Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Back 2 Basics - Equipment

It's Tuesday, and time to chat about the basics
we've seemed to ignore as life has progressed.
Let's challenge ourselves to incorporate
 some of the basics
back into our daily living.

Today's basic is all about...
Essential Sewing Equipment

There are tons of fancy machines, gadgets, and gizmos produced to make our sewing easier; however, they are not truly necessary. Just because something is designed to make your sewing easier, and is fun to have, doesn't make it essential. While I sometimes wish for all the fancy 'stuff' I have found there are only a few required items...

1. Sewing Machine - It doesn't need all the bells and whistles. As long as it sews a straight line and a zig-zag stitch, you can accomplish your sewing tasks.

2. Sewing Needles - You'll want needles that fit your sewing machine, as well as hand-sewing needles. Different sizes of needles do different jobs, so pick up a Variety Pack.

3. Pins - These are necessary for holding together your fabric, aligning your seams before stitching. Steel pins are my favorite. Nickel-plated are common, but I find they easily bend and can damage fabric. I prefer the longer pins...at least 1½ inches in length. If you can splurge, grab some pretty flower-head pins. They look sweet in a pin cushion. ☺

4. Scissors - Buy the best you can afford and they will last you a lifetime. You'll need shears for cutting your fabric, and a smaller pair of sharp scissors for clipping threads and seams. If you haven't done so, take them to be sharpened. You'll be glad you did.

5.  Tape Measure - We've talked about the retractable tape measure you can purchase for $1.00. That's handy for carrying with you while shopping; however, you'll want a dedicated sewing area measuring tape. For a few more dollars, you can purchase a measuring tape made of glass fiber. Splurge on this essential, as it will give you accurate measurements without stretching out of shape.

6. Iron - I dream of having a top-of-the-line Rowenta iron, but I live in the reality of kids running through my sewing room and knocking my iron off the table quite frequently. As long as your iron has multiple heat settings and produces steam for those seams, that's all you really need.

7.  Pressing Cloth - Use your 40% off coupon and buy a piece of high-end cotton that is finely woven. A 2-foot square pressing cloth is a good size for most projects. Pressing cloth is used to iron delicate fabrics, so make sure your cloth has no imperfections, holes, or prominent grain lines that could transfer to your final project.

8.  Ironing Board - Make one or purchase one, just make sure it's sturdy. The cover should fit well and be smooth and wrinkle-free.

Now you have the basic equipment...pick your project and start sewing!

What is one piece of sewing equipment you absolutely love?
Why do you love it?

Do you have any sewing equipment not listed
 that you would consider 'essential' ?

Happy Tuesday!

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