Looking for a teacher for your next quilt retreat, conference, or quilt show? Check out Find a Quilt Teacher, a new website connecting guilds, shops and quilt conference organizers with quilt teachers from around the world. You’ll find quilt teachers listed by name or by location, and each quilt teacher’s page contains a wealth of information including a teacher bio, how long they’ve been quilting and teaching, and what their particular specialties are. Online shopping for quilt teachers; who’d have thought?
Buy scented candles in small glass jars to impart a little ambiance to your quilting room or area. When the candle has burned low, clean out the wax and use the jar to store small scissors, thread snips, seam rippers, marking tools and other small, often used items close to your machine or work area. You can also use candle cups at your dressing table or in the bathroom to store cotton swabs, tweezers, clippers, lip- and eye-liners and makeup brushes. Elegant storage, easy to clean in the dishwasher, and virtually free!
When you ship a quilt as a gift or to an exhibit or show, label the contents “wallhanging” or “bedcover.” Avoid words like “quilt” or “artwork” to deter theft, and if you are shipping internationally do not use “textiles” as a descriptor. Many countries, including the United States, have limits on textile imports, and using the word textiles on the customs form may cause clearance delays.
Keep a reference file of notes for often used machine settings and details for bindings, decorative stitches and special techniques. Write down all the little details like the cut size of binding strips, the number of the presser foot, the stitch on the machine, the position of the needle, and even the type of fabric and thread you used. When you need to duplicate a technique, you won’t have to remember what you did the last time, or reinvent the wheel!
Machine embroidery can be a beautiful addition to your quilt designs. Use machine embroidered motifs in setting blocks or borders, or as parts of larger blocks. Quilt around the motifs right at the edge with a thread matching the background fabric, and the motifs will really stand out!
Cover machine embroidery motifs with scraps of fabric during machine quilting to prevent snags and wear on the embroidery threads. Use scraps of fabric anchored over the motifs with safety pins, and only remove the covers to quilt around the motif.
Keep pins, needles, rotary cutters, scissors and other potentially harmful notions tucked away in drawers or on high shelves when not in use to keep small children and animals safe. You just never know what kitty might find interesting or tasty, and animals and children are notorious for doing the unexpected!