Basic Of Sewing: Tools Of The Trade

Any post on the basics of sewing wouldn’t be complete without a rundown on the most important tools you absolutely need to have if you’re going to take up sewing as a hobby.

sewing basics

In this blog post, I am going to do you a favor and give you a list of the most important sewing tools.

1. The Sewing Machine

You will find lots of sewing machines in different types and in different price ranges. If you are only starting, you don’t need a professional model with all the bells and whistles. I’ve been sewing for some time now and the machine that I’ve been using was something that my mother gave me as a graduation gift – a Janome DC2007LE.

What I love about my machine is that it’s very easy to use. Most sewing machines have free sewing training included which I recommend that you use.

Also, don’t forget to read the manual as it has some good information on dealing with some common troubleshooting. Sew Far Sew Good is a good site to check if you are looking to buy your first ever sewing machine.

2. Tape Measure

I don’t have an opinion on which one to use. I think any tape measure is as good as any, so, just buy one. You will look really professional if you drape it over your neck while you’re working. *wink*

3. Tailor’s Chalk

Tailor’s chalk is greater than a marking pencil. Its mark practically lasts forever. But I’ve been told to use highlighters and pens as marking tools. Anyway, for me tailorís chalk is still the best.

The sewing machine, tailor’s chalk and tape measure are really just some of tools that you’ll need if you want to set up a sewing workshop at home. Other things you will need are pins, seam gauge, seam ripper, and, most important, are a great pair of scissors.

4. Scissors

I stress the term “great” because I have used crappy scissors before and they’re not good. I’ve committed to a set of top quality Fiskars scissors simply because they were nice heavy, sharp, and less expensive than Ginghers.

5. Seam ripper

Your seam ripper is another item that needs to be great. Whenever you create a sewing mistake, which is bound to happen, you’ll become fast friends and enemies with your seam ripper. You donít want to spend too much of your time undoing the seams with a bad seam ripper.

Some Suggestions

When it comes to undertaking an actual sewing project, you  want to start with the basics.

Novice sewers are practically required to make their token pillows and other simple-to-make items to master the basics.

When I first started out, I thought I could jump right to making a t-shirt for my son. I was wrong.

I have learned that it is better to watch a video on Youtube or any place on the internet  a lot of times and creating some muscle memory to get the stitches right is another story.

After about a few tries, I decided to go back to the basics and got to know my sewing machine and how it actually works. I suggest you do the same.

When working on sewing machine has become second nature to you, it becomes much, much easier to move on to the next sewing project.

Where Should You Learn Sewing?

You can do it online or you can sign up for classes at a local trade school. Obviously, each option has its set of advantages and disadvantages. I like the convenience of online classes, but I also like it that I get to meet people when I go to class. But thatís just me. If you sign up for online classes, you absolutely need to make sure that the class you sign up for has forums section where you can ask questions and learn from others who are more advanced than you.

Good luck on your sewing journey. Please hit me up on the comment section if you have some questions.

Get Your Supplies From The Online Craft Stores

If you love to do craft projects in your spare time, you can get all of the supplies that you need from the online craft stores.

online craft store

The online stores are much more convenient because then you will not have to end up traveling a far distance just to get exactly what you need to complete your project.

Some of my favorite online stores to visit are Michaels and Joann.

It may also be easier to find exactly what you need online because of the impressively large selection of products that are always available. Avoid wasting time and simply get what you need online.

Finding What You Are Looking For

Before you start ordering items, take a look at what types of craft supplies are available on the website. The items should be sorted based on what you can use them for when you are making something specific. For example, there may be cake decorating utensils and supplies, artificial flowers, beads with wires for making jewelry and even wood trinket boxes that you can paint and decorate. Assorted embellishments may also be available.

The online craft store will usually have a section for fabric and thread too. If you are planning to make some clothes or put together a beautiful blanket, checking out the fabric section to look at the different color and style varieties would be in your best interest. Some fabric options will have unique designs and patterns on them. The materials used may include silk, cotton and even polyester.

