An Organized Quilter

(photo by caitlin)

Pam, our Guild President, mentioned in the January newsletter that she was looking for quilt room organization ideas. And then Mishka at the Quilting Gallery, and Pat Sloan, started The Learning Center with the first topic on organization and storage! Getting organized is always a great way to start the year.

Pat’s article starts out with taking inventory, with the thought that you need to know what you own in order to organize it. Then prioritize the items that are used most often and therefore need to be nearby for easy access. The next two sections provide tips for “the overhaul”, whether you can do the whole area at once, or focus on one section at a time. I especially liked Pat’s suggestion for sorting fabric:

  • MOST loved
  • sort of loved
  • maybe this can go to a new home
  • why in the world do I still own this stuff?

Pat will be posting more tips in the coming months to help us all! What tips do you have? What tricks have you learned along the way to keep your area clean and improve your productivity?

Until next time … happy quilting!

Knots – The Good Kind!

Knots in twisted or tangled thread are certainly no fun, but we’re here to talk about the good kind of knots. Knots to secure our thread and let us get going with the sewing. How are your knots serving you?

Heather Bailey has a photo tutorial of her favorite knot (click on Enter Gallery). I think I learned this same method in Sally Barnes’ hand quilting class, and I agree that this is a great knot to use. It’s so easy to create. This YouTube video illustrates the steps in Heather’s photos. (The video resolution is low, but good enough for this purpose.) The video shows one wrap around the needle, which might be suitable for applique. Heather’s tutorial shows 3-4 wraps, better suited for hand sewing or tacking down quilt binding. (In my opinion.)

Becky at Piece O’ Cake Designs is asking for feedback on Which end do you knot? I read through the comments, and the consensus is to knot the end that you cut from the spool. This is what I’ve been taught since I started quilting, and it makes a difference. I also never thought about the thread on a bobbin, which is reversed from how it was wound on the spool, so it makes sense to knot the end that you pull from the bobbin. Also, all commenters agree that high quality thread makes a difference.

What tips would you share on knotting?

Happy quilting!

Sherilyn

Seasonal Color Trends

Fall-Winter 2010-11.jpgDid you know that seasonal color forecasts are set well in advance of the season? This is one reason that the season’s clothes and home dec items and quilt fabrics arrive in stores in similar color schemes. One website I’ve found that provides upcoming color palettes is the Fire Mountain Gems site. Their own Fall/Winter 2010-11 forecast (shown above), as well as the Pantone forecast, are available on this page.

Color lovers, are there other sites that you refer to for color forecasts?

Quick Weekend Projects and New Notions

Looking at the myriad of quilt-related blogs and articles on the web, I found some quick projects that could be accomplished over the weekend. Maybe some of these will fit into your schedule?

Projects:

Scrappy Bookmarks
Very simple. Instructions are shown following the second photo. Back to school item?

Organize quilt projects
Inexpensive and space-saving method of storing in-progress projects.

Cell Phone Pouch
Hmmm, my Mom was asking for one of these. This pattern could also be made with a solid piece of fabric for a simpler style. Or add beads and other embellishments.

Fabric Fortune Cookies
These would be fun for a Friendship group or Asian-themed party. Or just because they would surprise my family!

Fabric and fast2fuse Heart Ornaments
Couldn’t this easily be adapted to any shape? I’m thinking pumpkins or Christmas bells.

Christmas Tree napkin
Dottie showed this at Show-N-Share last year. Never too early to start thinking of Christmas!


Notions:

Fiskars Fingertip Rotary Cutter
Handy for cutting the intricate pieces. (Shown on Amazon; this is an extra “plug” for shopping through the SBQG Amazon link!)

Clover’s Soft Touch Thread Pic
“…the perfect tool for hiding or removing stray threads as it easily slips through fabric, leaving no marks or punctures.”

Does anyone have additional quick project ideas? Happy quilting!

Sherilyn

Quilting News From Around the Web

Winning quilts, new use for plastic wrap, creating with fabric scraps, and preventing stiff necks. Inspiration and tips to get your week off to a good start!

AQS Knoxville 2010 winners

Use Press and Seal to audition quilting designs

Online Quilt Museum

Scrap Therapy in 15 minutes a day

Saving Our Necks – Using a tabletop easel to prop-up hand sewing