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Thread: What's your favorite marking tool?

  1. #1
    Senior Member SparkMonkey's Avatar
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    I've got a small assortment of the basic "colored pencil" style of dressmaking pencils, and I hate them. They don't mark the fabric unless I mash it hard, and then it makes a fat line and distorts the weave of the threads. They do wash out, but they're basically useless if they're not going to mark easily.

    I love handquilting, and I'd like to incorporate more complex stitch patterns into my quilts (I'd prefer to draw them on, rather than stenciling). I would like to find a pencil or chalk or something that can mark in a fine line, is *not* air soluble, and will wash out (obviously). I don't trust the washable ink markers, but if you can reassure me that they'll wash out completely, I might give it a go.

    Any ideas?

  2. #2
    Super Member JUNEC's Avatar
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    I think I have a box of dress markers chalk - not sure if it will wash out or not - will check and get back to you

  3. #3
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
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    I use the Dritz Water Soluable pen and it works great. Has always washed out for me. Just don't heat set.

  4. #4
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    I do a lot of hand quilting and I use quilter's pencils- usually the one that looks like a regular pencil.
    I haven't had any problems. I don't really trust the kind that are inky and wash out. I could be wrong on this but I've always worried about the ink reappearing.

  5. #5
    Senior Member barb55's Avatar
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    I like Sewfine. After you sew through the marked line, you can brush it off or use the earse it has.

  6. #6

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    I have used Drilz? chalk pencils and like them, but the line is not always as thin as I'd like. As far as the washable markers, my girls have t-shirts that have preprinted pictures on them (not colored in) and washable markers. They color the t-shirts and when they get washed the picture is blank again - all the marker comes out - and they can start over. I think I've washed 3-4 times now and the marker has always washed out. Try it on a pillow case or something - something you don't really care about. See if it works for you.

  7. #7
    klc
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    Senior Member klc's Avatar
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    I like sewfine also.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    I do a lot of hand quilting and I use quilter's pencils- usually the one that looks like a regular pencil.
    I haven't had any problems. I don't really trust the kind that are inky and wash out. I could be wrong on this but I've always worried about the ink reappearing.
    I've tried these, and liked them until I had to sharpen them. I tried several pencil sharpeners, and the lead always broke. How do you sharpen them?

  9. #9
    Super Member DebraK's Avatar
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    I like my Sewline refillable pencil. It was a gift. Before that I used tailor chalk with no problems.

  10. #10
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barb55
    I like Sewfine. After you sew through the marked line, you can brush it off or use the earse it has.
    I use Sewline too and they also wash out. They're great.

  11. #11
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quilt1950
    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    I do a lot of hand quilting and I use quilter's pencils- usually the one that looks like a regular pencil.
    I haven't had any problems. I don't really trust the kind that are inky and wash out. I could be wrong on this but I've always worried about the ink reappearing.
    I've tried these, and liked them until I had to sharpen them. I tried several pencil sharpeners, and the lead always broke. How do you sharpen them?
    Yes, I've had that problem too. Now I'm wondering about the sewfine they're talking about.
    Can anyone tell me where to get them??
    Thanks!

  12. #12
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    Quote Originally Posted by quilt1950
    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    I do a lot of hand quilting and I use quilter's pencils- usually the one that looks like a regular pencil.
    I haven't had any problems. I don't really trust the kind that are inky and wash out. I could be wrong on this but I've always worried about the ink reappearing.
    I've tried these, and liked them until I had to sharpen them. I tried several pencil sharpeners, and the lead always broke. How do you sharpen them?
    Yes, I've had that problem too. Now I'm wondering about the sewfine they're talking about.
    Can anyone tell me where to get them??
    Thanks!
    It's Sewline pencils. You can get them online and I've gotten them from my LQS

  13. #13
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    Thanks, VirtualBernie!

  14. #14
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    Thanks I've wondered the sa
    Me thing!!

