For the sewing beginner (and advanced seamstress)
As a sewing beginner the most important question we have is, what on earth do I need to get started? I know for me that was a struggle and it really took me time to figure out my likes and dislikes when it comes to supplies. I bought quite a few things getting started that I thought I would need or I read about that I never use. Here is my top 11 sewing supplies must have…
1. Sewing machine
Of course the number one thing you need is your sewing machine! Choosing a sewing machine can be a challenge as there are SO many options. My recommendation is that you start with your budget. Once you know how much you are willing to spend look into machines in your price range and read reviews.
I personally have a Brother cs6000i. I will say if you are looking into $100-$200 range it’s a great machine with tons of features and mine came with quite a few different feet which was great! (Watch the price hopefully when machines come back in stock prices will normalize)
Every seamstress needs a good pair of scissors. Some people use them for cutting fabric (in which case you don’t want to use them to cut anything else or it will dull the blade). I personally don’t cut fabric with scissors I found it difficult and time consuming to cut the fabric around the pattern with them. But I use my scissors to cut the actual patterns and cut threads and (trim seam allowances when I’m not using my serger), So either way scissors are a must have!
3. Rotary Cutter
My #1 favorite tool! For me pinning fabric to my patterns and then attempting to cut around it was so tedious! And let me tell you about the times I got a pin in my finger. No thank you! Then I found the rotary cutter. What a lifesaver! You put your fabric down, Place the pattern on top, weigh it down (I usually use my cell phone and a baby monitor, or whatever I have close by), and trace around it and the blade does all the work. However you will need the next must have sewing supply to make it work..
4. Cutting mat
Essential when you have a rotary cutter to have a good self healing cutting mat. I initially got a smaller mat 18×24” due to cost. A smaller mat was fine making baby/kids clothes. But making for an adult the 36” mat was much better! It is big but so worth it! I will link them both below..
5. Fabric clips
Did I mention I hate poking myself with straight pins?? Pinning fabric together was the worst part of sewing for me, and the holes they caused in my fabric.. not ideal. For my birthday my husband gifted me with these fabric clips (per my request) and they were a game changer. They are by far my favorite sewing tool(well its a close call between these and my rotary cutter)! Speeds up the sewing process for me and safer on my poor hands.
All purpose Polyester sewing machine thread is what you’ll want! The biggest suggestion I can make is to read reviews if you buy online. Honestly I’m not super picky about my brand… but some cheaper thread can cause a lot of lint that you will have to clean out of your machine! Wawak is a great place to find thread!
7. Sewing Machine Needles
The needle you’ll need is dependent upon your fabric choice for your project.
- Universal needles: great for most woven fabrics
- Stretch/ballpoint needles: knit fabric projects
- Denim: for jeans
- Leather: for leather projects
- Double needle: for clothing hems
8. Extra Bobbins
They are inexpensive (at least my plastic class 15 bobbins are at wawak.com) I keep at least 1 of my most commonly used colors wound at all times! Another perk of my machine is it has a bobbin winder which makes the job much easier! Just make sure you are buying the correct bobbins for your machine!!
9. Measuring tape
You will need to get measurements of you or whoever you are sewing for to choose the right size for the clothes you are making. Don’t guess based on their retail clothing size, if can vary based on patterns. You will want a flexible measuring tape to do that!
10. Seam ripper
You will make mistakes.. a seam ripper is a great investment! I actually got a combo seam ripper and flexible measuring tape!
11. Extra feet for your Sewing Machine
My sewing machine not only has tons of features but came with a great selection of extra feet! The one I would strongly recommend is a walking foot of you plan to sew knit fabrics! I will make more posts later highlighting some extra feet but for today my most used feet are the standard and walking feet!!
I hope this has helped you make some choices on which supplies are best to get you started! Now you can head over to Starting to Sew for some free patterns to get you started!!