When sewing a straight line instead of using both hands to guide your fabric just put one finger where you want to end up. Your machine will automatically gravitate towards your finger for a perfect straight line!
Tape or glue a measuring tape to the edge of your table. This will provide a quick and easy tool for measuring projects and fabric.
Place a rubber band around your sewing machine foot pedal to keep it from sliding around. No need to go out and purchase rubber bands! Just save a rubber band from your produce! This tip also works on piano pedals for digital pianos!
Use soap to make stubborn pins a little more slippery. This will allow you to push the pins through multiple layers of fabric a little more easily. Simply push your pins into a bar of soap and start pinning!
Use tape to mark a new stitching guideline on your machine. Make sure to remove the tape as soon as you are done with your project to avoid leaving tape residue on your machine. You can also use tape to mark a stitch line one your project. This is useful for marking a line for top stitching.
When inserting a drawstring, put a safety pin on each end. Pin one to your project so that you don't accidentally pull the cord all the way through! Use the other pin to push the cord through the casing.
Use pipe cleaners and coffee stir sticks to create a DIY sewing machine duster! Cut a small length of pipe cleaner using your kitchen scissors (not your good sewing scissors!). Fold the pipe cleaner in half and insert the two ends into a coffee stir stick. You should have a small loop of fuzzy wire sticking out of the stick. Use this end to clean your machines, especially your bobbin! This quick and inexpensive project makes a great stocking stuffer for quilters!
When collecting materials for a quilt project carry swatches of the fabric you already have selected with you. Use pinking shears to cut a small swatch of each fabric and use a safety pin to pin it to your purse or keychain. This way you always have your swatches for last minute trips to the quilt store!
When hand stitching, mark two lines on your thumb indicating the distance between stitches. Refer to these marks to create even stitches.
Turn your project using a straw and a stick! Push the straw inside of your project. Push your stick into the straw from the outside of your project. Remove the straw and gently continue turning your piece!
Use a standard filing cabinet to 'file' fabric. You can hang your fabric on file folders and other filing support systems.
Use color catching sheets when washing quilts for the first time. You can find these at the grocery store.
Shop your stash! Pick out a few patterns. Look through your stash and pull out fabrics and notions for each pattern. Bag up each project so that they are all ready to work on. Make a list of any additional items you need to finish up the project. Modern Flowers Skinny Quilt is perfect for a stash project!
Use clear nail polish to seal the knots on a button. This will keep your button secure!
Looking for a new way to store your pins? Glue a magnet to the bottom of a cute dish. The magnet will keep your pins from sliding off the dish!
Have a ton of scraps to use up? Start making scrappy quilts! Start a scrap fabric exchange with other quilters. This will help increase the diversity of your scraps. A great project to do is a pineapple table runner or block! Use the pineapple tool to make beautiful scrappy pineapple blocks each time! Do you have larger scraps? Consider creating an I Spy Quilt!
A lot of times a quilt show will advertise on a nice sturdy bookmark. Hold onto these bookmarks to use when you're paper piecing. They are perfect for folding your paper over and then holding your ruler in place. A great way to make paper piecing easier and to recycle!
Have a small quilt or wall hanging? Use 505 spray to quickly and easily baste your project. Simply spray a light coat and stick down your layers. One can will go a long way! Find some at your local quilt shop, Walmart, or online.
When tracing a pattern use freezer paper. You can still see through it to easily trace and it’s sturdy. You can also use your iron on a low setting to press it to your fabric instead of pinning it to cut out your pieces. You can use the iron on each piece up to 10 times.