“I’m an idiot.” Have you ever said this to yourself when you’ve made a quilting mistake? I did just last Saturday, as I unpicked the quilt block I was working on for the 2nd time. Frustration can mount quickly when things go wrong.
Plus, there are so many ways that things can go wrong! Saturday’s issue was putting the wrong side of the fabric onto right side of the fabric. Grrr! I’m sure you’ve never done that! Or, picking up the wrong piece and sewing it on. Or even the dreaded act of sewing a piece the wrong direction. That’s a common one of mine!
I think we need to approach mistakes a little differently. We refer to our “corrective” tools as seam rippers, or unpickers. “Seam ripper” sounds violent and unproductive, and unpicker sounds like something involving a nose. So, let’s refer to it as “corrective sewing”, and the tools as “corrective sewing devices.” This sounds so much more positive! Plus, there’s a little secret I’ll tell you a little later.
Now let’s take a look at some of the options for our corrective sewing devices.
The one I love most I acquired at a quilt show in Utah. The maker is a local guy that has sold at many local quilt markets and shows. Luckily, he now has an Etsy store so anyone can buy them! They are beautiful, hand-turned wood with a high quality metal “corrective device”. They’re called Westenskows, and they have several different styles. I have one by my sewing machine, one by my couch where I hand sew, and one with my “take-it” bag.
Beautiful corrective sewing devices from Westenskows.
Another great company that has cool devices is Famoré Cutlery. They have my other favorite corrective sewing device, which I use with my long arm. It has a little hook that slips right under the stitch. They’re called the Mini EZ Stitch Snip. They were actually first made as medical stitch removers! Also from Famoré, the Easy Glide Surgical Seam Ripper. I’ve used this type of corrective device, also, and I like them.
Mini EZ Stitch Snips and Easy Glide Surgical Seam Ripper from Famoré Cutlery.
Here’s a fun one that my friend, Jane gave me: The Seam-Fix Seam Ripper/Thread Removal Tool. It has a ribbed plastic end that picks up those annoying little threads that are hanging on. Plus, it comes in cute colors.
Seam-Fix Seam Ripper/Thread Removal Tool.
Fons & Porter have and Ergonomic Seam Ripper that is designed to fit easily into the hand and is soft cushioned for comfort.
Fons & Porter Ergonomic Seam Ripper.
I even have The Mighty Bright Lighted & Magnified Seam Ripper, that another friend, Jerrie, gave me. The older I get the more I love this one. I can actually see what I’m doing!
The Mighty Bright Lighted & Magnified Seam Ripper
There are also a lot of other great corrective tools out there that you might prefer.
The secret to corrective sewing is twofold. First, think of the person you consider the “Queen of Quilting.” Actually picture her in your mind. Yes, she, too makes mistakes! I don’t care how famous or fastidious you think she is, she has to corrective sew as often as the next gal. Second, find the corrective sewing device that you prefer and that makes your task easier and faster.
So quit calling yourself an idiot! Everyone makes mistakes, many of them! And I’ll stop calling myself an idiot, too! Thanks for reading!