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Here are the ten most important sewing tools that I recommend to anyone just starting to sew:
1. Sewing Machine (obviously)
Just Google “sewing machines”. You’ll get a huge number of results. There are so many out there. I currently use a Brother SE-400 sewing and embroidery machine, I have had it for 2 years and it is a pretty good machine. It hasn’t broken down and it’s really good because you can do multiple things like sewing, embroidery and downloading patterns. However again there are so many machines out there, it just depends on what type of machine you like.
Make sure you have a variety of threads. I can’t tell you how many times I started a sewing project and then had to stop and go buy the right thread color. You totally lose momentum. What do I suggest as the basic thread colors to always have on hand? I recommend black, white, navy blue, tan, brown and red. If you have these on hand, it will stop the numerous trips to the store or waiting for them to arrive from Amazon. Or if you want you can also just buy the thread that you need when you buy the fabric, this way is also cheaper. Make sure you get thread that will work with your machine. Today, most threads are universal, but it pays to double-check so you can avoid tangled machine jams. If you find your sewing machine jamming frequently check your thread first. If the thread is the problem, it’s easy to fix.
A pair of good quality scissors will allow you to cut your fabric cleanly. It’s imperative that you get some good fabric scissors to make cutting easier and not mess up your fabric. Investing in quality scissors is worth it because you will use them every time you sew. Dull or cheaper scissors can be very frustrating.
4. Rotary Mat and Cutter
I love these tools, the rotary cutter is just like scissors however it makes cutting easier and faster. It only works with the rotary mat so you have to by both if you want to use one. I definitely recommend, I really don’t use my scissors as much as my rotary cutter
You are going to need a variety of rulers, both small and large. You will be doing a lot of measuring of your fabrics and rulers are the perfect tool. There are multiple rulers you can choose from. Be sure to get at least one roll-up ruler so that you can easily measure curves.
6. Pin Cushion
A pin cushion is perfect for holding all your tiny needles and pins. Your work area can get pretty messy when you sewing and a pin cushion is and easy, quick way to store needles and pins. You’ll have all your pins conveniently located in one place.
7. Seam Ripper
You are going to make mistakes. Everyone does. A seam ripper lets you undo those mistakes quickly and get on with sewing. It is perfect for undoing seams that you have messed up on or need to resize. I highly recommend getting a proper seam ripper and not rely on your scissors to undo mistakes.
8. Sewing Box
I love my sewing box. It is just a simple box that holds all my sewing accessories in one organized easy-to-find case. What goes into my sewing bow? Everything from threads, buttons, pins, needles, scissors, rotary cutter and a lot more that you will accumulate the longer you sew. When you’re sewing, you eventually collect a lot of things. It is always nice to have something that has little compartments that help you manage your accessories.
9. Iron and Ironing Board
Your fabrics will continue to wrinkle somewhat when you’re working with them. So you’ll need an iron nearby to iron them out and make them look nice and neat. You don’t want the wrinkles to take away from the overall end look of your sewing project. It is better to iron out your fabric before you start sewing. You’ll have to do it after to, but smooth fabric is easier to work with.
10. Something to hold your fabrics
When you start a sewing project it can get pretty messy. You have fabric and threading all over the place and your sewing area can look quite horrendous. So buying a crate or box to put your fabric in really helps organize things.
11. Extra Needles
I cannot tell you how many times I have broken needles during a project. It is quite irritating. So, make sure you go to the store and buy at least 5 extra needles (10 is better). Most of the time your sewing machine comes with some but as a beginner you tend to break a couple pretty quickly. You’ll also want a variety of sewing machine needle sizes for different fabrics.