I have suddenly been awfully busy the last week or so, both in the sewing room, and in general life, and it's been a bit of a shock to my system. I have become very used to the sloooooow pace of life we've been living, and my body has been protesting at moving back into hectic mode again. Thankfully, it was only a short busy spell, and this week is looking much calmer, so I can relax again for now.

I have been thinking about my favourite quilting tools and tips, and wondering what items other quilters love that they wouldn't be without now? I've definitely picked up hints and tips from others, including some ones that I wouldn't have thought of, but they really work. I've pictured some of my must have's, some which are obvious, and some less so. If you look at my quilting gloves in the picture, you might notice that the thumb and first finger ends have been snipped off. This was an amazing tip from a lady whose tutorials I love, (Christina Cameli) and it means that I still get the grip when I'm moving the quilt around, but I have my finger and thumb free to make any adjustments, without having take the gloves on and off - genius! :-) Another handy tip I found was to have a rubber handy for cleaning up my quilting mat. If you've been cutting out a lot, and especially fluffy stuff like batting, the fluff gets stuck in the grooves, especially if your mat is well used. Just run the rubber over it, and it clears the fluff out perfectly.  I love my Kwik Klip tool and the covers for my safety pins, and these have saved me a lot of sore fingers. You might also notice that I have 3 pincushions pictured, and technically I maybe don't NEED all of them, but then again, the mouse was my Mum's pincushion, the rainbow one was a must buy, and the bee hive one is so cute, so I think I do need them all ;-)  

I finished a project this week, but I can't show and tell for a little while longer yet :-) I have also continued with my scrappy blocks, and I'm currently dithering over quilting designs for a quilt that has been basted and ready to go for a while now. It was a fiddly one, with lots of angles and bias, and it is made up of diamonds. It really is calling out for some kind of straight line quilting, but I don't like straight lines. I am a bit too perfectionist, and if a line is not absolutely straight, it would bother me a lot, whereas stipples, loop the loops, and other all over designs are beautifully crazy, and meant to be so. I think I'm going to have to just knuckle down and go for the lines, but it's making me anxious! :-/