Bye, Bye Timtex

I’ve been in denial since Linda at CraftApple first broke the news to me. Out of production. Kaput. Timtex is no more. I’m hoarding the last of my supply, deciding which project is Timtex worthy. I feel like Elaine with her sponges. Timtex was the perfect product in my eyes. I’m still holding out a bit of hope that someone will take over production. Linda did an excellent write up of the other players in the extra firm stabilizer market.

I’ve started my own testing to see which products work best for the Note Taker pattern. This was test #1: Freudenberg B0509.

This is an interesting product. Extremely stiff but thin. It worked fine in the small Note Taker providing adequate sturdiness to the folio. It doesn’t have the loft of Timtex so that slightly squishy feel is missing. I don’t think using more layers of it would provide any benefit. In fact, given how dense the surface is I would anticipate difficulties sewing through more than one layer. The product creased similar to how a thin cardboard might crease. Once it’s there it’s there. It doesn’t have a self-healing property. I give it a high rating for stiffness and an average rating as a substitute for Timtex.

While I’m updating my pattern instructions to remove references to Timtex (lesson learned there!) I also took the opportunity to make the dimensions of the Notelet slightly larger. A big THANK YOU to Nicolette for helping me nail down real-world dimensions on the A5 pads and incorporating a roomier fit into the design (I’ll make those available on my website once they’re final).

I experimented with using a vintage bakelite button stacked with a Czech glass button for the closure. A little tough to sew on but so worth it. Raspberry Plume on the exterior, Pink Happy Dots, Linen Honeycomb, and Flirt Tangerine Roses on the insides.

33 Responses to Bye, Bye Timtex
  1. KathieB
    June 10, 2008 | 6:08 pm

    What? No more Timtex?? I have a good cache of it from my artist trading card days. Going into hoading mode…

  2. Anne K.
    June 10, 2008 | 6:43 pm

    Thanks for providing some of the due-diligence data on Timtex substitutes. I also mourn its demise. I use it as the base for flannel keepsake folders for my local NICU and it’s always been perfect. Here’s hoping the Freudenberg product of which you speak will hold up well, too – thanks for the tips!!!!!

  3. Kathy
    June 10, 2008 | 6:54 pm

    I love that for so many situations, there’s a Seinfeld parallel. I know nothing about Timtex (non-sewer that I am), but am sorry for the loss of a great and beloved product.

  4. Diane
    June 10, 2008 | 7:00 pm

    Thank you for the information. I have a piece of timtex in my sewing room, planning to make a quilt postcard. Our quilt group made fabric baskets using timtex a year ago. Your notelet is cute, I want to make one when I get off vacation. I’ll check your tutorials for it. Thanks again.

  5. Carrie
    June 10, 2008 | 7:34 pm

    Eek I didn’t know that Timtex was going out of business! I cut up my last sheet today. Looking forward to hearing about sunstitutes.. one day I’ll make a notetaker, I swear :)

  6. muralimanohar
    June 10, 2008 | 7:43 pm

    Oh, what? Timtex is done?? I haven’t even had a chance to FIND it yet! :wah: And I have no money at the moment to stalk and hoard! :(

  7. Sarah
    June 10, 2008 | 7:53 pm

    I always had a love/hate relationship with Timtex so I felt a bit of relief when I heard it was no-more. This note taker is gorgeous! Proof the Anna Maria Drawing Room is great for small projects too.

  8. mikawendy
    June 10, 2008 | 8:01 pm

    Oh, say it ain’t so! I’m also new to the world of stabilizers (mostly do quilting, so usually the most adventurous I get is fusible fleece batting). But your note books have been so gorgeous that I’ve been planning on trying something like that. I like to have all my notes, receipts, etc. in one place, but I find I stop using the el cheapo notebooks from the grocery store once the binding falls to pieces.

  9. Administrator
    June 10, 2008 | 8:56 pm

    Kathy: I could probably come up with a quote from every Seinfeld ever made! Not only did I watch it real time I’ve probably seen each and every episode another 20 times (at least) in re-runs. I still laugh when I catch an episode 😉 xo Kathy

    Sarah: The scale of that Drawing Room print surprised me. It looks so tiny next to the other’s in the group but just sings on a small project. I also LOVE the way it feels. I want to make some pillows now just to take a couch snooze with!

  10. Kristin
    June 10, 2008 | 10:32 pm

    What a gorgeous NoteTaker! I love those fabrics. Have you tried Fast-2-Fuse yet? I really love it for fabric postcards. I do have a very small stash of Timtex and actually have never used it. A friend who was sewing at my house one day needed some and she’s the only one who has taken some!

  11. yayie
    June 10, 2008 | 11:45 pm

    In France, we use jeffytex equivalent of timetex.
    you can find on this site:
    I can send you a piece if you want to test it before buying
    I hope I help you.

  12. nicolette
    June 10, 2008 | 11:46 pm

    I totally love this notetaker.
    Timtex was never available in Holland so I had to work with Fast2Fuse. I don’t really like the material. They sell it folded… which gives wrinkles. It only works for the small notetaker, so I never made an A4. Fast2Fuse comes in 2 different weights. I’ve been thinking about buying some alternative in the US, but I’m sure they have to fold the material to ship it, so… any good advice on this is more than welcome. Thanks for testing!

  13. Kristin L
    June 11, 2008 | 12:53 am

    Hee, hee! Am I dating myself when I admit to getting the sponge-worthy reference? :-)

    For those in Europe, check out Freudenberg’s non-woven line. I don’t have my samples with me to give out names and numbers, but there are at least three stiff products with various properties. One is too stiff to even sew through, but if you can slip it in a pocket, it’s great (like for purse bottoms and fabric boxes). The thinner one(s) are made for things like postcards. Freudenberg’s batting is pretty thin, so I wonder if a layer of batting with a layer of thin-but-stiff stabilizer would result in the puffy but not floppy look of Timtex?

