Tuesday Tip: Thangles – An Easy Way to Make Half Square Triangles

Do you ever wish there was a simpler way to sew a whole batch of half square triangles? Perhaps you would really like to do an Ocean Waves quilt or a classic Bear Paw quilt but dreaded the idea of having to sew and square up a zillion half square triangles.

Well, for many years now, our shop has sold a line of paper packs in various sizes called “Thangles”. These easy to tear paper packs come with simple instructions. In fact, we have often included a packet of the desired size in our quilt kits if the quilt design features a whole bunch of half square triangle units. Yes, these Thangles are that good!

Think about it: no more math of adding 7/8″ and all that. What if all you had to do is cut strips and sew on a line?

Thangles are an easy accurate way to make half square triangles in very little time. They come in a variety of sizes and are super easy to apply to the quilt project you are already trying to sew. The first thing you do is decide on the size you need for your “finished” half square triangle. Finished meaning the size once sewn into your quilt with the seam allowance off.

Thangles are available in our store (and via our website) for all finished half square sizes from 1/2″ to 6″ finished. Each size you want to achieve is available in its own package of specially created papers.

Here’s a video to demonstrate how they work:

We really hope you will consider using Thangles the next time you have quilt pattern requiring half square triangles.

Happy stitching!

 

Creative Grid Top Sellers

With so many rulers available to quilter’s today it can be overwhelming mentally to build a practical library of pieces you will love and use.
We’ve compiled a list of our top selling basic rulers.  If you only have a few rulers in your inventory or are looking to add to your collection make sure these rulers are on the list.

Creative Grids rulers feature fine black & white markings, 1″ grid markings, non-slip embedded gripper, turn-a-round feature, centering lines, 30°, 45°, 60° angles.

So if you are just starting out or or looking to add one or more to your collection these first five are excellent choices.

First up of the ‘basics’ and ‘must haves’ is the 6-1/2″ square ruler. Great for small blocks and mini quilts and is availble HERE>

2) The 12-1/2″ Square is excellent for cutting larger pieces or squaring the most common larger block sizes. Order the 12-1/2″ square HERE> 

3) Perfect for cutting strips is the 6-1/2 inch x 24 1/2 inch ruler available HERE>

4) Ideal for cutting half square triangles and charm squares is the 4-1/2 inch x 8-1/2 inch ruler HERE>

5) The 6-1/2 inch by 12-1/2 inch ruler is convenient for portability to classes and retreats.  Order the 6-1/2 inch by 12-1/2 inch ruler HERE>

The next four on the list are specialty rulers and tools. We’ve included videos so you can see how they work.

6) 60 Degree Diamond Ruler – Increase your diamond design possibilities with the 60 degree Diamond Ruler. Cut 60 degree diamonds up to 8 1/2 inches; hexies up to 8-1/2 inches; and 60 degree triangles up to 8-1/2 inches. Maximize the design potential by cutting them from strip sets. There are even markings included to cut 120 degree side setting triangles. Find it HERE>

7) Pineapple Trim Tool for 6″, 8″ or 10″ blocks. Create perfect 6; 8; or 10 inch finished Pineapple blocks by squaring up each round of strips as they are sewn. Since each round of strips is squared up before the next set is added, the blocks are perfectly square. The cutting requirements for the center square and the strips are printed right on the ruler. Find it HERE>

8) Slim Machine Quilting Tool. Want to master machine quilting with rulers but not sure where to start? It’s time for you to meet Slim, your new home machine quilting best friend. Angela Walters, machine quilting author and teacher, designed slim with you in mind! This versatile ruler is the perfect way to finally get comfortable using rulers while machine quilting. Find it HERE>

9) Squiggy Machine Quilting Tool. Squiggy may look different that your normal machine quilting ruler, but trust us, it’s your go-to ruler for machine quilting serpentine lines and wavy designs. The serpentine line is a curvy design that’s perfect for quilt borders and sashings. It adds beautiful texture and depth to your quilts, but can be difficult to free-motion quilt.
Find it HERE>

Hopefully this list helps 🙂

Clothesline Projects

Have you ever heard of sewing with cotton clothesline? You know the sturdy stuff used for hanging your clothes to dry?  Well there are some beautiful projects you can make that are no where near related for it’s recommended use like tying up your tomato plants or emergency rope to be kept in your car.

