Saturday, May 25, 2013

Pens for signing Quilt Blocks

I have had several inquires about the pen I used to sign my Priscilla Turner quilt block.
Not ever having signed a block before I wasn't sure which pen I should use so I did a Google search to see if I could get any information.  I did find several sites with recommendations about which pen to use. This site seemed to have the most information so I wrote down the names of the pens she recommend and went on a pen search.
I was not able to locate any of the ones she recommended so I decided to do a test for myself of the pens I was able to locate.

All of these pens claim to be permanent.  I used pre washed Kona  snow as my test fabric.  After writing on the fabric I heat set the names with a dry iron and then washed the sample with Dawn dishwashing liquid.  I then ironed it dry.

As you can see the Pigment Pro gave me the best results so this is the pen I used to sign my blocks.  In the sample it looks like I went over the writing twice with the pigment Pro but the first pen was out of ink so I traced over it.  I would recommend you do a test of the pen you might use to see what results you get.  We don't want our signatures to fade with time.  I wonder what type pen Rachel used to sign her blocks back in 1852 because the signatures still looks great.


  1. Great idea, Nancy. I appreciate seeing your test results. It has helped me know what pens to buy in the future.

  2. Thanks for telling us this - good to have them all pre-tested!

  3. Thank you for taking time to test these pens out. I will look for the Pigment Pro pen the next time I am in a retail store that has fabric pens. It's hard to find these where I live. I have used Pigma pens but they aren't as distinct after the quilt has been washed.

  4. Sorry! I meant to say Micron pigma pen.

  5. Hi
    Just a warning - I have used a sharpie in the past and it has run! I haven't used it on Kona fabric but homespun so it might be the fabric but I was very disappointed in the result.
    Thanks for doing this and sharing though. I really appreciate being able to see others tests.

  6. Greetings Nancy. I've just found your blog and became a "FOLLOWER."
    I've always used Pigment Pens, was afraid to use anything else. Thanks for the tutorial about the ink!!

  7. Thanks for sharing your pen experiment - very informative!


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