Camping and crafting? Take OLFA along!

After the tent or camper is set up at your campsite, it's time to relax! And for those of us who like to make things, that often means bringing a small project(s) along to work on when we go camping. Ideas include an embroidery piece, English Paper Piecing, or other work that doesn't require a lot of space or time. You're here to enjoy the outdoors after all!

For this trip, we've brought along these great OLFA tools + some wool applique shapes to cut and small half-square triangle units to trim.

OLFA FCM-12x17 12" x 17" Folding Cutting Mat - folded, this mat fits perfectly into our project bag but when we open it, it provides a good sized surface to work on or to rotary cut. It lies flat, too, which is what we want anytime we're cutting. It comes in a 17" x 24" size too if you need a larger area.

OLFA 5-Inch SCS-4 Precision Appliqué Scissors - this is the size we reach for all of the time! It's just right for snipping threads, trimming hexagons, or cutting applique shapes. And it doesn't take up a lot of room in our bag.

OLFA 28mm RTY-1/C Quick-Change Rotary Cutter - we love this cutter when we have small blocks to trim! The handle shape fits perfectly in our hand and it's size makes it easier to maneuver around smaller rulers, too.

OLFA QR-4S 4 1/2" Square Frosted Acrylic Ruler and OLFA QR-6S 6 1/2" Square Frosted Acrylic Ruler - when you're not sure which size ruler you'll need, bring both! They don't take up a lot of space.

OLFA TK-3M/2P Magnetic Touch Knife, 2pk - we're never sure when we'll need a Touch Knife so we pack it along, just in case. (Ours is an old-style one but the new shaped Touch Knife is magnetic so you can hang it in your workspace or keep one in your drawer - or pocket.)

Some other things we don't leave home without:

A needle keeper that holds an assortment of needles and pins.

Good lighting in case we want to work after the sun goes down or in the tent if it's raining. Bring a combination of solar powered and battery powered and really brighten up the place!

While the coffee brews, spend the time cutting out wool or cotton appliques, hexagons, or scrapbook shapes. An OLFA Folding Mat gives you a firm surface to work on. and if you need to scrooch over at the table, you can carefully lift it and move everything at once. OLFA's 5" applique scissors are perfect for these types of cutting. The blades are sharp from the point to the handle, and no matter which way you pick them up, your fingers will fit in the holes. They're comfortable for left- or right-handed cutters.

Because it was raining, we found a table inside one of the park pavilions to do some block trimming. One of the great features of OLFA's Frosted Advantage Rulers is that there is a 45 degree angle line drawn right on the ruler. When cutting half-square triangles, we're able to lay that line on the seam line to ensure the integrity of the angle. Using the 1/8" markings on the left and bottom of the ruler lets us trim the squares to the size needed for our pattern. A 28mm OLFA Rotary Cutter is just the right size to use with a 4 1/2" ruler.

Don't spend all of your time at camp crafting, though. Grab your hiking shoes and camera and hit the trails to see what you can discover. And don't forget to enjoy a s'more or two!