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Thread: Make do tools

  1. #26
    Super Member M.I.Late's Avatar
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    I have great kitchen counters and my breakfast nook table is just 3 feet away so I sew in the kitchen a lot. I got frustrated with my little padded sewing box, so I went to Wal-mart and found the perfect fishing tackle box to keep my tools handy. It's bursting at the seams now, so I need to get something else. (I wish I could get another one just like this - but they've changed the designs) I will keep this one for traveling no matter what I find next. I really want a Gerstner Machinest Tool Box (oak) but they're expensive. ($500) so for now, this will work. And it does work great - it's been working for 12 years now.

    It's @ 6 1/2" x 13 1/2"
    Name:  Attachment-69816.jpe
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    2 trays and a good sized bottom compartment
    Name:  Attachment-69817.jpe
Views: 10
Size:  41.5 KB

  2. #27
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    Great tips thank you - I bought a fishing tackle box from WalMart cost about $14 for quilting supplies and bought a fishing box that has cubbies on top and a second compartment that I store all my Wilton Cake supplies (well a lot of them any way)- I will need to go and visit my local Home Depot and WM stores. The T-sq ruler what awesome idea - thank you all

  3. #28
    Super Member mar32428's Avatar
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    I received two zip pouches to hold the sun glasses when I had my cataract surgery. They are perfect for carrying my small tools to class.

  4. #29
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    What ever you do with the snap marking line tool, don't use the chalk from the hardware store....it will not come out of your quilt...
    D in TX

  5. #30
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    If you glue magnets (at walmart) to the bottom of your plastic soap dish, or even a pretty ceramic one, the pins will stay in the dish.
    D in Tx

  6. #31
    Super Member ksea's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joyce
    Reading some of the posts got me to thinking about my workroom.
    I use a carpenter's T-sq, a regular sg, 4' long rulers, quick clamps, hand clamps. Heavy equipment nuts/washers make good weights.
    A rounded off wooden dowel makes a good point turner. I sharpen the dowel in a pencil sharpener, then use sandpaper to soften the point. I like mine about 18", but you can make several sizes if you like.
    You can find wood, hard rubber, hard nylon mallets, take your choice.
    An empty builders snap-line tool with your choice of marking powder also works great. So go exploring in the tool dep't.
    What a wonderful thread, I was just reading some of it to my DH and he said I had better stay out of his garage, but he offered to take me to Home Depot or the Bass Pro Shop, imagine that!!

  7. #32
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    i use a drying dish rack with the sppon and fork holder to hold my rulers, scissors, and any other notion and pattern for the quilt that I am making. Seems I always misplace them otherwise.

  8. #33
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    Go to Harbor Freight. I have found more "stuff" for my sewing room as my husband is browsing.....I found Magnetic tins, tool box, a large suction tool with handle-great for use as a handle for plastic rulers/templates, "surgical" clamps, painter's scrappers (metal with plastic handle)...it is great for pressing seams and the 4" one I use in paper piecing and marking..quick straight edge. Look at all the tools...then think what you can use them for in your sewing room...you will be amazed! Oh, almost forgot....painter's canvas drop cloths..cheaper than buying it at JoAnns...use it in making purses and floor cloths.
    D in TX

  9. #34
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    Lady Diana,
    What a really good tip. One I will definitely put to use.
    I have round and oblong magnetic metal ones, but now I can have a really pretty one.
    My dd does a lot of hand clay work. I will be putting in my order and it must have some painted on pansies.
    Love pansies and johhny jump-ups.

  10. #35
    Super Member Grama Lehr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blueeyez
    I found a magnetic bowl in the tool dept. that i use for my pins. Cheaper than the ones in the fabric stores.
    I've seen those!! Great idea!

  11. #36
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    Ooh, I love Harbor Freight catalogs. We also have a warehouse about 60 miles away.
    A lot of my goodies have come from there.

