Today I thought I would share a few sewing items that I consider staples in my studio. You, my trusted fellow sewists, have your own list of favorites, no doubt.
Clover Silk Pins
Carla got me hooked on these--Clover Silk Pins are longer, sharper and thinner than most standard sewing pins and have iron-proof glass heads. Intended for very fine fabrics such as silk in which you don't want your pin to leave a hole, I find that they work great with most apparel fabrics. Their extra length and sharp point are admirable for getting through multiple layers smoothly. They can bend easily if you aren't careful, so I don't recommend them for heavy duty fabrics like denim or canvas.
Unique patterns and great colors --there's so much to like about vintage sheets. I love them for making muslins, finished garments and appliqued accents.However, I don't love them for the effort of finding them--unlike a lot of bloggers, I don't have much luck at thrift shops, much less the time to drive around town trolling their aisles. But I have had much success if I let my mouse do the walking...on over to Etsy, that is. There are dozens of sellers on Etsy who specialize in vintage sheets--the cheery stack below is by Pink Fawn Designs:
Personally, I like the bundles for the instant variety they inject into my stash and I like the fact that the seller has often selected a well-coordinated packet of threads (and done all the pre-washing too). Of course, for sewing garments, you'll need larger yardage amounts--which may be available if you contact the seller. Just one caveat for sewing with vintage sheets--they can be very worn out and threadbare in the middle which can make for faded colors. Even in good condition, white sheets in particular may be a little too transluscent or shear for your project, so keep that in mind.
Heat'n Bond Iron On Adhesive
This stuff is the bomb when it comes to gluing two fabrics together--such as with applique. There are other brands out there, but I haven't had a need to buy a second package yet. I can't count how many projects I have used with this stuff in the nearly 2 years since I purchased it, so I can safely say that the amount in this package is generous.
Must polyester always have a bad name? Symphony Broadcloth does not wrinkle, not even just a tiny bit. Available from Joanns, it comes in a lot of colors and drapes nicely too, so it is perfect for apparel linings. While not what I would grab for my finer sewing projects, at $3.99/yard, it's easy to keep a small stash on hand for emergency needs.
Dritz Marking Pen
Finally, I wouldn't get very far without my Dritz Dual-Purpose Marking Pen to accurately transfer pattern markings, embroidery patterns, etc. This pen has two ends--the purple side will fade and disappear over time and the blue pen is water soluble, meaning a light rub with a damp cloth will erase the mark away in no time. I also like having the two colors because, inevitably, one color shows up on my fabric better than the other. This pen is available in store at Joanns (but not online, apparently) and is one to stock up on when on sale (each pen runs about $6).
So, tell me, what's on your list? Happy Sewing! ~Erin