Boxes of alcohol wipes

Hey Everyone, welcome back to Cool Tool Thursday.

Alcohol wipes – not just for first aid. I always have a box of alcohol wipes on hand for when I am doing appliqué.

Depending on the type of fusible web and stabilizer I am using my sewing machine needle can get a slightly sticky and gummed up with glue. It mostly happens when I use a fusible leave-in stabilizer which results in an extra layer of glue for the needle to go through. Having a layer of glue on the needle is not ideal as it can lead to skip stitches.

Wiping the needle with the alcohol wipe removes the unwanted glue leaving the needle nice and clean preventing those unwanted skipped stitches.

image of sewing machine needle being wiped with an alcohol wipe

Wiping the sewing machine needle

Often times when machines start skipping stitches the quilter blames the needle and gets a new one but in reality it only needs to be cleaned.

Now this isn’t to say that needles shouldn’t be changed after so many hours of sewing because they should. I usually change a needle after about 8 hours of sewing – they get dull and just don’t go through the fabric as smoothly as a new one. A nice sharp needle makes for nice even and smooth stitches.

I also use the alcohol wipes to clean my scissors that I cut fusible with. I have one pair of scissors – they are cheap scissors I might add – that the glue from the fusible adheres to when I am cutting the traced pieces apart. No other scissors seem to attract the glue only these ones. Very strange. Anyway the alcohol wipes clean the glue off and I am good to go again with nice smooth blade action cutting through the paper.

Using an alcohol wipe to clean the blade of a pair of scissors

Cleaning the scissor blade

Who knew alcohol wipes had a place in the quilter’s tool box.

An unusual quilting tool indeed but a useful one.

Happy Quilting!

Jen Transparent Signature