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mpeters1200 01-26-2007 12:39 PM

Ladies (and gentlemen too)

I have a couple projects going in my brain and I thought I would just holler them out. That way if people liked the idea, they could do it too; or if I do something totally wrong, as I do daily, there could be some insight.

1. I am making an ironing board. I can't tell my quilt club about it as I am making one for them as a gift. We really need room for storage where we meet at currently and the board we have is very old and rusty. It's also a pain in the you-know-where to put up and down. Also takes up a lot of unneeded room. When I lived in Omaha, a wonderful member of the club up there made one and I've been curious ever since.

I took 2 pieces of wood (which I cut myself!!) and cut them to the size I wanted. approx 37 1/2 x 24 x 1. I was worried about amputating my own leg or something when cutting the wood. I am totally inexperienced with power tools and I was worried my husband (who is insanely busy) would frown if I used his tools. He has the sense to stay away from my quilting supplies so I should be just as nice right?? My sister in law came over and showed me how and where to make the cuts at. She is an excellent woodworker and makes the most beautiful things. So wood is cut. I went to Hancock's to get the material as Walmart didn't have it. What's new there** They have it normally, but not that day so I'll go back and get it on Tues. You have to ask for ironing board material. A lot of quilters make neat pot holders and hot pads out of this "teflon" type material. Sew on three sides right sides together. I will use a wide seam approx 1/2 or 3/4 inch. Flip right side out and then slide over wood like a pillow case. I'm excited.

2. I will use the sew and flip to create a "foundation pieced" top as a gift. I have garbage bag upon garbage bag of apholstery material. It is all separated into types and ready for the washing machine. Then dry, press and cut. I'll use 4 and 6 inch widths. I'm tossing the idea around about putting some white pieces in the top and having the recipients family members sign them. Wouldn't that be neat?

Okay...my desire to spill my guts is full. What do all of you think??


mimisharon 01-26-2007 04:14 PM

Wow! You are ambitious but it sounds wonderful. I may just borrow your ironing board idea, for the cover.

june6995 01-26-2007 06:44 PM

AWWW!! you are one clever girl. You will do OK as a quilter because you get an idea and are able to put it into action.

I have used unbleached muslin to make ironing board ccvers. No one told me I had to use the teflon or whatever is in the bought covers. So I traced the top of my board, and cut out 2 pieces from the pattern, then added a cotton batting in the center and did a bit of stitching and came up with a quilted top for the board.. I cut a strip 4 inches wide to run around the cover to make a caseing for a draw-string, then serged it into place and left an opening for the drawstring.

For the drawstring, I cut strips on the straight of the grain to avoid stretching. Then I hit on the idea to make a section of the draw-string out of elastic and add the fabric draw-string to either end of the elastic to run along the sides of the board. I can pull it up snug and tie it tight. You can make the elastic piece as long as you like, then add the stips you cut for draw-string.

I set a cup of coffee on the board one day, bumped the board and spilled the coffee. I took it off and washed it and it came out clean. Someone told me to use Peroxide to remove scorth stains. So the scorch marks from pressing small pieces like half triangle squares came out. I now use an old pillow case laid over the board to prevent scorching.

Hope this idea may help someone. I enjoyed making it. June

Betty 01-26-2007 07:37 PM

Hi all,
Some great ideas! Thanks. I have been running some ideas around in my head to make a small portable ironing area type thing to just have on my sewing table for the endless little pieces you want to hit with the iron real quick and get back to your piecing. I am getting of an age that the less jumping up & down to the board for each little thing the more energy I have left to actually be piecing, rather than all that up and down. Was not thinking of a piece of wood, just a little padded press cloth kind of piece with the thermal backing, found some already padded and quilted on sale at Joanns & had picked it up, for something, someday but now think, though it will add a little more weight, mounting it on a piece of wood will give it more stability, can staple it onto the wood back, like upholstering. They do make the board covers with the grid printed on in the middle to keep your block lined up/sized while pressing but think if you do it carefully you can draw your own on, perhaps using a piece of muslin and permanent marker for the outer top piece. Anyway, thanks for the ideas. It all comes together when we all share doesn't it? Betty 8)

mpeters1200 01-27-2007 06:33 AM

In resonse to Betty,

That is a really good idea. I'm not sure about the grid part though, because I don't use one; but whatever works for you. I had a dear quilting friend that started to have knee problems the older she got. She said she had to give up sewing because she couldn't get up and down so much to press. So I bought her one of those travel ironing boards and a Clover Mini Iron. She's still going!! She bought a smaller house iron and switches between the two for her small board.

