I'm a fan of the clover white pens, too - but boy, oh boy, they sure don't last long. If I wasn't the queen of Joann's coupons, I might have to sell my second-born (firstborn is currently my favorite ;) ). As far as regular 'sharpenable' pencils, the cheap ones from WalMart fabric dept. have beat all of the specialty ones from both the quilting and notions aisles at Joann's.
Yes, I did try every single marking tool that Joann's had to offer - AFTER confirming that if I got it home, tried it once and was unhappy I could return it. I did that, returned something like 14 marking tools and got the Clover pens.
My Joann's doesn't sell the Fons & Porter refills, and Ann, I seem to recall you said that the pencil was kinda lame?
I have a box of chalk in my "Things That Mark" drawer (yeah, I have "Things That Stick" drawer and a "Things That Cut" drawer, too - no point in getting too specific!) - regular old school chalk. That works for the broad strokes or for tracing around certain templates.
I'm super paranoid about the "rinse out" stuff, like the blue or purple pens. I agree about really hosing down the quilt to make sure it comes out of the batting! I'm also painfully careful about not letting an iron get anywhere close to where I've used that type of pen - I'm afraid that it will somehow set the ink. This makes it particularly difficult if I've marked in a border; I can't attach the binding and press it without washing the quilt first to get the pen out!
:peek: Hey! My peeky guy showed up!! Yay!