Hi Everyone =)
Well, as you know, I’ve been practising with old baby clothes since Rebecca is growing up so fast! In the process, I’ve learned some things I hope will help any new beginner at sewing. So here they are, my tips and tricks that may help you on your journey to sewing =)
1) You WILL get a crick in your neck from straining while using the sewing machine…..add a few printer paper blocks under the machine and you will notice a big improvement.
2) Tie 2 pencils together (using tape, glue, rubber band, etc.) to create a seam allowance when tracing patterns…believe me, it helps. You can use an eraser on fabric to eliminate your pencil marks.
3) I confess, I absolutely hate pins. I never use them. Since I never liked them, I learned to sew “freehand” so to speak, just folding the fabric back to create a seam as I sew along using my sewing machine seam allowance lines as a guide. Yes, I know you are wondering if my seams turn out straight? Well, most of the time they turn out just fine….if I need to use pins, I substitute with clothe pegs, binder clips, or paper clips…they are much faster to get on\off.
4) Want to add appliqués to that beautiful blanket you are making but aren’t savvy with the sewing machine? Well don’t worry, neither am I =) So I just cut them off old clothing and hand sew them on to whatever I am making using embroidery thread!
5) Recycle EVERYTHING found on baby clothes….snaps, buttons, appliqués, ruffles, etc…..as well as keep the clothing. You can re-purpose baby clothes like crazy! For example, see my post on making a super fast diaper cover out of an old onesie. Since baby clothes are made from stretchy cotton, you can actually re-purpose the clothes to last into the next stage (e.g. 0-3 month size clothing can fit a 4-5 month old baby, depending on how you re-purpose them). I’ll show you more on that in future posts =)
6) Use colored pencils to mark your pattern on fabric….but be sure to test on scrap fabric first to make sure it washes out.
7) Invest in a rotary cutter to cut fabric, shark teeth scissors to help against fraying when cutting fabric, as well as a self-healing cutting mat….they make all the difference in the world.
I hope you have enjoyed these tips and tricks =)