You can use a wide range of hacks to make doing various sewing projects that much easier. Some of the hacks you can use include preventing your thread from getting tangles when you hand sew, creative ways to use bias tape, and using various items around your home to make the sewing process easier.
Whether it’s keeping your scissors sharp, finding simpler ways to sew materials, or keeping your material in place, these hacks can help to make your next sewing project a breeze.
In order to avoid hitting the pins you use to hold your fabric together when sewing, place them in horizontally. In this way you don’t risk hitting them with the needle and damaging your machine. For more on how to do this, check Sew4Home.
To keep your scissors close by and ready for use when working on a project, attach a cord to the handle of the scissors. Make sure the cord is long enough and you can place it around your neck so it is right there when you need it.
Instead of investing in expensive batting for your next quilt project, use some old blankets instead. Old blankets work just as well as batting and can even make the quilt easier to fold once finished. Check out The Slightly Mad Quilt Lady for more on how to upcycle your old blankets.
To hold your fabric in place when sewing, use office clips. These clips allow you to keep layers of material tightly together when sewing around the edge. When you get to the clip, simply remove it and continue sewing.
Keeping the drawstring for your hoods can be difficult. An easy way to keep your drawstring in place is to place a few stitches in the middle of the back of the hood to hold it in place. Visit Maybe She Made It to learn more about this marvelous hack.
Steel wool is an easy way to keep your pins and needles sharp. To make a steel wool pin cushion, place a small ball of steel wool in some colorful cloth and sew it closed. Then, when you are not using your pins and needles, stick them in the steel wool pin cushion to keep them handy while sharpening them at the same time.
Did you know you can utilize larger serger spools with a non-serger-type sewing machine? Simply place the larger serger spool over a smaller spool before placing both on your machine. This makes it so you don’t have to change out your thread as often.
Hemmers make it easier to sew a hem on your fabrics. The narrow hemmer folds the fabric over twice and stitches the hem down flat. Go to Threads Magazine to learn more about the different types of hemmers.
Adding fabric to another piece of fabric allows you to widen it and make it larger. When adding fabric to another piece of fabric for this purpose, add some to each side to create a symmetrical look. Visit Sew4Home for more info on how to do this.
Threading a needle is often a difficult process. The end of the thread tends to fray, making it almost impossible to thread through the eye of a needle. For an easier way to thread a needle, go to the Art of Manliness.
Getting you seam allowance right does not have to be difficult. An easy way to set your seam allowance is to use two rubber bands. Place the rubber bands around the bottom of the machine, and move them into place on your fabric when needed. Threads Magazine has more on this time-saving hack.
Bias tape comes in handy when trimming quilts, placemats, and other items. Fortunately, continuous bias tape is easy to make. Check out No Big Dill for more on how to make your own continuous bias tape.
Bulky fabrics can cinch up and make it hard to sew. An easy hack to prevent this is to use a plastic bag. By placing a plastic bag over your bulky material before attempting to sew it can make the material slide more smoothly through the machine. For more on this hack, visit Threads Magazine.
An easy way to ensure that you get all of your pins and needles picked up when you finish is to use a magnet. Keep the magnet in your sewing kit, and once finished run it over your work area.
Before proceeding with any sewing project, it is important to test your stitches before getting started. So, grab a piece of scrap cloth and make sure your machine is set up correctly. Otherwise, you might end up ripping out the stitches and starting over.
Using elastic thread in your projects allows you to create ruffles. Called shirring, adding elastic thread to a piece of fabric will cause it to shrink to about half its size, so plan accordingly. To learn more about shirring and using elastic, check out RufflesandStuff.
While many who sew think installing a zipper is hard, it doesn’t have to be. There are certain hacks you can use to make the whole process simpler and faster. Check out Make It & Love It for more on hacks to speed up the zipper installation process.
Washing your fabric before sewing is important. Doing so helps to eliminate any shrinkage beforehand. Most all fabrics, except 100 percent polyester need to be washed in this way. Check out Bluprint for more on this important step.