  15. #15
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    Thanks, VirtualBernie!
    You are both welcome! (you and Painiacs) I love them because they come in a lot of colors--pink, yellow, green and white are the one's I have and have never had a problem with them

    There's also a "Bohn" brand but seem to be more expensive.

  16. #16
    Senior Member barb55's Avatar
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    I got my from Amzon.

  17. #17
    Super Member LivelyLady's Avatar
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    I love the Frixion pilot pens. I only wish they would come out with a white

  18. #18
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LivelyLady
    I love the Frixion pilot pens. I only wish they would come out with a white
    I just bought some of them because of comments on this board. I tested on 100% cotton and it worked wonderfully. I happened to be making some bridesmaids dresses and had some polyester and that failed miserably! Just a word of caution--always test on the fabric you will be using...

    I'd like a white one also!

  19. #19
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    I hand quilt and primarily use a mechanical pencil with #2 soft lead. Never had a problem with it washing out and it can be seen on most fabrics. For darker fabrics I have the Bohin mechanical pencil with a white lead. It works well and have not had issues with their lead washing out. I also have the Dritz chalk mechanical style pencil with the different colored chalk leads. I have not had an issues with any of these colors washing out as others said on another thread here on the board but best to test. That said, you will not get a particularly fine line with those markers. I can't tell you how many markers; pencils; chalks, etc. I have tried and still just go back to my good old mechanical #2 pencil - never need to worry about sharpening either.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by LivelyLady
    I love the Frixion pilot pens. I only wish they would come out with a white
    Same here!! The red is a favorite...it even comes out of white. But, can only be used on cotton. I also wish they came out with a white or silver. I wonder if we started emailing them...hmmmm....
    I also like the wheelie thingie w/ the chalk in a tube. And, I save my soap slivers -- they're nice for marking free-hand patterns and wash out the first time the quilt is put in the washer.

  21. #21
    Super Member jitkaau's Avatar
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    I have found Sewline to be the best for my purposes. Multicoloured chalks which are fine and go into a propelling pencil. I found all of the other types unsuitable for various reasons but have yet to really work with the ceramic pencils.

  22. #22
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    For marking on light fabrics, I use the Ultimate marking pencil, which also has refills available, in the usual pencil lead, or colors. For dark fabrics, I love the Fons and Porter white marking pencil, which also has refills in colors. Both of these pencils make very fine lines, include erasers, which actually work, and I find that I need no other marking tools.
    Fons and Porter can be found at JoAnn's or quilt shops; I have only seen the Ultimate Pencil at quilt shops.

  23. #23
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    I too would like to find a chalk marker that is fine and not overly fragile. When taking a class the instructer turned me on to a triangular dressmakers Clochalk marker. Woe is me, I lost it and can't find another to purchase...Help!
    Anywho, I usually return to watersoluble markers and the trusty soap sliver.

  24. #24
    Super Member mar32428's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SparkMonkey
    I've got a small assortment of the basic "colored pencil" style of dressmaking pencils, and I hate them. They don't mark the fabric unless I mash it hard, and then it makes a fat line and distorts the weave of the threads. They do wash out, but they're basically useless if they're not going to mark easily.

    I love handquilting, and I'd like to incorporate more complex stitch patterns into my quilts (I'd prefer to draw them on, rather than stenciling). I would like to find a pencil or chalk or something that can mark in a fine line, is *not* air soluble, and will wash out (obviously). I don't trust the washable ink markers, but if you can reassure me that they'll wash out completely, I might give it a go.

    Any ideas?
    I have been using the quilters gray pencil for years. I don't like any of the latest marking tools. They usually fade too soon or not at all, don't wash out and most are too hard to see. Got a good idea from a dressmaker the other day. She uses nothing but old fashioned school chalk in all colors as needed. She keeps a small pencil sharpener close and sharpens the chalk to a fine drawing line. I'm going to WM today for chalk. What have I got to lose?

  25. #25
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    I've tried many and like the Fons and Porter refillable ceramic pencil. Lead comes inwhite and grey. Makes a nice sharp line.

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