My Favorite Quilty ThingsTo write a post about all of my favorite quilty things would take more time than I ever have, so I am going to stick with one favorite in each category. Keep in mind I probably have several I could list for most of the categories, but that would just get ridiculous.
Favorite Pattern: Chain Reaction
This pattern comes from the book “Dare to Be Square” by Boo Davis and I have made this quilt at least 10 times. It is simple, but very versatile. I have used complex prints, which work so well for the centers and all solids. I have adjusted the size depending on who will receive the quilt and even made a square version and a place mat version. This is my “go to” pattern when I need a quick gift for someone. The rest of the patterns in the book are wonderful, too, including a punk rock skull and an awesome robot.
Favorite Fabric Designer: Denyse Schmidt
This is a hard one because there are so many amazing designers out there. However, Denyse Schmidt has been an enduring favorite of mine since I first started quilting. Her fabric designs have a retro, funky vibe and the colors she uses are some of my favorites, very earthy and natural. And bonus: she has a line available at JoAnn’s, where finding quality designer fabrics is very rare.
My quilty friends know I love her, too, and for a swap last year, one of them got her autograph for me at a class and made me this. I love it!
Favorite Solids: Kona Cotton
Kona Cotton solids have been my favorite for years. I love the feel of them and the selection of color shades is unmatched. Nearly every quilt I make that has solids in it, is made with Kona. With over 300 different colors, they have just about anything you could ever need. They do tend to fray a little more than I like, but everything else about them is wonderful, including the fact that JoAnn’s carries them. Aren’t they just beautiful?
Favorite Rulers: Creative Grids
The days of cutting fabric with scissors are long gone. No quilter can live without a rotary cutter, cutting mat and acrylic rulers. My favorite rulers are Creative Grids. I find them to be accurate, durable and easy to read. I have tried several other brands, but they have a lot of distracting information or colors on them, are hard to read, or the acrylic is not as thick. I also love the subtle grippiness Creative Grids rulers have on the back, which helps with slipping and sliding – very important when you are cutting with a very, very sharp blade.
Favorite Rotary Cutter: Olfa
I have tried Fiskars and a couple of other brands, but Olfa cutters fit more comfortably in my hand, have the most sensible locking system and have the best weight to them. The first cutter I ever used was an Olfa and I liked it very much, even though I sliced off the side of my finger with it. Twice. It’s a love hate relationship with the blades – you love them to be super sharp so you can be more efficient with your cutting, but you hate how sharp they are when you slice off the side of your finger. Twice. I have since purchased two or three more in a variety of sizes. They are the only cutters I will ever buy and when I am in a situation where I have to use a different brand, I just grit my teeth and look forward to getting back to my Olfa.