Sewing For Beginners
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130+ Sewing Questions Answered: Ultimate FAQs Guide
Have a sewing Q&A? We are here for your sewing help! Not only are we tackling sewing FAQs but we have lots of sewing tips and how-tos as well.
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It doesn't matter what level of sewing you are at, you're going to have questions. Sewing encompasses so many different elements that the list of FAQs is pretty high. From basic sewing questions to more advanced queries regarding sewing machines and clothing details, it's a lot of info that not everyone can know.
Since we've answered so many over the years, the editors of AllFreeSewing decided to put together the ultimate collection of Q&As. With this page, 130+ Sewing Questions Answered: Ultimate FAQs Guide, find the answers to all of your burning questions.
To make it easier for navigation, the Q&As are split up into sections. First off, there are the ultimate beginner basics. These are the questions most people ask, whether they want to learn any other sewing techniques. Then we go into FAQs about sewing notions, supplies, and sewing materials.
Learn all about fabric in the next section. Looking to make your own clothing? Then the next section is going to be ultra helpful, too. It focuses on taking measurements and figuring out your body shape. This will help you when you buy or make sewing patterns. Speaking of which, those Q&As are featured in the fifth section.
If you are new to sewing machines, then be sure to check out the FAQs and answers in the next section. And master all stitches by reading the questions, answers, and tutorials in the section after. Our last section focuses on the other popular questions that people ask in relation to sewing. You'll definitely want to check out our answers to those.
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Sewing Q&A Table of Contents
Answering Sewing Basics for Beginners
Sewing Notions and Popular Material Q&As
FAQs for Fabric and Fabric Care
Answers to Clothing, Sizing, and Measurement Questions
Questions and Answers About Sewing Patterns
Sewing Machine and Serger Q&As
FAQs for Stitching and Hemming
More Sewing Questions and Problems... Solved
--- Answering Sewing Basics for Beginners ---
- Who Invented Sewing? - Get back to the very beginning in order to understand why sewing is as important as it is and how it has changed from its origins to modern times.
- Sewing for Beginners: Where to Start - When it comes to sewing for beginners, where do you start? This sewing guide will walk you through the basics.
- What are Basic Sewing Skills? - On this page, we've put together some of the most basic sewing skills that are necessary to becoming a better sewist.
- How Does Someone Benefit From Basic Sewing Skills? - Learn about the benefits of sewing and how you can start stitching in this article.
- How Do I Practice Hand Sewing? - Print out our sewing lines on paper PDFs and get better at sewing by hand. Our free sewing worksheets provide lots of lines and shapes to sew.
- How Do I End a Sewing Stitch? - Learn how to finish a stitch by hand or by machine with this beginner-friendly guide.
- Which Finger Does a Thimble Go On? - Not only will you learn what a thimble is, but why they are useful and how to wear them.
- What Does a Bobbin Do? - This little thread holder is confusing if you're unfamiliar. Learn all about them here.
- How to Sew One Hole Buttons - A popular question. These buttons are common on jackets and bags and are also known as shank buttons.
- How to Sew Two Hole Buttons - Probably the most essential type of sewing most will do. Learn how to sew two hole buttons with these tutorials.
- How to Sew Four Hole Buttons - Four hole buttons are the most secure buttons and are used in lots of clothing and other fabric items.
- How to Make a Button Hole - Most commonly asked when looking to add buttons to fabric or when the button hole needs to be fixed or adjusted.
- How Can I Get Better at Sewing Faster? - Looking for sewing help? This guide goes over tips for improving your skills and speed when sewing.
- Can I Bring Sewing Needles on a Plane? - If you're a sewist who is planning on getting on an airplane in the near future, you may have this question. We have the answer!
--- Sewing Notions and Popular Material Q&As ---
- What Are Sewing Notions? - If you are new to sewing, this is a common question. Find the answers with examples here!
- What are the Basic Sewing Tools? - If you're just getting started, find out what you need before you sew your first project.
- What are the Most Important Sewing Tools and Equipment? - If you are going to sew, these are the supplies you need to keep around.
- What Are Unconventional Sewing Tools? - Save some money by using what you have in your home. These ideas are clever and helpful.
- What Tools Do You Need for No-Sew Projects? - If you like the idea of no-sew fabric crafts, then be sure to check out this guide.
