Quilting Tips

There are all manner of tips submitted to Fons & Porter, from funny free motion quilting tips and surprising quilt binding techniques to clever ways to organize fabric and store your fabric scissors! The Fons & Porter editors consider every tip that’s sent to us, sharing those that are particularly creative or unique. We value all of our fellow quilters and their ideas! Take a look for yourself – you might find something that enhances your quilting journey.

Safe Needle Disposal

I often get samples of perfume in little glass containers. I use the containers to dispose of used needles. When they’re full, I toss them into the trash without worry that someone will be stuck with a needle. Linden Sofer Houston, TX Fons & Porter Hand Quilting Needles Size 7-9-10 20 ct.  

Medical Info Card

While at a quilt retreat, a new quilter to our group went into a diabetic coma. We didn’t know her medical history, and the friend she came with wasn’t there at the time. We wasted a lot of time trying to find the friend to get information. Now everyone who comes to our retreats fills out an index card listing an emergency contact person,…

Strip Storage Tray

I cut leftover fabric into 2″-wide strips, and use them for scrappy Log Cabin blocks. I store them in two plastic silverware trays from the dollar store-lights in one tray, darks in the other. It’s easy to keep the pieces in order for quick assembly.Hodge Sousa, Pennsburg, PA

Scrap Storage Jar

I use a plastic pretzel container for storing small scraps. It’s easy to find what you need for a paper piecing or scrap quilt project because you cansee through the container.Suzy Bridges, Lawndale, NC

Easy Ribbon Dispenser

Gum containers with snap-shut lids make perfect dispensers for ribbon and trims. Roll up the ribbon, place it in the container, and thread the end through the opening. You can pull out only what you need and the rest stays neatly in the container.Donna Coppin, Fresno, CA

Point Protectors

I bought a pack of foam doorknob hangers at a hobby store, and cut them into pieces about ½” square. I use them with flat-head pins when I machine quilt. I like these better than safety pins for basting because they lie flat and are easier to use.Shirley Whited, Baxter, TN

Divided Needle Storage

A small embroidery floss container is perfect for storing sewing machine needles. You can store a different size in each compartment so it’s easy to find the one you need.Deb Shafer Winterset, IA

Magnetic Instruction Stand

I use a magnetic stand for my cutting instructions. I find that it’s more convenient to have the instructions upright than flat on the table, where they always seem to be in the way. I also use the stand on my sewing table so I can easily follow the instructions as I sew. Joyce Marrs, Dayton, Ohio

Handy Fabric Kits

I like to keep my fabric and kits in paper bags rather than the plastic ones that stores use. You can buy these inexpensive bags at hobby stores. I type a label to attach to the bag including name of kit, contents of bag, and anything I need to purchase to complete the project. They line up neatly on…

Memories in a Square

Since my granddaughters were small, they have colored fabric squares with crayons. I back the fabric with freezer paper to stabilize it and so the girls know where the designs should stop. We label each square with the year. When they graduate from high school, I will make each of them a quilt using their blocks.Jo Ann Bailey, Charles Town, WV

Pincushion Cuff Idea

I cut the top off an old sock to use as a pincushion. It’s comfortable and doesn’t get in my way or slip around on my wrist.Dorothy Pugh, Warrensburg, IL

Yo-Yos, Ma!

Instead of wrestling with small circles while basting around the edge of yo-yos, I draw circles on fabric, and then baste inside the drawn lines. Then I cut out the circles, being careful not to cut the thread tails!Marilyn Sohn Sahuarita, AZ