About nadelfrau

This author has not yet filled in any details.
So far nadelfrau has created 15 blog entries.

Curve Master Curve Foot

I can’t say enough good things about the Curve Master. I was at a sewing get together with all my pieces cut out for a Drunkard’s Path quilt. I was struggling to get the pieces sewn together evenly. Pinning didn’t help me. I was just not getting a smooth even result. We left to attend a small quilt show in Kerrville, Texas. One of the vendors there was demonstrating the Curve Master – talk about good timing. I couldn’t get my wallet out fast enough. When my friends and I went back to our sewing, I whipped out the blocks with ease.

You can see the cut pieces. It looks like they will never fit, but they do. The sewn block is not trimmed. They fit together perfectly. The foot has a built in 1/4” seam guide. It is at the right bottom of the picture. You hold the top curved piece lightly with your thumb and index finger slightly up from the bottom fabric. As long as you don’t stretch either fabric, they will join evenly. At the end, do need to hold the upper fabric with bent-tip tweezers so it will go into place perfectly. There is no pinning or marking. They have adapters included for most any machine, even slant needle machines. Do yourself a favor and check out their website.

The website for this product is www.curvemaster.biz

By |2019-08-01T18:06:15+00:00August 1st, 2019|Product Reviews|0 Comments

QUICK CUT RULER from Sew Kind of Wonderful

I found this ruler at the Houston International Quilt Festival. There are some sewing geniuses out there! This ruler and the others they have make beautiful contemporary quilts. There is a larger version on this ruler, but this is my size. With this ruler, you cut 5” pieces of fabric stacked so you cut quite a few at a time. You place this ruler “on point” of your fabric and cut in the slot with your rotary cutter. Talk about a time saver! You sew the pieces together leaving a bit at the beginning, then square your blocks to 4 “ for this size. There is very little waste and they go together wonderfully. Quick and easy!

The website for this product is www.sewkindofwonderful.com They have many patterns for beautiful contemporary quilts and rulers for other curved-piece quilts. This gets an A+ from me.

By |2019-08-01T18:02:53+00:00August 1st, 2019|Product Reviews|0 Comments

The Wacker Seams Perfect

The Wacker Seams Perfect

If you are a bag maker as I am this is truly a must have tool. It is a great tool for flattening multi-seam layers without clipping, removing stitches, twisting or pressing seams open. You simply steam press your seam and wack it. It will flatten it out without distortion. This has changed my life! Those thick lumps are now manageable and not such lumps. It is not just for bags. There are many times this tool is very helpful. I just happen to be a bag maker. This product has gotten many great reviews from sources much more important than me and offered at major distributors.
You can find The Wacker from several sources. However, take a look at their website:


By |2019-08-01T17:59:31+00:00August 1st, 2019|Product Reviews|0 Comments


I just finished this dog bed for my son’s 4-5 lb. little fur baby, Chico.  He is a mix and was supposed to be mostly Chihuahua, but as he got older, he looks like a little old Scottish man.  I am thinking mostly some type of terrier.  I don’t have him here to “model” his new bed.  But there is plenty of room for him to root around and stay warm.  I have seen these for sale.  However, it was a must that Chico’s bed was made from camouflage.  I drafted the pattern and here is what I hope Chico will love.



1/11/19 Update. Chico loves his new bed!  My son texted me this picture:

By |2019-08-01T17:28:47+00:00July 30th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Singer 401A at an Estate Sale

I found this Singer 401A at an estate sale last weekend.  They wanted $55 for it.  I plugged it in and it didn’t run.  But I could see that the wiring was jerry-rigged.  The machine is filthy, but will be cosmetically great once cleaned.  The cabinet is in bad shape and I probably won’t be keeping it.  Therefore, I need to buy a foot feed and a power cord to make it usable.  I decided I would take a chance on it for $20.  Not knowing if it works, I wasn’t willing to gamble anymore.


I got it home and used the cord and foot feed from another machine and found that it does work.  It came with the instruction manual and some attachments.  There were no cams with it, but I have extra sets because I pick them up anytime I find them at a reasonable price.  I got a surprise bonus with the attachments.  There is a rare Singer darning foot # 86294 in the attachment box.  It doesn’t fit a slant machine, but I have many low shank Singer machines.  This must be a very early darning foot.  To use it, you take off the needle clamp and replace it with this attachment.  It requires a feed dog cover.  I have it installed on a Singer 99 and will be testing it soon.


The cabinet doesn’t look too bad on the outside, but the inside is a mess.  Someone altered it to allow the 401 to fit in.  The veneer is a mess and the bracket that front the front drawer from falling down is gone.  I can and have done a lot of veneer work, but I have too many other projects waiting in line.


Taped to the inside of the arm was an old Hints from Heloise article.  I can see just fine to thread needles (with my glasses), but it is a great hint.

By |2019-07-30T13:43:14+00:00July 30th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments


Crocheting is something I like to do when I am too tired to sew or quilt.  Somewhere I saw a picture of someone using a pretty teapot to keep their ball of yarn in while crocheting.  What I make most are dish cloths and hot pads using Peaches ’n Creme 100% cotton yarn.  I started looking for a teapot with a large enough opening for a ball of my yarn.  I found plenty of pretty teapots, but none big enough.  Finally I found this Drip-O-lator coffee pot.  It is the perfect size!  Including the lid, it is 7” tall and the opening is 4-3/8” wide. Originally it would have come with an aluminum coffee “basket” that sat on top of the ceramic pot.  With grounds in the basket, you pour very hot water in, place the ceramic lid on top and the hot coffee drips into the pot.  Mine did not come with the coffee basket.  Check out the link below that tells about the Enterprise Aluminum Company that made these.  According to the article, these came into production as early as 1915.


Pictured are some of the things that came off my crochet hook. I got the pattern for the hot pad from Pinterest. A couple of the spool pin doilies from the internet. The others are my own creation. I found quite a few patterns for the dishcloths on the internet, but they didn’t work for me. Most of them were to bulky/heavy when wet, so I made my own pattern. If you have never tried crocheted dishcloths, you should. They work wonderfully. I keep at least 10 at all times so I can have a fresh one every time I do dishes. You do want to hang them somewhere to dry after using.

By |2019-07-30T13:38:26+00:00July 30th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Singer Sewing Skills

I love to collect everything Singer.  I found this “Singer Sewing Skills” project material stuffed inside a sewing machine drawer in an old barn.  It was available to “class members only” for a whopping $2.95.  It has a picture of the beloved 301 Singer on it. The envelope was dated 1954.  It came with a reference book dated 1955 for 95 cents.  There are 6 lessons in the package and the person this belonged to only finished two lessons.


The six little wax paper packages contain the fabric for the lessons.  The first lesson even included paper to practice following stitching lines without thread.  That seems pretty basic to us who have years of experience.  But I can just imagine how much excitement it was for a first time seamstress.  She probably bought herself or was gifted a Singer machine.  During those days, most young girls took Home Economics in school and learned how to sew.  In my thinking most women that took the classes  at the Singer Centers were probably housewives wanting to sew for their family.

By |2019-07-30T13:25:03+00:00July 30th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Fabric at an Estate Sale

I found a large stash of strips of fabric at an estate sale.  I have always wanted to make a string quilt – this stash is perfect.  Most of the strips are 2-1/2” wide.  Others are 3”, which I cut into two 1-1/2” strips so all my pieces wouldn’t be the same.  This is so much fun and relaxing .  The fabrics aren’t all beautiful.  The idea is to use up scraps so it doesn’t matter.  I am using 10-1/2” squares of tissue paper as the foundation.  I used a shorter stitch so the paper will be easy to remove after each block is completed.


The person these strips belonged to is probably deceased due to the fact they were found at her estate sale.  She had begun making nine-patch squares with the strips.  One square is finished, one other just started.  I am going to make something out of those 2 squares in her honor.  She would probably be happy someone is loving her fabric and making it into a quilt.


I have 14 blocks made so far.  I don’t know how many I will get out of this.  It is the perfect Saturday night watching a movie and stress-free sewing.  Tonight I am watching “Call The Midwife” on Netflix.  It is pretty good!

By |2019-07-30T13:18:45+00:00July 30th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

My Singer Tote Bag

Here is another project I can’t take total credit for, but I did make it.  If you have ever been to the International Quilt Festival in Houston, TX, you know there are hundreds of vendors there with the most awesome products for sale.  In recent years, they don’t allow any type of roller cart on the showroom floor.  It gets so crowded and I’m sure people have tripped over the carts in the past.  Therefore, you are packing all your purchases in some type of bag.  You can check your purchases in for a fee, which is a good idea.  However, I am so busy shopping  and there is such a huge of amount of ground to cover, I don’t want to leave my path.  A lot of vendors give away large bags for your purchases.  One company gave away a cross-body bag made of the type of fabric most grocery store shopping bags you purchase are made from.  It was a back saver, much better than a back pack.  My clever friend Jeanne took hers apart and made a pattern so we could make one from fabric and wonderful Soft and Stable.


I bought this Singer fabric at the quilt show with no idea what I would use it for until Jeanne came up with the bag idea.

As with other quilted projects, I pre-washed my fabrics and cut my fabric larger than I needed.  I sandwiched the outside fabric, Soft and Stable and lining fabric which is also a Singer fabric.  I quilted diagonally following the design of the fabric.  I used the “Jeanne” (my friend) method of quilting using a Serpentine stitch rather than a straight line.  It takes the stress out of quilting.  No worries about whether or not your lines are perfectly straight.  I then cut out all the components of the bag and sewed it all together.  All the inside seams around covered with binding.  I like to sew the first side (outside) on the machine and then hand sew the inside.  This is the same as when you bind a quilt.




Magnetic fastener for the top of the bag

Large inside zipper pocket

Large outer pocket on one side

Small pockets on each end of the bag

Adjustable strap – soft but firm strap purchased from strapworks.com

Cushy comfy shoulder pad

Firm bottom of fabric covered corrugated plastic

Super spacious on the inside

Due to the Soft and Stable from byannie.com it has body and stands up nicely


With the leftover scraps I made a little zipper bags for the small bits I buy at the quilt show.  I am already for the next show.  If you have never been, it is well worth the time and effort to go.  You see products there you will see nowhere else.  The quilts are always over the top gorgeous.  Plan on staying a few days.  There is way too much to see in one day.  Three days are perfect.

By |2019-07-30T13:12:08+00:00July 30th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Sophia’s Reading Pillow

A special little girl has a birthday tomorrow.  My great-niece Sophia will be 3-years-old.  She loves Minnie Mouse!


I got the idea of this reading pillow from a friend on FaceBook.  Luckily I found Minnie Mouse fabric coordinates, one at JoAnn Fabrics and the other from eBay.  I always prewash and dry my fabric just in case there is fading.  Also for the reason that I don’t like my fabrics to shrink after quilting.  I cut my fabric a little larger than I needed to allow for the shrinkage the quilting produces. I quilted all the pieces of fabric and used Soft and Stable in the quilt sandwich.  I don’t like floppy pillows so I thought that would be a good idea.  However, it made the pillow a little firmer than I would like.  Therefore, I didn’t make my pillow form as firm as I would have.  I make my own pillow forms using glazed batting that is about an inch thick.  This is the sort of polyester batting a professional upholster would use.  I use muslin or whatever I have on hand for the pillow form.  I put two pieces of the glazed batting into the form and make sure it is nice and smooth and pokes out well into the corners.  I then use scraps of polyester batting to fill in between the 2 full pieces of batting.  This way you get a smooth pillow with no lumps.  If I am using a non-quilted fabric for my outer pillow, I use 4 full pieces of batting with scraps of batting in the middle.  I put a zipper in the back to make it easy to remove the pillow form and wash the outer pillow.


Another idea I got from a friend is the way I quilted the fabric.  Instead of trying to quilt perfectly straight lines, I used a serpentine stitch.  I very lightly marked my quilting lines with my Sewline pencil and centered the line on my presser foot.  My Bernina 830 Record has the serpentine stitch built in, but it is tucked away in the closet.  I am most fond of my old Singers.  So I used my Singer 306 W and the flat cam # 20.  I had to experiment with the stitch length.  The longer the stitch length, the longer the “waves.”  I love quilting fabric this way.  It used to drive me crazy when I got off a little with my straight lines.  Thank you so much Jeanne!


I tucked a cute Minnie Mouse book into the pocket on the pillow.  I hope she enjoys it as much as I did making it.

By |2019-07-30T13:00:13+00:00July 30th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments