I am totally not a gadget person and don’t fall for a lot of the crazy notions out there one can purchase for sewing. There are sooooo many and if we tried them all we’d go broke. And more than half the time, there’s no need for the gadget because the job can be done just as well with something common place you already have. (I have never crocheted in my life, but you can find a huge assortment of crochet hooks in my studio because they make the best pokers when turning something skinny right side out!
That said – there is still a nice collection of things we use regularly while making our many sewing projects and teaching others to sew. Some would be just plain hard to live without.
1.) Pellon Wonder Under
This is Paper-backed fusible web that turns any fabric into a fusible fabric. Fuses fabric to fabric or to a porous surface such as wood or cardboard. This is the stuff you use when you have to applique’ fabric to anything! It can be tricky to use for beginners so here are handy instructions:
2.) Omni Grid Rulers
Omni Grid Rulers are the number one selling quilting ruler in the world for a reason. They are preferred by professional quilters & teachers all over the world. They last longer than other rulers. They are the only ruler to maintain +/- .002 inch accuracy. Omnigrid’s patented and trademarked (black and yellow) double sight line make for easy reading and measuring on light and dark fabrics. Markings make right or left handed use easy. Omnigrid Rulers have grid markings throughout. These rulers are made of heavy-duty, premium quality acrylic and laser cut for a smooth edge. Designed and manufactured in the USA.
3. Thread Heaven
Thread Heaven is better than beeswax because it’s developed specifically for delicate thread, it prevents fraying and makes hand sewing just about anything a lot easier. It produces a static charge, which helps reduce tangling & will not stick to your needle. To use, simply press thread against Thread Heaven and draw it across. Pull between fingers to remove excess and to produce the static charge. Your thread will be ready for use! Once you have used it, hand sewing without it becomes unbearable.
4. Pinking shears
Pinking shears have a utilitarian function for cutting Cloth edges that are unfinished will easily fray, the weave becoming undone and threads pulling out easily. The sawtooth pattern does not prevent the fraying but limits the length of the frayed thread and thus minimizes damage.
These scissors can also be used for decorative cuts and a number of patterns (arches, sawtooth of different aspect ratios, or asymmetric teeth) are available. True dressmaker’s pinking shears, however, are not used for paper decoration because paper dulls the cutting edge.