Favorite Notions Part III

Everyone has a favorite notion or tool.  One that we use all the time, it is close to our sewing machine at all times.  While on a retreat I asked other quilts what there favorite notion or tool was.  This is the third and final post bout notions.  If you missed the first two parts you can start here.

Chelair Etter, Moda Fabrics, like the Creative Grid Rulers. The non-slip grid helps the ruler from moving while cutting. Her favorite size is the 6 ½” x 24 ½” It works great to cut strips and borders.


Susan Stiff, Moda Fabrics likes the omnigrid 4” needlecraft scissors. Susan does a lot of hand applique and travels with a portable desk that fits on her lap. Good lighting is also important.


Julie Karasek, Owner of Patched Works Quilt Shop in Wisconsin likes the Sewline Pink Pencil because it works both on light and dark fabrics. When Julie goes to a retreat she divides all of her things into pouches or bags instead for everything in on box or bag.  She also brings in extra spools of neutral thread.


Tammy Vonderschmitt, Moda Fabrics like having a mini iron at her sewing station. Her mini iron died just before the retreat and she really missed it.


Leigh Ann Prange a NICU nurse and pattern tester, likes to 2 ½” square ruler to square up her half square triangles.  she did not mention a brand but she uses the ruler often. She makes a lot of 2 ½: half square triangles and other small blocks that she uses the ruler for.


leigh annHere is a quilt is was working on at the retreat.

Lissa Alexander, Moda Fabrics likes to use starch on everything. She uses spray starch with a spray nozzle. She sprays all her fabrics before she starts a project.  She also like using Lisa Bongean of Primitive Gathering triangle papers.  Her favorite ruler is the    Olfa 10.5” x 12” ruler.


Janet Hill, Moda Fabrics and long-arm quilter like the Itty Bitty Eights ruler by Lisa Bongean.  She finds her blocks are more accurate with the extra 1/8 inch marks


It was interesting to see what everyones favorite notions were. There were a few notions I had not heard of. It gave me an excuse to try some new tools, and  I really like the Considine Creations Thimble, and the Micro-Applicator Brush for cleaning out my machine and adding a little oil.

Tell my your favorite notion or tool in the comment section for a change to win some of the notions mentioned.  Follow me here for another change to win. If you already follow me let me know with your comment. Winner will be announced Monday September 10th.

Happy Quilting


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I am the owner of Fabric Expressions, a quilt shop in Littleton CO. We have over 4000 bolts of fabric and offer many fun classes.

83 thoughts on “Favorite Notions Part III

  1. I have a lot of favorites like Bloc Loc rulers for squaring up HST and Flying Geese. I love my new Alex Anderson Quilters Select rulers and mats.

  2. One of my favorites is the Clover Dome Needle Case–great for holding a bunch of already-threaded needles, and the threads don’t get tangled up.

  3. My favorite tool is also the 6.5x 25.5 Omni Grid ruler, I need to get the 2.5 inch square like mentioned because I find myself making more and more off this size that need to be squared up. I’ll have to give the pink pencil a try too….thanks for all the great suggestions!

  4. I like the pink pencil since is great for each light and dark fabrics. I like a multi-use tool. Of course, I’m getting ready to make a predominatly pink quilt for a good friend, so I’ll use my trusty pencil since it won’t show. I hadn’t thought about pink showing on lights and darks – thanks for the tip. Blue probably would be good, too except blue is my favorite color, so pink would be great for me usually.

  5. My little 21/2 in ruler by Creative Grids is my favorite notion. I also couldn’t get along without my Clover seam ripper.

  6. My favorite notion currently is the stripology squared ruler by creative grids. Cutting strips is a breeze. So much more accurate as well, as no slipping of the ruler.

  7. I don’t know if I would be a happy quilter if I didn’t have my Creative Grid rulers and Olfa rotary cutter, along with the mat, but aside from those essentials, a tool that I LOVE is my Karen Kay Buckley scissor. Rather than push the fabric away as you cut, these scissors grip the fabric, so the cut is much more precise.

  8. I just started following your blog – I didn’t know about it until Sherri at A Quilting Life linked to this blog because of your series on notions that quilters couldn’t live without.

