6 important sewing tips and tricks to try 5

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Do you love to sew? Have you been considering getting into it as a new hobby? Whether you’ve been doing it for years or are just starting out, there’s bound to be a couple of important things you didn’t know that you should probably try!

1. Skip the pins: Pins actually cause the fabric to lay differently, which can cause puckering. Instead, use pattern weights when cutting pattern pieces. When you’re at the machine, use your left hand to hold the fabric down, while holding both pieces of fabric in your right hand, providing a little bit of tension. Also, you can use binder clips instead of pins for fabrics such as leather that are easily damaged. They can also be used to hold binding together on a quilt.

2. Clean up easily: Add a lint roller and a large magnet to your sewing toolbox. A lint roller makes it incredibly easy to clean up all of those clipped threads. The magnet is helpful for attracting straight pins if you (or your cat) dumps them everywhere.

3. Get a real straight edge on your fabric: Fabric cut off the bolt rarely has a completely straight edge. This can be really frustrating when you’re trying to line everything up perfectly. Fortunately, fabric rips straight. Just make a slight cut on the gross grain and rip away. This is also a handy trick when working with a large amount of yardage that the largest cutting table in the world wouldn’t be able to accommodate.

4. Use hairspray as a needle threader: Threading a needle is a simple enough task, but it can be frustrating when the thread bends and frays, refusing to go through the needle’s eye. Next time this happens to you, try spraying it with hairspray. It will stiffen and easily pass through the eye of the needle.

5. How to find your grain: Pull on a loose thread will tug at your fabric and gather a little, gently pull it all the way out. The line this thread left behind is your cross-grain, perpendicular to your grain line. When you fold your fabric in half this line should match up on both sides.

6. Use a folding template: Seam gauges are great, but sometimes the whole process gets very fiddly. Instead, use a folding template that you can iron over – easy!

1. Hem the easy way!

Do you have any tips and tricks to add?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. When sewing up a knitted garment, use bobby pins to hold the pieces together for hand sewing.

  2. I like to use a cardboard cutting board. the fabric and paper patterns are easily placed over the area and the pins are poked upright through both to be held in place for cutting. I do like the idea of a folding template for hems etc.

  3. I would never rip my fabric, it ruins the fabric around it. Not many sewists or quilters adhere to that tip.

  4. I love sewing !! I have made a few things like dresses for the grandies and shorts/ leggings ect. But, I have taught myself how to make Washable Cloth Menstrual Pads (they are good for light incontinence too!) Machine washable/ comfortable/ waterproof (PUL) with Kam snaps) If you want to see pictures of these things —Google—Images of Washable Cloth Menstrual Pads. They sell them on E bay/ Etsy. Take Care xx

  5. Following Irene’s tip. Curtains or large patterns can be cut on the carpeted floor. The pins are pushed in vertically as with the cardboard. No puckering and held firmly in place while you cut.

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