Have a great weekend.


Betty 01-27-2007 07:26 AM

Hi Melissa,
You know, all you have to do is get that thought process warmed up & it just flows, doesn't it? I don't have a travel ironing board but you reminded me I have a small board I have not used in some time......somewhere in the garage...lol. Anyway it made me think again that maybe that could do the trick.I had disregarded it once as it would just be too big & awkward & in the way. I have already got a fold up ironing board that I put on the back of the door, regular size. I bet I could take the little one, mount it on the wall at a workable height in a convenient place, over the sewing table. I could put a little piece of wood wide enough to stabilize it under the pointed end, on a hinge so it could be pulled down when the board is pulled down, then fold the whole shebang up flat on the wall when I don't need it. I am an old sew-er but a new quilter & it is great to toss thoughts & ideas around with others. If you don't exactly use what they have in mind it can sometimes jog an idea loose of something you can use for your own situation. I have not yet used the grid either but when I first had heard of it it sounded like a helpful way to not end up having your piece get out of shape when pressing or ironing it. Anything that can help when your new and dumb and trying to teach yourself the skills you need! You have a great weekend also. Betty 8)

mimisharon 01-27-2007 08:10 AM

You reminded me, Betty, I have a really bad back. I don't do the walking, standing thing very well anymore. (I'm to afraid to get the surgery because of all the folks that have been in wheelchairs after, including my uncle) ANYWAY, I have a multi-level ironing board, regular size, I just lower it to comfortable place for my desk chair on wheels that I use to roll from sewing machine to ironing board to desk. It works wonderfully for me, but I like the idea of having a smaller one that opens from the back of the door. Then I could get around more, maybe.

All of you are so talented. I'm a novice quilter on big quilts, I've made so many baby quilts that my mind said I could do a large quilt if I put my mind into it, so I've been working on larger ones for about 3 years now. It is the most relaxing thing I've done in a long time.

Thanks for sharing all your ideas everyone, I so appreciate learning on the 'net, I just can't get out easily for classes in the stores/schools. You make my day!!

Betty 01-27-2007 10:34 AM

Hi Mimi,
I have been in the process of stealing space....by the (inches)! in my master bedroom for my sewing area. I picked up the hang-on-the-back-of-the-door ironing board at my local Hospice thrift store for pennies & it enabled me to take down my regular ironing board & boy, did I gain a lot of inches there! lol The sewing table top one idea started out I would make a "pad" kind of thing, integrating the thermal cloth into it to minimize the heat harming anything. I may still do it, but I think I can also hang that mini-board on the wall where it can just be pushed back up against the wall when not in use. Pretty soon I will be trying to figure out what I can hang on the ceiling! I am satisfied with gaining just an inch here & an inch there cause I have now claimed 1 whole window wall-it is nice to be able to glance outside once in awhile to de-fry your brain for a break- & a half of another wall, so I am getting there. As for the "rolling" chair they are great...you have probably found, as I have, that pushing oneself (backwards) is much easier than trying to pull yourself around in the chair, especially on carpet. I don't have any back problems, thank goodness, but I can tire more easily now & then it stops being fun. I am really really new at this but I try to listen to the voices of experience for tips and hints because they have found a lot by trial and error themselves that I can profit from and avoid. Have a great day Mimi. Betty 8)

Sis 01-28-2007 05:15 PM

I noticed you mentioned about the rolling chair and carpet. You may know this but there are office chair floor pads found at office supply stores (i.e Office Depot,Office Max,Staples,etc.). They have a type for carpet (it has little gripper teeth to grip the carpet) and one for bare floors. It works wonderful for moving on carpet. :)

Betty 01-29-2007 02:57 PM

Hi Sis,
Yes, I have one at work. The info was mostly for anyone who doesn't happen to have one. Thanks so much for mentioning it though. Betty 8)

mpeters 02-02-2007 03:55 PM

Hello all!

