Skip to main content

Quilting Maintenance Tips

Have you already stopped reading? For me, quilting maintenance just wastes valuable time that I
could be using to sew or shop for fabric. Also, what exactly needs maintenance? If you have to ask yourself this question, the answer is probably all of it. Here’s a quick list of maintenance items I perform.

1. If it can be changed, change it.

Machine needles and rotary cutter blades.

Most of these items are relatively inexpensive. I’m cheap so I cling to a cutter blade until it’s no longer even circular in shape. Replacing them can make a huge difference. All of sudden it doesn’t feel like I’m dragging nails over a chalkboard when I cut fabric. I realize I’m wasting time trying to use stuff that no longer works, and I’m potentially damaging my project. So, I’ve become better about changing things when they need it. I like to evaluate the sharpness of my tools after one or two projects.

2. If it can be reached, dust it.

The bobbin case, cutting mat, rulers, sewing table and fabric shelves. 

Come on, admit it. You’ve removed the components of your machine to get under the bobbin case and discovered Sasquatch’s cousin living in there. It’s sort of funny for three seconds until I think about the damage it could be causing to my current project or permanently to my machine. Even simple things like my cutting mat, rulers and fabric shelves need a good cleaning to extend their life too.

3. If sunlight can reach it, evaluate its placement.

Fabric, UFOs, finished quilts. 

I have a window in my primary sewing space and while sunlight can’t directly reach the entire room, it reaches enough that if I leave something sitting for too long, it may become discolored. And if you’re like me, your sewing isn’t limited to one space. I like to think my entire house is my sewing room but the other occupants of the home don’t agree. Regardless, my supplies end up everywhere, sometimes for extended periods of time. Sunlight or other light sources can do harm if supplies just sit there.

4. If it can be found, document it.

Scraps, UFOs and supplies. 

I’ll admit that even though I’m a fabric hoarder - I just like having fabric in my presence – I get annoyed when I’m almost done with a project and then unearth a really cool piece of fabric that would have been perfect in it. Keeping an inventory of fabrics (yardage, pre-cuts and scraps), UFOs, supplies and other quilting resources saves me a bunch of time, money and frustration.

5. If it looks scarce, replenish it.

Fabric.

Enough said.


What's your #1 quilting maintenance tip?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Quilt Project Tracking Document

Have you ever found yourself staring at a WIP not knowing where you left off? Have you ever started to fill out a quilt show form and realized you didn't have all the details needed? There are several missing details on quilts I've made that I sure wish I would have better tracked! A couple years ago, I started a quilt project tracking document to keep better record of my quilts.

The document has basic information like project name, year started, pattern, fabric, status (cut, pieced, quilted, bound) and year finished. There's also a general notes field so I can add whatever detail I'd like to have down the road. It's been exciting to look back at the document and see what I've accomplished! I have a current projects tab and a completed projects tab so I have an accurate look at what I'm working on. I tend to work on 10-20 projects at a time, so it's easy to forget where I was or what else I need to work on without the document. Since I am a pattern writ…

Tips for Getting Your Sewjo Back

We’ve all been there. We have a little free time to sew, so we make our way to our sewing room/corner/nook and we just stare. We start feeling annoyed at ourselves for having too much fabric or too many UFOs or too many less-than-perfect seams and we walk away in a funk. Our sewjo is gone and we don’t know what to do to get it back. Here are a few tips I use to level-set my expectations and get my machine humming again.

1) Start SMALL

Make a block. Make a bag. Make the miniest of mini quilts that I can. Just make something. Sew together a few scraps. Make binding (whether I have an actual project for it or just feel like it’ll be a good one to have on hand one day). Find a free tutorial for some project what I can put fabric to the machine and be done. The reason to start small is that there’s an intense feeling of satisfaction that can come from finishing something. If my goal was just to sew together a block and I do it, my motivation level rises – which even if it’s just a little, …

Scrapper's Paradise QAL Starts March 17

The Scrapper’s Paradise QAL (quilt along) starts March 17 and runs for 8 weeks! You can join the fun and use up those scraps that have been collecting dust bunnies in your sewing space :)



There are great giveaways from awesome sponsors to keep you motivated during the QAL. There will be a weekly newsletter with details and we’ll keep each other accountable on Instagram using the tag #scrappersparadiseqal.

This is also a good time to dig out pre-cuts as the updated pattern offers suggestions of how to cut and use mini square packs, square packs and FQs! Speaking of the pattern, it’s on sale right now in my Etsy shop, so grab a copy and click below to sign up and join the fun!

Pick Up a Copy of the Scrapper’s Paradise Pattern

ScrappersParadiseQAL Newsletter Sign Up

ScrappersParadiseQAL Schedule Details