Remember back when we met the Clever Tools folks during the Pet Show this year?
Here's my story.
. . . It sneaked up on me. Slowly. Stealthily. The pain kept increasing. But I hate doctors. No offense, guys and gals, but I just don't like to visit y'all. (Grin) I finally had to admit; it was time to go and have my hands x-rayed.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, no? At least that is what the doc said, as he placed the film on the viewer. It was so obvious that even I could see it -- my bones had failed me! There, beside the carpometacarpal joint, was a fragment of bone . . . it wasn't supposed to be there. It was supposed to be attached to the larger bone near it. But there it was, grinning at me, as if to say, "Yep, it's me, causing your problem!"
I couldn't find an image that was just like mine, so I settled for one that showed you the area where the problem is.
Well, enough of this; I don't want to bore you. Long story short, these bones are degenerating, and I have the same issue in my other hand now. And they probably are going to continue doing this, my friendly doctor said. Oy vey.
Raising my now-braced wrist in the air, I shouted, "But I will NOT give up my quilting!" And I haven't. But it ain't been pretty, and sometimes it ain't fun.
But then along came Ellen, from Clever Tools.
Ellen, you are my hero!
Here is what the discs look like -- the light blue part is supposed to face up, and the darker part lies on your fabric.
See the large surface area? That is the magical stuff that grips the fabric! Instead of your ten little fingers moving the quilt sandwich, these big boys do the job!
Alright, back to our story . . .
The Grip and Stitch discs are Ellen's baby, and BOY HOWDY am I happy to have a set! Ellen graciously sent me a set to try, and I gave them a whirl. I wasn't sure how it would go -- lately I'd been trying to free motion quilt with my fancy-schmancy gloves on, and it just plain hurt. It even ached for a good while after I stopped.
But Ellen said it might work, so I gathered up some orphan blocks and pieced together a project. I guess you would say this is a pretty large placemat, as far as the size goes:
Sometimes I have trouble when the project needs to roll up under the throat of the machine. That pushing around of the quilt sandwich is tiring and I get some severe twinges.
I placed the smaller of the two discs there, and pushing the project was effortless! I was really amazed.
Ah, this picture is showing a situation that really bothers my hands when I use gloves. On a corner or an edge of the project, you know how you need to apply some pressure to small areas of fabric, to keep it where you want it? Ouch! (Usually.) This time I used the disc and it kind of "grabbed" the fabric for me, and I was able to move it around easily!
Here's a shot of how I used both discs; I placed the larger one on the left -- other folks may want to try it on the right. It's just a matter of personal preference, I think.
Just to give you an idea of how gently my fingers were resting on the discs -- very little need for pressure with these tools.
Here is a picture of the back . . . I had two little blocks left over, so I appliqued them onto the back of the project for a little extra interest, and a pop of color.
I came up with this little dogwood blossom motif (don't yell at me if someone else has thought this up before me) and repeated it around the small blocks on the outer edge of the mat:
Just keepin' it real, folks, and showing you that I am NOT an accomplished free motion quilter; I have lots of places where I don't go back in the lines that I wanted to!
Aaaack! I must have been distracted by my studio kitty on this one! (Grin)
This swirl is on one of the large pinwheel blocks in the center; lookin' a lil better here!
Here is the front side; I actually kinda like that fact that these lines are not perfectly on top of one another; after all, I am not perfect, either! (Wink)
Anyway, just to keep you from having to scroll back up to the top, here is a picture of the quilted mat, ready for binding -- and my hands feel great!
I am so grateful to Ellen for letting me try the Grip and Stitch discs!
I hope that this review will encourage some of you that may have problems similar to mine, to hop over to her site and purchase a set -- I truly believe in her product, and I love how much easier it made my quilting!
I was able to complete my project without the pain that I usually experience, both during and after the free motion quilting process!
(Waving) Thank you, Ellen!