Sometimes the best thing to do is to do things the easiest way. One of the things I enjoy doing is deciding how to go about making something in the simplest, most straightforward way.
10 Top Tips to Make Sewing Projects Easier
1. When threading elastic, use a safety pin. Attach a safety pin to one end of the elastic then wiggle the safety pin through the casing. The safety pin will pull the the elastic after it. Just make sure you catch the end of the elastic before it disappears into the casing!
2. If you don’t want to mark the fabric, use double sided tape instead of pins. Usually pins are fine, but if you are using fabric where pins will leave a mark, double sided tape is an alternative. Cheap tape (Poundland!) is easier to remove. Otherwise you could pin in the seam allowance.
4. Consider using bias binding on necklines. I always have trouble with facings! Binding the neckline is an easy alternative that looks much neater and doesn’t keep popping out in an annoying way like facings do!
5. Keep an unpicker handy. The amount of time I have wasted hunting for an unpicker when things have gone a little bit wrong is unreal! Now I keep one in the cubby in my sewing machine and one in my pencil case.
6. Press seams as you go. We all know we should! It does make a difference! Apart from anything it is easier. It also means that if you are sewing over seams the finish will be neater. If you are struggling to press them flat, press them to the side instead.
7. If you are sewing in a zip, sew up the seam, then tack the zip over the seam. Sew in in place then unpick the seam to uncover the zip. You can find a tutorial for doing this here.8. If you are sewing oilcloth or laminated cotton, smear a little bit of lip balm or hand cream onto the right side of the fabric. This will help to prevent it sticking to the sewing machine foot while you are sewing.
9. Add a magnetic snap to a handmade bag. It’s less of a faff than a zip and easier than you’d think! You can find a tutorial here.
10. Don’t bother turning straps the right way out. There is probably an easier way of doing it the proper way but I’ve yet to discover it! I just end up with a crumpled mess and grumpy because it’s taken so long. The easiest thing to do is to cut 2 strips (or just 1 if both sides are going to be the same). Put the right sides together and sew up one of the long edges. Turn it out, tuck the raw edges underneath then top stitch along both long edges.What do you do to make your sewing projects easier?
PS If you want to sew clothes without using a pattern, you might like my ebook!