  9. I love my Gizmo Thread cutter. It is a huge time saver when snipping apart chain pieced blocks. I now see that I must make myself tread cutter using my Clover thread cutter and a spool of thread for use at workshops and retreats. Every little trick that saves space in the packing is great. Thanks for sharing all these great notions.

  10. I cannot sew without my purple thang. It is my most used tool next to the essential four, sewing machine, rotary cutter, rulers, and mat. I even use it to make sure my jam jars are filled to the proper height. I have a few on hand to give as gifts to new quilters too.

  11. I also like a lot of the notions already listed, but my favorite tool is the Olfa rotating cutting mat. The less I handle a block, the more accurate my cutting and trimming turns out.

  12. I could not cope without my hera marker. I love it for marking stitching lines since I know the mark isn’t permanent. I’m also fairly reliant on plastic ziplock bags for holding projects together. It’s not normally thought of as a ‘notion’, but if it didn’t already exist and Clover or Dritz started selling them, you know we’d all be praising them to the sky!

    I follow you on The Old Reader.

  13. Creative Grids 8.5 x 12.5, my favorite travel ruler, big enough for cutting fabric width quartered yet not too unwieldy

  14. I can not do without my thread nippers. I have several pairs through out my sewing room and in my bags. The best things for trimming and snipping threads, I don’t waste time putting my fingers in and out of little finger holes in small scissors.

  15. I love reading this lists of best notions! One of my favorite notions is the little read seam guide measurer. I travel between machines: my big one at home, my feather weight, my modern travel machine, one of my mom’s machine I use when sewing at her place, my heavy duty straight stitch machine. It keeps the elusive quarter inch exact no matter which machine!

  16. On of my favourite quilting notions is my i-phone! After laying out the quilt blocks, I take a photo. When transferring the blocks from the design wall to the sewing machine, I don’t have to worry that I may have mixed up the order since I can look at the photo to keep me on track.

    1. Being left-handed, I’m thrilled with my Martelli Ergo 2000 left-handed rotary cutter. It’s comfortable in the hand, the angled handle let’s me see what I’m doing. I used my mom’s right handed cutter backwards for years before I knew this product existed lol

  17. Thank you for the great posts. I now have a few things on my wish list. My favorite notion is the stiletto.

  18. I love my Creative Grids and Bloc Loc rulers – they make my life so much easier. I really enjoyed reading about the favorite notions and I hope you will do it again some time. It encourages me to try some new things…and to look for the ones I’ve misplaced!

  19. I always sew with a small magnet nearby, it is useful for picking up and finding dropped and lost pins, also needles when I am hand stitching on my bed. x

  20. Who doesn’t love their notions? They make our lives so much easier when quilting! Right now I have been using my small rotating mat a lot! I’ve been squaring up hundreds of HSTs and QST’s!

  21. I’ve been working on foundation piecing recently and love using the Add-A-Quarter ruler to trim the patches.

  22. One of my favorite notions is my Clover needle threader. It even works well with needles with small holes.

  23. I like my Clover seam ripper. No getting around having to rip out once in a while so you might as well use a good product that makes it easier to do it.

  24. I love rulers that help make tricky patterns easier. Creative grids cats cradle ruler is a favorite of mine.

    1. Congratulations you are the winner. Please email me your address and I will send you some of the notions mentioned. I hope you will continue to enjoy my blog you can also find me on instagram @alisonsexpressions

  25. My favorite notion is a tie between the triangle papers and the rotary cutter; sand paper is also nearby..to hold the fabric transfer & pattern sandwich when I trace patterns. Thanks for a chance to win!

  26. I love Alex Anderson’s Four-in-One tool. It has a great seam ripper and a wonderful stiletto. But the best part is that the handle is square and it doesn’t roll off the table 🙂

  27. I love my add a quarter ruler. I use it all the time! And I’m never far from my trusty seam ripper! Lol!

  28. My new favorite are the Olfa Endurance blades. They really do make a difference. Cutting is easier. My other favorites are the Creative Grids rulers. I’m slowly changing over to them. Love the grips on the back.

  29. I would have to say my Gingher rotary cutter and my omnigrid rulers! Some of these other notions look helpful.

  30. Thank you for all the wonderful posts on a Facebook! What a wonderful opportunity you have provided for some lucky person to win some amazing notions. I look forward to seeing who won!!

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