Quilting

Top 10 Gifts For Beginner Quilters

Do you know someone who just started quilting? Check out this gift guide for some ideas that will help them take their quilts to the next level!

These items were suggested by quilters of many different skill levels, and many of them are personal recommendations as well.

Disclaimer: I am not affiliated or sponsored by anyone; I do not earn any commission from clicking links.  These are just my own personal recommendations. 

Cost Key:
$ – under $20
$$ – $20 – $50
$$$ – $50 – $100

quilters planner

  1.  Quilter’s Planner, quiltersplanner.com ($$$)

With space to design quilts, and keep track of project progress, the Quilter’s Planner has everything you need to organize your creative life.  The 2020 edition offers many customization options, including your choice of cover, Monday or Sunday start date, and additional accessories like a snap-in to-do list and a gorgeous magazine of patterns.  If they already have a day planner system they know and love, the Quilter’s Planner team offers a variety of printables including their project planner pages, which are my favourite thing when working on multiple projects at once!

Where To Buy: With so many customization options, the Quilter’s Planner is only available on their website, quiltersplanner.com.

Olfa Rotary Cutter

2.  Olfa Rotary Cutter and extra blades, olfa.com ($ – $$)

Olfa is widely regarded as “the name” in cutting tools, and for good reason – long lasting blades; safe, ergonomic design; and a history of great quality makes Olfa a household name for creatives of all types.  A high quality rotary cutter can make a big difference in accurate cuts, so splurge a little and get the best.  And if they already have one?  Throw some replacement blades in their stocking – because everyone needs an extra blade, regardless of skill level! (Someone send this gift guide to my husband and highlight what I just said about needing extra blades..)

Where To Buy: Honestly, just about anywhere craft supplies are sold!  Places like Jo-Ann’s or Michael’s may have coupons you can use for discounts, too.

cutting mat

3.  Large size cutting mat, fatquartershop.com ($$ – $$$)

A great looking quilt starts with accurately cut pieces, and a large size cutting mat is a huge difference-maker when it comes to cutting fabric.  It’s tempting (and often cost-effective) to buy a smaller mat when you’re just starting out, and that’s why a large size mat makes such a great gift.  At minimum, a 24″ x 36″ size provides a surface big enough to cut strips of yardage without too much frustration.  Just don’t ask me how to wrap it and hide it under the Christmas tree! (If you’re very new to this: do not roll the mat and keep it away from sources of heat!)

Where To Buy: Again, you can find cutting mats at nearly every craft store, so shop around to find the best price! I love my Olfa mats, but I’m lusting after this dark one by The Tattooed Quilter 

omnigrid rulers

4.  An assortment of high quality rulers, omnigrid.com ($ – $$)

Have I convinced you yet that quilting is 25% skill, and 50% great tools? (The other 25% is calling your mom for help!).  These rulers by Omnigrid are my favourite, but Creative Grids also makes some pretty great ones.  Don’t feel like you need to have every single size, though! I find I use my 6″ square, 6″x12″ rectangle and 6″x24″ long rectangle the most, and my 1″x6″ little ruler is great for marking lines on HST’s and Flying Geese.  If your quilter already has these sizes, consider branching into shapes like 60° triangles, and hexagons.

Where To Buy: You guessed it – nearly anywhere craft supplies are sold. Again, shop around for the best deals if that’s your thing.

seam ripper

5.  Alex Anderson 4-in-1 Essential Sewing Tool, fatquartershop.com ($)

Chalk this up under “tools I never thought I’d use, but end up using almost every day”.  Quilters of any skill level need a great seam ripper.  This 4-in1 tool is a stiletto, seam ripper, presser, and turner all in one, making it a value-packed stocking stuffer! Plus, the natural wood look is way more aesthetically pleasing than the cheap plastic seam ripper I had in my high school sewing kit.