I just wanted to let you know I have the ironing boards finished. I have enough material left over to give to the girls to make potholders or whatever with. I had to add some towels and staples to make things padded enough and look just so, they did come out nice.


Betty 02-02-2007 05:45 PM

Melissa, That's wonderful. You go, girl. Isn't it just the neatest to get an idea like that & bring it to completion? Keep em coming! Betty 8)

mimisharon 02-08-2007 06:23 AM

Hey Melissa, that's great!! How 'bout a picture???

mpeters1200 02-08-2007 02:15 PM

Well, gave the ironing board to the girls today. They seemed pleased. Forgot the extra ironing board material I was planning on giving them, but I'll take it next week. Hubby says I can buy a new camera in the next few weeks. When I get it, I'll take a picture. It's not fancy or anything, but it will serve it's purpose.


mimisharon 02-08-2007 03:39 PM

That's what counts. If it were to pretty no one would want to use it. Bet it's just right! Good work!!

susan s. 02-15-2007 08:46 AM

I'm confused I think you intend to attach the Ironing board to a wall? and then cover it with Teflon fabric? then make a quilted cover to go over that? Are you seeking Ideas on the outer cover design? I think signature blocks would personalize it and give it historical value.

mpeters1200 02-15-2007 09:32 AM


I will not attach these ironing boards to anything. They sit on the table while I work. I set up my machine on one part of the table, cutting mat and ruler on another, and the ironing board just fits.

I was simply sharing about the boards I had made. One for me, and one for a club I belong to that quilts (among other things) for local charity. I took two pieces of wood that were 37 x 24 x 2 and wrapped towels around them for padding and stapled them in place. Then I made a pillow case out of that teflon type material they sell at Hancocks. Slid that over it, stapled it down and it's a usable, easily stored ironing board. None of my friends have to mess with the old one getting it up and down and stuff like that. It worked out nice.


joy 03-20-2007 08:13 PM

Hi Mimisharon, you say that you have made many cot quilts - do you mind telling me what patterns you used please... I have a couple to make and need some ideas... thank you....

zyxquilts 03-20-2007 09:30 PM

I saw a pattern in the latest Connecting Threads catalog for an ironing board cover to fit onto a wooden tv tray - I think that would be pretty easy to figure out on our own! And it would be easy to fold up out of the way too....


PatriceJ 03-21-2007 01:52 AM

2 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by joy
Hi Mimisharon, you say that you have made many cot quilts - do you mind telling me what patterns you used please... I have a couple to make and need some ideas... thank you....

sharon won't be here for a while, i think. she's tending to a family emergency and might not even be able to think about quilting or the computer right now.

i can't be 100% sure what her answer would be, but i'm sure you could use any pattern you wanted, but make sure it's no wider than a twin blanket. if you want it to serve as a blanket, it should be about 7 feet long - which makes 5 feet a good a good width. at that size, it will probably hit the ground on both sides, depending on the style of cot, but will be perfect for almost any soldier of any height to wrap up in on a cold night. make it from durable fabric that can take the punishment of frequent washing. choose colors and prints that can "disguise" a few stains here and there. white and pastels are probably not a good idea.

Log Cabins and pineapples are great for quilts like this. they go together quickly. you can make the blocks any size you want. they look good not matter which style of quilting or tying you use. you don't have to fiddle and fuss with a lot of complicated measuring and cutting for the pieces. the only piece you need to measure at all is the first piece. and they're great for using up scraps.

you probably already know how to throw together a log cabin block, but for those who've never tried it, i've attached a few files to go by.

