary cutter or extra bobbins for her machine. I'm not a fan of fat quarters. I guess I fear running out of a piece that I need. My recommendation is a gift card to JoAnn's or some store such as that. The gift can be stretched by using their coupons. It can be used for batting or other supplies, not necessarily fabric if she is a quilt shop quilter. Fabrics/fat quarters you choose may not be to her liking. Too, those stores have supplies for other hobbies and winter is great for yarn projects.

  23. #23
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    Do you live close to this special aunt and is she a beginning or advanced quilter? Answers to these questions might make a difference in what you choose to do for her. If she is only beginning she may not have need for some of the more advanced tools and if advanced she may have no need for the simple things you choose. Her local quilt shop should be able to give you some information in regard to the last question. How about enjoying a Quilter's Holiday with her. Pick her up at her home and take her to a nice place where you can share lunch together. Skip dessert and then take her to her quilt shop. Enjoy browsing together and ask her what items she has and what items she would want to add to her collection of tools, fabric, or patterns. There may even be a book or magazine subscription that she would enjoy. If she picks out only a few items you can always finish with a gift card. You may learn some things from her in that store visit and you will know that you are not buying things which will end up on a shelf or in a drawer. Top your day off with a visit to a coffee shop for something rich and gooey to finish your day. You might even find a quilt show at some point which you could visit together. This would create more together time for you and your aunt and I feel might be something she would enjoy. Just thought I would mention this idea. I know it would work for me.

  24. #24
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    Absolutely wonderful thought, but, if she is a quilter, she probably has the tools she wants. Having said that, there are things that always need replaced. These would include needles and rotary cutter blades (the basic is a 45mm). If you can visit her, sneak into her room and look at her machine. Then any sewing center can help you with needles. If you are sneaky (?), you can draw her into a conversation about quilting and how she does it, the hard parts, what would make things easier, etc. Listen carefully and she might let something slip about what would help her. And a gift card to a fabric store is wonderful Normally I feel that gift cards are sort of impersonal - BUT - a fabric card for a quilter IS WONDERFUL!

  25. #25
    Super Member thrums's Avatar
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    I second abc123xyz's suggestion.

    Take your aunt out for a day of shopping where you present her with a gift card at her favorite quilt shop. You will be making memories which is priceless.

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