When you land on the website, use the navigation system to get to the items that you are most interested in buying. Once you do that, you may end up seeing a variety of similar items that are available and offered by different brands.

If you were to take a look at the cake decorating supplies, you may find cake pop stands, cake pop wrappers, cupcake wrappers, frosting dispensers and dozens of other items that will allow you to make sweet treats that look great and taste amazing. You may even be able to find cake pans in assorted shapes and sizes.

Comparing Prices to Get a Good Deal

Because there are numerous online craft stores, it is a good idea to see what items each one has to offer and then compare the prices from all of the sites. Although it may take a little more of your time to make these comparisons, you could end up saving a lot of money. If you want to get the best deal possible, it is certainly worth it to find out which site is offering the specific supplies that you need at a decent price.

You may also want to check if there are any online coupons available. Many craft websites offer some coupon codes that customers can use to get their merchandise at discounted prices. By selecting the most affordable website and using a coupon code, you could end up saving even more money without compromising the quality of the supplies that you need.

Once you are ready to buy the craft supplies, you can put in your order. As long as the items are in stock, they will be sent out to you in a timely manner so you are not stuck waiting a long time for them, especially if you want to get started on the project immediately.

It does not matter what type of craft project you are planning to do. Whether you want to bake some tasty treats, paint beautiful pictures or even make your own blankets using different types of fabric, the online craft store will have everything that you need to complete your craft.

How I Chose My Favorite Sewing Machine

When I decided I was going to sew my own clothes, the first thing to do was to inform myself about all sewing machines available. I wanted to pick the best one, but I was clueless, so I spent a few weeks researching and comparing various options.


This post is a guide for all those who wish to buy a sewing machine but have no experience in this area. Hopefully, I can save you some trouble.

1. How Much Can You Spend?

The first thing to consider is your budget. This is very important, because sewing machine prices may vary quite a lot with various parameters. If you have almost no money, you need to limit yourself a a machine that does mainly the basic operations, without thinking about complicated embroidery patterns or other things like that.

You should probably go for a second hand machine. If you insist on buying a new one, it’s probably going to be very basic. Nonetheless, it can be good for you to practice on it and then move on to a better one when you can afford it.

I had enough money to start with, so I went for an automatic machine with several neat functions and over 200 different stitches. If you only care about being able to perform a straight stitch and a zigzag stitch, you might find good machines that aren’t very expensive.

Here is a good video that explains everything I discuss here on my post.

2. What Do You Want To Do?

This brings us to the purpose you want your sewing machine for. If you are sure you only need straight stitches, you should care more about choosing a robust and versatile machine rather than a sophisticated one. It would be a shame to pay for functions you are never going to use, so do your research well before purchasing anything.

If you think you are going to sew fabrics of different textures and thicknesses, you might want to consider getting a machine with adjustable stitch length. This is very important, as very thin fabrics call for shorter stitches, otherwise you risk to do a lousy job.

I wanted to have multiple stitch choices, so I picked a Janome 2032. This is a very good machine, with lots of cool functions and within a reasonable price range, at least for me.

3. What Accessories Would You Need?

This is very hard to determine, especially if you are new to sewing and you have no idea what are the possibilities. For instance, if you want to make clothing items, you should consider getting a machine that has the capability of performing buttonholes, sew zippers and execute a blind hem. All these operations require specific feet, so you should get them as standard attachments. If you wish to make quilts, you are also going to need a 1/4 inch foot, as this is the one used for patchwork. Nonetheless, you should at least make sure there are such accessories available for your machine, should you be willing to buy them at a later stage. You should also look into their cost, as you might not be very happy if you had to pay a fortune for each extra attachment you buy.

There are also criteria such as the size of the motor and the materials the machine is made from. Plastic is cheaper, but it is less resistant, so you should consider whether you want to use your machine for decades or you don’t really care about that.

If you do your research well, you have good chances to pick a sewing machine you are going to love, like I did with mine.;)