- What are the Best and Worst Glues for Fabric? - When looking for the best glue for fabric crafts, what should you use? This guide will go over the best and worst glues for fabric.
- How to Thread a Needle for Hand Sewing - Want to start hand sewing? Learn how to thread needle for sewing with this simple to follow tutorial. It's a must-read for beginners!
- How to Use a Needle Threader - Getting the tiny thread in the eye of the tiny needle can be difficult, which is why this tool is popular. Your questions about it are answered here!
- How to Tie a Sewing Knot - Unsure how to knot thread at the beginner or end of a hand sewing project? We're here to help!
- How to Use a Seam Ripper - We all make mistakes but it's much easier to start over with the help of this little tool. Many ask this question!
- How to Sharpen Sewing Scissors - Without a clean cut, fabric doesn't sew right or last as long. That's why this question needed to be answered. Check out your options for sharpening those scissors.
- How to Use a Rotary Cutter and Mat - These are essential for sewing and quilting but there are a lot of questions that are asked regarding rotary cutters and mats. Answers can be found here.
- How to Use Pattern Weights - Learn how to make and use pattern weights for all of your sewing projects with this helpful guide.
- What Types of Hand Sewing Needles Should I Use? - Learn everything you need to know about hand sewing needles: from sizes to what they are used for.
- What Types of Machine Sewing Needles Should I Use? - With this sewing machine needle sizes guide, you'll learn everything you need to know before choosing the wrong needle.
- What Types of Buttons Should I Use? - When it comes to different kinds of buttons, what's out there? Learn all about buttons with this guide on the types of buttons for sewing.
- What Types of Thread Should I Use? - Even many experienced sewists struggle with this question. We have all the answers on this page.
- What Type of Thread Do You Use to Sew Leather? - Learn what the best thread for stitching and sewing leather is, and you'll be making durable leather projects in no time!
- Thread for Sewing: What's Best? - With this guide, you'll learn the best thread for sewing machines, along with hand sewing projects.
- How Much Sewing Thread Do I Need? - With this sewing thread guide, you'll learn how much thread you need for certain projects.
- What is Bias Tape? - This sewing product is referenced a lot in patterns. Learn all about it with this helpful resource.
- How to Use Bias Tape - After you've read "What is Bias Tape?" you can learn how to use it on this page.
- What Is Fusible Interfacing Used For? - Another product that is used in many sewing projects. This Q&A will help you understand it fully.
- What Do I Do With Extra Fabric? - Whatever you do, don't throw away those fabric scraps! Save them up for these amazing stashbuster sewing projects instead.
- What Do I Do With Extra Denim? - Don't throw out your old jeans! Upcycle them into something brand new with these denim refashioning patterns.
- What Do I Do With Old Socks? - What can you do with old socks? Most of us have lonely, mismatched socks or a few socks with holes. Check out what to make here!
Learn even more about sewing with this definition page: Glossary of Sewing Terms
--- FAQs for Fabric and Fabric Care ---
- How Much Fabric Do I Need? - go over what you need to know when preparing a new sewing project with easy-to-do calculations and charts to download.
- What Do Laundry Symbols Mean? - Whether you sew or not, this is an important thing to know. Learn all about them.
- What are Fat Quarters? - If you're just getting started, you might be wondering, "What are fat quarters in sewing and quilting?" This page will explain.
- How to Rotary Cut Fabric - Professionals make this task look easy but there are a few important factors to keep in mind.
- How Do You Cut Fabric Perfectly? - Ah, one of the most popular questions. Get all the tips and tricks for fabric cutting here.
- What is Fabric Grain? - With this guide, learn how to find the grain of fabric, which is important for many sewing patterns. Also, learn about fabric bias and selvage.
- How Do You Care for Vintage Clothing? - Do not touch your valuable vintage pieces until reading this helpful page on the subject.
- How to Remove Old Stains from White Clothes - If you've discovered stains on your clothing long after they happened, don't fret! Learn how to remove old stains here.
- How to Thrift for Fabric - There are so many times when checking out the local garage sales and resale shops will save you lots of money. Learn how to do it right!
- How Do you Sew Denim? - Denim is thick and tricky but this page has all the answers to the most common questions regarding this fabric.
- Why Do Clothes Shrink in the Dryer? - What causes clothes to shrink in the dryer? Learn this, how to avoid shrinking clothes, and more about laundry care by reading this guide.
