The most magical time of the year is fast approaching, and with it comes the joyful but sometimes overwhelming task of finding the perfect gifts for our loved ones. It’s the time when we gather with loved ones, exchange heartfelt gifts, and create memories to cherish for a lifetime. Let’s face it; the holiday season can turn even the most organised among us into a whirlwind of last-minute shopping and impulse buys. The ever-growing list of gifts to buy, the unique presents to create, and the desire for a beautifully organised holiday season.
If you’ve ever wondered how to make the most of this magical time while keeping the chaos at bay, we have the answer: the Christmas Gift Planner. Do you already use one? Or is this your first time hearing about it? We want to know! Join us as we explore the world of holiday planning, the benefits of using a Christmas Gift Planner, and the joy of crafting unique gifts from the heart. Share your thoughts and experiences with us as we delve into this enchanting journey.
Introducing our Christmas Gift Planner – your key to a more organised, thoughtful, and budget-friendly holiday season.
In these series of blogs leading up to Christmas, we’ll not only introduce you to the planner but also hope to delve into the experiences of those who already use one and those who are yet to discover the benefits. We encourage you to share your thoughts with us, making this blog a space for a lively exchange of ideas. Let’s unwrap the magic of planning together and make this holiday season unforgettable.
We’ll explore the invaluable benefits of having a gift planner, which will not only make your holiday season more organised but also show you how it can help you support small businesses while ensuring that your gifts are unique, personal, and practical.
The Christmas Gift Planner: A Path to a Calmer Christmas
The Christmas Gift Planner is designed with one goal in mind: to make your holiday season as stress-free as possible. It helps you answer all the important questions: Who are you buying (or making) gifts for? This planning phase ensures that your gifts are thoughtful, personal, and within your financial means. With a clear plan in place, you can say goodbye to impulsive purchases that often lead to gifts that miss the mark.
One of the most significant benefits of the Christmas Gift Planner is that it empowers you to make well-informed decisions about your gifts. You can carefully choose who to buy for and decide whether you want to purchase a gift or put your crafting skills to good use. The planner encourages thoughtful decisions and minimizes the likelihood of impulse purchases that you might later regret.
Does the idea of last-minute gift shopping send shivers down your spine? Our Christmas Gift Planner is your lifesaver. With a clear, up-to-date list of your gifts, you’ll never forget to buy or make something special for someone. No more rushing to the store on Christmas Eve for a last-minute, expensive, and not-so-thoughtful gift.
Supporting Small Businesses: The Heart of Your Community
As we all know, the holiday season isn’t just about gifts; it’s a time of sharing, giving, and coming together. What better way to embody the true spirit of the season than by supporting the small businesses that form the heart and soul of your community? In this challenging financial climate, small businesses need our support more than ever.
The holiday season is the perfect time to show your love and support for small, local businesses. In these challenging financial times, they need your help more than ever. By choosing unique and handmade products from local boutiques, artisans, and craft stores, you’re not only making your gifts unique and personal but also contributing to the growth of your community.
Small, local businesses are the backbone of our neighbourhoods. They’re run by your friends, family, and neighbours, not faceless corporations. By choosing to shop at local boutiques, artisans, and craft stores, you’re not only making your gifts unique and personal but also contributing to the growth of your community.
In these challenging financial times, your support means the world to these businesses. They’re not just providing you with goods and services; they’re putting their passion and creativity on display, creating something truly exceptional for you. So, as you embark on your holiday shopping journey, remember the significance of supporting local businesses. This year, let’s make our gift-giving experience more than just a transaction – let’s make it a celebration of our community, our local economy, and the wonderful people who make our town special.
As we continue this journey through the magic of thoughtful gifting and supporting small businesses this holiday season, we invite you to consider making your celebrations extra special. Explore our Christmas-themed patterns and handmade crafting notions that will add a personal touch to your gifts and decorations.
Imagine having a clear plan in place, knowing who to shop from and what to create for your loved ones. Imagine crafting unique, one-of-a-kind gifts that carry the warmth of your community, and imagine being equipped with tools that are both practical and artistic.
Here, at Nifty Needles, we hope to make those decisions just a little bit easier by showcasing some of our patterns, kits and notions to give you some ideas for Christmas gifts and filling out your Christmas Gift planner.
And if you’re ready to take your holiday planning to the next level, download our free Christmas Gift Planner. It’s our gift to you, a token of our appreciation for your support of small businesses and the creative spirit of crafting. Download it as a PDF from our website, and let’s make this Christmas the most memorable one yet.
This holiday season, let’s craft joy, spread love, and make every stitch and gift count. Together, we can make this Christmas the most wonderful time of the year.
In the coming weeks, we’ll be showcasing a range of products that are perfect for Christmas gifts. Whether you’re into sewing, knitting, crocheting, or needlework, we have something special for everyone on your list. From crafting kits and patterns to handmade crafting notions, our products are a testament to the love and care that goes into every handmade creation.
Stay tuned as we delve into our extensive range of crafting products, providing you with unique, personal, and practical gift ideas for the crafters in your life. This Christmas, let’s make the season about more than just exchanging presents – let’s make it about supporting small businesses, sharing creativity, and spreading joy.
I have written a couple of blog posts about getting my craft snug (and stash/materials) organised in the lead up to my latest release – The Quilter’s Handbook. I have gone over the first two sections in the handbook – Inventory Section and Planner/Journal Section. I hope you found those posts to be interesting and helped to encourage you to get more organised with your quilting area. If you didn’t get a chance to read them, please do.
Have you ever had a tension issue while sewing and completely forgot just how to fix the problem? Or maybe you have been stumped on how to cut the correct measurement of fabric pieces needed? You may feel completely confused when confronted with the names of fabric pre-cuts or quilting terminology or even wondered on just how big to make the quilt which is to go onto a particular sized bed, etc.
Well, the next section in the Quilter’s Handbook deals on just those issues. I have complied the most common issues that we all experience at some stage. Now you just need to refer to your handbook for quick reference, instead of having to try and find the answer online and never knowing exactly where to look. Why waste time searching while you could be spending that time quilting?
So, just what is in this section?
I have designed a template that is all about our sewing machine. It has space to fill in all the details of our sewing machine – Brand, model, and the category group of the machine if applicable, along with any extra feet/tools you may have brought for your machine. I have found this handy as I have quite a selection of extra specialised feet for my machine. My machine is also quite a specialised machine, and it is in a certain category which is important for when I am wanting to order extra bobbins or feet for my machine. Without knowing this category, I could purchase the wrong foot/bobbins for my machine. I can assure you I have done exactly that in the past! With these details recorded in my handbook, I can now quickly double check what category I need to search for when purchasing extra parts for my machine. Not all machines will have this, but it is always handy to have that recorded somewhere that it is quick to double check.
