Monday, 22 October 2012

Gifts for Quilters 2012

People are thinking of Christmas already, not to mention Thanksgiving.  How do I know?  My Thanksgiving and Christmas Tree mug rugs are selling well in my Pattern Shop.  As it is coming up to that time of the year when gifts are shared (along with food, drink and old grudges - like the mother-in-law!!)  I thought it might be nice if I provided some suggestions for people who don’t sew but who may want to buy a pressie for somebody who does.  So for all you quilters and sewists out there tell your nearest and dearest to visit The Patchsmith's Gifts for Quilters blog for ideas.  You can then sit back and wait to for the tinkle of jingle-bells in the safe and certain knowledge that Santa is bringing you something quilty and delicious.
So without any more ado, here are my TOP TEN GIFTS FOR QUILTERS for 2012. 
Note:  Click on any of the pictures for further info or to go through to the item.  The links provided are only a selection and will expire for sure sometime in the future.  I have included quite a lot of Amazon links but they are just for suggestion – you can find these items in lots of places – you do not have to buy from Amazon. 

1.         Books – yes the bookshelf may be buckling under the weight of quilting books but trust me, a quilter can never have too many.  But which to buy?   Here are four books that contain a variety of projects and are suitable for all levels of sewists.  Any one of these will be gratefully received.
 
 
(I have this last one and can recommend it - so many lovely projects) 

2.         A subscription to Audible.  There is nothing so lovely as stitching away whilst listening to a great book on your MP3, phone or ipad.  Audible have a subscription service where you can buy a bundle which allows for 12 books to be downloaded of a year-long period.
USA - http://www.audible.com
UK - http://www.audible.co.uk

No mp3 player – no problem just go out and buy one and include it with the gift note telling her she has an Audible subscription. 

3.         Fat quarter bundles – if you are living with a quilter you will know what a fat quarter is but if not let me reassure you – it is not a fat quarter piece of pie/cheese or any other food related item.  It is, in fact, fabric – a quarter of a yard in fact.  To play it safe I would recommend a ‘charm pack’ (this is not jewellery) or a ‘jelly roll’ (no they don’t come covered in chocolate – that is a swiss roll!) or a ‘layer cake’ – (nope, sorry, still something you can’t eat – and not the film either!).  Pop into a fabric store or an on-line store (even Amazon sell them) and ask for a ‘charm pack’.  Hopefully you will be faced with an array of 5” sample squares of fabric.  Pick one - any one – it doesn’t matter what colour or style.  A quilter will always find a use for a 5” square of fabric.  The Fat Quarter Shop is an on-line shop based in the USA but they ship worldwide at very reasonable costs.
 
4.         The most important item in a quilter’s arsenal (nope, you can’t buy her a smith-and-weston) is a seam ripper.  I know what you are thinking – ripping seams – this sounds more like a ‘sexy’ type of present.  Yet again I hate to disappoint – it is not the same as a bodice ripper which would, in all likelihood be a present more for the man in her life that her!  A seam ripper is a small pointed blade that is used to unpick fabrics (come to think of it - if you are very careful it could rip a bodice or two).  There are some lovely ones around – just look online in Etsy (put ‘seam ripper’ in the search box – pick a fancy one and check it out - literally).  Here is one where I did just that:
http://www.etsy.com/listing/93023551/handcrafted-seam-ripper-handle?ref=sr_gallery_12&ga_search_query=seam+ripper&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_ship_to=GB&ga_search_type=all&ga_facet=seam+ripper

5.         Storage boxes – plastic ones are functional but boring so pick something colourful and decorative.  Any size will do from small to large and they can be cardboard, wood, leather and plastic.  Include a magazine holder as well.   Pick something attractive and pretty – maybe even patchwork like this one:  http://www.paperchase.co.uk/invt/00500214/
Ikea also sell a huge selection – these are two from Ikea that I decorated with papers, so if you buy plain make sure you pick up some colourful papers to decorate them with:

Or go for something quirky and fun:
http://www.bluebanana.com/product.php/1005280/1016/blue-banana-us-flag-keepsake-boxes--set-of-two-

5.         A cross-stitch kit, sewing kit, button kit – any sort of craft kit (but not woodwork or metal work or how-to-change-a-tyre type of kit!).   There are many kits on the market and it can be difficult knowing which type or style to choose.  To play it safe pick a chart that a quilter could incorporate into a pillow or wall hanging –  houses, chickens, seasonal charts like these:
     
  

Yet again your local fabric store or craft store should also stock some kits.  In my fabric store this week I saw sweet little kits in a tin that turned buttons into bracelets.  Just ask for a sewing kit – pick something not too big or intricate and make sure it comes with all the necessary fabric/cotton/buttons.

7.         Sign your quilter up for a New Year class on Craftsy.
Unsure what to pick – select any class – even if the class is for a skill your quilter already.  Here is a good example for patchwork http://www.craftsy.com/class/re-piecing-the-past-civil-war-blocks-then-and-now/91
You could even combine this gift with no. 2 above and enrol your quilter on Craftsy’s Magical Jelly Roll Quilts course – extra brownie points for you.
http://www.craftsy.com/class/Magical-Jelly-Roll-Quilts/81

8.         Coloured sewing thread. A quilter/sewist never has enough coloured thread. Some of these threads come in sets which make an excellent gift on their own. Some even come with little extras like these cottons with scissors:


9.         A pretty journal and nice pen in which your quilter can write her notes, stick pictures of ideas and keep a record of any projects.  Here in Britain we have WHSmith which supply some nice leather bound journals.  Amazon also stock some.

10.         A manicure from your local beauty parlour.  A sewists hands suffer many woes, from pin pricks to callouses.  There is nothing worse than snagging fabric on rough hands.  So do something really nice and get a voucher for a manicure.  Whilst you are at it a facial might also be nice – and a pedicure – not to mention a massage for those tired shoulders hunched over a red-hot sewing machine for most of her spare time.

And an extra one for a secret Santa workmate or if buying for a fellow quilter - a quilting calendar is a good little standby.  Amazon do some that have a project a week.  Here are a couple:
    
 
So there you have it - no excuses this year for not getting the right thing.
And before I go - I would just like to tell you about a wonderful surprise gift I received this week.  It felt like Christmas had come early this year at Patchsmith Palace when I received a glorious bundle from Susie in America.  Susie had lovingly made me a wonderful bag and wallet in my favourite colours of pink and turquoise (clever woman).  But not only that, she has stuffed it full of wonderful sewing things - like special USA  press-n-seal paper, a charm pack and even more fabric.  On top of all this  she also sent over the sweetest purse for my sister (it is the little pink one in the foreground)  I also shared the charm pack with my sister as it was designed by 3-sisters for Moda so it seemed appropriate.  How lucky am I?  

Feel free to add any other suggestions for gifts for quilters to the comments section - every idea will help our loved ones put a smile on our faces this year.
Sew until next time ........

5 comments:

  1. Lovely gift ideas! And so nice to think about early...way before Christmas is here!

    I am so glad you like your surprise. :)

    Susie


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  2. What a great post, Amanda! I always have a tough time when someone asks what I would like, and now I can refer to your top 10! That seam-ripper paragraph made me blush...I already have a couple of those and will never be able to use them with a straight face now!

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  3. Perfect list. How about tickets to a craft show too? Or a subscription to a craft magazine such as Mol;lie Makes?

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    1. Excellent suggestions - especially a mag subscription - it would be likely Christmas every month. Nice one Kay.

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