Sunday, February 17, 2013

Tips From a Novice

I have scoured the internet since acquiring my machine last month, and I'm sure I've only hit the tip of the iceberg for sewing resources.

As a beginner, I have a long road to travel, obviously :) BUT, I do think that sometimes commiserating with people on your level can be just as helpful from hearing the good stuff from the experts.

Here are my beginner tips:

*Be confident.  Can you do this? OF COURSE! Will you do it perfectly the first time? Probably not. Is that ok? YES!!

*Really, start with "easy" or "learn to sew" type patterns. It isn't just about the garment and the construction of it, it's also about the instructions.

*IMO the patterns are designed to give you a little wiggle room on fabric. So you still may be able to make that garment that calls for 1/4 or 1/2 yard more fabric than you have on hand. (this is assuming you're like me and go gaga over fabric and buy 2-3 yards even though you have NO clue what you're going to use the fabric for!)

*READ the pattern instructions. Read them before you start. You may need to research techniques and it'll be much simpler if you're prepared before you get stuck on something. YouTube is invaluable.

*Fit your tissue paper. It's quick and simple.

*Be amazed by your iron! AMAZED!!!!! The pressing of a seam completely changes the look of the item. Instantly!

*Use like-RTW items to help you! I couldn't understand the construction of the collar and collar stand on a shirt and looked to some button down shirts of my husbands to see how it should go together. Same with pleating on another shirt.

*Never sew anything with sleeves. No. I kid. Find some good resources and get some practice in easing in set-in sleeves.

*Get a scrap fabric and try different options for creating buttonholes (e.g. varying stitch width, lighter tension, etc)

Go forward and conquer your machine!

***UPDATE: I am now up to like 50 patterns. It's an addiction.***


  1. Sorry I replied earlier on the wrong post. These are words to live by...

    I have to frame these words of yours and hang it in a place where I see often...

    Be confident. Can you do this? OF COURSE! Will you do it perfectly the first time? Probably not. Is that ok? YES!!

    Thanks for sharing. I just posted this on my blog right below the blog header, quoting the source (your blogpost). So that I can read these words time and again and also share with others.

    If that's not okay with you, please let me know. and I'll remove it.

  2. How nice of you! Of course you can reference me! I'm truly honored. I think it's so easy to question and doubt ourselves and really - we shouldn't be! Any sewing (or other aspects of life really) "failures" are just opportunities to learn more and do better. I say we just have FUN!


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