Another option to sewing buttons on by hand is to use a sewing machine to do so. Supposedly, it is much easier to use a machine, as long as you use the proper technique. DIY & Crafts has all you need to know to learn this crucial skill.
If you do not have a bodkin, luckily you have some replacement options that can stand in as a replacement. One option is to use a safety pin attached to the elastic to pull it through.
A serger can really speed up your sewing, making it easier to do a lot of sewing tasks, many at the same time. For more on how to properly use a serger, check out Sewway.
If you use elastic in your designs, then a bodkin is a must-have item. A bodkin, a blunt, thick needle, allows you to feed the elastic through your material. For more on how to properly use a bodkin, visit The Sewing Loft.
Sewing buttons is a skill that is easy to learn but hard to master. Luckily, the method is easy enough. You just have to make sure the thread is the right length and then not pull the thread through the fabric while sewing. Martha Stewart has more on this necessary sewing skill.
This hack can help you make a crisp corner with perfectly straight corners. Simply turn the fabric inside out when sewing to get a nice crisp corner. You can find this hack at Closet Case.
Keeping track of skirt lengths is difficult, especially for children. An easy way to track the proper lengths you need is to print off a length chart and keep it close for when you need it.
While it might see hard to sew a circle pattern, using this hack makes it much easier. Use a round object with sandpaper attached to the bottom as a template for sewing. Find out more about this hack at Threads Magazine.
small bobbins are easy to lose, especially if you have a lot of them. An easy way to keep track of your bobbins is to secure them using a toe separator. You can find toe separators for cheap at your local dollar store. Sew4Home has more on this great hack.
In order to make straight quilt lines, use masking tape to mark off the edges of the lines. The tape keeps the squares from moving and creates a perfect guideline to sew along with a sewing machine. Visit Makery for more info on this helpful hack.
Organizing your trim can be difficult, especially if you have a lot. A good way to organize it is to cut off a piece of cardboard, such as from a cereal box, and wrap the trim around it. Check out the The Cottage Mama for more on this helpful hack.
An easy way to mark a seam allowance is to be to place a rubber band around two pencils. Then, when you need one, use the pencils to draw a seam allowance on your fabric. The pencils should be about 3/8-inches apart, the perfect size. Go to OneCrazyHouse for more information.
Over time, the thread that holds buttons in place can fray and come loose. A great way to prevent this is to add a thin layer of clear nail polish to the top of your threads. Go to That Cheap Bitch.com to learn more.
Keep your thread from getting tangled by coating it with beeswax when using. Not only does the wax make it much easier to handle the thread, it also doesn’t interfere with the use of the thread. For details about a variety of products used for this purpose, check out Sew4Home.
The problem with many paper patterns is their flimsy nature. Luckily, you can attach your paper patterns to interfacing to make your patterns last longer. Pinosy has more on this money-saving hack.
To keep your pins better organized, attach a small dish to the top of your sewing machine. To attach a shallow bowl or saucer to the top of your sewing machine, glue two magnets to the bottom of the holder. For more on this helpful hack, check out Sarah Jane’s Craft Blog.
Believe it or not, you can use a fork to create ruffles. The fork allows you to easily fold the material over to make uniform pleats in your material. Check out Home Decoras for more information on this hack.
Often when finishing a zipper, it can look unprofessional if not done right. Fortunately, you have an option to get a more professional looking zipper. To give your zippers a more professional look, use the hacks presented at Burda Style.com.
When sewing it is important to make sure your stitches are evenly spaced. An easy way to do this is to make a mark on your thumb using a sharpie. BoingBoing has more on this easy to use hack.
If you cannot afford a serger but like the seams you can do with a serger, then this hack is for you. You can either use pinking shears to keep the seam from unraveling or sew a zigzag stitch for added strength. Go to The Seasoned Homemaker for more.