Knot Sew 03-21-2007 05:46 AM

where would I find more info and picture of the file labeled EZ as falling off a log.......It looked interesting.........but I didn't understand what is going on.and what it would look like :roll:

susan s. 03-21-2007 06:08 AM

OH I SEE! Like the ones they sell in JoAnnes for a ton of $. I've been thinking of doing something similar. Tho I haven't seen any teflon fabric in any stores I've been in lately I'll have to remember to ask next time I go fabric shopping.

mpeters 03-21-2007 10:35 AM

Sue, the idea you posted about using a TV tray sounds like a great idea for a small board!!!! The teflon material is usually white on one side and grey or silver on the other. But I'm colorblind so it could be any color I guess. Try and hit it with a coupon because it's rarely on sale and on average cost is 5.49/yard.


joy 03-21-2007 12:20 PM

Patrice, Thank you for replying.... it was so good of you.... it is a baby's cot quilt I want to make, thought Sharon may have had a few ideas for me... maybe a cot in America is different to a cot in New Zealand...

I have thought about a four patch, then a square, then a four patch etc.... that is one idea.... nice and easy... I want to make three cot quilts and would like them all to be different. I managed to get some material for half price and it is so nice. Will buy some more next week...

Patchwork/quilting keeps my mind and fingers occupied amongst other interests.... no family at home now and life is so different.

With life we never know what is going to crop up next and it is just as well.. my best wishes go to Sharon... I will be thinking about her and her family.

Jane Sisk 07-18-2007 05:49 AM

Hi there,

I can appreciate the problems with up and down all the time I am disabled from a back injury and also have bad knees. My son gave me one of those long folding tables to do my cutting and pressing on (I just lay down an old beach towel folded) but the height of the table was to low and I could only cut a few minutes because of bending over. I went to a garage sale one day and found a set of those 6 inch risers you can buy to put on your bed legs. Put my table on them and made it exactly the right height for cutting and long pressing sessions. I also put a fabric skirt around it with velcro and walaa a new place for hiding my stash.Works for me!

Jane Sisk

SandraJennings 07-18-2007 09:55 AM

I found this thread late....but gosh gals...Talk about brainstorming! You have given me quite a few things to get busy on. All wonderful ideas too. Would love to see pics of the ironing boards you did, and of the other designs ya'll have talked about. Wow.....gotta get even busier now. Later!

Catherine 07-18-2007 11:52 AM

I covered two boards, one small and a large one. i absolutley love mine, the small one is light weight and portable. The large one fits perfect on my table behind the sewing machine. I made these several years ago when I had my custom sewing business. Never have to use a reg. ironing board..they do take up so much space, and just aren't study enough when you need to press down. I bet your sewing club just loves you!!! keep those ideas flowing!

thimblebug6000 07-18-2007 03:30 PM

This post isn't really about your new project, but as the topic got going towards ironing boards, I thought I'd post this link here. Awhile back I decided I wanted a big board for ironing meters/yards of fabric. I did a search and came up with this lady's webshots pictures
http://home-and-garden.webshots.com/album/180862212jmSjuv I got my DH to watch & we had some wood from a ramp that wasn't needed anymore and I now have a wonderful big board. I can't believe I struggled so long without it, however I wouldn't have been prepared to pay the price for the original board either.

mpeters1200 07-18-2007 05:01 PM

Yes we do love it and we use it as often as we can.

Rebecca Chambley 07-20-2007 05:03 AM

I bought a pad for ironing while you quilt, at JoAnns. it's not expensive, and it is on the rt side of my machine, with pockets that hang over my table to hold odds and ends, while quilting. It works great,padded, and the top has a measured off grid thats helps sometimes. I also have a minature iron, not a clover, a minature iron. It saves ALOT of steps.

quiltmaker101 07-20-2007 05:49 AM

Whoever invents an ironing board that all quilters love is going to make a fortune! I know I wish mine was rectangular instead of pointed. And I need a rack to set the iron in so it doesn't tip over. I think they sell those, but then the board will stick out too far, since the iron rack goes on the end.

I have a large cutting board made from a scrap of Corian (kitchen sink cutout) and I wrap it in leftover Warm and Natural batting. This way I have a firm surface to iron on, and I don't scorch the Corian.

Speaking of new project ideas, I had a crazy one yesterday. I LOVE Scrabble. I play the computer version at work when things are slow. I was looking at the board and thought, that is sort of a quilt layout! I bet I could make one out of different gray prints, with the blues, pinks and reds added in! And I could spell something out on it too.

