May 10, 2013

Learning and Sharing plus Giveaway


Geta Grama from Geta's Quilting Studio is hosting a blog hop this week, so we can share with each other tips we learned in our quilting journey. I am always amazed at quilters' willingness to share what they know with one another (why reinvent the wheel, right?).

What is a blog hop without a giveaway?  I have two gifts for a lucky quilter:

Smart sponsor!
$10 Gift Certificate from my favorite online source for fabrics, courtesy of Fat Quarter Shop!

and


A Fat Quarter Bundle of Riley Blake's Serenity line, courtesy of Riley Blake!

The details:

1. Leave a comment on this post.

Note: If you are a no-reply blogger - or you are not sure - you may want to include your e-mail address on your comment, using words such as 'at' and 'dot' in place of the usual symbols (this way you will not get spam email, and I will be able to reach you in case you are the winner!)

2. Bonus: leave me another comment telling me you are a follower, for an extra entry!

This giveaway will close May 16 at 5 pm. The randomly chosen winner will be announced on Friday, May 17, here at this blog. I will ship internationally, too!

You may want to create a file to record the tidbits you will collect as you visit all the creative blogs. Thanks, Geta, for your idea and for hosting this blog hop!

So, here is my contribution. I am pairing it down to 10 points, for your convenience.

1. A few of my favorite notions:  bodkin, seam ripper, 4" x 12" ruler, embroidery scissors.

2. For successful color schemes on your projects, take the time to learn about the color wheel, color values, and the advantages of playing with fabric texture. Value can make or break your designs, and fabric texture adds an extra dimension to your quilt.

3. About threads: purchase the best quality you can afford, even for piecing! If you use low-quality thread for piecing thinking the seams will be hidden anyway, you might be shortchanging yourself: tons of lint will accumulate in the gears of your sewing machine, causing thread breakage and other problems; thick threads will affect the overall size of your block; threads might endlessly break, and your project will take longer and be less enjoyable.

As for fabrics: you are spending soooo much time piecing and quilting your wonderful project, so why would you use anything but high-quality fabrics on your quilt??? Enough said...

4. For easy piecing, try the assembly line method: instead of piecing one whole block at a time (unless it is a sampler quilt), stitch each section of all blocks at once, then move on to the next, and so on. Use strong thin thread (such as Aurifil, my favorite!), clean and oil your machine before each project, and always start with a new needle. These few tips will ensure smooth piecing...

5. Art quilts are an alternative if you don't enjoy patchwork. You can create amazing landscapes or abstract designs using paint, thread, and embellishments. Sometimes, that is all I want to do: play with fabric. Have you tried it?

6. As for quilting your own quilts: don't spend hours on end practicing. Make a small wall hanging and start quilting it! Your lines will become smoother, you will quilt with more confidence, and soon you will venture into larger projects. Take advantage of different marking tools (for intricate designs, Golden Thread paper is my favorite tool, or use FriXion pen to design your own lines [be sure to test the pen on a scrap piece of the fabric before using it liberally - it may leave white marks on darker fabrics!]). Shorten your stitches when quilting lots of curves or custom patterns. When stitching in the ditch or around applique motifs, always work with monofilament!

7. Check out the tutorials on my blog by clicking here. Lots of cool techniques and projects!

8. Sewing Machine thoughts: for straight stitch, any machine which is in good repair will do. If you are planning on buying a machine, listen to your friends' experience with their own, then go to a store and take the machines for a 'test drive'. However, make sure whatever you buy has the 'needle down' feature and, if possible, that bar on the right side which allows you to lift the presser foot with your knee - it makes life so much easier! As for me, my Bernina is heaven!

9. Quilting books: they are the best! Eleanor Burns' Quilt in a Day series are fabulous books for beginners and seasoned quilters alike. Also, check out the books I have reviewed (click here) for insight on many great possible additions to your library.

10. My last advice: if you are planning on giving quilts away to friends and family members, DO IT NOW! Let them enjoy them, sleep under them, use them as they please. If needed, replace the gift after wear and tear. Quilts can be heirlooms, but they are to be enjoyed and not be folded and stashed away in a closet... If you want it to be carefully kept, give it to them inside frame and glass, but give it to them now. Watch them enjoy the gift...

Above all else, treasure the process of quilting!!!




