Clover White Marking Pen Love

Clover White Marking Pen review: Keep It or Bin It? I’ve blathered on about the Clover White Marking Pen before, but it bears repeating, especially after my “A-Ha” moment” the other day. This is why the White Marking Pen (Fine) from Clover rocks:

White marking pen mistakes

No, you’re not seeing double, I marked the first set of lines through the stencil on the border of this quilt, and it was in the wrong place, so I marked over it, figuring I’d be able to remember which lines were the right ones later. Yeah, right. And there were other parts of the marking on this quilt that were much worse, with so many lines and marks that it was likely to be impossible to figure out where to machine quilt when the time came.

But wait! I’d temporarily forgotten that you can use the iron to make the marks disappear:

White marking pen mistakes

Ah-la-peanutbuttersandwiches and A-Ha! A quick pass with the iron, and the marks were gone, and I could re-mark the lines in the proper place. This makes fitting continuous line borders easier too, since you can start at the corners and mark your way along, guestimating as you go how it will all fit together in the middle, and if you need to, you can erase a bit of it and remark it to make it fit better in the end.

And while the Clover White Marking Pen is ideal for really dark fabrics like this black Bali batik, I’ve used it successfully on even medium value printed fabrics, when nothing else would do. The ink is delivered via a roller ball like a Gelly Roll pen, and marking lightly is best. Also note that the ink is virtually invisible until it starts to dry, and will become fully white and opaque when completely dry. The white ink sits on top of the fabric a bit, so that it’s easier to see under the sewing machine lamp. It’s become my go-to marker when I’m faced with a difficult marking task.

It is a bit expensive, selling for around $6.50 per pen in shops, and to be honest, I sometimes marvel at how fast the ink in the pen disappears, but it’s so worth it when no other marker in the arsenal is up to snuff. You can find it cheaper if you scout the Internet a bit, and buy in multiples so that the shipping costs per pen are cut down.

Definitely a Keep It notion in my book! If you’ve used it, share your experiences, good or bad, here!

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New Glasses and a New ‘Do

It’s been a week (and a day) since I picked up my new glasses, and a week since I visited my favorite hairdresser, Jessica, in Stuttgart. I have to say that the glasses came off with more success than the hair, though the glasses are the cause of the current dissatisfaction with the hair.

New Glasses and a New 'Do

Backstory: I haven’t had a pair of glasses that I liked for more than about a week (if even that long) ever. And I’ve never been able to continuously wear them anyway. I’m nearsighted, so I need them to drive and watch TV across the room but I can’t wear them to read or do anything where I have to focus close up. I get this instant headache if I use my glasses to read, and I do mean instant, like within seconds the back of my head between my ears and down my neck is absolutely pounding.

I don’t have this problem with contact lenses; I can read just fine, no headaches, although I do have to hold the book farther away than I do without contacts. I’ve told this to every eye doctor I’ve ever been to, and one of them suggested bifocals a few years ago, with no correction on the bottom part of the lens. Sounded good in theory, didn’t work in practice. I still got the pounding headaches. Those lenses went back and after that, I’ve just stuck with contacts when I go out and have to drive, glasses (with frames I hate) to watch movies or drive quick trips if I’m too rushed to put contacts in, and no eye correction the rest of the time. I know what the inside of my house looks like, and I’m not THAT blind, so I just deal with it and don’t wear anything when I’m at home.

But lately, since the big 4-0 came around, my near vision is starting to go as well. I’ll bet that some of you knew this was coming, right? Now, even without my contacts in, I have to hold things farther away to see them, and then there’s the computer monitors, which are either too far away or not far enough, depending on the day (or something). And those little tiny numbers on the tops of machine needles? I swear they don’t even exist anymore. Since my glasses were eight years old (my bad), I took a trip to the eye doctor finally.

Glasses

So I now have progressive lenses. Yep, no-line trifocals. I’m feeling old, people. And dang, these lenses were expensive! This is what happens when you can’t see properly out of single vision lenses anymore I guess. I’m still trying to get used to them, and figure out which part of the lenses to look through at which time, though that headache threatens as soon as I do it wrong, so I’m hoping it’s just a matter of time before it’s automatic and all.

I did manage to find a pair of frames that I like pretty well, and they look okay on me, I think. I’m not sure what attracted me to this pair, but maybe it was the combination of the swirly, mother of pearl looking sides, the little bit of bling in the raised silver dots at the temple, and the iridescent metallic jade green lens frame in front. All of those elements must appeal to the color and embellishment junkie quilter that I’ve become lately.

And the hair? The style I had was in conflict with the glasses; I’ve been wearing a no-bangs look lately, and I had this chunk of hair on the side by my eye that got hung up on the side of the frames that just wasn’t working. I told Jessica about it and showed her what I didn’t like, and she suggested cutting in some wispy bangs. Sounded good in theory, big mistake in practice. Then it was worse, in a different way, than it was before. I looked young before, younger than I am anyway, and could probably have passed for say, 30-ish. After the cut, I looked totally my age, or maybe more. It was just wrong, and the glasses weren’t helping so I was really feeling the pain. And feeling old.

I say “was” because I tackled the hair this morning with a pair of sewing scissors and got those “wispy bangs” straightened out to my satisfaction, and I’m feeling a bit better about it all. I might be able to actually live with it, instead of going back to her to have a re-do. *sigh* I’ve had this love/hate relationship with my hair for the past few years anyway, since when I have bangs, I can’t get them to cooperate all the time, and when I don’t have bangs I feel like my face looks too long and maybe too severe. Now I guess with the glasses, it’s back to the bangs for a while. I look younger again, for now. And sometimes, I can even see past my nose.