Saturday, January 18, 2014

Ergonomics and Baby Quilts

I invested in a couple of new quilting tools recently that are already making my life easier and a lot more fun! Rotary cutting has always taken its toll on my wrist, elbow, and shoulder. I did some research and discovered the Martelli rotary cutter, an ergonomically designed cutter that has made a huge difference. When you use it, your wrist and forearm are straight in line, no awkward angle at the wrist as you cut through the fabric, so no stress, aches, and pains. Another bonus is that I can use it sitting down for those small jobs.




I read some reviews, watched some videos, and knew I had to have it. I called Darlene, who blogs at Quilts by Darlene, at her new quilt shop, A Needle Pulling Thread and sure enough, she had this cutter in stock!  Within a few days, my new cutter was delivered to my door. Darlene posted a great pic of the Martelli cutter on her Face book page so I borrowed it to give you a better look. This is the best thing since sliced bread and comes in right and left hand models.


My second gift to me was an Oliso Smart Iron.  There are three models available and I chose to purchase the TG1050 model. I found it online at Amazon.ca and it arrived the other day. I call it my hovercraft iron and, like the rotary cutter, it is the best thing since sliced bread!


My wrist problems were being aggravated from lifting up the iron and putting it on it's end over and over and over again. This Oliso iron can stay flat the whole time. It has "feet". When I touch the handle, the feet disappear into the base and I press my fabrics accordingly. When I'm finished, I just slide the iron over, remove my hand, the feet extend and the iron pops up. Don't believe me? Check out this video here.
What have I been doing with my new toys? Here is a picture diary of my latest project...















I used a free pattern, "Sophie Car Seat Quilt" designed by that talented mother-daughter team who blog at Clover and Violet. They also have a wonderful selection of patterns in their shop.  This particular pattern is featured in the Moda Bake Shop and can be found HERE. The quilt finishes at 25" x 30".

I love the idea that there are ties on the quilt so it can be used for a car seat or a stroller and won't fly away! My nephew and his wife had their first baby just last week and the quilt is on its way to them today. I used fabrics from my stash, including some Lori Holt fabrics by Riley Blake, and chose a soft flannel for the back to make it a little more cozy. I used straight line machine quilting and a decorative stitch for the binding. Hope the new baby likes it!

It's a great day for quilting!

33 comments:

  1. I enjoyed your reviews. I have have seen this iron in action...just might have to get me one.

    Love your quilt

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  2. I am in the market for a new rotary and have been eyeing this particular one. My LQS carries them, so when I am a little more out-of-house bound, I think I will treat myself. I bought a lightweight iron that I love. I knock them on the floor (or kitties) too often and would hate to replace an expensive iron so often. Your little quilt is adorable!!

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  3. I really need one of those Lesley,have huge issues with my shoulders.I will have to see if I can get one here in UK.xx

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  4. I have seen that iron and have been thinking of purchasing one for myself

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  5. Thanks for the review of your new tools... happy to hear that the rotary cutter is available for lefties... sounds like a great investment in preserving our joints! Question about your hovercraft iron... does it get good and hot???
    The carseat/stroller cover is so cute! Love the cheery fabrics you used... and the simple quilting is perfect! Lucky little baby!!!

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    1. Yes, it has more watts than my last iron and heats up really quickly. I use it both dry and with steam...plenty hot and the shot of steam makes all the wrinkles disappear.

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  6. Thanks for keeping us in the know about these products!
    What a cute baby quilt/cover. Very nice job!

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  7. Glad you found some tools to help your with your kwilting.

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  8. Cute quilt what a great idea. Love the new ergonomic tools.

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  9. I enjoyed hearing about you 2 new toys--we had the iron at the quilt shop and used it during classes!
    I love that little quilt--so cheerful!
    hugs, di and miss gracie

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  10. Hello! The quilt is adorable - lovely fabrics. I am intrigued by the rotary cutter. Can you easily cut multiple layers with it? I get a lot of pain, too. Have a super day!

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  11. Thanks for sharing these new tools with us Lesley..will have to check out both. The little quilt is so pretty and a great baby gift :) Have a wonderful weekend!

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  12. Thanks for the info. Preventive medicine may lead me to purchasing an ergonomic cutter soon. I'm glad you are back in the swing of things. Take care.

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  13. what a cute little quilt. That iron looks real good. Have to look into that one.
    Glad the rotary cutter is working for you.

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  14. I think we are all interested in quilting tools that make it easier on us!! I am going to check into them too!! Your little quilt is adorable so bright and fun!!( p.s. thanks for sharing our blog here!)

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  15. The cutter looks rather interesting , would like to see that in action , the iron really would be wonderful to own , love that you can just lay it flat . The baby quilt is adorable , I am sure it will be well loved !

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  16. Oh! I'm so glad you got your new toys! The carseat cover is so cute and such a good idea...there's a new baby boy at work...wonder if I can get one done soonish!

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  17. What great new toys! I've used the Martelli rotary cutter for years - in fact I wore one out! Got it because of my carpel tunnel and it works great! I've looked at the Oliso irons but haven't gone for it yet. Nice to know someone who likes it. The baby quilt is darling. Congrats to the new parents. ~Jeanne

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  18. Love your new "toys"!! Bravo for you!!! That little quilt is adorable and I'm sure baby and parents will love it!!

    Blessings and hugs!

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  19. Okay Lesley. Are you trying to get me in trouble with my DH??? Giggle. Now I want to go shopping online of course. I'll try to resist.....really I will :)

    Love your new quilt...so sweet.

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  20. Great idea to find the right items to look after yourself. If this is what it takes to keep you stitching then it is well worth it!
    Love the new quilt, too.

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  21. The quilt is adorable. I love all the bright fabrics. I'm thinking I might get me one of those irons the next time I need a new one to replace the current one.

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  22. I have been dreaming about one of those irons for awhile, but I haven't heard of those cutters. Both would really help.

    Your car seat quilt is wonderful. I love the colors you used.

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  23. Hi Lesley, glad to see you are back quilting again! pretty baby quilt you have made. I too have this iron, I always find I am too quick for it and the little feet move my fabric when I go to iron, guess I'll have to slow down!
    Happy Sunday.

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  24. I absolutely love my Martelli cutter. It really has helped my wrist, elbow and shoulder. That Oliso Iron has been calling me but so far I've been able to resist.

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  25. Love your little quilt. It's made with happy colors and I'm sure that baby, Mom and Dad will love it.

    Love your cool new iron. I'm so tempted but my little Rowenta is performing wonderfully so I might hold off for a while. Enjoy your new toys. It's great to hear that they're helping with your tendonitis issues.

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  26. I love the martelli cutter and am on my second one - wore out the the first one. :) I'll be interested to see how your iron holds up. blessings, marlene

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  27. A beautiful and perfect baby gift! I know they will love it as much as you love your new tools!

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  28. I'm glad you're back to sewing and you have new toys to make it easier. I have that cutter and love using it. Your quilt is beautiful!

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  29. stop the clock…this is soooo lovely….please share about your cutter…I am always thinking there has to be a better one out there...

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    1. I had one from grace company that was similar, but I found I could not cut through the fabric properly

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  30. That's great that you found these items! How cool is that iron? I'm always leaving my iron flat by accident. Your new little baby quilt is absolutely charming. Your nephew and his wife are going to be so pleased when it arrives!! Don't know why this post didn't show up in my reader....sorry I missed it and am commenting so late. Glad I checked your blog for activity!!!

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  31. Love your iron, I've considering one for the shop. Glad to hear you're enjoying the cutter! I love mine, so easy on the wrist!

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Thank you so much for visiting me. I enjoy writing about my quilting projects and am so glad that you enjoy reading about them. I will certainly reply if you leave a comment. Thanks again!