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Thread: Good, Bad, and Ugly Quilting Tools

  1. #1
    2wheelwoman's Avatar
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    A few years ago I came across a forum on the web which had great input from members on which quilting tools really worked, and which were just waste-of-money gimicks. Naturally, I haven't been able to find the site again. The only thing I remembered of the advice was to get the Kwick Klip pin closer, and it's been awesome. Is there a thread on this topic somewhere on the site....and if not....can we start one? I searched but never found anything like this (which doesn't mean it's not here in plain sight.)

    Have any of you bought a tool thinking you HAD to have it because it had great advertising or because you were new and didn't know better, and never used it or didn't like it? Or, have you found the Holy Grail of quilting tools and would like to share it with us?

    Naturally I can only think of one thing right now that I bought and wished I didn't - binding clips. Sheesh, they're just hair clippies in a more expensive package. I know there's more, but my mind has gone completely blank right now. :oops:

  2. #2
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    The funny thing is, you will find totally contradictory reviews because we all work differently.

    For instance, I can't stand rulers with a lip or rulers that have ridges on the back that prevent it from sliding smoothly across the fabric when I want it to! I don't like rulers with the extra 1/2" added to them (except for the 12 1/2" square). But some people love all those things!

    I love my big white cutting mat because it is 30" x 36" instead of 29" x 35" like the green ones.


  3. #3
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    Hi Quilters,

    Absolutely love the new frosted rulers - you can really see the measurements on any kind - or color of fabric. And the yo yo makers are another great tool. They work well. Have made more yo yos since purchasing them that I ever have - made enough of those things to make a flag for my daughter-in-law.
    Sue in PA

  4. #4
    2wheelwoman's Avatar
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    umm - what's a yo-yo maker? I don't think I've seen one of those.

  5. #5
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    I TOTALLY agree on the Olfa Frosted rulers. They are incredibly easy to read and my measurements are far more accurate because the lines are not so fat as all the others.

    The ugy? Anything by June Taylor. She should have stuck with choreography!! (Don't think she's really the one of Jackie Gleason fame, though.)

  6. #6
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    Well, I got my rotary cutter for my birthday, and I haven't used it much :roll: The fabric I have, is pretty much scraps so... I should've waited.

  7. #7
    Senior Member foxxigrani's Avatar
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    I agree with you about the 1/2 extra, it confuses me. I have one that has it on the very beginning and hate it. I am always cutting say 3' and end up with 3 1/2 because I forget so there is another half inch I have wasted. Sometimes this doesn't make a difference but when you are down to X amount of fabric, there is no more anywhere and you can't afford a mistake, well need I say more?

    Lets see in my long list of buying gadgets, what have I bought or gotten that I never use or hate... My hubby bought me for my birthday one yr a hoop on a stand. Now I know that sounds great and some of you may use them. But I don't hand quilt so much yet, have used it on one quilt and found it to be very ackward. Even taking it off the stand its hard you can't reach from end to end, and its too long that way to hold comfortably. So I never use it.

    Rita

  8. #8
    Super Member sewmuch's Avatar
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    I was given the Clover threader and it works great for me, not being able to thread my hand sewing needles anymore.

  9. #9
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    I have a 6 1/2 inch ruler that I love. I dont know if you can tell from the pic, but at one corner it starts out with whole inches with the extra half on the end. From the oppisite corner it marks the half inch at the beginning. Plus you can flip it to either have black or yellow lines.
    http://us.st12.yimg.com/us.st.yimg.c...021_1267575120

    As for duds....I'd say my fabric pens/pencils/chalk/whatever. I can't seem to find one I like.

  10. #10
    Super Member Rose Marie's Avatar
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    My most expensive mistake was the Flynn frame. It sits against the wall and is useless.
    Also many marking tools that dont work well.
    My best tool is the Quilt in a Day flying geese rulers and the square up ruler.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Missi's Avatar
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    I have a 12.5 inch square Olfa ruler that I love. I use it for just about everything after I cut my long strip. I have used it so much that it appears that the top three inches are no longer straight. I can't believe I wore it down but have noticed my squares are off. So now I use the top edge and read numbers sideways :) Has anyone else had this happen?

  12. #12
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    Yes, I think I wore a curve into one of my rulers, also. I couldn't figure out how come when I moved the ruler, the fabric didn't follow the measurement line and had this bow in it.

    DUH.

