Are you still wondering what to give your quilty friend for the holidays? Sure there are journal covers and zip pouches to make, but if you are running out of time and would rather purchase a product for your friend, I put together a tiny list of things you might not have thought of.
First, my new seam ripper:
I recently listened to a podcast by the lovely Sandy at Quilting for the Rest of Us, where she reviewed this seam ripper and a couple others. After hearing her thoughts, I wanted to try it myself, so I ordered one. It does look a little scary, but it works really well. You use it by sliding the scalpel between the layers of fabric.
I found this ripper EXTREMELY useful when paper piecing (it is really hard to use a regular seam ripper when your stitch length is so short), but I've also used it with regular sewing and applique stitches. I think it would also work really well if you had to undo any satin stitching or machine embroidery. You can get it at the Havel's website. $10 may seem like a lot for a seam ripper, but it comes with blade refills, so I will last you quite a while.
My next recommendation would be great for anyone who does applique or paper piecing and frequently has to trace patterns. The Crayola Light Up Tracing Pad:
I totally stole this from my daughter! It is super thin and light and uses a couple of batteries, so it is extremely portable. The size of the light up space is roughly 8.5 x 11 - so the size of a sheet of regular copy paper. It is great for paper piecing (checking to be sure that first piece of fabric is placed properly), and would be great for tracing applique shapes.
Now, I've seen and heard of people taking storage boxes and filling them with tap-on lights. When the costs add up, that makeshift version is about the same as this, but it is much less portable. Also! As I write this, the price on the Amazon link is $35, BUT I've seen it closer to $25 on Amazon (you just have to check periodically), AND I saw the same toy at Target last week for $20 (regular price). So shop around.
For the free motion quilter:
Machinger Quilting Gloves
Both of these products make free motion quilting on a domestic quilting machine so much easier. The gloves help you grip the fabric to move it around easier, and some say it alleviates the strain on your shoulders as you quilt. I tend to hunch no matter what, so I can't really attest to this benefit.
The Supreme Slider just makes your quilting table surface slippery, thus making your quilt move around with less friction. I use both products, and love them.
For the quilter who has everything......get something completely NEW.....
This book is available from some of the authors' websites now (like HERE at Fresh Lemons Quilts or HERE at Swim, Bike, Quilt), but the regular release date is not until December 31st, meaning it is highly unlikely that your friend already has this book. This means you can pre-order it from your bookstore, or Amazon, OR you can buy directly from the authors. I love to support the authors directly, especially if you want an actual book to present instead of an IOU.
Well, there you go. I hope I gave you a few new ideas for gifts (or something to put in your own stocking).
Thanks for reading,