How to Sew? The Ultimate Guide to Conquer Delightful Lands of Tailoring
Have you ever thought about how to sew? Are you a tailor or a seamstress already? When we think about sewing, thousands of questions arise. How to sew a stitch, how to sew with a needle, where to start this adventure?
Image source: Gathered.sew
The case gets even more complicated when we recognize that sewing doesn’t boil down to a skillful hand only. There is so much more that matters in this department.
To sew means to be precise, focused, and creative at once. You need to keep track of what you’re doing (said in both a literal and metaphorical way). You should be well-organized and structured. Yet, the process of sewing is not so orderly at the core―it needs constant inventive updates in action.
There is no innovation without making errors. Sewing may not be an easy skill at first. Yet, acquiring this artistry can make you fulfilled. Your professional and personal satisfaction are aspects not to overlook in life.
Let’s take a ride to unknown (and so delightful) lands of sewing.
Table of Contents
How do I sew?
The internet is full (and when we say ‘full’ we mean it) of sewing advice. From the most basic to sophisticated techniques, from a casual summer dress (see these summer sewing projects) to shoes and clutches made of jeans’ scraps (sewing projects old jeans)―everything is permitted.
That’s why we decided to guide you through this elaborate subject. Follow the article and learn a bit of history, basics, and sewing lifestyles.
Hand sewing―a grasp of history
Comes as no surprise that sewing isn’t new. Its formal beginnings date back to the 14th century. Yet, people had been sewing for ages. For many of these years―by hand.
The ‘newest’ update on the route to automatization of this activity is a sewing machine. Its existence is a matter of only two centuries.
There were two crucial thresholds in the development of sewing:
- The birth of sewing machines in the 19th century, and
- computerization rise in the 20th century;
Image source: Europeana
What was once a home-based activity, became an exclusive task for educated professionals. The development of societies fastened and automated industries took over the market. Also the fashion industry. At that time, people abandoned sewing by themselves and started buying ready items. Creating clothes at home and repairing old ones became history.
Nowadays, the story has come full circle, as it does. We eagerly take up sewing. We appreciate it also for being part of the sustainable fashion movement (read about recycling and upcycling clothes).
We are here to guide you through it! By the end of this article, you will be able to call yourself a real sewing amateur. You can even practice in the meantime.
Perhaps you’ll even go from the sewing hobby to successful sewing business? Sewing is an addictive passion!
Super Label Store thrives at supporting small brands and private DIYers. It means that you can design and order even a small amount of custom labels. The charm of these labels is that it adds to the professionalism of your fashion items. That, in turn, leads to helping you climb the ladder of the fashion business.
How to sew for health?
While sewing can be a profitable business, it’s also healthy (read about the health benefits of sewing). Among the central health motives to taking up this hobby:
- Sewing is a form of stress relief,
- It helps you to maintain flexible fingers and develop hand-eye coordination,
- It helps to cultivate and grow one’s self-esteem,
- It adds to fighting depression and overcoming anxiety,
- It boosts the immune system by lowering heart rate,
- It helps to practice focus;
And so on and so on.
The list has 18 points with explanations so you better have a look yourself.
Why and how do you sew?―more reasons to start
Getting healthy is not convincing enough?
Let’s see what are a few other reasons to take up sewing. You’ll find the full list of 10 reasons to start sewing clothes.