Where To Buy: A quick Google search shows it’s available all over the internet, including Amazon and Fat Quarter Shop.  Shop local if you can, but find it online if you can’t!

 wonder clips

6.  Wonder Clips, clover-usa.com ($$)

Okay, so being transparent – I have a handful of Wonder Clips, and I don’t find them as useful as everyone else does.  But when I reached out to a variety of quilters on Instagram, a lot of people said that they love their Wonder Clips so… here ya go! They’re on the list!  Wonder Clips are fantastic if you’re doing any English Paper Piecing, and lots of quilters use them to hold the binding in place.

Where To Buy: These suckers can be expensive (I’ve seen them go for $1/clip!) so shop around anywhere crafts are sold and see if you can get a deal.

pin cushion

7.  A pincushion, etsy.com ($)

Name something more iconic than a classic tomato and strawberry pin cushion.  Go ahead, I’ll wait! Pincushions have come a long way from this bright red ball, though, and you can find a variety of ultra-cute styles on Etsy.  Why is a pin cushion a good idea, you ask? Well, if your quilter uses straight pins, a pin cushion is 100x easier to pick up off the floor than if you knock over a tupperware container full of tiny metal pins.  Speaking from experience here!

Where To Buy: Literally anywhere craft and sewing supplies are sold, or you could probably find one in an older family member’s sewing basket.  OR you can go online to Etsy and find a huge variety of handmade ones that are all super cute.  Up to you!

flatter spray

8.  Flatter spray, soakwash.com ($)

What can I say about this amazing starch-alternative spray that I haven’t already shouted from the rooftops in my Instagram posts?  Flatter spray is Canadian-made with plant-based ingredients, and it’s also cruelty-free! It smells great (or doesn’t smell at all, if you go with Scentless) and believe me when I say it has been a game-changer in building my confidence as a quilter.  I spritz almost all of my fabric with Flatter spray when I start a new project, and it helps keep my points point-y, and my seams crisp.  If I have a block that is misbehaving and not lying flat? A quick spray makes it behave.  This sh*t is MAGIC, y’all.  And did I mention it smells amazing?

Where To Buy: Lots of local quilt shops will carry Flatter spray, especially in Canada, or you can order online directly from them.

505 spray

9.  505 Spray Adhesive, odifusa.com ($-$$)

There are many, many schools of thought when it comes to basting.  Some prefer a plethora of safety pins.  Others prefer just to take it to a longarmer and have them do it.  There’s also thread basting, which is a ‘Heck nope’ from me.  And others prefer to spray baste.   If your quilter is struggling with keeping everything smooth and pucker-free when basting, give them a can of 505 Basting Spray.  Just keep it away from an open flame if your Christmas tree is in front of your fireplace.  But also – keep your Christmas tree away from your fireplace!  Fire safety aside, this basting spray works wonders to keep all the quilt layers together and it is a 100% MUST if you’re using minky or any other finicky fabric on the back.

Where To Buy: I’ve heard that Jo-Ann’s and Michael’s carry it, and you can usually find it at your local quilt shop, too.

 

leather thimble

10.  A thimble, fatquartershop.com ($)

Ok, full transparency here folks: I don’t own a thimble.  But then again, I also don’t do any hand sewing.  But when I was a beginner quilter, I did hand-sew my binding, and perhaps if I had a thimble I wouldn’t have hated it so much.  I digress.  Anyway – when I asked my followers what their favourite notions were… a lot of them suggested a thimble.  Specifically a leather thimble, but I’ve linked to the search results for just “thimble” for all the vegans in the group.  Save your favourite quilter’s fingers, and they’ll probably thank you.  Also, thimbles make a super cute, inexpensive add-on to any gift, so why not throw one in the cart while you’re getting everything else?

Where To Buy: Again, anywhere craft supplies are sold.  Clover USA is a very reputable name-brand for sewing notions, so look for the hideous green/yellow packaging and you’ll be set!

 

There you have it, friends! And if you have questions – find me on Instagram (@mgjbtx_quilts) and DM me, I’m always happy to help!!

Beginner Quilter Gift Guide

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