Well... I could't decide.
So naturally, I've turned to my sewing room which has recently welcomed some new members-- all consequences of the act of the "treat yo self" movement... *shiftyeyes*
In October, Tula Pink announced her new hardware line of rainbow steel awesomeness that included 8" shears, a surgical steel seam ripper, and some tweezer snips. I preordered them, of course.
I ordered my set from The Crafty Cora on Etsy. I had trouble locating a shop that would answer my pleas, and this shop was quick to communicate and happy to take orders. They came to me in mid November, just as the doctor ordered, heh!
The tools are far prettier than I could have expected! True to the nature of Tula Pink (one of my favorite fabric designers, weird I know), they're very bright and colorful-- they easily beat out my Gingher shears. To be honest, I am not sure why I ordered the ripper and the snips too... I don't like either method of snipping or ripping lol. I'm just as bad a gadget-aholic as I am sew-aholic.
I did worry about one thing when it came to the shears since there was no real description of the blade; luckily my worries dissipated when I slid my finger across the blades...
If there's one feature that annoys me, it's micro serration. I don't know why they add this to so many sewing scissors-- it's the worst idea, in my opinion. Once they go dull (and they do, despite the claims of otherwise) you can't take micro-serrated scissors to get resharpened without completely ruining them. You can tell if you have micro serration just by looking at the blade-- it would appear as a tiny pinking pattern. Likewise, you can feel it-- a blade that isn't serrated will feel smooth and kinda dangerous to slide your finger across.
Shortly after, Black Friday sales were kicking in online and I saw two deals I couldn't pass up; I was in the neighborhood for a new iron, even though there isn't anything mechanically really wrong with my Rowenta. It doesn't sputter, and I kept up the maintenance well-- it's just that, even at its highest temp it wasn't hot enough and didn't steam enough for my liking anymore.
Entrer le Oliso TG1100.
I used one of these in the quilt shop I worked at back in New Mexico, so I knew it packed a punch in the heat and steam department. It's a little weird that it doesn't need to be propped up like any other iron, you keep it on its plate and it jumps up with little legs on its own. Cute, and actually pretty intuitive if you think about it; like so many who sew, we've all been victim to the "hot plate graze" every now and then. It glides better than any iron I've ever owned, and best of all... it's purple!
That being said, I nabbed it for $100 flat (including shipping); it's a lot for an iron even on sale, and I don't think I would have spent it if I didn't know what I was going to expect from it. My second choice was the Smartfill by Maytag; I did a bit of research and this maytag is probably the best one if you find yourself on a limited budget but in need of a decent iron for your sewing-- current price on amazon being under $40!
Finally, along with the Oliso, I ordered myself...
A thread tower. Yup.
Probably the most gratuitous purchase of this post, it comes with 80 spools of all purpose Guterman sewing thread in a rainbow of colors (some of which I probably will never use lol), and can hold 3 of each color. It's on a lazy susan mechanism, and spins rather quietly and gracefully dons my Ray Bradbury inspired Halloween Tree. I guess since there's nothing else to say about the tower, I might as well tell you all my favorite brands of thread. They are as follows in order: Mettler Metrosene, Gutermann, and Maxi Lock.
So if you're thinking about splurging and spoiling the seamster in your life, any one of these might put a huge grin on their face-- and don't forget to stuff their stocking with good thread (not coats & clark), high quality sharps (John James needles are great quality), and perhaps some 45 mm rotary blades (make sure to ask the brand of their cutter so you can match the blade!). Trust me, they'll love it.