April 29, 2013

Laying Tool Review and Giveaway!

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Hi guys! Remember this lovely doodad I showed you last week? The folks at JR Crafter sent me one of their Best Laying Tools to try out and I'm ready with a full report for you!

First of all, if you've never used a laying tool, it takes a bit of time to get used to, and like any skill, you get better with practice.

I like that this tool is lightweight and easy to hold - it's the width and length of a pen, and quite pretty, as well.

The end is wicked sharp - here it is next to my needle, for comparison:
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That said, even with my slightly clumsy paws and the smooth acrylic finish on my tool, I managed not to stab myself. I'd take Mary Corbet's advice and use a floor stand for embroidery, to leave both hands free. I did okay by resting my hoop on the edge of a table and just sort of finagling it.

I tried the laying tool on a section of Satin Stitch - in these photos I'm using 2 strands of embroidery floss. First I stitched without the laying tool, as I normally do - and you know what happens - sometimes it works fine and sometimes the threads get all twisty, separate-y, and just plain sad:

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Laying tool to the rescue!

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I realized that in the past, I was already using my needle unconsciously to do this - tugging out and straightening the twisted threads after I'd stitched them so that they'd lay flat. Tugging at threads after the fact is touch and go and many times I grumpily have to re-stitch it.

With the laying tool, I had none of those problems - you use it to hold the threads taut and straight while you're pulling them through, so there's no last-minute twisting, separating, or bumps. Yay! When I get better, I'd like to try it on stem stitch, another stitch that frustrates me at times.

This laying tool really is a pleasure to use - since it's the length and width of a pen, your hands already have a pretty good idea of how to handle it. When you're done using the tool, the top screws on nice and tight to keep you safe and the tip nice and sharp. If your satin or stem stitching makes you grumpy, I'd say it's definitely worth a try. I mentioned Mary Corbet's helpful post on laying tools before, but I'll plug it again because her photos and video tell you everything you need to know about how to use this lovely thing.

And now for what you've been waiting for huh - the giveaway! Not only is this a great-looking, easy-to-use tool, it comes in SO MANY lovely configurations. Well you know what? One of you lucky peeps will be getting the laying tool in the color combination of your dreams, thanks to the wonderful people at JR Crafter!

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To win, check out all the beautiful colors and finishes on their website. To see what they look on the actual tool, click over to their Etsy store for some nice photographs. Leave a comment on this post with your favorite color, by 9 PM CST, Friday, May 3, when I will draw a random winner.

My color combo is "Pink Cloud," if you like mine. But, hey, maybe you're not a pink acrylic fan - to each his/her own - let's hear your favorites!

100 comments:

  1. Shelly BlumenthalApril 29, 2013 at 6:14 AM

    What a great giveaway! I fancy the "antique silver."

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  2. I've always wanted to try one of those tools. I do like the Purple Crush color :)

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  3. Northern lights looks pretty amazing!

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  4. So many to choose from, I think my favourite is Persian Blue but it was tricky to select just one. I have not tried a laying tool before and would love the chance. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  5. Vixen Camo!! Love it. Okay, actually like all of them but that's a fab combo.

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  6. What a lovely tool! Candy Coated is my first choice. Thanks for the chance to win it.

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  7. I think my favourite has to be Pomegranite martini !

    Awesome giveaway! :)

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  8. I'd go with Pink Passion, but good grief was it ever hard to choose. There's a gazillion colors! Like you I've been sort of doing this with my needle and not always getting the effect I'd like. It would be great to have the proper tool! :) Thanks for the giveaway Floresita! :D

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  9. Wow - I too found it hard to pick, but copper swirl sounded wonderful to me!

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  10. I love the blue & yellow swirl! A favorite combo!

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  11. Lorraine ArmstrongApril 29, 2013 at 6:52 AM

    I love the Northern Lights colours

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  12. Virginia Sattler-ReimerApril 29, 2013 at 6:53 AM

    I love the cocobolo wood, really lovely!

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  13. Turquoise and black :)

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  14. Elizabeth CampbellApril 29, 2013 at 7:06 AM

    I love Water! They are all beautiful.