|Your clothes are unique||It comes without saying that fashion is all about originality. We are used to buying at fashion chain stores. Yet, we are never satisfied to see a friend wearing the same outfit. Making your own clothes (be it upcycling fashion or sewing from the scratch) gives you 100% individuality.|
|You save money||Whether you’re a fashionista or not, you know that clothes cost. Some of us will never leave a fashion boutique without purchasing a fashion gadget. The fashion world is passionate and hooking. If you get and develop a sewing skill, you can avoid many fashion-related costs. Fabrics are much cheaper than the final brand product. Reducing the amount of money you spend on clothes will repair your budget in no time. Yet, you still regularly get the new clothes in your wardrobe!|
|All your clothes will fit you||How many clothes are waiting in your wardrobe for you to put them on? Despite being pretty, some clothing items just don’t fit our bodies since the beginning. Everyone is unique, every anatomy is different. Clothing designers and producers go with the standard measure because there is no way to please everyone. After you learn how to sew, this is not a problem anymore. You can always adjust your garments and make them perfect. Besides, making sure your clothes fit perfectly is one of the central points to being stylish.|
|You share your creative side||Putting your new self-made clothes on, trying them, and showing to friends, creating something out of nothing―it’s a fair amount of fun! Your sense of style, creativity, and even worldview are all reflected in your creations. Who knows, maybe someone will ask you to sew for them on demand? Go on fashion shows and get to know people. Take your time with the designing and production phases. Wear your perfected outfits with style. It’s your biggest advertisement.|
These are only a couple of reasons to start sewing. It makes sense to learn to sew with us, doesn’t it?
Image source: MorningChores
How to sew simple tips (how to start sewing by hand)
At first, many people seem to be intimidated by the idea of taking up sewing. This happens to many of us and it’s normal. Starting a new hobby is always a little bit like a first kiss. You’re not sure how, when, where, what will others think about your performance. You can rest easy―we are putting our hearts to help you start sewing.
Putting your first steps toward sewing (be it clothing items or household decor) won’t make you a seamstress or a tailor in an instant. Yet, you have to start somewhere! Everything else will happen en route.
The best thing is that learning the basics of sewing can get you far.
How to sew by hand?―sewing kit essentials
Where to start then? How do you hand sew?
Knowing how to sew can be a game-changer. The history knows examples of people going from the sewing hobby to successful sewing business. Investing in custom woven labels for your fashion projects takes the brand development even further. Check these different types of woven labels to make the best decision.
As you develop the sewing skill, don’t forget to check the best sewing tips and tricks.
|A needle||Why is it such a big deal? Without a needle, we won’t go far. Yet, as a beginner, you may not know that there is a particular needle for sewing called sewing sharp. It’s a type with a pointed end. It is created this way to glide through the fabric without damaging it. You won’t have to look far. Sewing sharps are available:
|Thread||If there is a needle there also has to be a thread. The best ones are polyester or all-purpose thread types. Buy a couple of individual spools or the whole kit. The best idea is to get yourself a mini sewing kit―it’s easier. The kit includes all the pieces of sewing puzzles needed at the beginning. Mind that spools of thread are often miniature in such kits. How to choose the best thread? See these sewing threads types and tips.|
|Sewing shears||The most annoying gadget that you don’t want to have around is dull scissors. They not only have the potential of making you angry but. Cutting your fabric can turn into a difficult and messy experience. Instead of pushing on using the old pair of scissors that you already have at home, get yourself a new one. Sharp pair of sewing scissors or shears will make you so much happier with sewing from the start. They aren’t expensive! You get them cheap online or in the craft stores.|
|Seam ripper||You may not have heard about it before if you had nothing to do with sewing. A seam ripper is a small tool that resembles a tiny fork. It serves to remove unwanted stitches. How to make use of it? Slip the pointed prong underneath a bad stitch and pull.|
Read more about it on PopularMechanics.
We went through four essential sewing elements with descriptions. Yet, there is a lot more to it. What to have in your sewing box to feel like a pro?
Browse this complete sewing kit essentials list:
- Tailor’s chalk
- Clean ruler
- Tape measure
- Straight pins
- Embroidery scissors
- Bent handle shears
Now, you know at least part of the secret: sewing ingredients. Let’s learn to sew by hand.
Hand sewing basics―how to sew a button like a pro
How to sew with needle and thread?
Let us guide you through the most fundamental and the most common among sewing doings―sewing a button. (for more, check Ties.com)
You can also watch the process here:
For starters―let’s name the enemy. We will sew a flat button. This type of button has either two or four holes and is common on button-up shirts and cardigans.
