Best way to learn to sew?? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 13 Old 03-28-2009, 06:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi all. I am kind of interested in learning how to sew. I would like to be able to make different items. One thing Id like to start with is a tote bag.. But I have no idea how to get started with this. Can anyone give me some advice?? I know I would need a sewing machine, but what kind? I appreciate any advice on this!!

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#2 of 13 Old 03-28-2009, 07:14 PM
 
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Sewing machines are expensive. They are also amazing, and make it much easier to complete big projects. ( I don't sew many clothes without one. being the silly traditional girl I am, I do sew some garb without one though I would not recomend it purely on a time consuming level lol). All you really need to sew is a needle, thread, fabric, scissors, and an iron. (yes, you need an iron, it makes everything look sooooo much nicer.) let me think about the best place to start.

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#3 of 13 Old 03-28-2009, 07:16 PM
 
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A tote bag is a great starting project. Here's a site with directions.

I don't know much about machines. I've been very pleased with my bottom of the line Bernina, but I kind of wish I'd gotten the next most expensive one for the automatic button holer.

Kristy, wife to Josh proud mama to Katie: since 3/08 and Emma since 8/12.

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#4 of 13 Old 03-28-2009, 08:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the tips
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#5 of 13 Old 03-28-2009, 08:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Is there a good guide/book that helps show you how to make a variety of items?
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#6 of 13 Old 03-28-2009, 10:18 PM
 
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the only book I have on sewing is mostly tailoring stuff. (even though it calls itsself a basic sewing book. I beleive it is the complete book of sewing by dk publishing. It has some basic stuff for making everything and then the majority of the book is taken up with tailoring/clothing making, and fairly advanced stuff at that. useful reference for me but not for an absolute beginer sewer. I think that knowing different ways to make sleeves might be a bit much to start with. its confusing even now, having sewn my whole life (but little clothing other than costumes from a pattern).

I think stitched in time might be a fun book with pretty simple projects, though I'm not sure, I don't own it, and only read it once.

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#7 of 13 Old 03-28-2009, 10:40 PM
 
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I recently picked up this bookhttp://www.amazon.com/Readers-Digest...8290773&sr=8-3 and LOVE it. It is the Reader's Digest Complete Guide to Sewing from the 70s-80s.

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#8 of 13 Old 03-28-2009, 10:57 PM
 
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I checked this book out from the library http://www.amazon.com/Sew-Fast-Easy-...8291627&sr=1-1 and it comes with 3 folded patterns in an envelope in the back. One of them is for a tote bag and she spells it out very simply. The first half of the book before it gets to the patterns goes into the basics of sewing and the tools that you need and what not. I also have gotten a lot of really good info from my machines manual ( a brother) and just trying things out!

Good luck!
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#9 of 13 Old 03-29-2009, 03:22 PM
 
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I have been wanting to sew forever. Tried researching on line but it can be so confusing. So I walked into a sewing store told them I was a newbie but wanted room to grow. They steered me towards the pfaff 1132. I didn't want computerized simply bc that's one more thing to break, my kids would go crazy. It has been really easy to use. My first projects were a few pairs od leg warmers and they turned out better than I expected. My next project will be an Amy Butler nappy bag and a super hero cape for my son.
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#10 of 13 Old 03-29-2009, 03:32 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeekingJoy View Post
I recently picked up this bookhttp://www.amazon.com/Readers-Digest...8290773&sr=8-3 and LOVE it. It is the Reader's Digest Complete Guide to Sewing from the 70s-80s.
That is a great book.

I learned to sew/use a machine by taking a class because the machine can be a little intimidating if you don't know where to start. Once you learn how to thread it properly and operate the functions the rest is really fun to learn.

I would recommend looking into a class at a local craft store or somewhere like Joann Fabrics. To find the right machine for you, I would go to a store that has them on display and look/feel/try out as many as you can. The Singer website can be helpful in finding a dealer - most of them carry refurbished models at a discount. If you find one you like and its too expensive, keep your eye on Craigslist because they come up all the time on there. I would go with a model that has a top-drop bobbin (the side bobbins really frustrate me for some reason) and one that has a variety of stitches. Sometimes if you just go to your local fabric store you will find some experienced sewers who are more than happy to help you find something that will meet your needs. Have fun!

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#11 of 13 Old 03-29-2009, 03:57 PM
 
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I took a class at a local fabric store. First, I took a one night "learn how to use your machine" class. Then I took 6 classes in a beginning sewing class. A tote bag was the first thing I sewed myself outside of class.

I would ask all your family and friends if anyone has a machine you can borrow for a month. Then I'd take a class. If you enjoy it, then you can invest in a machine.

An local art studio also offers beginning sewing classes in my area, you might want to check that out also.

Have fun! I am still planning an taking the intermediate class one of these days (maybe I can finally learn the sew a zipper on well).

Tanya
Mom to John (age 11), James (age 9) & Katherine (age 5)
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#12 of 13 Old 03-29-2009, 05:21 PM
 
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i recommend private lessons if you can.. i found my teacher in the paper. i took private lessons for like 200.. i think i had 6 one hour sessions? the first thing i made were pants! it gave me the confidence to sew although i havent sewn in a long while.


 

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#13 of 13 Old 03-29-2009, 05:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone for your help!
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