I have included a section where you can write in all the extra tools and feet that you have purchased for your machine. I found this quite useful when I went through my pile of feet that came with the machine and that I have purchased along the way. I was now able to identify and write down what the feet where for. My next step is to sew a handy zipped bag to house the feet separately, along with any instructions sheets that came with them, so I can keep them safe and know exactly what they are used for. This is especially true for the feet that I wouldn’t use as often but still need to use on specialised sewing projects. I am still working on the perfect bag to keep them all where I can also label each compartment with the name of the foot!
There is space to record the contact details for the service technician that you may use for servicing/repairing your machine. You no longer need to search frantically for the contact number that you wrote down on a scrap piece of paper or wonder where you placed their business card …..
I have drawn up sections where you can write down the dates of when your machine was serviced, as well as the date when the bobbin area was last cleaned, and the needle changed.
If you hold more than one sewing machine, it is handy to have one for each of your machines. I have done one up for my Pfaff sewing machine but also plan on doing one up for my longarm machine so I can keep a record of all the extra tools and feet that I have purchased for the machine. It just helps for when I may want to purchase anything in the future and I know straight away what I have for the machines, instead of having to go and search through my box of tools or feet for the machines.
How many of us shudder at the mere thought of having tension issues while we are sewing? We can be sewing quite happily only to discover that our sewing is not right, we either have loops on the top or bottom of our fabric and the stitching is not balanced. One pull of one of the threads and the whole stitching comes undone!
I know I really do run scared if the machine has any tension issues and I dread having to touch my tension dial! I seem to inwardly hope that I never have to fix any major tension issues. However, having issues with our stitching where the loops do not meet in the middle of the fabric layers does not instantly mean that we should fiddle with our dials! Before we go anywhere near our tension dials, there is so much more that we should check. The dials are what we check last, after we have go through and checked everything else!
This handy reference goes through what to check when our machine is giving us tension problems and once, we have eliminated all of those other possible issues, we can then start to adjust our tension dials.
However, I have always found it hard to know which way to move the dial – is it up or down the number range depending on if our tension is tight or loose? I also tend to forget how to work out from the way the thread shows on the fabric as to whether the tension is too loose or too tight. I need to have something visible in front of me to remind me.
I really do dread tension issues, and my longarm machine is very sensitive to having the correct tension to ensure that the stitching is perfect with no loops on the bottom or the top of the quilt. The stitching loops need to meet in the middle! I knew that I would have to overcome my fear of tackling and correcting tension and I had gotten to be quite good with ensuring the correct bobbin tension. The slightest things would throw it off, even were the tension would be off if the bobbin was not wound on with the correct tension of the thread going through the tension discs.
It seemed that my longarm decided that I needed to face my fears and conquer the fear of tension. Last August I was quilting a wholecloth quilt which required a lot of stitching as the design was the stitching! I was working to a deadline, and would you believe that my quilting had serious loops underneath! Half a day’s quilting took me over a day to unpick! I really needed to conquer and overcome my fear and be able to tackle and solve tension issues. I went through all the steps prior to attacking the tension dials. I kept on saying out loud ‘Loosey lefty / tighty righty’ – it certainly imbedded into my brain, and I learnt which way to tighten or loosen the tension dials. I must say that those couple of days of pure hell – stitching, unpicking, not so nice words, and going through all the tension steps – really helped me to overcome my fear of tension issues. I can not say that I will not shake with fear the next time I have a major tension issue, but I know that I can always refer back to my tension guide, take a deep breathe, grab Jack, and know that I can overcome my tension issues.
When I am teaching workshops, I have often been met with bewildered looks at times when the pattern calls for cutting fabrics which may not be of the more common inch fraction measurements. We will all be familiar with the ¼”, ½” and ¾” measurements and able to find those with ease on the ruler. But there are times when the pattern calls for the less common fraction measurements – the ones that talk about eights or sixteenths. Where do we find those on the rulers?
This guide gives a visual guide to explain the fractions in inches and where to find those measurements on the ruler. More confusingly, those fractions may have several ways to write them. So this guide explains how to read and understand all those lines on the ruler between each inch.
Why is it that our quilting patterns all work in inches for cutting our fabric and yet the material lists are usually in metres and the fabric shops sell the fabric by the metre? I haven’t worked out the reason yet, and I don’t think I ever will.
Coming from New Zealand where everything is in metric – kilometres, kilos, centimetres, metres, etc it was quite alien to come to the UK and instead of driving in kilometres, I was doing it in miles! Yet I brought my meat/vegetables by the kilo or grams and the fabric was by the metre or half a metre.
It then got stranger when I starting to cut my fabric for making a quilt, my rulers were in inches and the cutting instructions talked about inches or parts of an inch! The seams were ¼”. It really was a mixed up world! Then there were times when we downloaded a pattern from the states and the material list was all in yards! Just how did a yard compare to a metre? I know that there is 100cm in a metre, but just how many inches are in a yard?
I have drawn up a couple of visual charts, so it is easy to see at a glance on converting yards to metres and inches to centimetres. Now you don’t have to go and google to find out.
In this reference, I have also included the approximate sizes of UK beds to help give you an idea on what size to make that quilt. It is easy to find quilt sizes online for the American beds, but they are different from the UK. Even New Zealand has different bed sizes from the UK, and I found it strange to learn that the UK does not have a Queen, but rather King or Super King!
This table makes it easy to give you an approximate guideline on what size to make the quilt if it is to fit a certain bed size.
When it comes to purchasing fabric for a certain project, it can also be daunting. You can go into a shop and purchase a metre or part of a metre of fabric, but what if you need to get a Fat quarter, or maybe a long quarter? Even worse, you may need to purchase a Layer cake, Honey bun or a jelly roll …. You would be forgiven if you suddenly thought that fabric purchasing just turned into some kind of cake eating spree. If you are new to quilting, all these lovely or weird sounding fabric terms can be daunting! Is a Fat quarter the same as a long quarter? Just what does it all mean?
I have drawn up a visual guide showing and explaining what the different fabric cutting terms mean and just how much fabric is involved in each cut. I have also written a guide to all the pre-cuts along with photos for each type. I knew that my personal collection of pre-cuts would come in handy – a photo shoot for the handbook. I am sure they enjoyed being taken out of the boxes that they had been thrown into and having the opportunity to see some daylight for photos. The most attention and handling they have received for quite a while I can assure you.