169 comments:

  1. I love the look of that fabric!

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  2. I can only underline your item 3.) - by the best thread, because cheaper thread kills your sewing fun. I can do satin stich appliqué or embroidery in high speed with high qualtity thread, but the cheaper thread always breaks, it's a nuisance.
    And chain-piecing gets a lot of work done and you can even sew mindlessly if you just sew squares together. It's relaxing AND productive!
    Thanks for the chance!

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  3. All great tips for sure. Thanks for hostign a giveaway also.

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  4. Thanks for all the great tips and for the chance to win!

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  5. Thanks for the sharing the tips & tricks! I learn to quilt from the inner-webs, thanks to quilters like you! :)

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  6. I follow your blog via GFC and Google Reader; thanks for the chance!

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  7. Thanks for all the tips and for the opportunity to win your giveaway.

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  8. I'm a new follower. Thanks for the opportunity to win your giveaway.

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  9. Your tips are right on - thanks so much. This is going to be such an informative blog discussion. Can't wait to read about everyone's favorites.

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  10. I am your follower thru Google Reader. Great info. Thanks.

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  11. Great tips. Thanks for sharing.

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  12. Thanks for the useful advice!

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  13. I'm a follower! missquestedatgmail

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  14. Great tips!! So true about buying the best thread! Thanks for the chance to win!

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  15. oh, thanks for the chance to win this giveaway

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  16. I'm a follower with bloglovin'! and GFC.

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  17. Great tips! Thanks for sharing. I think we all find something new when we share our favourite tricks & tips!

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  18. Thank you for sharing! I totally agree with you about giving the quilts, I only made a few and most of them were offered to others - I was very satisfied seeing them appreciated, and I have also received quilted gifts, so this is the best approach to this! Thanks once again!

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  19. Thanks for sharing. Great advice - especially just get on with making things :-)

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  20. Thanks for the tips and giveaway.

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  21. Awesome advice - thanks for all the great pointers!!

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  22. I am following you via email - thanks for the heads up on this Share & Learn blog hop!!

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  23. Thanks for the hints and tidbits and thanks for a chance to win your fabulous giveaway!

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  24. I'm a follower. thanks for the chance to win.

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  25. This is a fantastic blog hop, so excited to hear what everyone is saying.

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  26. I am a follower, thanks for the reminder e-mail :)

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  27. great tips, thanks for sharing

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  28. I am a follower and I get email notices

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  29. Thanks for the tips and giveaway! I agree - give the quilts now. No one knows how long they have, so enjoy today!

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  30. Ganz lieben Dank für die tollen Tipps und die Email...

    LG Marion

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  31. Ich lese immer wieder gerne als Follower auf deinem Blog

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  32. Thanks for all the wonderful tips. I especially like #6 - practicing on a scrap sandwich is only good for testing tension, so I need to make some table toppers to practice designs. And thanks for the chance to win.

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  33. I'm a follower - thanks again.

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  34. This is a wonderful blog hop, isn't it? Reading all the helpful hints is really enjoyable. :)

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  35. Thanks for all the good hints. The only one I question is the oiling of your machine, my newest machine is not to be oiled; the rest do require oiling. I don't want to ruin that machine by oiling it. I love the idea of using good thread. It's a shame to have a great otherwise quality quilt and have the seams come apart due to poor quality thread. I don't think many sewists know there really is a difference in thread. Thanks for the generous giveaway.

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  36. Wonderful blog hop.... love all the tips. Thanks

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  37. I am a follower by email. Thanks

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  38. So many good points and tips. You shared lots of my favorites and a few new ones. Super post, and I love your reviews.

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  39. The tips are all goin to be saved by me for sure....pretty new to quilty/stitchy life...love it too! Appreciate all the help available thru Blogland! :)

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  40. I am definitely a follower! :)

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  41. Thank you for all those tips!
    I like these kind of bloghops, very useful.
    I recently bought a needle sharpener pad and it really helps to save on needles!

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  42. I'm a follower, thanks for the chance!

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  43. Thank you! I agree with all your points - especially the one about cheap thread an the last one about using our quilts!

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  44. Adorei a dica 6!! É o que preciso para tomar coragem e quiltar.

    Obrigada.

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  45. Sou seguidora do blog.

    Abraços.

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  46. Thanks for sharing your tips!!

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  47. I`m a follower.Thanks for the fun!

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  48. Thank you for the chance to win and sharing your tips!