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  15. clever tool..... love the blue green ocean..... thanx for the opportunity....s cree

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  16. oohh I like the abalone colour

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  17. They are all really nice, I think my favorite is cocobolo.

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  18. I like cocobolo but I think the Northern Lights has clinched it for me with its pretty colours and lovely name.

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  19. I dig the Oasis color. Neat!

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  20. Oh! I was just working a satin stitch and cursing over my separating threads! This would have been so handy! I am digging the color "Calming Water". Thanks!

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  21. I love the pink & purple of Northern Lights. What a helpful little tool!

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  22. Oh My!

    This looks right up my alley, and the pink flamigo color is Nice and Bright!!!

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  23. I love the violet.

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  24. I was thinking Tuscan Sun, but after seeing Oasis and Turquoise on the actual tool on the Etsy shop, I seem to be having a bit of a crisis! I think I still slightly prefer Tuscan Sun. They are all so gorgeous.

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  25. Would love to win one of these. I love all the purple colors; Purple Rain, Purple Haze, Violet, they are all pretty.

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  26. Spalled pearl looks beautiful! Thanks for reviewing this tool!

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  27. disqus_QD3EdkHyoJApril 29, 2013 at 9:07 AM

    I hate to be too boring, but I bet the opal is super pretty in person.

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  28. I love abalone! Would really like to try these.

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  29. OMG! They are all beautiful, i guess the Copper Haze is the most beautiful one.

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  30. The violet is lovely!

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  31. Grape Fury! I love it! Thank you for the chance to win one of these amazing tools. I have always wanted one.

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  32. I can't get over the colour choices, I have never used one of these but can appreciate how amazing it would be to use. Favourite colour................wow hard to pick I do love the purple rain! Thanks for such a great giveaway

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  33. Pomegranate martini! I love it! Awesome giveaway :-)

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  34. Grape Vines is so pretty, but Earth's Core reminds me of my mom, who taught me to embroider. Maybe one of each?

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  35. What an awesome tool! I love the watermelon color.

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  36. I actually really love the one that you picked! My other favorite would be the White Pearl, simple and classic :) Thanks for the giveaway!

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  37. The Persian Blue is gorgeous!

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  38. I am having trouble deciding which is my absolute favorite... but have narrowed it down to the Violet.

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  39. What a great tool....my favorite color is Seafoam. Thanks for the sweet giveaway :)

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  40. Oh my - there are so many beautiful colour combinations! I had no idea they offered so many!

    I think I'm in love with Deep Purple. But I really love the purple & lavender and the eggplant and the purple haze too... Oh this is just too hard!

    And if you don't have or want a floor or lap stand to hold your work, the easy/cheap version of something to hold your work while you stitch is a simple C-clamp or bar clamp. You can get very lightweight ones at any hardware store. I like the ones that you pump to close the clamp. I clamp my work to a tabletop and away I go. Handy when taking a class too.

    Or you can make/buy a frame weight. Here's one frame weight: http://www.debbeesdesigns.com/DDHtml/FrameWeights.htm.



    Thanks for this great giveaway and good luck to everyone!

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  41. Ohhh, what a great little tool. My favorite color is Lucky Clove!

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  42. I would pick Abalone. I can think of so many fun projects to use this for!

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  43. I like the cocobolo or the abalone. Fun!

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  44. yay. my favorite color is red and orange. hope I get to try the tool.

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  45. What a handy tool! Turquoise and black is my favourite colour combo.

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  46. I had no idea these existed, I love the northern light color!

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  47. Lucky Clover! I think. There are so many great choices.

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  48. What a great idea for a tool!! At first I was drawn to Northern Lights, but then I saw the Abalone color and I am in love. :D Thank you for the chance!

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  49. Those are so cool! I love that Grasshopper green one. Thanks so much for the chance to win one. :)

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  50. I am torn between the zebra wood and the banana split!