The accessories that we need to equip ourselves with are:
- The clothing of your choice and the matching button
- A needle (plus a needle threader if you need one)
- A pin
- A thread (in the color of the garment)
At this point, the action unfolds. Let’s go through these simple steps to sew a button:
1. Thread the needle―Cut a fair amount of thread. Not too much, not too little, so to say. Slide it through the eye of the needle. This part is easier said than done, but you’ll make it. If you find it super hard, reach out for the help of a needle threader. Pull the thread through the needle farther to form a double-thread structure. See if there are the same lengths on both sides. Knot the ends, making sure that the knot isn’t too big but neither too small. In this case, it might have got pulled through the material.
2. Mark the spot―Here we are with the easy part (finally). Lay the fabric down and push a sweet little pin through the middle of the buttonhole and the fabric behind it. This is the mark that will serve us to know exactly where to sew the button.
Image source: Ties
3. Push the needle through the backside―It only seems complicated. Having the needle and a thread in your hand, push it up the cloth, next to where your marker pin is. Then, pull out the pin. Pull the thread up to the point when you arrive at the knot at the end of the thread (on the underside of the fabric).
4. The first set of holes―Push the needle up through the fabric and the hole in the button, and then, in reverse, down through the hole and the fabric. Repeat it a few times in the same spots. Then, change the holes to those that lie diagonally. This way you’ll draw a neat cross with the use of a thread.
5. The shank―As you grow your sewing skill, you may want to try some variations. To shank means to wrap the thread around the base of the button and then push the needle back down through the fabric. If you do it about three times, it will separate the button from the material. This is not a necessary thing to do.
6. Secure and cut the thread―We are almost done. As the button is already firmly attached, the last thing left to do is to secure the thread. Start with a loose stitch on the underside of your piece of clothing. Before you tighten it, bring the needle around and through the loop like a single knot and pull. Do it about three times. Cut the loose ends near the fabric and voilà! That’s it!
Image source: Ladulsatina
How to start a sewing stitch?―Hand sewing for beginners
To sew doesn’t mean only to repair. There is so much more to it! All the glittering creativity on catwalks starts with a quiet dance of a thread and a needle.
Small wardrobe mishaps need a quick reaction. So does creative flow! Sewing is an almost necessary skill to have to feel independent. It makes you feel more self-sufficient and fulfilled.
In the video below, you can see how to make a pencil skirt with a high slit. It’s a very sexy outfit to have in a wardrobe!
What to add to it? Something as simple as a plain t-shirt. Put on your favorite flats or high heels. The best way to sew is to like what you do and/or what you’re going to have in your wardrobe after it’s ready.
Image source: Craftsy
Later, to get a step closer to the excellence in sewing, feel free to check advanced sewing techniques. As they say in Italian: “Piano, piano, si va lontano” (“Slowly, slowly, one goes far”).
Among the tips on how to sew by hand beginners, there are a couple of lessons on must-know stitches. How to sew a stitch by hand? Check Cyberseams for more information about it, with extra photos and videos.
|A name of the stitch||What is it used for?||How hard is it?||A how-to|
|Straight stitch||You can use it for:
||The straight stitch is the easiest and the most common among stitches.||
|Whip stitch||Used for decoration (on the right side).
Commonly used to close a hem.
Funny fact: this stitch is invisible if you do it from the wrong side of the fabric.
|It’s quite easy and quick.||Before you start, pin the fabric the way you want to sew it. If you’re hemming a pair of pants, fold, iron, and pin the fabric in the configuration you want to sew it in.|
Knowing a few ways to create stitches opens the door to the next sector in the sewing department. How to sew something together? At this point, the answer is clear.
Image source: ApartmentTherapy
You may also want to check how to perfect your blanket stitch with these 3 easy methods.
When you have your embellished outfit ready and you learned how to sew, think about adding a flavor of professionality. You can make it happen with these woven labels and care labels by Super Label Store. It’s a great way to start making steps towards a serious career in fashion. Whether it’s going to be a small and decent personal brand or a bigger enterprise.
