I’m not an advanced sewer just yet. I’ve only bought a sewing machine last year. I’ve done sewing before, but I always had help. Preventing me from making silly mistakes.
So when I bought my first machine I made some mistakes, some silly, some not that silly.
What have a learned?
Make sure you buy enough fabric. Nothing is more frustrating than finding out you bought too little fabric and have to go back.
This goes for scraps as well. Make sure you got enough for what you are making. Many stores sell the last few centimeters/inches of their rolls as scraps and won’t get new rolls of the same fabric. If they have more than one roll, make sure they’re the same batch. Otherwise you can end up with slightly different colouring.
Buy more than you need. I always find myself going back for more. So now, when I need one meter, I buy two, just to be sure!
Ironing your fabric
So you’ve made sure you’ve got enough fabric? Wash and iron it. As soon as you get home. Of course you can choose to not wash it before, but the fabric might shrink a bit. And your project can get wonky if that happens.
Ironing is necessary too. For my first project I thought ironing was stupid. You won’t believe how wonky that sewing machine cosy is…
Make sure your fabric can be ironed. I’ve made this mistake twice and ended up having to clean the iron with nailpolish remover and a piece of wood…
Make sure you look at the pattern before cutting. I didn’t with the sewing machine cosy and ended up with one piece wrong side up and one piece on it’s side…
If you use stripes, make sure they line up.
Map out the pieces you need for your project on paper first. Then decide how they can best be cut out of the fabric. Trust me, you won’t end up with weird scraps…
I didn’t do this with the first bag. And while the piece of fabric would have been big enough for two bags, I ended up with a weirdly shpaed piece of fabric which has almost no use.
On the up side, I got to buy new fabric!
I think that’s what I’ve found out so far. I’m sure there are many more great tips out there. But these are the ones I wanted to share.
photo by heatherknitz.