Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A Few of My Favorite Things + GIVEAWAY!

When I started sewing almost two years ago, I was inundated with information. I found Vogue Sewing at a local bookstore and it was extremely overwhelming. I had no clue which tools I absolutely needed vs. which tools were just nice to have. I had no clue which thread to buy or which needles. So, for my first official post, I've put together a short list of my favorite sewing implements. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but I've found that these are the most basic items that any beginner should have before they start their first project. 

Necessary Small Tools
From top to bottom: seam ripper, snips, Dritz seam gauge, soft thimble, hand sewing needles.
I like to call these the necessary small tools - seam ripper, small snips, a seam gauge, thimble and hand sewing needles. I have two seam rippers, one next to my machine and the other near the ironing board. I should really have multiple pairs of the snips - one day!

Pins & Pincushions
Clockwise from top: pearl head pins in a pin cushion, stainless steel pins in magnetic pin holder, fine silk pins, wrist pin cushion, fine glasshead pins in magnetic pin holder.
I love all of my pins, even though I don't use all of them! I'll admit the purple pin cushion is really just for decoration, but they're so pretty! I mainly go between the stainless steel, which are nice and colorful, and the glasshead which I can iron over.

Scissors, Shears & Rotary Cutters
From left to right: paper scissors, Mundial 8" Dressmaking shears, Fiskars pinking shears, Fiskars rotary cutter 45mm, Gingher 8" Dressmaking shears.
I just recently bought the Mundials as a back-up to my Ginghers when I eventually send them off to be sharpened. I have to admit though they don't come close to the Ginghers. I love my rotary cutter - and I've only had a few minor incidents. Amazon has a great deal on a 5-pack of blades for 45mm by the way.


I started off buying thread from JoAnn (the small spools) but then I found out you can purchase spools of Gutermann MARA 100 from Wawak (top few rows). Each spool has 1,094 yards and lasts a lifetime. Plus it's available in 400 colors! All of these colors make me happy! The MARA 100 is 25% off through December!

Pressing Tools
Clockwise: sleeve board, cotton pressing cloth, point turner, seam roll, pressing ham.

It's taken a full two years for me to appreciate and come to value proper pressing and the tools that help you accomplish this. I just recently bought the sleeve board (which is extremely useful) and the point turner, which really makes all the difference when creating collars and waistbands.

Marking Tools
From left to right: Allary Chalk Cartridge set, chalk sharpener with white chalk, Clover Chacopel fine pencils, Dritz tracing paper.
I love all of these marking tools, but use the Chacopel pencils and the tracing paper the most. I usually lay out my pattern pieces right sides up, then trace darts etc. onto the wrong side with the paper sandwiched in between. All of these can be purchased through www.Wawak.com. 

Medical Paper for Tracing

I went through a terrible phase of cutting my new patterns and subsequently ruining them every time. Now I trace most patterns, although skirts I'll go ahead and cut out - I don't think my waist will change that much! I found this on Amazon for about $25 I think.

Now for the GIVEAWAY! 
I have so many rolls of tracing paper, so I'm giving some away! To enter:
1. Subscribe to my blog!
2. Leave a comment below!

I will randomly choose three readers to win a roll of tracing paper! Giveaway is open to all readers! Giveaway closes Tuesday, December 10, 2013 @ 12:00 am EST.

Just a note: I was not compensated by Wawak, I just really love their notions and find them to have the best prices on most things. Request a catalog and see for yourself!

What are your favorite sewing tools?


  1. I think my favorite small tool is the tape measure. I don't think I could get anywhere without it! I am no good at estimating 5/8 seam allowances or grain line distances. The ripper is also a tool I can't live without. If I my tape measurement is wrong, I sew something wrong, or the machine screws up, I find the ripper essential!

    1. Hi kajero! I forgot to add the tape measure even though I use it all the time! Thank you so much for commenting!