So with having some pre-cut fabrics like a layer cake or charm pack, you may want to create different cuts from the 10” or 5” fabric squares. I have compiled charts so you can see at a quick glance just how many 4”, 2” or how size squares you can get from the different precuts. Maybe you just what to know how many charm packs it takes to make a quilt? These handy charts will give you all the help you need by working the math’s out for you.
What if you are just at the start of your quilting or sewing journey. Do you find that there is quite a few strange terms and words that are used? It really does seems as though quilters have this secret language that needs to be used.
So to help de-code those strange sounding terms, I have compiled a list explaining the meanings for the more commonly used terms to help you break down that language and just be able to get down to the more important part – sewing and quilting.
What I like most with the Handbook is that you only need to purchase the parts that you would find useful, which is so much better than purchasing a prebound one where you have to have parts that you would never use.
For example, you may know what all the terms are and don’t need to have this reference, so there is no need to include it in your handbook. Maybe you are not interested in inch measurements or machine tension.
Basically you can pick and choose what you need in your basic reference section and make your own personalised handbook.
Come back next time when I will discuss and look at the final section – Cheat Sheets Section. The section that gives you step by step instructions on how to make the more popular and commonly used units in quilting, along with a maths cutting chart so you can quickly refer to so you know what size fabric to cut for the finished sized unit that you are wanting …..
As a crafter, I have so many projects on the go, waiting to be started or completed. In the previous 2 blog posts I have discussed about my notions and materials that are stored everywhere and this post is about keeping ourselves organised with planners and journals.
I do try to be organised and keep everything together, especially materials and notions for a particular craft all in one space. However, there are times where it is difficult to keep everything together in one place even though I now have a designated craft area. I seem to get overwhelmed with the amount of craft materials and notions I have collected/accumulated over the years and over the years have aften wished that I had an inventory of everything I have so that I can just go and look at the necessary inventory and know exactly where it is kept.
I am also a crafter that tends to have more than one project on at one time. I seem to get bored if I am on the one project all the time and depending on the way I feel at the time, I need to focus on a particular project – be it quilting/sewing, needlework, knitting, crocheting, or spinning.
I love being organised (but don’t manage to sometimes) and thrive on lists. I have found that there are times when I get overwhelmed by my sewing/quilting projects, the unknown growing mountain of unfinished projects and just what I need to get done. I have regretted making a quilt, gifting it, and not having a record of what it was, any adjustments, nor photos of it.
I have often wished I had a book for each craft that would keep me focused on the projects I have on the go, the projects that I want to start, either as gifts or for myself, any adjustments I have done for the project so I could refer back to it, especially if I started the project so long ago.
I have looked at Quilter’s journals/planners over the years thinking how great these were but there was always something that held me back – the fact that most of them were in book form, which meant that you couldn’t add to it once pages had been filled in. You would also be left with pages in the book that weren’t useful or relevant to you so it would be a waste. I thought on just printing out templates and placing them into a folder, but that just didn’t seem special enough. I was wanting something unique, special, and personalised – something that fitted exactly what I had in mind.
This is the result of months, upon months of thinking, planning, researching, drawing, typing, designing, and coming up with a truly personalised crafter’s handbook.
We have discussed all about inventories – pre-cut fabric, tools and notions, patterns and books in the previous posts and ways in which to get ourselves organised and know exactly what we have and more importantly, where it is kept.
Having those inventory lists kept in the Handbook folder made it so easy to look up an item and know where it is kept.
I have always wanted to keep a planner, but never found one that suited my needs/wants. I wanted a planner that I could add pages to as needed and rather than a prebound book where I couldn’t add the pages needed or leave out the ones I didn’t need or use. Basically, I was looking for a customised book that would be used and not left part empty due to unusable pages/templates. I have come up with these templates/pages which best suit my needs/wants, and hopefully yours. We may feel hesitate to use a journal/planner due to not knowing exactly how to make the best of it. A journal is not there to make us feel guilty or accountable of the unfinished projects, but to help keep us focused and motivated to get things done and to extent of our skills, to keep track of what projects we need to make, the projects we have made and gifted, the numerous BOM projects we signed up for. It also has the added benefit of keeping track of the pattern and materials used, writing notes/tips in case you want to make it again.
So just what is in the journal/planner section? And how do we make the most of what is in there?
Firstly there is the ‘Goals’ planner …
It is always good to start fresh each year and set ourselves some goals for the coming year. Maybe there are techniques we want to learn, maybe setting aside time to dedicate to finishing those unfinished projects thrown in the back of the cupboard, or maybe it is nothing quilting/sewing related.
This is where we can write down those goals, the reason why and the steps needed to achieve the goal. Breaking a goal down into smaller steps can make that dream/goal seem more achievable and not as daunting. It is also brilliant when we can tick the goal as achieved.
Just because we have written them down, doesn’t mean they have to be achieved. There is no rule to say we can’t change our mind. Life, needs, and situations change, which means that our goals change along the way. It is also brilliant to have a written record of our goals so we can look back at the end of the year and see what we have achieved over the year.
Writing down a list of the projects we have started and never completed, helps us to truly realise just how many we have on the go and needs finished. This could be one of your goals for the year – finish a certain amount of the WIP’s on your list. I have also found that my unfinished projects are all stored away in different boxes, drawers, and areas – all waiting patiently to be resumed.
This list helps you to know exactly what you have started (and need to finish). I felt it was best to keep this list simple, with just the stage the project was left at and MOST importantly, where it is stored. Once you get back to the project, start a Project page for it so you can keep track of your progress, keep more detailed notes and tick off each complete stage of the project until it is complete.
I also designed a planner for Future Projects. This planner is just as important as your Works in Progress List. We may have already started (& not finished) so many projects, but we will ALWAYS have a list of the projects we want to start at some stage.
I have all these projects that I want to do (at some future stage), and even an idea of the fabric to use from my stash, but it is all in my head and I tend to forget about them over time. I come across the fabric that I may have set aside, or ear marked for the project, but have forgotten where the pattern is that I wanted to use for it.
So this planner is for those projects, the ones we want to do at some stage in the future, and now it is all written down with all the essential notes like where the pattern is stored, or in what book it was published and whether or not I have the fabric for it in my stash or I need to purchase extra for it.
