The other day I got a surprise package in the mail from Lorraine!
"From Lorraine? But this package was sent from Japan."
How I laughed when I opened it! This is a patchwork piecing board. You know...
For my first few years of doing patchwork I traced my template patterns on a piece of sandpaper from Tetsu's tool box. (The sandpaper keeps the fabric from slipping, right?) Somewhere along the line I saw a sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bob in a quilt store but since Tetsu's sandpaper served the purpose I passed over that purchase. Tetsu knew I really wanted a pretty sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bob so he designed and constructed one for me! A fancy two sided board connected by hinges! I could open it up to trace templates and close it up and use it as a mini-ironing board WITHOUT scratching my table. My sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bob has served me well for probably 20 years.
A couple of years ago my sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bob broke at the hinges and that meant I now had a HALF of a sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bob by my chair downstairs and another HALF upstairs in the sewing room. (I had to be careful about scratching the table though). But when a person has TWO things (or thing-a-ma-bobs) a person is less likely to keep track of where she has laid down the first thing. (I am forever losing my glasses because I have more than one pair.) So I am often running upstairs and back downstairs looking for one of my sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bobs.
While Lorraine was visiting she offered to piece a couple small stars for my close-to-being-finished Star Within a Star quilt.
"Great! Let me get one of my sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bobs for you."
That's right! I couldn't find either one. I ran up and down those stairs looking in various places while Lorraine patiently waited. I finally gave up my search and Lorraine traced around templates with the fabric slipping every which way. But thanks to her last two stars, my Star Within a Star quilt has been made into a flimsy!
Obviously Lorraine felt that as a quilter doing hand piecing now and then, I REALLY needed a new sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bob and she had her daughter-in-law send me one! It is a beauty! Big, soft grey flannel on one side, sandpaper on the other, and a mole grip on the sandpaper side so that it won't slip while I'm ironing. And I have heard that the grip can also be used to mark applique pieces so that will be a new technique I am wanting to try out.
My new sandpaper/ironing board thing-a-ma-bob is big enough that it will be hard to lose and because I have only ONE it will be treasured!
Thank you Lorraine!