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  51. Wow this is one pretty tool! So many beautiful colors to choose from! I actually loved the rosewood, so pretty! And looks like it would be so comfortable in your hand.
    usagypsy(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  52. The purple haze is pretty, and looks like a useful tool.

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  53. Wow, this is kind!!! Bocote wood has such an attractive pattern, I'm sure it looks very elegant. And being made of a natural material would probably make it nicer to hold too... Thanks for the opportunity of daydreaming a bit.

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  54. I didn't know about this sort of tool before, it looks so handy! I like the way the Bocote wood looks. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  55. What a great idea! I always use the needle, so it would be great to have one of this perfect tool.
    I love "Pomegranate Martini"

    Thank you for the giveaway.

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  56. The cowhide pattern --how cool is that?

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  57. I love the pink and purple blue swirl pattern! What an interesting idea!

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  58. spalted pearl is pretty. Awesome!

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  59. Great tips! Love the blue green ocean combination.

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  60. White pearl or charcoal - surprise me. Such a fun give away.
    Thanks
    Ann

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  61. I really like the Grapevines color!

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  62. Vixen camo! Although water is also lovely.

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  63. I love the ones that look like wood grain--Southwest, Oasis, and Festival. Festival edges the other two out for my top pick, I think.

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  64. Persian Blue is my favorite, but it was hard to pick!

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  65. Molten Bronze. I think this would be a very handy tool to have. Thanks for the review it was informative.

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  66. Blue Green Ocean or Turquoise are one of my favorite color. I have never used a laying tool before. Love to try one since some of my stitching threads do twisted around while I am stitching! Sigh!

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  67. I like the rainbow swirl or any of the green swirly colors. Thanks for showing this tool, and where to get such a pretty one. And thanks for the opportunity to win.

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  68. How very handy! I love the Seafoam color.

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  69. I've never seen these before––what a great tool! If I were to be the lucky winner, the scarlet mesh would be my wish. Thanks!

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  70. Oh my goodness, they are all so pretty! The Persian Blue would be my color of choice.

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  71. I like Gold Pearl the best!

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  72. I love the Cocobolo wood one. I just love different wooden looks and that one is gorgeous. :)

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  73. Definitely zebrawood - and who doesn't need this tool?!

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  74. oh i would love this! thank you so much for showing this to us, i had no idea it existed. the persian blue one is just too captivating!

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  75. I love the turquoise. I had no idea these existed. I'll try anything to make satin stitch easier.

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  76. Huh, I had no idea these things existed. They look very useful! My favorite is the zebrawood.

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  77. I'm digging the purple haze, but the wooden ones seem cool, too. Thanks for sponsoring this giveaway!

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  78. Ooh these are nice. I have a make-shift laying tool that I remember to use sometimes, but I love the look of these. There are so many beautiful choices, but I think the black & purple swirl is my favorite.

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  79. How cool! I really like it in seafoam

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  80. green and black swirl! very pretty!

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  81. I didn't realize until after reading about what a laying tool is used for that I've been using my thumb as a makeshift laying tool -- bit limited, though, since I can only keep the strands steady up to a point that way. I should really try using a real one!


    So many great colors -- I think the prettiest one is the rage red.

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  82. Ahhh the Zebra Wood one would match the pen my dad made for me that I keep in my sewing pouch :)

    Thanks for the chance to win!
    prajaline-at-gmail-dot-com

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  83. Pink flamingo is my fave! I'm definitely a pink girl too :)

    Crunchyconservativemommy at gmail dot com

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  84. Stephanie GouldMay 2, 2013 at 6:26 AM

    Purple Passion Swirl!!!!!



    holland_lops@hotmail.com

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  85. Northern Lights is my pick! Thanks for the review!

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  86. Love the turquoise and black!

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  87. I love the turquoise one! Beautiful, thanks for the chance.

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  88. I love Festival! heidig@gmail.com

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  89. I'd love the Water, #148247, if I am the winner!!

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  90. Sowmya ViswanathanMay 3, 2013 at 12:17 PM

    Northern Lights is beautiful

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  91. I like Clover but they're all very nice.

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  92. Festival is gorgeous!

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