I have about a dozen projects ahead of this one, so this is a someday idea, but I think it would be funny to have a giant Scrabble board on my bed.


danna738 07-20-2007 08:13 AM

My son made an ironing board for me in his shop class in high school. It was one of the best presents I ever got and I was definitely surprised. He painted the legs to match my living room and I made the top out of the same fabric I used for valances. I have a pieces of an old sheet that I use to cover the top when I use it so I don't scorch the pretty fabric. I never thought of using fabric with teflon, but I will be making a new top as soon as I find the fabric.
It sits along my stairs and seems to collect mail and the paper. My only complaint is that I have to clean it off every time I need to use it. That is my only complaint, it is too handy. :-)

chickenfoot 10-13-2008 05:27 PM

i love your idea.i have been wanting to cut out one step from my quilting....the running to my ironing board!! i came up with the idea of cutting a piece of plywood to 18" square (fits my sewing table) and i am stapling that teflon stuff onto the board.
thanks for the push to do it!!

mpeters1200 10-14-2008 07:15 AM

You'll have to post some pics when you are finished! I love that teflon material!

Izy 10-14-2008 07:36 AM

1 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by chickenfoot
i love your idea.i have been wanting to cut out one step from my quilting....the running to my ironing board!! i came up with the idea of cutting a piece of plywood to 18" square (fits my sewing table) and i am stapling that teflon stuff onto the board.
thanks for the push to do it!!

I just about read thru the whole topic then realised this is an old topic brought back up. Interesting technique for log cabins posted by Patrice if you look!!

Heres a picture of how I avoid getting up and down while doing piecing, particularly foundation piecing etc., this is just a small wooden garden table with a sheet folded over several times and a tiny little 12" cutting board to the left, so I can trim, press and line up the next piece with a swivel of my chair :D I have neck problems and found that the lower height of this table was perfect for seeing straight down on top of your work and makes it easier to 'press' too :D I use a full size iron or sometimes my little Clover mini iron, but I find this a bit awkward to balance and have scorched the sheet several times with it :roll:

Minda 12-22-2008 05:47 PM

For those who made their own ironing boards, what did you put between the wood and the cover? Does using steam warp the board? I'm not sure if I should ask my husband to put some kind of varnish on the surface of the wood. I also read somewhere to put aluminum foil on top of the wood before adding the cover. Does anyone recommend this?

mpeters1200 12-22-2008 07:45 PM

Never heard of the aluminum thing...I don't recommend it though. I think varnish is a bad idea as you are going to be heating it up a great deal and it might give off chemical vapors...it'll hit your fabric before it hits your lungs.

As far as what to put between the cover and the wood, I used my hubby's industrial staple gun (all of once before I made him take over) and stapled on old bath towels...one to each side and then slid the cover on like a pillowcase and stapled that in place as well.

Good luck!


quiltwoman 12-23-2008 03:25 AM

Cool! show us pics please. :wink:

Connie1948 12-23-2008 04:43 AM

I used a fire proof ceiling tile as my base. Wrapped the top with 100% cotton batting gluing it to the back. I then wrapped it with 100% cotton ducking fabric and glued it to the back. It is the perfect size to take to classes or set beside your machine at home.

ksusan 12-23-2008 06:21 AM

I made my own version of the Big Board (tm) by using the plywood with rounded corners.

First layer next to the wood: single layer felted wool blanket cut to exact shape of wooden surface - no overhang.

Second layer: is teflon coated material with overhang large enough to be folded over edge and brought underneath to be stapled. Cut strips of manilla file folder on top of the teflon material added stability to the area where staples were placed.

Third layer is removable duck cover. Wide bias tape used to make casing for nylon drape cord used as drawstring. Allow two opening areas, one on each side midway lengthwise. Cord cut in two pieces allows easy insertion and adjustment. Duck cover wears like iron -- excuse the pun :)

I use this on my adjustable height ironing board. Multiple uses include:
cutting surface with use of appropriate mats, place to layout blocks during assembly, surface to rest part of quilt when pinning or sewing.

Quiltingday suggested a firm base when I was in the brainstorming stage for the board. That's why I used only one layer of felted wool. I have never regreted that decision. Thanks, quiltingday :) This is definitely my favorite quilting tool.

Piecefully yours,
Kay Susan

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