I’ve been sewing for about 6 weeks now and am enjoying it more every day, from selecting and completing projects to browsing the internet for inspiration to wandering around Spotlight asking stupid questions such as “where is the bias binding please? Oh so sorry, I thought that was a display of ribbons!”. I’ve found so many great sewing websites, tutorials, free patterns and blogs online and have also very much enjoyed a couple of sewing book splurges on Amazon during the free p&p to Australia offer that ends (probably fortunately) in about 2 weeks. I've also enjoyed a great many pleasant chats both on and offline with other sewing mamas - who knew there was such a vast and vibrant sewing community out there! These are some of the things that I’ve learned on my sewing journey so far:
- Check the tension on a scrap every single time the machine is rethreaded or a different type of fabric is used, otherwise much angst and unpicking will surely follow.
- Clip thread diagonally and it will be easier to thread; better still, have one of those funny looking needle threaders handy at all times (preferably several, either that or stop throwing them in the bin by accident).
- Always iron material before doing anything with it, even if it was ironed a while ago and doesn’t really look that creased, as laziness spoils results.
- Always iron on fusible interfacing before cutting - I don’t know why exactly but I read it in The Sewing Book by Alison Smith (my trusty companion) and it makes sense to me as otherwise you have to cut and fuse everything separately, which sounds like a drag.
- Tacking (also known as basting but that makes me think of turkey) is a very good idea. I tack most everything on advice of Jane Bolsover (Sewing Machine Basics). Obviously it does take longer but it keeps me straight and also stops me being stabbed by pins or getting my finger caught under the foot trying to remove them. Perhaps one day I shall be skilled enough not to have to tack pretty much everything, but until then I am a happy tacker!