  12. #37
    Super Member C.Cal Quilt Girl's Avatar
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    Soft nylon rope for tote bags, from Lowes, lots for about 5-6 dollars... or Gromets from harbor freight in canvas/tarp area, then figured out it was easier to just make a button hole! oh well !! :)

  13. #38
    Junior Member ekbuckeye's Avatar
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    I just love to browse at Harbor Freight! I use a tool box for beading supplies, set of different tweezers, small suction cups to use on rulers, wire bins for the pegboard. I'll never forget seeing, in a notions catalog, a short piece of half-round wood molding (for use under garment seams when pressing to prevent seam marks on the outside) for $11.99!!

  14. #39
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    I had the fella at Home Depot saw a 1" dowel to make two half rounds for garmet seam pressing.....does not leave ridges.
    It was less than $4....I love this thread!

    Din TX

  15. #40
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    Very good ideas!!!!!!! Quilters are very resourseful!!!! Would it not be wonderful to hear from our grandmothers the things they used to "get the job done" when there were no quilt stores, craft stores, etc. I have always thought that some quilter was using a pizza cutter and tried using it to cut fabric, then got her husband to sharpen that blade. Thus rotary cutters were born. LOL

  16. #41
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    I have round dowels that I use to press open seams like for pillow cases.
    If it is something longer, like a turned quilt, I use a good tube that fabrics have been wrapped around. JoAnn's will let you pick whatever you want.

  17. #42
    Miss Mona's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by katier825
    Quote Originally Posted by walen
    Me, too! I guess a trip to the hardware store is in order! I do need a rubber mallet for whacking thick seams, my nice, clean one seemed to disappear about the same time that a dirty one turned up on my husband's bench! Hummmm....
    LOL Maybe you should paint the handle pink & flowery! Would that help keep him from taking it?
    No, my tools have purple and pink flowers on them and they keep turning up on hubbys workbench. He says mine were easier to find. Duh!! If you put things away after you use them they are easier to find. My hammer has red nail polish around the handle, (and is missing) and my tool box is purple. I still can't locate my screw drivers, but he knows nothing.

  18. #43
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    Miss mona, get yourself a dirty old box (only has to look dirty) set your toolbox inside it. Do you think that might work?

  19. #44
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    Some tool boxes come with locks.
    D in TX

  20. #45
    Super Member marytoddliz's Avatar
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    My hunny bought me a piece of plexiglass at the Auto parts store and used a utility knife to cut it into templates for me. I now have any size I can think of. To get my measurements I have used clear packing tape and taped on an inexpensive cloth tape measurer that I purchased at the dollar store. They work nicely, on a few I have added lines with a black permenant marker.

    You will need to lightly sand the rough edges with a very light grain sand paper.

  21. #46
    Super Member Tiffany's Avatar
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    The hardware store is a great place for tools but I prefer to shop at my hubby's tool box. It's much more conveniently located for me and the price is just right! :twisted:

  22. #47
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    My hunny bought me a piece of plexiglass at the Auto parts store and used a utility knife to cut it into templates for me.
    -------------------------------------
    With some care, you can cut OUT the shapes needed for
    Fussy Cuts, and still be able to see the surrounding area.
    Dremel tools are good for this.

  23. #48
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    I'm busy copying and pasting this onto another letter to
    send to my daughter and sewing friends. I'll also print it out
    for computer illiterate friends and family. These are marvelous
    ideas, and thank you all for them. This forum is filled with such
    talented folks!!

  24. #49
    Super Member quilt3311's Avatar
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    Our hardware store has an oven liner that is identical to what the quilt shops have as a pressing sheet for fusible applique. Its about $5 where the quilt shop version is $17. Hardware stores, storage unit shops, scrap booking shops, upholstery shops (they sometimes give sample books away or for a small cost) farm stores, lots of small items that can be used, lumber yards (door peep holes, door stops etc) It goes on and on.

  25. #50
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    I just set a huge box of home dec & uph fabric down at the end of my driveway. I just wrote "free fabric scraps" on it.
    It was gone right away. I'm almost ready to put another one out.
    I don't have garage sales. Anything that is useable we always take it to the end of the driveway which is 1/8 mi.
    Someone always picks it up which makes me feel good.

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