Fons & Porter Mechanical Fabric Pencil

Featured Tool: Mechanical Fabric Pencil by Fons & Porter, Item # 81861Mechanical Fabric Pencil

What is the Mechanical Fabric Pencil typically used for?

This pencil allows you to make washable and erasable marks on dark fabric. I used it to mark my seam allowance and keep a steady line while hand-sewing.

What was your first impression?

“It’s a mechanical pencil–how is this supposed to leave any mark on fabric?”

What was your experience using the Mechanical Fabric Pencil like?

It was awesome! The white lead in particular made following everything so much simpler–the line was right there! It also comes with a darker lead color for when you want to use it on lighter fabrics.

How long did it take you to learn how to use it?

Not long at all. The first time using it, I just went over the original line I had made to ensure I was good to go.

Why do you NEED it?

It makes hand sewing SO MUCH easier! This helps keep your lines straight and consistent, which is absolutely necessary when hand-sewing. You could also easily use this to mark fabric for quilting and embroidery–it’d be a handy tool to have in your sewing room.

Who would appreciate the Simple Foundations Translucent Vellum Paper most?

This would be perfectly suited for:

  • Beginner Quilters
  • Intermediate Quilters
  • Expert Quilters
  • Embroiderers
  • Paper-Piecers


  1. Karen - July 12, 2016

    I have two of these pencils, one with light led and one with the dark. I find I reach for one or the other quite often when piecing quilt tops. I find I don’t have to do as much un-sewing, which is a big plus.

  2. Becky Schultz - July 12, 2016

    I also have a light and a dark one – it is my “go to” marking tool for seams.

  3. Judy - July 13, 2016

    I use the white lead all of the time. It’s my favorite marking pencil. I love that the line is so fine but very visible and that I don’t have to keep sharpening my pencil to get a sharp point.

  4. Kathleen - July 13, 2016

    I have this tool, but a different brand. I used it on a quilt where I did a lot of big stitch type quilting because I drew my own designs. Worked great. I did find though that the colored leads stained the cream/ecru colored thread I was using. But fortunately it did wash out.

  5. Kathy Potts - July 15, 2016

    These pencils are great. I also have two of them, one for white, and one for dark, but I also have a supply of yellow for those times when neither white or dark work. I’ll never use another type of marking pencil again!

  6. Linda Christianson - July 18, 2016

    Well I lost mine a week ago so I decided it was time to clean the sewing mess until what ever project I was working on was found. I have a much cleaner sewing room now after three full days of just putting the projects and scrapes away. I need to add second pencil to my wish list so I can have one for white and one for dark.

  7. rosemarie garone - July 19, 2016

    I also have 2 pen colors. I use the white most of the time. I do find that the lead is a bit hard. doesn’t mark right away. but I love the pen.

  8. L Meloche - March 13, 2020

    Is there a trick to replacing the lead? I have not been able to make it work since I used up the first one.