25 February 2012

{friendship} february: tools of the trade & (yet another) giveaway

Hello there!
I hope you are all having a great weekend....here on the Causeway Coast we are all breathing a huge sigh of relief, the big project I have been slaving over working on day & night for the past couple of weeks is finally done & we can go back to eating at the kitchen table, if I can find it under this lot....
But on to more important things...like the crochet giveaway.......and the winner is Number 5 -  Strawberry Patch, congratulations Emily! (sorry I had to remove the image as the number kept changing on random.org) Thanks so much to Sarah & to you all for the interesting comments about crocheting. I was inspired to find out more & here are some of the many wonderful crochet projects & tutorials out there...
http://pinterest.com/songbirdstitch/crazy-crochet/
But back to the next installment of {friendship} february. I'm so thrilled to introduce you to the lovely Leanne, a relatively new bloggy friend who I've met through our do Good Stitches bee.....over to you Leanne....
Hi there – I’m Leanne - I blog over at daisyandjack and I’m very excited to be guest posting here today.When Karen asked me to do a guest post for her {friendship} february series I immediately thought of this quote that I saw recently…
Life is short.
Do what you love.
Live your dream and
share your passion.
I think sharing your passion is what sums up online friendships – the online quilting world is full of fabulous people happy to share their passion and knowledge with anyone who is interested and that’s often how online friendships start.
So I thought I’d share my passion and my ( little) knowledge and tell you about a few of my favourite quilting tools that I now can’t live without.
First up is my design wall – mine is by Fons and Porter ) and can be hung from a wall with small clips which is fabulous for me as I rent and I also seem to move house a bit so it’s very transportable which is handy – my mum says a vinyl backed tablecloth works just as well but mine already has the holes for hanging J
I discovered a need for a design wall as I live in a very small house and I was laying out quilts in progress on my bed which meant that I couldn’t leave them laid out for very long (I need to sleep occasionally) and I discovered quite a few bloggers used design walls so I thought that would be a perfect solution and it is! There are a couple of reasons I think a design wall is great – one is that you can leave your layout where it is for as long as you want – I tend to leave mine for at least a few days so I can move and change blocks around.  It’s easier to place blocks so you don’t end up with too many of the same together and it’s easier to see the colour placement.
This is the first “big” quilt I made which I laid it out on my bed as I didn’t have a design wall – all the blocks should be scattered around evenly but as I discovered (after I’d sew the quilt together) I had sewn the same coloured blocks next to each other and quite a few times as well !
There are quite a few tutorials around that show you how to make your own design wall – Oh Fransson has a good one and there’s another one here
My next favourite item is a hera marker that my mum sent me for my birthday last year. I must admit when I got it I wasn’t quite sure what it was or what it did and then I watched Sarah Fielke using it to mark her lines for applique.
A few weeks later I was making a quilt with a heap of half square triangles and flying geese and I thought I’d use the hera marker to mark the lines instead of a pencil or pen and I’ve been hooked ever since – it’s a fabulous tool!
And my last favourite tool is actually flower head pins – I made quite a few quilt tops last year and after working out the block placement on the design wall I was pinning bits of paper to the blocks with the block and row numbers and I thought there had to be a better way!
My mum had sent me some flower head pins and I thought that I could write block and row numbers on those and then I wouldn’t have to worry about the bits of paper (yes, my mum is a great inspiration and sends fabulous things my wayJ)  So I ordered two lots of yellow flower head pins and have been using them for a while now and wondered why no-one else had thought of it.
Well, a few weeks ago I was blog surfing and I discovered a tutorial and yes, you guessed it, the lady was using flower head pins with the block and row numbers marked on them – so alas I’m not a genius after all –and the tutorial was done in 2006 so my bright idea has been around for a while!
So that’s my post for today - if you’ve made it this far, well done and to thank you for sticking with me. As a reward, I have a copy of Emily Cier’s Scrap Republic book to giveaway.
All you have to do is leave one comment telling us your favourite quilting or sewing tool or gadget and you could win a copy of this fabulous book. If you follow Karen's or my blog, please leave extra comments & let us know
I’d like to thank Karen for having me on her blog today and I’d love you to visit me at my my blog sometime !
Leanne

Thanks so much Leanne!
We'll keep this giveaway open until 29th February & announce the winner on 1st March, good luck!
Fancy crocheting this???
Hope you have a wonderful weekend
Take care
Karen

56 comments :

  1. Huh, fancy wanting to use the kitchen table to eat at... ;o)

    Congrats to Emily, and nice to meet you Leanne. Karen, think you need to get going on your yarn bombing skills, maybe a boat cover for the Schools' Head? ;o)

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  2. Thanks Leanne - I would be lost without my rotary cutter. Do your pinheads not snap off? I think I have some cheap imitations, and all the heads have dropped off!
    Congrats to Emily (and Leanne and that big haul of Oakshotts heading your way!).

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  3. My favorite quilting/sewing gadget is my rotary cutter. I don't know how I ever lived with it. :)

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  4. What a fun post! My favorite tool is my Omnigrids. I have one that is 12.5"x12.5" (perfect for cutting blocks down to size for swaps) and one that is 6"x6". Can't imagine quilting without them!

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  5. I'm with you on the Hera marker- I call it the HERO marker. It is an amazing tool - I use it mark, turn out corners, help start turning tubes inside out, creasing paper, hooking out loose threads, easing curved seams and it has even been employed to remove wall paper from a tricky corner when we decorated! Mine has a flat curved end like yours and a pointy end - like a pencil. Versatile doesn't even begin to describe it :)

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  6. Great advice there L! I couldn't do without my Chaco chalk pen (nor my stitch ripper for that matter!). Jxo

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  7. Great post Leanne! I'm so glad I came across you in the Wonky House swap!

    My favourite tool seems to be my quick-unpick at the moment - grrr - but otherwise I guess it would be new needles! They make sewing so easy even though they don't seem to put holes in them anymore ; )

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  8. I follow Leanne! And if you ditch the word verification I'll be happy to follow you Karen!

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  9. Love that car! My favourite tool was my little ruler with the non-slip bits on it so it doesn't move when I'm cutting. It does have a downside though, because I when I switch to the big ruler without the non-slip bits I always forget and the ruler moves all over the place!

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  10. My favorite tools are my rotary cutter and iron. I'd like to give the Hera marker a try someday.

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  11. Thanks Leanne for a great post - I hadn't thought of writing on my pins! so much easier than bits of paper!
    My favourite gadget has to be my unpicker/seam ripper!

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  12. I love all my gadgets, but I find my stitch ripper is the one that gets used all the time! I will have to try a hera marker instead of my trusty purple pen!

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  13. I'm very new to quilting and don't have a lot of 'gadgets'. I'd have to say my favorite tool right now is my GoBaby! It makes cutting shapes so accurate and easy.

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  14. I've been a follower of Karen for a while. :)

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  15. I'm following Leanne now. Great post!

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  16. I love my funky rulers (60 degree, or tri-rec rulers)
    But a rotary cutter I couldn't live without!

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  17. What a great post!! I agree about your 3 favourite tools!! All brilliant!! My favourite tool, or most used is my unpicker! And my radio, because I love sewing to music!

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  18. Another great FF post! My favourite tools are my Hera marker, my Sewline chalk pencil and my little cutting board (about 12"x8" - too lazy to go upstairs and check) - it's great for trimming block units, etc. And it's not strictly a sewing tool but I also love to listen to my ipod while I'm cutting or sewing!!

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  19. Thanks for the great post Leanne...I have just recently started following your blog. Now I will want to follow this one too! :-) I am a newbie quilter and when I made my first quilt I used the flower head pins to mark the rows. I thought I was a genuis! I guess not...but at least I can still say great minds think alike! Happy sewing!

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  20. My rotary cutter and my measuring blocks I could not live without!

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  21. I would love to win this book, it's on my list! My favorite tool is my quarter inch foot for my machine!

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  22. I love my new binding tool to make half inch double fold binding. I want to get a bigger one too! Love your info Leanne. I just got a Hera marker and used it for the first time today. Can't wait to use it for hst.

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  23. I love my 1" double fold binding tape maker and my new iron. Now I can make the cutest custom bindings for my quilts without burning my fingers!

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  24. Well I think the writing on the flower head pins is a GREAT idea, I too am always 'inventing' what I think are great tricks to help me get it right--and sometimes they work ;)

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  25. My favorite tool is my rotary cutter.

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  26. I follow Daisy & Jack, too. :)

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  27. my favorite tool is of course my rotary cutter! I'd be done without it!

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  28. Following Daisy & Jack as well!

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  29. My favourite tool is my rotary cutter. It is the only one of my many "gadgets" I use regularly. Well, other than the rulers, of course.

    Thanks for hosting the giveaway.

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  30. Those pin heads are brilliant! Thanks for the idea and the giveaway!

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  31. Ooooh I'd live to win if It's not too late :)

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  32. Great post - I'll be using the pin and number idea. I couldn't live with my seam ripper! Thanks for the chance to win! Amy from www.craftyshenanigans.blogspot.com

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  33. Great giveaway! I am your newest follower :)

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  34. Woohoo...I would love this book! Right now my favorite "gadget" is my 3 1/2" square ruler...for cutting out my swoon blocks. :)

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  35. My favorite quilting tool at the moment is my
    lil' twister square, and of course my rotary
    cutter.

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  36. Karen, I already follow your blog. Thanks for the chance to win!

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  37. I also follow Daisy&Jack~~Leanne's blog.

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  38. My favorite (and least favorite) sewing tool is my seam ripper. Wish I could live without it, but alas I cannot!

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  39. my favorite tool is a crochet hook and knitting needle--i use them to get sharp corners when I quilt!

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  40. I bought me a seam iron and I love it.

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