Image source: Pinterest
How to sew fabric
We are at the point throughout the sewing adventure, where we can plan to sew a dress. Seems impossible? Not anymore.
Click here to read the elaborated step-by-step instruction on sewing fabric. In the meantime, we’ll guide you through the most essential points on the way:
- Choose your pattern and the fabric (fabric must be suitable for the style of a dress to be)
- Prepare a pattern and start cutting a fabric (see more easy beginner sewing projects here)
- Prepare facings, mark out darts and sew
- Attach a zipper
- Sew the arms and shoulders
- Start to work on facings
- Sew the sides together
- Create a clean finish, secure the edges of the facing
- Don’t forget the hemming. It prevents unraveling, adjusts the length, and creates a cleaner finished look.
- Order custom woven labels or care labels (or both) for your new creation
How to sew easy: sewing machine and computerized sewing
Besides the great, epochal accomplishment of sewing technology―sewing machines―there is an even newer upgrade. It’s called computerization.
In 1978, Singer invented the first computer-controlled sewing machine―Touchtronic 2001 (Read more about it here).
To get a grasp of the topic, let’s see what are the differences between a sewing machine and computerized sewing. Check them also here to learn more details.
|A limited number of stitches||Multiple stitches|
|Change of stitches: Dial||Change of stitches: computer button|
|Good for everyday projects||Good for every day to advanced projects|
|Easy to use||Complex to use|
|Not expensive||Can be quite expensive|
|Adaptivity: Easy||Adaptivity: Hard|
Sewing machines are a large subject to cover. We’ll be happy to provide more tips in another article. Take a look at the best sewing machines for beginners or over 13 sewing machine safety tips to have some introduction on basics.
How to sew―a few extra sewing tips
Knowing how to sew gives you a fair amount of extra freedom in life.
What to do if your button has popped off, a seam has ripped on a shirt or a pair of pants, or fate brought you any other ‘system error’? There is nothing better than knowing that you can fix it almost for free at home.
You still don’t have enough sewing hacks? You already know how to sew with a needle by hand and how to start a stitch sewing. In this article, we cover sewing room ideas (Airy and roomy? Sewing machine cupboard? Working station? Choose your fighter wisely).
Image source: Pinterest
When it comes to sewing, we still have a bunch of tips left to share. There is never enough knowledge to have, right? Take a look:
- Pay attention that the thread you use has the same color as your garment. If needed bring the garment along to the store.
- Always pull the thread completely after each stitch. This will help you prevent the outfit from having unexpected knots and tangling.
- Scissors are fine, but a rotary cutter and a mat can do wonders to the cutting part of the process. It all goes easier and faster. The fabric won’t flex, so you’ll be more accurate with cutting. Also, use a ruler. It helps to achieve a better result. The blade needs to be sharp and in good condition. And the last thing, use weights to help your pattern from sliding off.
- Ever heard of a button thread? It’s thicker and stronger than usual. Invest in one, rather than using an all-purpose thread on every occasion. Thanks to it, you’ll fasten your button in a more secure and solid way.
- What about coating the thread with a wax candle? What does it do? It will help you to pull the thread through the fabric.
- Don’t throw away clothes (how about upcycle sweater or make no sew DIY clothes?) but if you ever decide to, save the buttons and store them for later use.
- Make use of a pincushion cuff (we took this advice from the sewing hacks). You know how it goes: While working, you use your mouth to put pins in a ‘safe place’. Well, we’re here to tell you that it’s not exactly the safest one. Make and use a pincushion. You can place it on your wrist when you work (so it really is ‘at hand’).
- Use matchsticks―It’s best to find ways to turn sewing into an easy and pleasurable activity. Watch tutorials, read, learn tricks. How to use a matchstick to your advantage while sewing? For example, when you give a button stitched to a fabric, passing the buttonhole won’t be easy. You need a space for movement―you can put a matchstick under it.
Now you can button up, suit up, and move up in the world.
Image source: Sewing