Hand Sewing Tools, Sewing Machine Accessories: What Do I Get to Start?

Do you need to know what equipment and tools you need to get started? Getting together the tools you need to start sewing can cost very little or, if you want to sew by machine, it can cost a bit more.

Outdoor scene with wood desk, sewing machine set up with fabric, iron on ironing board nearby

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Whether you want to start with hand sewing some smaller projects first, or you want to jump directly into making larger projects by machine, it's a good idea to get a few hand sewing tools first. You should also learn a few basic stitches, since a bit of hand sewing here and there on a machine sewn project can make for a better made product.

Having the tools and equipment you need before you start your project will make it go more smoothly and prevent the frustration of having to put the project away until you can acquire the proper tools.

With this in mind, I've listed those tools which I consider basic and necessary for beginning sewers, both for hand sewers and for those who intend to use a sewing machine.

Tools for Hand Sewing

For hand sewing, it's a good idea to collect the following in a shoebox or other container:

•         pin cushion with an emery

•         a folder with a selection of good quality hand sewing needles of varying sizes

sewing needles, straight pins, shears, measuring tape, chalk, pincushion, all in a sewing box

•         a pair of good quality dressmaking shears

•         a selection of basic colors of good quality sewing thread

•         a needle threader

•         straight pins

•         a tape measure

•         sewing beeswax

•         a thimble

•         a seam ripper

•         an iron which can be used with or without steam

•         an ironing surface

These should be enough to practice stitches and to do very basic sewing projects.

Tools for Machine Sewing

For machine sewing, you need, of course, a sewing machine. You should also have the above listed items, since some hand sewing is often required, even in machine sewn projects. Other items which will be good to have before starting are listed below:

Pfaff sewing machine

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•         a container of sewing machine oil

•         a small stiff bristle brush for removing lint from the bobbin area

•         the manual for the sewing machine

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•         a surface to hold the machine

•         a chair to sit in when sewing

While these lists of sewing items are hardly a complete description of all sewing items available, they're a really good start towards producing your own projects.

If you have more questions about what to get as you start sewing, you can contact me on the contact page. I look forward to hearing from you!