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Thread: Helpful Tips and Tricks

  1. #1
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    Helpful Tips and Tricks

    I am a new member who has been reading a lot of your posts, and you are all so talented and such a wealth of information. I am sure that many of you have learned a thing or two in your years of sewing experience. I thought that it would be beneficial to start a thread where you can offer up some of your most helpful tips, tricks, or favorite products. And remember that, even if your idea seems elementary, it might be helpful to a beginner.

    I will start by listing a few ideas:

    1.) If you are using a serger, and you are missing your cone thread nets, try using knee-high nylons and cutting them into tubes.

    2.) To sharpen your dull seam rippers, purchase a fine needle file set, like the ones that jewelers use. Amazon Carries them for less than $10.

    3.) When I worked as a seamstress many moons ago, we used single-edge razor blades instead of seam rippers. They are easy to use once you get in the zone, and they are inexpensive.

    4.) When hemming pants, and to remove stubborn wrinkles and creases, wet a flour sack type kitchen cloth, wring the water out, and use it as a pressing cloth. I know some people prefer white vinegar, but in the Tailor Shop we just used water.

    5.) Instead of cotton batting, use your old towels to make pot holders.

    6.) When sewing by hand, run your thread through beeswax to keep it from tangling.

    And I read recently that if you fold a piece of aluminum foil into many layers and run your rotary blade through it, your blade will be sharper. I don't know if this works, but I thought I'd mention it.

  2. #2
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    good tips thank you
    we can make our plans but the out come is in god,s hands nellie diaz

  3. #3
    Senior Member FabStripper's Avatar
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    I tried that with the aluminum foil but didn't get it to work for one of my scissors. But it worked on another set it. I save my old needles and use them to hang pictures on the wall. I also use elmers glue to baste my quilts now. If I can figure out what makes my house messy when all I do is sew I'll be happy.

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    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
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    thanks for starting a new/good thread. I use a lint roller to get cat fur and threads off of things it shouldn't be on.
    put off till tomorrow what you can do today, and if you procrastinate long enough, you may never have to do it.

  5. #5
    Super Member AngeliaNR's Avatar
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    Beeswax for needles is great, but your head is closer--rub the tip of your needle GENTLY against your scalp.
    Courtesy is not optional.

    http://theeclecticabuela.blogspot.com/

  6. #6
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    When hiding a thread knot, hold the knot under your thumb fingernail while pulling with the opposite hand. The knot will pop into the fabric like magic.

    If a tool/notion gives you frustration, toss it and buy a new or better one.
    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.

  7. #7
    Super Member DOTTYMO's Avatar
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    Read instructions for cutting twice, measure cutting line twice then cut once.
    Finished is better than a UFO

  8. #8
    Junior Member Siodach's Avatar
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    Don't do complicated math or cutting when you're tired!

    Also, very much don't measure how much backing fabric you need in inches, and then have the lady in the store cut it in centimetres. You get less than half of what you need that way!!!!!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by FabStripper View Post
    I tried that with the aluminum foil but didn't get it to work for one of my scissors. But it worked on another set it. I save my old needles and use them to hang pictures on the wall. I also use elmers glue to baste my quilts now. If I can figure out what makes my house messy when all I do is sew I'll be happy.
    I tried that trick and it did not work for me. But I have read where others had success. Maybe just my scissors.

  10. #10
    Super Member JenniePenny's Avatar
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    I have found that using a dedicated brand of bobbin thread (Bottom Line or Gutterman) has made a noticeable difference in my piecing accuracy. It is my best tip to myself.
    "He who masters the grey everyday is a hero."
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/PeachPalaceDesigns

  11. #11
    Super Member Pollytink's Avatar
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    GREAT thread! Thanks for starting it!

  12. #12
    Super Member nannyrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lynnie View Post
    thanks for starting a new/good thread. I use a lint roller to get cat fur and threads off of things it shouldn't be on.
    Me too Lynnie!!
    so many quilts to make, so little time.

  13. #13
    Super Member Stitchnripper's Avatar
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    http://www.quiltingboard.com/main-f1...d-t220591.html

    Here are more from a thread I remembered from a while back.
    Alyce

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    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    This is what Harriet Hargrave taught me in a class: "Use the best fabrics and batting that you can afford".
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

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    I try to clean my machine after every second bobbin. Now I only ever fill two bobbins. Helps me keep on track.
    True4uca

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    Super Member Marilynsue's Avatar
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    Use a toilet brush (new of course) to pick up threads on a carpeted surface. It works!
    Every Sunrise brings a blessing

  17. #17
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    Press seams so they will nest. Makes sewing any intersection much easier and neater.
    Make backing a little bigger than quilt top.
    Make sure backing is flat, then the batting, then the top.
    Start pinning sandwich together in the center, and work out to the edges.
    All I can think of right now.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

  18. #18
    Super Member citruscountyquilter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AngeliaNR View Post
    Beeswax for needles is great, but your head is closer--rub the tip of your needle GENTLY against your scalp.
    I used cloth diapers and diaper pins on my children. I always ran the pin through my hair before pinning it in the diaper and it easily ran through the cloth of the diaper. The oils in your hair work wonders on needles and pins.

  19. #19
    Junior Member pdriggs's Avatar
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    Re: Helpful Hints

    Quote Originally Posted by AngeliaNR View Post
    Beeswax for needles is great, but your head is closer--rub the tip of your needle GENTLY against your scalp.

    Back in the day.........before disposable diapers, we used to run the diaper pins through our hair to make them easy to get through the diaper. Brings back memories!
    Phyllis
    Phyllis Driggs

  20. #20
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    I used a bar of soap for diaper pins. Haven't tried that for needles and pins. I wonder if it would work. I do use a sliver of soap as a marking tool.

  21. #21
    Super Member newquilter10's Avatar
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    I use a bar of soap and it does work. I also keep a pair it tweezers in my list of tools. When quilting if needle hard to pull threw I use the tweezers to grap the needle and pull.
    Linda
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    Retired and Loving It

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by slbram17 View Post
    I tried that trick and it did not work for me. But I have read where others had success. Maybe just my scissors.
    Instead try cutting fine grit sand paper. Works like a charm.

  23. #23
    shy
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    Using cotton thread in your bobbin.be sure to clean out the casing every few changes..it helps the bobbin move better..
    When quilting on a DSM make sure none of your quilt is hanging down..this cause tension on the quilt.which stops it from moving well..
    Never cut..sew..measure when u are in a hurry..upset..or wore out..just causes more problems..that list goes on and on.lol

  24. #24
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    I don't remember who said this but it's helped me.....

    Watch where your fabric is going at all times. Forget about that needle. The needle is going to go up and down so don't even look at it

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by citruscountyquilter View Post
    I used cloth diapers and diaper pins on my children. I always ran the pin through my hair before pinning it in the diaper and it easily ran through the cloth of the diaper. The oils in your hair work wonders on needles and pins.

    Yep, this is an old trick for those of us who used diaper pins....and for pins and needles when sewing, too.

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