Nellie"s Needles

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Tips From My Studio

Finally, my table was cleared in preparation to make a backing for a quilt as well as to layer said quilt with batting and that new back. In the process, fabric needed to be pressed. I'd like to take this opportunity to share my solution to NOT having space in my studio for an ironing board.
I use one of those ironing pads that are made to fit a craft table. In the photo above it's folded in half at the end of my table. That's a pretty big pressing area ... much larger than any ironing board top. I could unfold it and use more of the table for pressing, but I've found that to be awkward since I can only walk around two sides of my craft table. When the pad is not in use it gets folded up and stored under the table next to the small rectangular ironing board that you see standing on edge.

That small board is used a lot for pressing seams and is usually out on the corner of the table next to the iron. As for the iron, it's lives on that trivet so it's at the ready when I need it.
I love that portable light fixture. It has a daylight florescent bulb that switches on when the lamp part is swung up from the base.

My other tip is for sewing consistent and straight seams.
I use the 1/4" sewing foot made for my Pfaff machine. I also have the foot that has a metal flange at the outside edge to guide the edge of the fabric against. However, I've found that taping a stack of post-it notes to the bed of my machine and the plain foot works best. Having that long straight edge to align the fabric so far in front of the needle helps to get a very straight and accurate seam. Also, any information that is particular to the project that's being sewn can be written on the top post-it note.

Soon I'll tell you about the quilt that got my table cleared and is being sewn in that last picture.


Vicki W said...

I agree with you about the 1/4" seam - I measure for each quilt I am making and I haven't found a 1/4" foot that I can reliably count on consistently. It's not a machine issue, it's a fabric and thread issue.

Debra said...

I am almost to the point of not caring if I have a ¼" seam or not-which means I am doing a lot more abstract stitching than I thought possible. Being so precise is boring to me now. Or, maybe I am getting lazy! *wink*

Libby Fife said...

I love that pressing setup. What a great idea. I wish I had space to accomodate that.

Gail P said...

I thought that it was just me who can't get the 1/4 inch foot to work properly! Nice tip about the post it pad. I use an old ironing board pad for quick pressing. It's folded and sits on an old dresser next to my sewing area and now that I've seen your trivet the iron sits on an old tile. Thanks for the tips!

Heather said...

I don't like ironing boards Nellie and do most of my ironing on a table top. Sewing a straight and continuous line/seam is always a challenge for me.

Michele Bilyeu said...

totally fabulous idea!

as soon as i have a life and two arms of my own, i am so trying this