If you are a beginner, or want to learn how to sew a great entry level (and affordable) sewing machine is Brother CS6000i. (I still use mine)
If you like to sew knits, I highly recommend a serger. I also use a very affordable Brother model (Brother 1034D 3 or 4 Thread Serger)
I cannot love without these 4 cutting tools:
- Fabric Shears – I use Gingher 8-Inch Knife Edge Dressmaker’s Shears
- Small scissors to reach corners – I use Gingher 4 Inch Embroidery Scissors
- Rotary Cutter – I like to use the 28″ one because you can cut around curves easier (OLFA 9551 RTY-1/G 28mm Straight Handle Rotary Cutter). You’ll also need a cutting mat – the larger the better, I use Self Healing Cutting Mat 24″ x 36″
- and last (but not least – probably the one that I use the most) is a thread clipper. They are inexpensive.
Pressing is critical to achieve well sewn (not homemade looking) garments.
My favorite steam iron (and the one that I use for everything) is the Consew CES-300 Silver Star Gravity Feed Steam Iron. It has a large water container that last a long time (you won’t have to refill it every 3 minutes).
Other essential pressing tools are a Seam Roll and a Tailor’s Ham. These are handy for many things, but they are essential for tailoring (button down shirts, jackets, and coats)
Another must have is a Point Presser Clapper. This wooden tool is critical for to press accurate and flat seams.
If you want to make patterns, you’ll need:
- Pattern Paper – I like 1″ grid easel pads (these can also be found in office supply stores). Another cool paper is the Swedish Tracing Paper. You can sew over it to try your patterns.
- 18″ x 2″ transparent / grid ruler
- curve ruler
- awl – not only for pattern making (this is another tool I cannot live without)
A great pattern making book to have in your sewing room is: Patternmaking for Fashion Design
There are a few websites where you can learn many different sewing skills.
Crafsy has several free mini-clases and they also have good sales and promotions. In my opinion, Craftsy is one of the best learning resources.
- Machine Savvy: Tips for Creative Sewing
- Mastering Zipper Techniques
- Sew Ready: Machine Basics
- Bag-Making Basics: Reversible Tote & Zipper Pouch
- Bag-Making Basics: Drawstring Bag & Bucket Bag
- Sewing Machine Feet from A to Z
Creativebug also offers many sewing classes. They provide a service similar to Netflix, pay a monthly fee and watch all the classes you want. Try it for FREE through this link.
CreativeLive also offers sewing and craft classes. CreativeLive live broadcast classes are free. Review their live broadcast schedule and sign up for the ones you like.
There are several websites that offer FREE sewing patterns. In this blog, you can find a great selection of FREE Sewing Patterns.
A few of my favorite websites where you can get FREE sewing Patterns are: