Monday, February 4, 2013

Cool Tools: The Lil' Twister Tool

There's alot of rave reviews over this somewhat "newish" tool called the Twister by CS Designs.
You've probably heard of it and if you haven't heard about it you've more than likely seen the awesome results of using this Cool Tool.

Like this:

I actually used mine to make Fiona a new Christmas Stocking.  Here's what the tool looks like:

Lil' Twister

(fabric is JOY by Kate Spain for Moda)

Pay no attention to the missing ring, my fingers were still puffy from pregnancy ^_~

Using it is pretty easy.  First you'll want to sew all your blocks together.  I used a regular 5" charm pack.  Then sew each row to the next and so on.

Fiona's Stocking

Fiona's Stocking_1

The most important thing about using this tool would be to press your seams.  The reason being is that there will be ALOT of seams hanging around the backside of your fabric.  If you press your seams from the time you start your project they'll lie nice and flat and behave when it comes time to actually use the Lil' Twister.

The things you'll notice about the tool is that the lines on it are off centered.  This is a good thing!  Place those lines on your seams.

Place on seams

Carefully cut all the way around the template.  You'll have a nice swiss cheese like pattern in your remaining fabric.  Be careful not to over cut past the template or else you risk cutting into the next twister square.

Tip: Once you've cut a block, lift it out, don't turn it and place it just above the cut out.  It will be "on point" like a diamond.  Do this until you've cut out an entire row.  Then arrange them IN ORDER of how you cut them out on your floor/table/workspace/design wall.


Now the fun part, start twisting!

Start twisting

You're just matching colors to colors in a sense and pretty soon you'll start to see the pattern emerge.

Match the twists



Presto, easy twists

Once you've got all your twists done sew the blocks to blocks and then rows to rows being very mindful to keep everything in order :)

Eventually you'll end up with something like this!

Fiona's Stocking_3

I added the quilting once all the twists were sewn in place.
I've seen this tool as big as 10".  I will warn you that if you're in love with your fabric this tool does waste a good bit of it, but it's for a good cause.  If you're super attached to the remaining bits keep them for your stash :)

  5" is the most common Lil Twister and you can buy it here.

p.s. Missouri Star Quilts doesn't know who I am and I'm not affiliated with them, but they are super nice and helpful and they do carry the Lil' Twister and several patterns you can use them with.

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