They’re little bites – fun, fast, easy and a bit addictive.
I also have some on my desk right now… as well as everything in this post. So I’m sharing some of the little bites of some of the cool, necessary, new, interesting and “how did I not know about this?” things that have caught my attention this past week.
Cool. Do you Zirkel?
I love magnetic pinbowls/trays/whatever for two reasons – I can drop/toss a pin in the general vicinity and it sticks. Two, when I drop pins – regularly – finding them is more comfortably done with a magnet than a bare foot.
These Zirkels might be the strongest magnets around, but they also have an ingenious way of automatically arranging most of the pins with points in, pinheads out. (There are always a few rebels in every bunch.) . But they’re good for more than pins! If you use clips and mini clips for bindings, bags, zippers and any one of the hundred other possible uses, a Zirkel keeps them handy. Clothespins – especially these For Good Measure mini Clothespins – are easily picked up and used. (Tammy loves using these clothespins to keep block parts and same-size pieces organized when she’s power-cutting for a big project.)
Karen Kay Buckley’s Perfect Scissors. I confess to being skeptical when I see the word “perfect” but these are good… really good. The fingerholes are slightly oversized and have a soft covering so they’re very comfortable to use. They also have a micro-serrated edge so the fabric doesn’t slip while cutting. (That’s why so many appliquérs love these scissors.) I also love the hard-plastic protective cover that comes with the scissors and fits securely. The red pair are 3-3/4″ with a slightly curved blade, the aqua-handled pair are the 6″ Perfect Scissors. Aqua. Necessary and cool.
Do you use a Hera marker? What is a Hera marker? It’s a small hand tool that leaves a temporary crease when it is dragged across the surface of a piece of fabric. The edge isn’t sharp enough to cut through the fabric or create permanent impressions – it’s temporary. That makes it great for marking quilting lines, any kind of measurement or placement line/mark.
Since I’ve been doing more machine-quilting in recent years, I’ve reached for it more frequently… until I dropped it and rolled my chair over it while trying to pick it up. So I needed a replacement. I found three!
- The regular, been-around-for-ages Hera Marker.
- The smaller tip and edge Hera Marker for Appliqué & Sewing.
- The Point 2 Point Turner has two different shaped turning points – one of which is a Hera Marker. It’s longer length and shape makes it very easy to hold and use. Joan Hawley of Lazy Girl Designs designed it so it has to be good, right?
New & Interesting.
Books! We’ll be sharing more about all three of these books soon but in the meantime, you’ll want to keep an eye out for these. They’re all headed to shops – might already be there.
- Longarm Quilting Workbook by Teresa Silva. Teresa is a very skilled and talented longarm quilter and this is her first book.
- Red & White Quilting by Linda Pumphrey. An award-winning quilter, Linda shares blocks and quilts inspired by the red and white quilts in the International Quilt Study Center & Museum’s collection. Classic and contemporary – this book is a winning combination.
- Stitches from the Harvest by Kathy Schmitz. Inspired by nature and stitched with “the gentle romance of days gone by”, Kathy’s designs that use simple embroidery to create treasured keepsakes.
Necessary? Good to Know.
We know quite a few stitchers for whom this is a must-have for their sewing box – Thread Heaven Thread Conditioner & Protectant. Sadly, this much-loved product has been discontinued. If it’s your favorite – stock up. Or consider a little Thread Magic instead.
Cool and New.
Do you use 108″ wide backings for your quilts? I confess that I’ve not used them much but I. Love. These. Buffalo Check Wide Backings – coming not-soon-enough! That translates to next year… January.
Until then, I will have to make myself happy with the “how did I not know about this?”
Got Your Back. A couple of the most popular pieces from Modern Backgrounds by Zen Chic and Compositions by BasicGrey have been manufactured as 108″ extra-wide quilt backings. Have I mentioned before how silky soft and smooth these new-generation wide backings are? They’re gorgeous – like luxuriously soft, high-thread-count sheets. Only better. (Because they’re quilts.)
These are two of my favorites – they’re only small sample pieces. The yardage won’t arrive until next month.
That’s it for today. I’m out of things to share and crackers!