Following on from last week’s post on preparation and piecing tools (available here), this week we’re looking at quilting, basting and binding tools.

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In the photo above we have the following:

A. Batting Tape – this is used to join pieces of batting together to create a larger piece. It is applied with an iron, so check your batting before applying to ensure there won’t be any adverse reactions.
B. Basting Pins – these curved safety pins are one of the more traditional basting options after the needle and thread tacking option. Pins are applied at regular intervals to hold the layers of backing, batting and top together during quilting.
C. Basting Spray – this is probably the most modern option, whereby a temporary adhesive spray is applied to the batting to stick it to the backing and the top. It washes out after the fact, but is great for holding all the layers securely together when you have a lot of handling in the quilting stage.

Note that you can also get tacking guns that work a bit like the guns that apply swing tags to clothes in shops, but I don’t happen to have one for a photo, sorry!

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In the photo above we have the following:

D. Chaco Liner – this can be used to mark stitching or quilting lines. It works by dispensing a small amount of chalk as you roll it along the fabric which can be brushed or washed off after you’ve finished.
E. Sewline Pencil – this can be used to mark stitching lines. There is a rubber at the other end which will erase the line, although I have to admit that I only use this on the backs of fabric to be on the safe side.
F. Frixion Pen – this is the most controversial of the marking tool options, so I will caveat with ‘this was not designed for sewing’. Heat from an iron will remove marked lines but if you freeze the item, then lines can reappear. It can also seem to alter the colour on some fabrics, although I’ve found that will wash out – test on a piece of fabric first. Saying all that, I do use these pens all the time, even on a quilt that’s gone into competition!
G. Hera Marker – this is the safest of all the marking tools as it doesn’t actually work like a pen/pencil, instead it marks creases to be followed when stitching.
H. Masking Tape – this can be used to mark straight quilting lines if you don’t want to use any kind of marker. Be careful not to sew over it though as it can be a bit of a pain to pick out of the stitches!
I. Quilting Gloves – these are used for free motion quilting on domestic machines as it gives the quilter a grip on the quilt as it’s maneouvred under the needle.
J. Supreme Slider – this is also designed for free motion quilting, and is placed on the bed of the machine to allow the quilt to slide around under the neelde more easily during the quilting process.

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In the photo above we have the following:

K. Bias Tape Maker – this is not a vital tool, but can be useful especially when making binding for mini quilts that don’t need double fold binding.
L. Glue Baste + Tips – this can be used to hold the binding securely in place before stitching down. It can also be used to glue bast seams when piecing. The different sizes of tips dictate how much comes out of the bottle at any one time.
M. Binding Clips – these are used to hold binding in place before stitching down. You can buy these in bulk very cheaply as hair clips from places like eBay.
N. Wonderclips – these are the normal sized wonderclips, and are again used to hold binding in pace before stitching it down.
O. Mitring tool – these are used to get nicely mitred corners on binding. I’ve seen several versions on my travels, I think I picked this one up in a quilt shop in Sedona, Arizona.

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In the photo above we have the following:

P. Colour Catchers – these are the first thing I put in a washing machine before I wash my quilts. I’ve never had a colour run yet, so I’m going to keep doing it!

There have been thousands of quilting tools made and sold over the years, these are just a selection of the tools in my collection, but feel free to tell me if you think there’s something amazing that I’m missing out on!

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