Here are a few…

There is also a book available “It’s A Wrap” by Susan Breier for Martingale Publishing.

Wind, wrap, and sew fabric strips into fantastic containers! Start with a plate shape to learn the technique. Then experiment with four basic container styles to create round, oval, square, and other shapes. Create purses, baskets, and bowls in an endless variety of sizes, shapes, and colors Simply wrap fabric strips around cotton clothesline, coil into the desired shape, and secure with machine stitching Special sections on lids, handles, and embellishments offer unlimited options for your own variations. 

Watch a video to see how it sewing with clothesline works

Need clothesline?  We have it in store or online here>

Sew Steady Wish Table

Have you seen or heard of Sew Steady Tables? They are a pretty amazing custom sewing machine extension table. You enter the make and model of your sewing machine when ordering and it is cut to the right size for your machine.

Right now we are offering a Wish Table Holiday Package which we have been running for a few weeks. Due to the popularity of this item we have extended the the sale to December 31st, 2018

The Wish Table Holiday Package includes:

  • Wish 22-1/2″ x 25-1/2″ Sew Steady Table Features include: 3 Rounded edges 9″ x 14″ blue compartmentalized notions tray, holes in the table for circle sewing and Circle Sewing Tool.
  • NEW GRID GLIDER is a extremely slick polyester mat that has a 12″x20″printed grid including seam allowances, and degrees to meet all your sewing and quilting needs.
  • 26″ x 26″ Big Travel Bag

The Wish Table is made of the same high-quality acrylic as all the Sew Steady Tables and Inserts. The NEW Wish Table includes several features as requested by quilters and sewers alike:

– 3 beveled edges
– 9″ x 14″ blue compartmentalized notions tray
– Circles Sewing Tool
– Universal Table Grid
– Table Lock

Watch the video below to see how they are installed.

And if you own and love sewing with your old Singer Featherweight then you will love the Classic Featherweight Extension Table.

Inspired by the sewing machine that never goes out of style, the Classic Featherweight Table is made exclusively for the Black and Gold Singer Featherweight 221. Black acrylic is printed with gold details, including a 16″ ruler on the front edge. This 17-3/4″ x 22-1/2″ Table also comes with a bottle of Sew Steady Acrylic Shine.

This would be a wonderful addition to your sewing setup.

Steamfast Mini Iron

steamfast2

The Steamfast mini iron has become very popular for quilters. We received a shipment of them here at the shop and have enjoyed testing it. This mighty little iron heats up super fast, in less than a minute, produces great steam when you need it and yet it fits into the palm of your hand.

One of our staff members purchased this iron for her young granddaughter to use when sewing patchwork. What a great idea to have a smaller iron like this to make it easier for young sewers who are learning to use an iron to press seams.

It is strong enough for everyday use at home, yet lightweight and compact for taking along with you. This time of year, many quilters are travelling and going to retreats and this iron fits into its own drawstring travel bag to tuck in with your quilting supplies. The non-stick soleplate glides over your patchwork as you put together your blocks. We found that there’s plenty of steam when you use the fill cup to put water into this mighty little iron.

The iron itself measures about 5 long x 3″ wide and comes with a nice long cord to reach the outlet. It weighs less than a pound. This iron comes with a heat up indicator. Check out this video below for some other information about this iron.

Note for left handed quilters:In closing, the only drawback to this iron is the location of the cord as it attaches to the iron. I found that the cord is in the way of where you want to iron as you use this appliance. The cord comes out of the back right side of the iron and if you hold the iron in your left hand, the cord is right there, kind of in the way. However, I still really liked the performance of this iron!