General Sewing Tips

  • Keep your sewing scissors for fabric only as paper blunts scissors. To sharpen them, take a piece of silver foil, fold into strips as if maing a fan and cut up the strips of the foil.
  • If you have unpicked stitches and the holes are very noticeable, use the tiny red dot on the unpicker in a circular motion over the hole and the fabric will repair itself by the fibres weaving back together.
  • When using iron-on interfacing, cut it to size and shape, then iron it onto the uncut fabric. It is easier to cut out the fabric and far less is wasted.
  • Tack! Don’t rely on pins for anything other than rough work – fabric can pucker and the pins can break sewing machine needles.
  • When sewing multiple layers, instead of using pins, use small bulldog clips (or Wonder Clips) – not only will they protect your fabric, they will not bend, are easy to apply and save your fingers too.
  • Measure twice, cut once!
  • The easiest and most consistent way of getting a perfect hem is only use one pin for the measurement. If you use too many and each pin ends up in a slightly different place, then which one do you use as your guide?
  • Use the best thread you can afford – it makes all the difference.
  • Always press seams as you are working through a project as seams will lie flat and look much better.
  • A tiny travel iron and sleeve board are useful for getting into those hard to reach places when pressing seams in middle of making up a project.
  • Use masking tape on Velcro while machine or hand sewing to prevent the thread from catching in the loops. Once stitched, the masking tape can be removed.
  • For making blinds and cutting straight, try using a right angle that you would use in DIY – it works great.
  • Use lots of pins and position them so that you can pull them out just before they reach the foot. Don’t sew over them as it can make the fabric slip under the foot and make the line wonky. Fine Clover pins are longer and finer and so they distort the fabric far less.
  • Always check to see if a seam is to be pressed open and if so then overlock it before sewing it, rather than after sewing as it’s much easier.
  • Make only what you love. Don’t be following what everyone else is doing…then you will love what you make and make more!

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