When I sat down and did an inventory of my quilting books, I also spent time flicking through each book and rediscovered projects that I had mentally told myself that I wanted to make up when I first got the book. It was silly of me to think that my brain would retain all that information and remember the project and where the pattern was. Actually there was one such project – a mantle cover – that I had found in a book/magazine that I had purchased, I mentally stashed that info away and I forgot which book the pattern was in! I searched through my books without success many times over! Would you believe that while doing the inventory, I actually found that pattern and was now able to add the project to my Future Projects planner, along with the pattern name, book title and the page it was on. Now I have it recorded safely in my journal for when I get round to making it up.
I have to admit it was a fun way to spend a day, going through all my books while doing the inventory. It was a great excuse to be able to revisit all my wonderful quilting books. I do have to admit that my pages grew quite without shame or hesitation. I now have quite a lengthy list of future projects planned. But I am not worried, there is no expiry date for starting or completing these projects. I do, however, now have a list written with all the projects I would like to do and know I will not lose that piece of paper with the details or forget the info stored in my head, as it is safe in my handbook. There is also space if I want to list down any fabric I may want to use for the project.
Something that fits in well with future projects is gifts that we may want or need to make.
Every year I say that I am going to make gifts for family and friends at Christmas. I have several that I planned to make for a special occasion, but they are still unmade as they tend to get forgotten about. Definitely one task for my goal list.
This list is to help us stay focused on making gifts, giving a deadline so we can make time to get them made and gifted. It also gives a great record of what we made, who it was for and when it was finished and gifted.
I am sure we have all subscribed to Block of the Month projects at some stage and even lost track of what we are subscribed to or when they are due out. If you are on Facebook, there are numerous designers from around the world that are running BOM projects through a designated Facebook Group and share each monthly pattern for free for a limited time. How many times have we joined up, started the project only to realise that we have missed the deadline to download the free monthly pattern and we are faced for with the choice of missing that monthly pattern or having to pay for it. Paying for a great pattern is no issue, but it can be when the designer is overseas and the only way to purchase the missing pattern is via a printed pattern and the postage is high or the designer doesn’t post internationally. I have been caught on several occasions and I always vow that I will keep better track of release dates and the BOMs, usually on a scrap of paper by my computer or in my diary.
This tracker solves all these issues. Here you can note down the name of the BOM, the designer and what Facebook group it is connected to (if relevant) along with where you have stored the pattern, either as a PDF in a designated folder in documents on your computer or as a printed pattern in one of your storage folders.
There is also room to note the start/end dates of the BOM, number of individual parts, price and any BOM rules that you need to remember, like the release date each month and if the pattern is a free download for a limited time.
Once you have started the BOM project, you can then start an individual project template so you can keep more detailed notes. I know that this BOM tracker will be invaluable as I subscribe to numerous Facebook BOM groups that run several free mystery projects each year. Now I can keep a written record of them and know that I have kept up to date with release dates and saved the pattern to my computer until I can get round to making the BOM.
Keeping a journal for your current projects is brilliant. This is where you record everything you need about the project you are creating. The one place where you can keep a note of the more technical details of your project, like the fabrics and notions used, pattern name, piecing basics, notes of any adjustments or modifications you may have made. There is space for you to include fabric swatches (if you want) or written notes on the fabrics used along with photos of the finished project is also a checklist provided so you can tick off each step/process in the project which helps to break it down and gives you a visual note of how much you have done or what still needs to be done.
There is also a checklist provided so you can tick off each step/process in the project which helps to break it down and gives you a visual note of how much you have done or what still needs to be done.
With this tracker, you have everything you need to complete your project all in one spot, so you know exactly where to go if you have had a break in the project and just need a reminder of what needs to be done or the technical requirements like the thread colour, stitch length and so forth.
The best thing, you have a detailed written and visual record of something you have made and gifted to someone. If you every want to remake the project, you have all the information you need to complete another.
What I love about this, is that it is also a future keepsake of projects you have done. In years to come, you may go through your journal, and you will have a reminder of the projects you have made over the years. What memories and a true keepsake to pass down to future generations.
I know that I have made quilts in the past and never kept a journal on any details, nor took photos. These quilts have since gone, maybe gifted to others, or just misplaced. They are quilts that can not be shared with others, they only exist in my memories and over time those memories will no longer exist like the quilts themselves. I truly wish that I had the journal then, especially when I was first on my journey in creating quilts. What memories and stories would I have been able to share with my daughters’ if I had records of those first quilts? The ones that I had started when I was young, where I gathered the fabrics from, the mistakes (redesigning) I had created with those quilts, the skills and knowledge I had gained with those quilts but more importantly, the memories and stories I could recall with making each and every one of those quilts.
The journal and planner will help you in so many ways – like planning your future projects, helping you keep track on the projects that are in progress and need to be finished (the ones that needed to go on holiday for a while), any gifts you need to make for someone.
Come back next time when I will discuss and look at the Basic Reference section. The section that we all can do with referring back to, no matter how long we have been sewing or quilting for ….
However, why not go to the website and check out the Quilter’s Handbook and maybe start to build your very own personalised Handbook to help you with all your quilting and sewing needs ….
So following on with doing an inventory of my pre-cut fabrics, I also did one for my Accuquilt dies a year or so ago.
This inventory came about, long before the creation of the Quilter’s handbook, with the need to know exactly what dies I had. I had purchased the machine and a couple of the dies. I found these items to be quite expensive and not something I wanted to purchase often. There was only one or two places in the UK that stocked the dies, however Amazon started to stock them and every so often, they had some very good offers/discounts on the dies. So much so, when they did come on offer, it proved to be hard to resist.
I had my dies stored on a shelf in my craft snug but as the number increased, it was hard to remember exactly just what I had. It proved to be abit of a bother to keep going out to the craft snug, locating the dies, writing down the details on a scrap paper. I always seemed to misplace that piece of paper when it came to the next time, and I had to repeat the exercise all over again! So, I came up with the idea of an inventory and breaking it further down into the different types of dies. This proved handy when I was looking for a certain size in a square and so forth.
I now have my Accuquilt dies written down and placed in my quilter’s handbook and it is just a matter of grabbing it and checking to see what dies I have and also to add in any new acquired ones. I also have a wish list of dies that I would like and when I see them on offer, I can just check them from my wish list.
From my Accuquilt inventory, the idea expanded, and I thought of all the other tools and notions I have acquired over the years and really have NO idea of exactly what I have! It really is bad, but it also meant that I was not sure of what I had if I was wanting to treat myself to a new ‘essential’ tool or notion. Knowing what tool or notion you have on hand is also handy when you start to plan your next cutting task.