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  49. Hi :) All good advice! Another idea for learning is to make pillows... they are great for learning new blocks and quilting techniques and everyone can use a new one for a gift LOL

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  50. Great tips! You are so right about good quality fabric and thread!

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  51. I follow you by e-mail.
    hulseybg at gmail dot com

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  52. Thanks for the giveaway! Great items!
    hulseybg at gmail dot com

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  53. Such beautiful fabrics!
    lenelson(at)mail(dot)com

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  54. I am a follower.

    lenelson(at)mail(dot)com

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  55. Thanks for the giveaway chance! :D

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  56. As a new quilter, I love all your tips.Thanks for sharing.

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  57. I am a follower by email.
    Thanks for the chance to win.

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  58. Oh what a great idea for a blog hop! I'm going to go and look at the other posts too! And I totally agree about thread, I never would have thought it would make such a difference, but it really does!

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  59. I am a follower of your blog.

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  60. I'm an ongoing follower of your blog via email

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  61. Great tips!!!
    Another is it's suppose to be fun!!!!

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  62. Thank you for linking to the party and for the great tips, Denise.

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  63. I am email follower at louster388atyahoodotcom:)

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  64. Lifting the presser foot with your knee sounds interesting! I visited a Bernina dealer this week just to look around.

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  65. Many thanks for the email! Really looking forward to all the tips, it's always great to learn something new that might prevent you from doing some mistakes that would've have been necessary :)

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  66. I'm one of your followers via Bloglovin :)

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  67. i follow by emAIL! Thats how I found out. :)

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  68. =) love your tips. I totally understand not wanting to waste time and energy on poor quality materials. I have little time right now, with school and family, to make something that will not last. Esp. when Joann Fabrics prices are $8-10/yd and quilting quality fabrics are $10-12. Not that much of a price difference.

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  69. I follow by email. Thanks for the heads up.

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  70. Lots of great tips. Thanks for sharing them.

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  71. Every day I learn something new from someone across the globe...today is from you...thanks for your tips..wishing you a superb weekend.

    Usha
    usharaneem@yahoo.com

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  72. Nice tips, I Love my embroidery scissors. I don't want to be too overdramatize but yes, please, if you are thinking of making someone a gift you should and soon. You really don't know how short life can be. I made someone dear to me a gift that I had been thinking about for a while. We were both happy, me to give and her to get. She enjoyed it for two weeks, then she passed. I was so happy I made it and she got to enjoy it even if it was just for two weeks :)

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  73. I am also a follower through email :)

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  74. Thanks for the tips and the chance to win.

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  75. Super great tips. I particularly like #10.

    SewCalGal
    www.sewcalgal.blogspot.com

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  76. I'm a follower via GFC

    SewCalGal
    www.sewcalgal.blogspot.com

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  77. Thanks for sharing your tidbits.

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  78. I enjoy receiving your blog with my morning email! Thanks!

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  79. I follow you through Bloglovin.

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  80. Thanks for the tips and the giveaway. vickise at gmail dot com

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  81. I am a follower via email. Thanks for the giveaway. vickise at gmail dot com

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  82. Thanks for all the tips. I completely agree about using quality thread and fabrics. I also agree that quilts are meant to be given and enjoyed ... used and well-loved ... and when they become worn, I have a good reason to make a new quilt for my loved ones ... :) Pat

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  83. I am a happy follower. Lovely giveaways ... thanks for chance to win ... :) Pat

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  84. I love my FriXion pen but be warned - patch test it on your fabrics as I have found with some (particularly darker fabrics) it can pull the colour right out when you apply the heat to remove the pen line. Could be very upsetting if you had used it to quilt your top and then their is a pale line under all your quilting stitches.

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  85. Thanks for the wonderful tips! I especially appreciated the fabric marking tips. I've never tried a FriXion pen but I plan to now. Thanks for the wonderful eye candy on your blog too!

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  86. I follow your lovely blog via email.

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  87. Thanks for sharing so many wonderful tips and thanks for the update on this giveaway!

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  88. Thanks for the great tips. Before I started quilting, I used to only change my needle when it broke or I needed a different type. Now I know better!

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  89. Thanks for all your tips. I couldn't agree more about using quality thread, what a difference that can make. Thanks for the chance at your giveaway.

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  90. Great set of tips. Thanks for the give away.

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  91. I follow you on Pinterest.

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  92. Great tips! Thanks for the generous giveaway!

