A special edition of Tools Tuesday, special, because it's Friday and not Tuesday, special because I've not had a new tool to blog about in months, and extra extra special because I'm reviewing
"The Crumbler" is a tumbler template created by Carrie Nelson for Miss Rosie's Quilt Co. Guess who came up with that interesting and distinctive name, ME! For some reason I just love to name things, and I'm constantly trying to name and rename things for folks all the time, even when they don't ask for my input. It must be genetic, my brother does the same thing, he calls no one in my family by their given name, it's always something else, to my brother I'm Lulu! Anyway, this summer, when Carrie told me she was working on a tumbler template, I immediately ask, "What's its name?" She was up in the air but leaning towards some sort of practical name. Well I came up with "The Crumbler", C for Carrie, R for Rosie and Umbler from tumbler. Carrie got a good laugh and moved on. But then my name sort of caught on, and folks said they liked it, and then Carrie decided she liked it too. So "The Crumbler" it is, for now and for forever. I'm hoping this template becomes so popular that "Crumbler" is someday recognized by spell check.
And here it is!
Before today, I had never played around with tumbler blocks. I bought a tumbler die for my Go Cutter but had not used it. When Carrie mailed me the template this summer, just the ruler, no instructions, I looked it over, thought it looked nice, and threw it in my tools drawer. I didn't even take the plastic off!
This week I got my first look at the directions (8 pages of directions) that come with this ruler, and let me tell ya, I was digging that ruler out of my drawer and ripping the paper off and making blocks in no time. I'm amazed by the possibilities and versatility of one little block.
Cutting the blocks is a piece of cake and like most other templates just decide on your size and cut your strip accordingly. Then just line up the template and cut each piece. You can cut several layers at once. I put a little strip of double sided tape on the back to keep the ruler from sliding. I do that with all my templates.
You can make tumblers that measure 3", 3 1/2" ,4", 4 1/2", 5", and 5 1/2" from top to bottom.
The directions provide information on cutting regular, pieced, horizontal strip, vertical strip, 4 patch, jelly roll, and mirror image tumbler blocks! That makes for some very interesting tumblers! There is also a table telling you how many tumblers you get from each specific strip width. Not that that isn't something you can't figure out on your own, but how nice to have it provided.
So the cutting was a piece of cake, next up the piecing instructions. The instructions are easy to follow and come with wonderful illustrations, but I had my doubts that I would get it all right the first time.
Here are the directions, "Joining the tumblers is easy - once they get lined up properly. And that's easy too - just find the right starting point". Basically the corners don't line up, it's up to you to align the edges and offset the corners. You offset enough to where your needle comes down right where that"v" is created when sewing a 1/4" seam allowance.
I followed the directions and my tumblers came together perfectly.
I didn't realize how many different patterns you could create using these blocks until I got my instructions.
How about opposite fabric but top to top and bottom to bottom, matching seams.
How about same fabric, top to top and bottom to bottom, matching seams.
More of the same . .
Maybe off-set is more to your liking.
There are a lot of possibilities!
There are also instructions on cutting and piecing the perfect side setting pieces.
You just follow the directions for cutting,
and sewing, it could not be any easier.
See how perfectly that side piece fits on the end of that row to create a straight finished edge.
Don't like the width of your tumbler,
there are directions on how to cut a narrower tumbler.
There are also instructions for making a quilt with two different sized tumblers, along with fabric requirements.
The template is precise, easy to use, and fun to play with. But the best thing about this template is the directions that accompany it. Do you remember all summer, most every time I would try out a new tool, how I would have to look online for additional directions, because the directions provided with the tool were so lacking, and then, after figuring out how to use the tool, I would usually end up saying something like, "well it works, but I don't know what I would make with it". The instructions that come with this template explain how to use it and give several patterns and suggestions on what to make. It's almost like they were written for a quilter, imagine that!
I'm not sure I see a whole tumbler block quilt in my future, but I definitely plan to work on a tumbler block border, maybe in my 100th quilt. If you're a tumbler novice, like me, you'll love this template and the directions, you'll be a tumbler pro in no time. If you are already an experienced tumbler quilter, I think you'll love the accuracy of the ruler and the size options it gives you.
You can buy your own "The Crumbler" from several online stores like The Fat Quarter Shop or Carrie's online shop, it runs around $13.50.
Give-away now closed. Thanks for stopping by.
Disclosure - Carrie Nelson of Miss Rosie's Quilt Co did not ask me to blog about this template and is not providing the templates for my giveaway. I did receive one template for my personal use, a fair exchange for providing that excellent name I think.