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  1. #1
    The Guild President

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    Apr 2015
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    Default quilting 'hacks'

    I saw a post referencing using a teflon oven liner and got to thinking about 'hacks' for tools, etc that I am too cheap to pay for if I don't have to. I made a light 'table' for tracing applique shapes out of a clear acrylic clipboard, four plastic cups and a tap light all from the dollar store. Small but perfect for my needs!

    I also rigged a slide on table out of foam project board from the dollar store and the teflon oven liner.

    I'll pay for stuff if I have to (Roxanne's basting glue is a MUST, trust me I learned the hard way) but if I can rig it, I'm gonna.

    Wondered if anyone else has hacks they'd like to share!

  2. #2
    Batting Beauty

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    Jul 2014
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    Donner Lake, CA
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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    I have use a collection of poster-making, plastic drawing tools, such as right angle triangles, straight edges and cutting mats. They aren't labeled for quilting inches, but they do the trick. Is this a hack?

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  4. #3
    Missouri Star

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    Aug 2010
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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    Thanks for the ideas - I made a pin holder by taking a beautiful small bowl (from thrift shop) and gluing magnets on the bottom.

  5. #4
    The Guild President

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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    It's certainly a hack if it saves money! I'm gonna try a right angle from the dollar store. I love the idea of magnets on the bottom of a pretty bowl, too!

  6. #5
    Designer Diva

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    Apr 2014
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    On I-40 in New Mexico
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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    From Harbor Freight, I purchased air hose coils and cut every couple coils for holding my rolled up quilttop as I FMQ. Also found long tweezers, magnetic bowls, 72 inch metal ruler for long cuts.

  7. #6
    Missouri Star

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    Jan 2013
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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    Here is one of my favorites.
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    I keep them in a small food keeper. and 2 loaded with white bobbins right next to my sewing machine
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    Also from Harbor Freight 45mm rotary blades made for carpet cutters. Work beautiful in my Olfa cutters. 2 in a pack for $1.99 can;t beat that
    Iris Girl = April = fabric, Fabric FABRIC!!
    Time spent with cats is never wasted.
    Sigmund Freud

  8. #7
    Missouri Star

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    Dec 2012
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    Greater Cincinnati
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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    I have found that if you look, you can find good substitutes for things that are exoensive, just because they are called a specific thing.

    For instance, I needed a rollalong bag/cart for my sewing machune... My husband went yo Hatbir Freught, and bought me a great tool bag toll along... It looks just like the ones used for sewing machines, but has way more compartments for quilting tools...

    Also.... Bakers often use what is called a bench knife to separate dough.... They generally cost twenty dollars or more. I went to Kroger's, and bought the same tool for five bucks.....it was called something other than a. bench knife, do it was cheaper.

    My DD is in need of a carrying case for the Janome Jem Gold I gave her.... She will be looking for something other than a "sewing machine case"... for her small mavhine... Not going to pay bigger bucks for a dedicated carrying case.

    Same thing goes for seeing baskets.... Why pay $25-$45 for a "sewing basket"? There are lots of options.... I keep my hand seeing supplies in a dollar school box..... When I did a lot of hand piecing, I used pretty cosmetic bage, to carry my piecing & supplies. Some hand pieces kerosene things in a ziplock baggie..... I like brng able to tuck my sewing things in my hand bag...

    There is a uTube video out there of a Quilt Outloud show with Mark Lipinsky and the blond woman....can't remember her name... Where they went into various types of stores....and found great things that quilters could repurpose... It's a fun video...

    Oh... I use cheap hair Barretts instead of ecpensive Wonder Clips when hand stitching my bindings. They do a good job, and it 's no big deal if they get lost.... I get them at the Dollar Store....

    It's fun to look around, and discover quilty goodies that were meant for some other use...


    Sandy from Cincinnati


    AKA Kermit

  9. #8
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    Good idea for a thread imo. I don't have a brilliant hack like the light table you describe, but like Esgrandma, I made a pin dish using magnets. I hot glued them onto the bottom of the dish. It was an old 40s era Nippon dish that was my grandma's. I was happy to find a use for it, because she was a master quilter.

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  11. #9
    Missouri Star

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    Oct 2014
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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    Instead of buying a non-permanent ink pen for putting my quilting lines on a quilt and run the risk of the pen not washing out, I have learned to buy the narrow blue painters tape and stick it to the quilt and then FMQ next to it. In some instances I use the one inch pieces and lay them in parralel and then quilt perfect straight lines without marking on the quilt. I am not sure it is cheaper, but it certainly is safer. I have read where women buy the circular cutters for carpet at the hardware store for pennies on the dollar and then put those into their rotary cutter, but I never heard anyone speak if it worked or not. I have also read on this forum that a lady decided to use her plant caddy and placed the quilt on top of the plant caddy on her table during FMQ and it was easier to move the whole quilt around while making smoother curved stitches on the sewing machine.
    Years ago my father saw how the blocks of wood were manufactured for holding rotary cutter templates, so he made one for my mother and one for me. All he did was took a one by six piece of wood and then set his table saw to remove a slit in the wood all the way down the piece. He would then reset the table saw guide and do it over and over. I have had that thing for about 15 years now and use it every time I quilt

  12. #10
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: quilting 'hacks'

    I used foam insulation board and silicone spray to "hack" a drop in table with a slippery surface for my sewing machine. Now I have a 2.5' by 4' flat, slippery, no edged surface to quilt and sew large projects on.
    Sonic is learning to sew and quilt. .....

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