I purchased some free motion rulers for myself a few years back and there are times when I see someone DE stashing some on Facebook and was never too sure if I had that particular one. With an inventory I now know exactly what I have and can shop around for specials/offers, knowing it is only a matter of checking my free motion ruler inventory to see what I already have.
I found this extremely useful as I have two inventories of the free motion rulers for both my domestic machine and the long arm, as both of these machines use totally different free motion rulers.
Over the years of quilting, my stash of quilting rulers has expanded from the one basic ruler which I brought when I first started and still use most of the time, to a wide range of other rulers. I had lost count of the rulers I have purchased over the years and knowing exactly what I had and what they were used for.
I have the staple collection of my essential rulers – the long standard cutting ruler, a couple of smaller rulers, several square rulers and my Stripology ruler. I kept those in the mat, ruler bag that I had designed to hold my mats and the rulers I use the most for cutting fabrics. It was a handy place to store them, and they were always with my mats.
However, I have purchased other rulers that would be more specialised and used for specific tasks. Some would have been an impulse buy after seeing them promoted. Whatever way you looked at it, the collection was growing, and I was unsure of exactly what I had. It was also getting harder to know exactly where they were stored when I needed them.
So, the ruler inventory was created. But not just one inventory. Not all rulers are equal … NOR do they all do the same thing or have the same purpose. The ruler inventory is divided into three separate categories –
Rulers that are commonly used for cutting fabric such as 6 ½” x 12 ½”; 6 ½” x 24 ½”; 4 ½” square; etc.
Non-standard rulers that can be used for squaring up blocks, or specific function rulers such as Bloc Loc; ½” Triangles; Stripology Ruler; etc.
Rulers that have a very specific use such as cutting or trimming certain blocks; Crazy Patch; Log cabins; Pineapples; etc.
I had such ‘fun’ storing through my stash of rulers and deciding which ones went into which category. But I can truly say it was a real sense of achievement to get them all sorted, listed into the particular inventory as well as allocating them into their specific locations.
My Stripology ruler went there too as I use this often as well (and it was too large to go anywhere else). I allocated a drawer in my cupboard for storing the other rulers that I would not use as often as the standard ones but would still use regularly. I even placed the small rulers that I used regularly in my sewing trolley that I keep by my worktable, that way they were on hand and wouldn’t get lost in the other places.
The other rulers that I would use less often are placed in my small template folder that I designed for this purpose. I keep the folder on my shelf in the snug, so it is still handy to grab, and all the templates/rulers (instructions) are kept safe and in one place.
This small template folder is brilliant for keeping your smaller and less used rulers and templates safe in a sturdy zipped folder. There is also room to keep any instructions sheets that may have come with the rulers and templates. There are two designs available as patterns (either PDF or printed format) on the website – a plain folder and Just a small golden rule – featuring some machine piecing of a tape measure that matches up with the mat, ruler bag design of the same design available as patterns from our website.
Completing the ruler inventory took me another afternoon to do and it was so satisfying to gather up all of my rulers and assign them to a specific inventory category and then to a designated location and have all that written down. It is now easy to check what ruler I have and where I can find it …. So much better than wondering if I had really did own that ruler … or did I imagine it?
What about all those tools and notions that you have acquired along the way, like specialised marking tools, applique, and tools/notions? The tools and notions that make your life easier and you just couldn’t be without. I really didn’t think of having an inventory of these items. They were things I seemed to take for granted. Items you purchase along the way, and sometimes forgot about. Small tools that got put at the back of the sewing box or into a drawer and never brought out again. Items that really would be so handy to use …. Often…
I had this happen to me … just recently ….. I was sewing and the pattern suggested using an awl to help with attaching the binding on a 3D item. I really thought it was a tool that I did not own. Yet, once I went through my box of notions/tools in my dresser, I discovered that I did in fact owe one … several in fact! They were pulled out and placed on my sewing trolley and I have been making good use of them!
So, filling out the inventory of these specialised wee tools is brilliant. You never know what you may rediscover!
Once these inventories were completed, I decided to start on my patterns, magazines and books ….. We all collect patterns that we want to eventually make, be it PDFs, single paper patterns or a pattern in a book. I don’t even want to begin on books …. But I promise I will …. After the patterns ….
Over the years I have purchased PDF patterns online and stored them to my computer. I have also forgotten exactly what PDF patterns I have. So with this inventory, it is now possible to have a record of all the PDF patterns, what they are and what document file they are stored under on the computer. Hopefully, no more forgotten PDF patterns….
What about the printed patterns? Do you purchase patterns, with the intention of making them and maybe, putting them somewhere … How many of us forget where that special pattern is? I know I have, plenty of times, getting frustrated on exactly where that one pattern is! I have written them on loose paper (& lost the paper!) so hence, this handy inventory of your patterns kept safe in your folder, so the next time you are looking for that one pattern, you know where to look.
I had fun gathering up all of my By Annie patterns and seeing them written down in my pattern inventory was astounding! I didn’t realise I had accumulated so many of them. However, I have a good reason for that – I am making quite a few of the bags for organizing my craft items and tools. But I will save that for another post…. It is still very much a work in progress, and I have a long way to go on that area ….
Books! Where do I start on this subject?! I definitely think I am a book addict!! Definitely an addict (or collector) of quite a number of different items! I am sure we have all brought books on quilting, techniques, and designs from a particular designer. How many of us forget just what particular book we have, or even where it is (or should be)?
I know that I personally have hundreds of quilting books – ‘How to’ on a particular sewing or quilting technique, a particular designer with a collection of project patterns, or instructions to create quilts from pre-cut fabrics. There have been numerous times that I have wanted a list of the actual books I have, so I can go straight to the location of the book. It is also handy to have if you discover a book sale and you are not sure if you already have that book. With this book inventory (as well as a wish list), you will not be guessing.
At the start of the first lockdown, Alyssa and I made a pact that we would go through each area of the house and sort through/organise everything. We have managed to do quite a few of the areas – my office area, my fibre/spinning area and the library area was on the to do list as well. To date, we have been putting it off as it really is daunting and there are literally hundreds of books. The bookcases need to be tackled one at a time and the books taken off the shelves, one shelf at a time and sorted. We need to go through the books and see what ones we no longer need/use/interested in. At the same time, write down the title and author of all the books we want to keep. It is a task that is well overdue. The bookcases are overflowing, and I can’t fit any more books into it. I know that I will NOT stop buying books, so the logical choice is to weed out the irrelevant books….
It is a task we have both been putting off …. And we are fast running out of reasonable excuses … I also need to know exactly what books I have in the bookcases …. I have purchased so many of the various craft subjects. I also need to put the books into logical grouping, so I know where to find a specific book when needed.
Hence, this inventory. I now have no excuse for not doing the bookcases and it also means that I can finally have my books written down and at a glance I can see exactly what I have and (fingers crossed) will NEVER purchase a book I already own. I also plan on keeping all the books on a particular subject – spinning, knitting, applique, embroidery, etc. – all together on a particular shelf/bookcase and this will then be noted on the inventory form.
Keeping inventories is brilliant, so you know exactly what tools/notions you have, their purpose and where they are located – i.e. – on the shelf or in a drawer; in a box, container, or folder; or any other place you usually store them. When you are preparing for your next project, you can refer back to the inventories to see what you already have and what you may need to purchase to complete that project.
It is also a handy reference so when you see a sale you know exactly what you have or don’t have, no longer a guessing game as to what you already have.
It is even handy to have a wish list for your tools/notions, so when there is a sale or friends/family are wanting ideas of what to get you for Christmas/Birthday, you can just pass on the ‘Wish list’.
I have also found it handy to have a written inventory for insurance purposes in case the worse happens and you need to replace everything.
Hopefully this insight on inventories in the Quilter’s Handbook will help you to sort and organise your craft space and you will always know exactly what tool, notion, pattern, or book you have …. With our Handbook you will be able to purchase the inventory templates that are suitable for your needs. If you don’t have free motion rulers, then you don’t need to purchase the free motion ruler inventory. The same with the Accuquilt die inventory. If you don’t own a Accuquilt machine, why would you need an inventory for the dies? Our new Handbook release is truly a design where you can pick and purchase what you need to make up your very own Handbook that is suitable for your needs. I will have more information on how it all works once it is ready to be release on the website in the next week or so ….
Come back next time when I will discuss the Handbook in depth, and we will look at the section all about the journal and projects. This section is one that I am really excited about using…..
This question is something that I get asked time and time again. For some of us, it really isn’t an issue and are so disciplined, that there is NO fabric stash, as you only buy what you need for your current project. What category would you put yourself into – A fabric stasher or A ‘buy as I need to’ person?
It is strange thinking back on when I first started to sew and quilt, many decades ago. I remember there being a time when I would have put myself into the last category – I brought what fabric I needed for the project I was planning on making. It got hard at times, as I would buy the fabric at the regular price and it could get quite expensive. Even though there was a couple of dressmaking fabric shops in the town I lived, there were NO quilting fabric shops! In fact, the nearest quilting fabric shop was about 7 hours drive away in Auckland! It was the time BEFORE online shopping! It was only a few years before I moved to Northern Ireland, that my local town got a large craft store (Australian chain – Spotlight) and it was a treasure haven of all things crafting!!
I also found that I would get the sudden urge to start creating (often at weird hours) and just not be able to, due to not having the fabric on hand. It was frustrating. I started searching in the local charity shops for fabric lengths and clothing made from cotton fabric that could be repurposed into quilts. That was the start of my fabric stash but it was manageable and I stored it on shelves in my ‘sewing’ room.
In moving to Ireland, I had to start my fabric stashing again. For a number of years after I moved, I had no such thing as a fabric stash and really didn’t do much sewing or crafting. I had to find the quilting shops which is hard to do when you are new in an area and don’t know of other such minded people. However, the internet has made shopping so much easier and maybe abit too easy for emptying our wallets.
I started to buy fabrics that were on sale, mostly fat quarters, and these I started to store in plastic containers. I remember I had a good size one (or so I thought) that would be perfect to store my fabric stash and make it easier to create when I got the sudden urge. That storage system worked well for a short period, but my buying of fabric started to grow when I saw fabric on special.
I had to rethink a good way to store my stash so I could easily see what I had before I started on a project. It is hard when you suddenly decided that you have to create that quilt on a Sunday and then realise you don’t have the fabric and there are no shops open.
I have become a shopper of quilting fabric, mostly when it is on special. I have also come to the conclusion that Fabric buying and storing is a separate hobby from sewing. I would always buy Fat quarters which were great for small projects or scrappy quilts. But as I progressed (& especially when I started to design) I realised that sometimes fat quarters just don’t fit the bill so I would buy half metre or over metre lengths.
So this brought about the issue of how to store your fabric (which is the purpose of this blog). I thought that it would be useful to share my ideas and resolutions on how to store that fabric stash.
I wanted something that stored my fat quarter fabrics in a way that it was easy to see what they were and kept them protected. I found the best storage solution was the Really useful containers – 6.5 litre size that are meant to store CD’s into. These are just the right height to keep the folded fat quarters in so they stand upright. I sorted the fabric into categories – Christmas fabric and then into the colours – a box for each. It is a great way to see exactly what colours, prints and fabrics you have. I also keep my half metre lengths in these containers which works well.
The next issue that needed to be sorted was how to store my fabrics that are a metre or more in length. The real issue I had with these fabric lengths, was how they would come folded from the shops. They are usually folded in such a way that makes it awkward to cut the fabric into the required cuts on the cutting mat. This is especially true if you have a length of 3 metres or more. Basically you would have to unfold the length and then fold in half along the length so the cutting length is manageable and fits onto the cutting board. I found that having to do this really took away the joy of preparing and starting a new project, as all you want to do is to get struck into cutting and begin sewing, and not having to wrestle with fabric lengths.
I found this way a few years ago on the internet and it works for me, so I thought I would share this with you. It means that when I want to use the fabric and start cutting… the fabric is all ready to cut into. The fabric is folded in such a way, that the fabric width is ideal for the cutting board and you don’t need to spend the time trying to wrestle and fold the fabric when all you want to do is start cutting and sewing. All the hard work is done when you store your fabric. Its brilliant, especially when you have lengths of 3 metres….
Fold the fabric lengthways- selvedge towards the fabric fold, ensuring it lies straight with the grain n no major creases. You may need to iron the length of fabric.
I then take a comic book backing board (A4 size) and fold in half lengthways as shown in the photo. The boards are from Amazon – comic book backing boards- 100 for around £10. I also reuse them when I have used all of the fabric.
Place the fabric end into the board so the fabric end sits in between the board touching the board fold as shown in the photo.
Start folding the board along the fabric length ensuring the fabric remains smooth n flat as you fold the board.
Fabric length folded onto the board- easy to keep tidy in storage and ready for cutting when required. All you need to do when you want to cut, is to unfold some of the fabric so you can cut the required size. The fabric on the board stays tidy and out of the way.
The fabric boards are now ready to be stored upright on a shelf which makes it easy to see the fabric. I store my fabric lengths in an Ikea box on a shelf away from direct sunlight. The fabric bolts are placed in a box according to their colours. I have a box for plain fabrics as well as Christmas fabrics.
As well as collecting fabric lengths and Fat quarters, I seem to have succumb to the habit of collecting pre-cuts. You know, the ones with pretty sounding names – Jelly rolls, layer cakes, honey buns, charm packs and so forth. You could be mistaken in thinking that I am referring to a sweet shop …. But these lovely names refer to pre-cut fabric bundles for quilting.
I remember years back, I vowed never to collect these…. But times change and sometimes we succumb …. To the point … where I had acquired several items in the range and placed them randomly about my sewing snug to only lost them in the abyss of the dark corners ….. I no longer knew exactly what I had brought over time with all good intentions to actually use them. YES, buying fabric and ACTUALLY using it …. Are TWO separate hobbies!
So…. With the Quilter’s handbook in the planning …. I strongly felt that a space was needed in the book to have a pre-cut inventory! I spent a lovely afternoon, quietly locating ALL of my pre-cuts (though I do fear that the ODD one or two still remains lost!) and I dutifully recorded ALL of the pre-cuts into my inventory. I was shocked with what I actually had on hand, and it quickly filled up several pages! However, at the end of the exercise, I was able to know exactly what I had, how many of each and exactly where it was now located. Yes, I designated several drawers and plastic containers for the different types of pre-cuts. I can now look at my inventory sheet, know exactly what I have and in what designer collection and where it is located. One of my goals this year is to use up those pre-cuts to create some quilts.
It really was the most satisfying afternoon I had spent in a while. There was such a sense of achievement in the end with it all recorded in a safe place where I can quickly refer to and know exactly where to find a particular pre-cut.
With starting on my pre-cut inventory journey, it seemed natural to continue with compiling inventories of my other notions and tools. You just never know what item you will reacquaint yourself with …. There is always bound to be that notion or tool that you have forgotten about or mislaid…..
Come back next week and we will discuss the other inventories in the Quilter’s Handbook and how to use them ….
As a crafter of many different craft interests, it can be so hard to know where and how to keep yourself organised (and tidy). If you are lucky enough to have a designated craft room (no matter what size) it is brilliant to be able to have/store everything in the room, go in there to create and when you are finished, just close the door behind you. However, not all of us are lucky enough to have that separate space to store, organise or just to shut ourselves way to be able to sew or craft.
I have always been interested in crafts; in fact it was a way of life when I was growing up. My mother was a sewer who helped to supplement the family income by doing dressmaking for people. I often remember ladies coming to the house for fittings and so forth to have that outfit sewn up. Even back then (50 odd years ago) she didn’t have a designated sewing room. Thinking back now I have no idea where she stored all her sewing/crafting notions and equipment. With a young child’s eye, they always seemed to magically appear when she needed them and magically disappear when they were no longer needed! She sewed from the kitchen table, did the fittings there as well (when my father was not at home) and would draft out the paper pattern for the outfit from a magazine on the floor of the sitting room under the watchful eye of my sister and I (both very young) but even at that young age, we learnt by watching and taking everything in.
It was just the routine of our family and from a very young age, we learnt the skills of understanding the strange language of the lines (with different colours and patterns) that represented the different outfits in the magazine. Those magazines were sent out a couple of times a year to New Zealand by her mother in Holland and over the years they grew into quite a large pile, and they were used by several generations of sewers. She never threw any of the magazines out and you knew at some stage the outfits would eventually come back into fashion. The magazines were in Dutch, so we could never understand the written instructions on how to make up those wonderful outfits that were photographed in the magazines. However, we were taught how to locate the lines that were for the particular outfit, locate them on the pattern sheets, use the roll of newsprint and the tracing wheel to draft out our very own patterns.
My sisters and I learnt to sew by watching and participation. I was sewing outfits for myself when I was 7/9 years, and those early years gave me a firm foundation into dressmaking. It wasn’t just sewing that my mother gave us a lasting love for. She was also kept herself busy with several other crafts – knitting, crocheting, painting, cross stitch, needlework and spinning. Her passions in those crafts were passed down to myself, and my sisters.
So, how does this relate to craft organisation? Well … my mother never had the luxury of a designated sewing room. She did her sewing on the kitchen table and her other crafts were done in the evening. Looking backon how long I have been sewing and crafting for, I can also honestly say that I never had a designated craft room to store all my crafty notions and materials. Moving from childhood into young adult and then into my own home, I still did not have a designated craft area where I could store everything.
It is hard to think of just where did I store everything. My Dad acquired an old Singer sewing machine treadle table (minus the machine) when I was a teenager. He restored it for me, and it was my own small, designated sewing area. I could keep my machine on the table and sew there. There was space inside (where the machine once was stored) where I could keep all of my dressmaking patterns and the drawers were just perfect for keeping my scissors, pins, and other essential notions in. Maybe I just didn’t have as much as I thought I did. When I was sewing all my own outfits (as well as my girls) I would generally go out and buy the fabric needed, there was no fabric stash. Could I also be right in thinking that maybe now, we are needing so much more in the way of ‘essential’ equipment?
I kept my other craft materials in cupboards around the house and when I wanted to work on them, I would carry them together and take them where I wanted to work. It was generally in the lounge or the kitchen table. The latter was a bit more of a nuisance as I would have to tidy everything away at every mealtime due to the table being needed.
I remember one house I lived in, I was overjoyed to find there was a space in the laundry (Utility) room with a wooden bench by the window with some shelving on each side. I finally had my own sewing room. However, it was not ideal, the utility room was out through the back door and was basically a concrete floor outbuilding which I had to share with the freezer, washing machine and dryer. There was barely any room in which to work in. I definitely could not lay anything on the floor, it was uneven as well. There was no room to have an iron or to cut everything out. The bench was narrow and not that long, so just large enough for the sewing machine to sit. It was nice when the weather was dry and warm, but during the winter, it was cold and dismal. I think I generally ended up taking my machine and sewing on the kitchen table. The shelves were great to store my odd bits of fabric onto. I was just starting to get into patchwork at this stage and was slowly buying pieces of cotton fabric. There was also a disused toilet and shower room off this area, so it had become a place where I could store my surplus craft materials in boxes, along with fleeces I had acquired for spinning. I guess we make do at the time with what we have. But we all need to have it organised.