    So if your ruler has been a well used tool, it might be a good idea to stand it on edge and see if there is an arc on the cutting edge.

  13. #13

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    I have many notions myself and love them all and find all of them helpful in each way. I like my big ruler that has an edge on it to hold on to the edge of my cutting mat so I can stack my yardage and cut straight long strips even. That has been a life saver and a time saver for me. Also, love those little sticky pieces of sandpaper that hold your ruler from sliding. I guess I put too much muscle in my cutting for if I didn't have those on some of my rulers I'd only cut about 3/4 of the fabric straight:))I'd say the biggest waste of money is the chennile (sp?)cutter...the one that slides under the layers to cut for you. Since I was going to use it on a rug that never worked out...it still sits in it's plastic:))Maybe one of these days:))Skeat

  14. #14
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    I totally agree wth you, 2wheelwoman. I bought a couple packages of the binding clips, tried using them a couple of times, I'll just pin my binding. To me, it's easier.

  15. #15
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    I kind of like the clips - but you are right - as hair clippies they cost a lot less.

    The only thing that I think will be constant is that different folks like different things.

  16. #16
    Super Member gcathie's Avatar
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    I have a lot of Creative Grids I just love....love love love my Olfa rotary cutter 60mm that you open when you grip it....love the chaulk markers with the wheels....love my cutting table and mat from Joanne Fabrics....Love my White style-maker sewing machine I bought as a reconditioned machine so the price was right...

    waste of money....chennel mat and cutter....disc sharpeners.....I paid good money for these things and they don't work like I had hoped they would...

  17. #17
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    My best tool for marking dark fabrics is the sliver of soap left that most people toss into the trash and used dryer sheets are great stabilizers.

  18. #18
    Super Member Minda's Avatar
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    gcathie, I agree with you about the Creative Grid rulers. A friend recommended them to me. I bought two and they are my favorite rulers now. They slide less than any other ruler I've tried (and I have a large selection). I intend to gradually replace my other rulers with Creative Grid. I also wouldn't be without my Tucker Trimmer rulers. I have the small and large sizes.

    Does anyone use the revolving cutting mats? It took me a while to remember to use it, but it really saves time since you don't have to move your fabric. Instead, you just revolve the mat.


  19. #19
    Super Member mary quite contrary's Avatar
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    You all are much better than me. I don't know if it is my favorite but I sure do use it and that is my good old seam ripper.

  20. #20
    CRH
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    I bought a bamboo tool to hold fabric near the presser foot,and I really like it, but then read a hint to buy the bamboo skewers (about $1 at the dollar stores for 50 of them) and they work great. (I cut them off so they're not so long.)

    (gcathy) I too bought the rotary blade sharpener and didn't have any luck with it(

  21. #21
    mgshaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mary quite contrary
    I don't know if it is my favorite but I sure do use it and that is my good old seam ripper.
    Boy do I agree with you on that!!!! Dont like to have to use it but what would I do without it!!! :lol: :lol:

  22. #22
    Super Member zyxquilts's Avatar
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    I think my least favorite was a gift from my Secret Pal - one of those 'rulers' with the slits in them for cutting strips. It may be June Taylor, not sure. I don't know why, but I just couldn't get the hang of it. Other than my rotary cutters, I think my favorite is my 8.5" wide Omnigrip (yes GRIP, not grid :wink: ) ruler. I use it all the time :D
    And speaking of seam rippers, I just got a "scalpel" seam ripper & it works like a charm!

  23. #23
    Super Member ScubaK's Avatar
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    I can't seem to find any markers that I like. Be it chalk, air erase or water erase...
    If I could find something like a Sharpie, but not permanent!
    I bought, years ago, a plexi-glass template set called Pandoras' Box...have never used it.
    I bought an Altos quick cut and use it all the time...
    I have the Fiskars roatry cutters...45 and 65mm and that is my primary because I tried the Olfa Ergonomic cutter (what a joke, for me), I hated it!
    The basic rulers I love, the basic rotary cutters I love and I love my scissors...
    K

  24. #24
    Super Member 3incollege's Avatar
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    Like everyone else we have issues with our rulers. I don't like the green rulers it is so hard to see the lines.
    I love this new foot for my machine called the curve master it is really neat, it make sewing curves pin free.
    I do like the yo-yo makers also.

  25. #25
    Super Member zyxquilts's Avatar
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    I forgot one! Flat flower head pins! I love them! :D

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