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  93. Amazing idea about blog hoop.lovely giveaway,thank you for the chance t win it.Have a lovely day.

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  94. What great advice babscorbitt@gmail.com

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  95. I am a follower via bloglovin babscorbitt@gmail.com

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  96. This blog hop is great. Thank you fore the tips!

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  97. Hi Denise! It's great to meet you and I thank you for sharing all of the great tips and information. I'm a fan of Eleanor Burn's books too!
    Julie @ The Crafty Quilter

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  98. Thanks for your tips. Your suggestion to keep a file of all the great tips was right-on!! I am doing that.

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  99. Thanks for the tips. They are sound - but many people try to cut corners. Thanks for the chance to win, also!

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  100. Wonderful tips. Especially the one about using your quilts. I can't tell you now much it means to me to have my quilts used and loved. Like it to short to store special things in a closet!

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  101. Great tips. I wish I could hang on to my quilts just for a day or two but as soon as they are finished their new owner claims them and carries them off!

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  102. I'm a new follower and really enjoyed your post. Thank for hosting a giveaway!

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  103. Great tips! So nice to learn from others. I'm glad I was taught early on to use quality fabric and thread. Thanks for sharing with us.

    Thank you for a super giveaway and a chance to win.

    usairdoll(at)gmail(dot)com

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  104. I'm a new follower via BlogLovin.

    Thanks again for a chance to win.

    usairdoll(at)gmail(dot)com

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  105. Really enjoyed your tips. Here's hoping I win. Thanks for the chance.

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  106. Thank you for the tips! I like the tip on trying out the machine at the shop. My DH just purchased me a PE500 embroidery machine. I wanted a duel but after he read the reviews. He went with a PE 500. I have not had a chance to play with it since this past weekend was helping out my children due to surgery and did enjoy my grandchildren. Now I am on trip with my DH and brought the machine with me to play with it on his business trip. I also need to play with the color wheel. That is my biggest problem. Thanks for sharing....Judith, Texas

    and I am a follower

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  107. Oh my goodness. I didnt even think of doing a giveaway. You are so very nice. And thank you for stopping by my blog.

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  108. I enjoyed your last tip, about giving away your quilts, the best. I would add to that, USE your quilts!
    Mine get washed and worn, but so what - there are lots more coming down the pike.
    I'm not sure I get all the stuff about 'following' and giveaways, but I sure enjoy looking at and reading the blogs.
    Thanks for your comment on mine!

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  109. I enjoyed your last tip, about giving away your quilts, the best. I would add to that, USE your quilts!
    Mine get washed and worn, but so what - there are lots more coming down the pike.
    I'm not sure I get all the stuff about 'following' and giveaways, but I sure enjoy looking at and reading the blogs.
    Thanks for your comment on mine!

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  110. Thanks for the tips and the chance for the giveaway!

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  111. Great info. I have the bodkin and never figured out how to use it.

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  112. Thank you for the ten tips! My favorite notion tool is the seam ripper. My late father gave me one with a long hand turned handle that fits my larger hands perfectly. Of course, I would love to win the fabric too.

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  113. Thank you for the tips and the lovely giveaway!

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  114. Ótimos conselhos e dicas,só você mesmo.Tenho feito alguns presentes,mas não vejo ninguém usando...Acho que fica com pena rsrs.Os meus uso sem dó nem piedade,são tão quentinhos e macios.Obrigada por oferta estes tecidos são adoráveis.seguidora GFC e BLOGLOVIN.

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  115. Thanks for your generosity and your advice! I especially appreciate your comments about quilts to be used. I have a couple family members who regularly use the quilts I've given them. My mother, on the other hand, keeps her quilt stored in a pillowcase in her closet because "it is far to nice to be used." Maybe I'll have to make her a less nice one and she will feel comfortable using it. :)

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  116. I follow your delightful blog on Bloglovin.

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  117. Those are some great tips, thanks so much. And thanks a bunch for the giveaway :)

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  118. I am a new follower via bloglovin.

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  119. You have given us some great tips. I'm always looking for the most useful features of a sewing machine. When I'm ready to buy a new one, I'll know exactly which features I need. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  120. I usually don't think I need a new sewing machine, but a knee lifter sure would be nice to have. Now, how do I convince my DH?

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I am so glad you are taking the time to leave a comment. It is always nice to hear from you!

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