I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to the Minnesota Quilt Show and Conference with my friends from the DIVAS. The quilts were marvelous, the class I took was delightful, and I had the chance to catch up with tons of people I know.
And I did some shopping, of course! Although I have honed my ability to get in and out of a quilt shop with only the things on my list, I’m not so good at shows. The array of goodies is simply too tempting.
On the other hand, shows are the perfect place to get a “color fix.” Between the magnificent quilts and a stroll through the vendor mall, the sheer volume and variation of color is absolutely intoxicating. Can you tell I’m more than a little bit of a color nut?
If you haven’t figured it out by now, I have to confess that I’m a “bright and shiny” girl. With the exception of choosing a background to show off my favorite (mostly bright) colors, I will walk right by the dark, muted colors favored by many shops – no offense intended. Dark and muted just aren’t my thing.
So, you can imagine my delight when I found that the wool dyers and vendors are now showing bright colors. At Quilt Market in Portland, Sue Spargo was showing off brightly colored kits and fabulous stitching in her booth, and Weeks Dye Works also had clean bright colors on display.
Then, at the Minnesota Quilt Show, Tracy Trevathan had absolutely scrumptious little rolls of wool in her booth that I just couldn’t resist. I restrained myself and started with just four, but I suspect the rest of her collection will find it’s way to me soon.
I also added to my growing collection of pearl cotton for embroidery work. I’ve been collecting beautiful variegated threads from Laura Wasilowski at ArtFabrik for a while. While I was at the show, I took advantage of the opportunity to add a nice assortment of solids to my collection. After all, sometimes I just want PURPLE! Since my mind works in color wheels, I picked out the 13 brightest colors I could find in pearl cotton, conveniently avoiding all of the dark muted colors.
Now the question is how to keep track of my threads. I need a visual way to keep track of what I have on hand so I don’t go buying the same thing when I’m out shopping. Any suggestions?
Is there a way to do a variation of my paint swatches with thread that you can think of? These nifty swatch cards from Swatch Buddies are great for fabric and paint, but I haven’t figured out how to use them for thread. If you have a suggestion, post it here on the blog or over on the Facebook page. And thanks! I look forward to your great ideas.
Deanna Rankin says
I have created a database on my Mac using Bento. I keep it in sync with my iPhone and iPad. My family laughs, but thread, paint, etc are just too expensive to have doubles or triples. Just because you love a color doesn’t mean more of the same us better. 🙂
Hmmm… I had not thought about making a little database. I’ll have to ponder on that one.
One thing I did with my machine embroidery thread was to do a stitch out using just one color. Mine are on a long strip of material, but putting them on the swatch cards is an option. A database is one of the best reasons for having an iPad (I don’t have one yet, I figure I’d just spend my time playing instead of playing with fabric).
Hi Elizabeth, I’m not sure I can do a machine stitched color card with the pearl cotton. These threads are size 8 pearl cotton and I’m not sure they make needles big enough to work. But, I could certainly do a hand-stitched color card if I’m really bored! 🙂
Vicky Morrow says
I’ve got two suggestions – 1. Use a little bit of the actual thread and sewing the narrowest way, sew an example of the thread – a couple running stitches, then just a couple satin stitches. I’d label the back side of the card. Then add the next couple colors until that card is full, and add it to the ring. 2. Similar to the first, but take your stitches over the color swatch – you could use complimentary colors to the swatch, or use shades from light to dark of that same color as the swatch. Again, put it back on your ring. As you begin to use the thread, mark the back side of the appropriate card in pencil that this color is getting low. When you replace the thread, erase the notation.
I love my swatch buddies and have them for all my paint stiks.
First I would cut pieces of clear packing tape smaller then the swatch buddie, then I would roll off some thread and place it on the packing tape then adhere it to the swatch card and then write the pertinent information in the label
Woo hoo! Glad to hear that you made swatches for your paintstiks. I think that was one of my better ideas. 🙂
The packing tape is a good idea. And speaking of tape… perhaps some double stick tape might work???
Maureen Curlewis says
Have you considered winding your #8 Pearl cotton threads onto your machine SPOOL and sewing your colour samples that way?
(Your normal bobbin thread goes to the top and your pearl is on the reverse side)