  14. katrin
    June 11, 2008 | 1:00 am

    I said it on flickr and I say it again: It’s beautiful! Your fabric choices are great, and the little kiwibird-label is extraspecial! (and how adorable is the pink/tangerine combination?!?)

  15. Pauline
    June 11, 2008 | 1:20 am

    In New Zealand my only option has been Fast2Fuse as well. I can buy it off the roll so it doesn’t have cresaes but it doesn’t need a bit of flattening undr something heavy for a wile to get the ‘roll’ out. I’ve only ever seen one weight though and I’m guesing it was the heavier one? I’ve used it successfully to make the A4 notetaker although it did take me 3 or 4 tries to get the technique right! I don’t know how it compares to Timtex because I’ve never seen or felt it…. but I love the way my notetakers look. Here’s one from Christmas:

  16. Amy
    June 11, 2008 | 3:45 am

    Is that the stuff with adhesive on both sides? I have a ton of it from a project that I never got around to doing…

  17. erin
    June 11, 2008 | 6:11 am

    elaine and her sponges….you had me spitting coffee all over my computer!

  18. apple cyder
    June 11, 2008 | 6:12 am

    I admire your ability to match up fabrics. So pretty! Loved the Elaine reference….

  19. quilterlee
    June 11, 2008 | 6:55 am

    I love the Elaine Sponge-worthy reference!!! I also love your Note taker pattern. I have never used Timtex, but I see references to it on many blogs. It must be a wonderful product.

  20. Anina
    June 11, 2008 | 7:20 am

    So THAT’s why I can’t find any anywhere! I hope someone comes up with a good substitute soon.

  21. Pam
    June 11, 2008 | 8:08 am

    Spongeworthy.. you crack me up.
    Bummer about Timtex. Hoarding time I think.

  22. Mymsie
    June 11, 2008 | 8:37 am

    I have a dilemma. If you iron interfacing on fabric and then the fabric gets wrinkled, the interfacing holds the wrinkles so the fabric looks wrinkly no matter how much you iron it. Do you know of a way to keep this from happening? Thanks!

  23. meg
    June 11, 2008 | 11:55 am

    Timtex aside, I’m about to lose it over your fabric combo here. So great!

  24. Victoria
    June 11, 2008 | 2:20 pm

    This was a heart breaker when I found out about it just a bit ago. (I use it to back my very small embroidered art quilts.) I was sure that the ladies in my local quilt shop were wrong. They tried to sell me some Peltex saying it was exactly the same, but I dug in my heels, like a child ready to throw a tantrum! I wanted my Timtex and I wanted it NOW! I left the store downcast, and depressed, only to return a while later. Defeated I bought the Peltex, and while it is not the same, it actually is a pretty good substitute, which really surprised me as it seemed way to thin. And yes, I too have become like Elaine with my small remaining stash of Timtex!

  25. Nichole
    June 11, 2008 | 2:55 pm

    I love how you photograph fabrics for your shop! It is so wonderful to be able to actually see the print!

  26. amy j
    June 12, 2008 | 11:09 am

    love the notelet, and lol about elaine and the sponges. we’ve all ad our own sponge over the years. Mine was that perfect shade of Philosophy cheek tint that went the way of the dodo.

  27. tanaya
    June 12, 2008 | 12:04 pm

    Hopefully you won’t think I’m some crazed quilt-loving stalker, BUT…I do love your quilts and always gain so much info and inspiration whenever I visit your blog. Here is the thing….I have an entire roll (is it called a bolt?) of Timtex. I bought it the roll because it was so darned expensive in smaller pieces and I thought I’d use it constantly. I cut one small piece from it but never really needed it anymore. I just couldn’t bear to part with it though, because I didn’t want to waste that money.

    That said, it is still (2 yrs later) sitting in my closet. I happen to be hopping the ferry to Bainbridge tomorrow and was planning a stop at Esther’s (my mom is in town, visiting for the first time). Do you want it? Do you think that it would be possible for me to leave it at Esther’s for you?

  28. Kay
    June 13, 2008 | 3:45 am

    Peltex works fine for anything I’ve ever made.

  29. Administrator
    June 13, 2008 | 5:40 pm

    Just to go on the record, Tanaya is most definitely not a crazed quilt-loving stalker, she’s an extremely generous, fun and friendly blogger that totally made my day. She actually hauled a whole bolt of Timtex on the ferry for this crazed Timtex-loving blogger! Thank you Tanaya!!!

  30. Annie
    June 13, 2008 | 9:59 pm

    Seriously? No Timtex? That can’t be true! Timtex and Polaroid both going out of production in the same year? I don’t quite know what to do with myself right now. Sigh.

  31. Kristine
    June 17, 2008 | 10:44 am

    Love the Seinfeld reference! I never had the chance to use Timtex (what can I say, poor college student), but I’ve heard such great things about it. So much for “one day.”

  32. Kim
    June 23, 2008 | 12:53 pm

    Made my first Note Taker (yipee) — Love the pattern, simple to follow. If you’d like to take a look, here’s the link — — And I can’t wait to make more! I love how you put that little label in this one – ingenious :)K

  33. Casey
    October 22, 2008 | 9:43 am

    Hi Kathy,
    I just wanted to let you know that my employers have picked up the distribution of Timtex. You can read about it here. Hurray!