Once I moved into the rabbit hole of quilting, my essential notions and tools seemed to explode at an alarming rate. At the start (over 20 years ago) it seemed that only essential tools needed were the cutting mat, ruler, and cutter. Now there is so much more on offer and all claiming to make our quilting so much easier. I am not disputing that, as I have acquired so many tools that I just wouldn’t be without as they have made quilting/sewing so much easier and enjoyable. But when you invest in these needed tools, you really need to keep them safe and more importantly, know where they are so you can grab them when you need them.
We all need to have that one area, that we can go to and know that we can find exactly what we need, where it is kept and more importantly …. To know exactly what we have. Have you ever purchased a tool and then realised that you have exactly the same at home, but had forgotten about it, or maybe mislaid it due to not being organised?
I know I am guilty of that over the years. If you don’t have a designated craft/sewing room, it can be hard to know where everything is kept. Thankfully, I can now say, after 50 years of sewing, I now have my very own designated sewing/craft snug! However, like many crafters I am a messy crafter, and it can be so difficult to keep my craft snug tidy and organised, especially after a day of sewing and pulling things out when I have needed them. I am good at getting out what I need, but just not that great at putting it back after I have finished with it!
I love my craft snug and after a few trials and errors I am making it into what I need and require in a sewing area. I have my table in the middle, so I am not facing a wall. The window is far too high to have my machine there and there is a radiator directly under the window. It is not an ideal room as there really isn’t any wall space available, it is basically an open area off the kitchen and next to the stairs. So it is making the best of what I have to work with and using it to its best ability. The Ikea storage shelves are brilliant, and I have found the fabric bins and plastic tubs really make for great storage containers. There is built in shelves and cupboards which are still a work in progress. I have purchased several types of plastic drawers which are put to great use – for storing all my spinning tools and blending fibres as well as the different types of needlework thread.
I have found that I am ‘a list’ person. I like to work to lists. It gives me something tangible to work from and to look at when I need to refocus myself and know exactly what I have. I like order, I just find it hard to maintain that order all the time. I tend to be a messy sewer …. I will leave that there ….
I also found that my craft snug can tend to become a dumping ground. When in a rush, things get dumped in there with the intention of ‘sorting that out later on’ and it just never does. I am also a crafter that needs to have several projects on the go at the same time. To the point where I have numerous (too many to count) Unfinished Projects. There are times when I tend to forget about them and stumble across them many years later. It shouldn’t be like this, but it is. My creative mind seems to jump about from one idea to another, especially when it comes to coming up with new designs.
During the first COVID lockdown I used the time to think over my craft projects and different crafts. I was in desperate need to know exactly what projects I had, be it partially finished or yet to be started. What tools and equipment I had and just exactly where it was all stored? To find a suitable method in which to store my fabric. The list was endless.
I know I could just tidy and organise my sewing snug again, but how long would it stay in that state, and it still didn’t solve the need to know what equipment I actually had. I had purchased an Accuquilt machine several years ago and had been slowly adding to my collection of dies. When I found a good sale for them online, I struggled to know what I already had without having to go through them all and write them down. This was the first step in starting to organise my tools. I had complied an Inventory for my Accuquilt dies. I found this so handy, and it was brilliant to be able to transfer that inventory idea to the other expensive equipment I had acquired over the years – books, patterns, free motion rulers, quilting rulers and other handy specialised notions.
There is such an achievement when you have gone through all your notions, tools, patterns, etc sorted them and compiled an inventory of them all. It gives you a sense of being in control and knowing exactly what you have. It is even better if you know exactly where that particular notion is kept. I decided that this was the year that I would truly get myself organised.
So with inventories all completed, it got me thinking of the projects started but never finished and even the ones planned but never started. In sorting through my craft snug, I pulled out containers of long forgotten fabric bundles, obviously placed together for a particular project but having no idea which one due to no pattern or note placed in the container. This is when I decided to expand on my inventories. I discovered several containers of pre-cut fabric bundles – jelly rolls, charm packs, layer cakes …. I had no idea of just exactly what I had and NEEDED to know so I could use them!
I wanted to create some organisation with my sewing so I would not get overwhelmed with what I had to get done or even to forget about the special quilt I wanted to make but never got round to. I started thinking on the project folders/books that many quilters spoke about. The concept interested me, but I never found exactly what I wanted or needed in such a book. I like to work from lists. I am terrible for roughly scribbling lists/notes on scraps of paper and then losing them as I had nowhere to keep them safe. I guess I searched and thought about the concept for quite a number of years, but never did anything about it. I just couldn’t find one that fitted all my needs. I wanted something that I could add to if I ran out of space – so a book wouldn’t work as it would not allow me to add to the pages when I ran out. It would also have pages that I wouldn’t use so it would be a waste of a book. I didn’t want to print off templates and put them into a folder – it just wouldn’t be special enough. I thought of placing the paper sheets into plastic pockets – but that wasn’t suitable – as it meant that each time, I wanted to write something down, I would have to take the paper out of the plastic pocket. I really needed to put my thinking cap on.
So, the Quilter’s Handbook was conceived…. I started to put down ideas of what I wanted in my book to keep me on track…. Somewhere I could write down all the projects I wanted to start, those I needed to finish, as well as the projects I was currently on where I could add in notes for any adjustments. Somewhere that the notes would be safe, and I could refer back to them if I ever needed to make that particular project again. It also gave me a record of what I had made, something to go back over in years to come. I also needed a place where I could keep a record of all the patterns, books, tools, and notions that I have and where they are kept. The handbook was designed so that you could decide just what pages/sections you needed for your own use, so there was no wasted or unnecessary pages.
I had so much fun deciding on what to put into this folder. I am excited about sharing it with you over the next few weeks. It is the result of many months of research, ideas, trials, and errors in putting together the perfect quilters handbook to help keep you organised and on track. I also felt it was important to add in a section of the basics when it comes to quilting and using your machine. How often have we had tension issues and just not quite sure on how to adjust the tension dial or even to check through all the tension issues before touching that dial? What about how to accurately cut fabric when we are directed in the pattern to cut fabric with a 16th fraction? Maybe all the quilting terms are confusing? What about the common sizes of UK beds if we want to make a quilt for a particular sized bed? I have complied all that to go into this Handbook. Now you just need to grab the handbook and look it up instead of spending hours searching online for answers. There is so much more to this book….
Over the next few weeks, I will do blog posts on helping you to organise your sewing area. We will discuss storing your tools, notions and fabrics and using the inventory sheets and making them work for you. We will also look further into the Quilters Handbook and how to make the most of it.
I hope you will enjoy accompanying on this journey while, together, we will organise our designated sewing space…… and move this area ….
Into an improved, tidy and VERY organised sewing space ….
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