- How Do You Wash Flannel? - It's surprising how much can go wrong when working with flannel. We answer all the most popular questions on this page.
- How Do You Cut Felt? - Felt is pretty simple to work with but it can easily be cut wrong. These helpful answers will keep you from making errors.
- How Do You Sew with Knits? - Knit fabric is incredibly finicky but you don't have to worry with this page full of answers to your burning questions.
- How Do You Choose the Best Fabric for Skirts? - From minis to maxis and everything in between, there are a lot of questions about skirts - we have the answers!
- How Do You Keep Fabric from Shrinking? - If you have ever washed clothing, you know how often this question comes up. We have all the best tips to help you keep clothes at the same size.
- How to Unwrinkle Clothes - Even without a dryer! This page full of advice on drying questions is a must-read for sure.
- How to Iron Without an Iron - Find out how to iron a shirt without an iron or dryer with these clever methods using what you have at home.
- How to Keep Raw Fabric Edges From Fraying - Most fabrics fray but we have the answers and tips to prevent and fix this problem.
- What Fabrics Can Be Tie-Dyed? - Find out the best fabric to tie dye with this guide on everything tie-dye!
- How to Sew Slippery Fabric - Learn how to keep slick fabric from shifting while sewing with these tips.
- How to Sew Canvas - These tips for sewing canvas will help you avoid pitfalls while sewing.
- How to Sew Vinyl - Sewing vinyl fabric can seem intimidating. Not with this guide and tutorial for how to sew vinyl.
- What are the Types of Clothing Closures? - This page focuses on fastener options outside of buttons and zippers. From hook-and-eyes to toggles, learn about garment closure alternatives.
--- Answers to Clothing, Sizing, and Measurement Questions ---
- What Size Am I? - This page has all the basics covered in relation to your sizing questions. Get that perfect measurement with these tips.
- Which Body Shape Am I? - Apple? Pear? Hourglass? Find your answers here along with suggestions on how to shop and what to wear.
- How Do I Dress for My Body Type? - Once you learn your shape, find out how to dress in the most flattering ways. These answers will help you out.
- How Do I Take Body Measurements? - A must-read if you shop online or want to start making your own clothes. Having the correct measurements is necessary.
- How Do Take I Take Men's Measurements? - For the guys! Measuring for men is different than for women which is why this page is so helpful!
- How Do I Find My Bra Size? - An ill-fitting bra is frustrating for so many reasons. This page answers all your questions about bra shopping and designing.
- How Do You Make a Body Form? - Once you have your measurements, make the perfect body form with this DIY tutorial.
- How Do I Make My Own Lingerie? - Not only does this guide explain how to make your own underwear, bras, and other lingerie, but there are lots of tips.
- What Are the Different Types of Bras? - Our awesome printable bra styles infographic covers common bra styles to help you sew your own or shop specifically for what you want.
- What Are the Different Types of Dresses? - With our types of dresses guide, you can put the name with the cut and know your dresses for sewing or shopping!
- What Are the Different Types of Skirts? - If you can never remember the difference between a pencil skirt and an a-line, or are a beginner sewist, then you'll love this guide.
- What Are the Different Types of Pants? - This free printable PDF infographic can help you when sewing or shopping for pants.
- How Do I Start My Own Clothing Line? - Have you ever wanted to start your own clothing line? Developing a brand and selling your DIY clothes can seem intimidating but these tips will help get you there.
- Is Making Your Own Clothes Cheaper? - Is it cheaper to make your own clothes or buy them? If you're looking to save money, sewing your own clothing may or may not work.
--- Questions and Answers About Sewing Patterns ---
- How Do You Read a Sewing Pattern? - Before you learn the specifics of patterns, you need to know how to read one. Read answers to your questions here.
- How Do You Use Sewing Patterns? - Learn how to use digital sewing patterns along with traditional sewing patterns. Knowing the differences will help you out!
- How Do I Grade a Pattern? - Learn everything about grading sewing patterns, and you'll never be constrained by pattern size ever again.
- How to Print PDF Sewing Patterns - Printing sewing patterns can seem difficult but this guide will walk you through the details to prevent and solve problems.
- What Do Notches Mean on Sewing Patterns? - When it comes to notches in sewing, what are they and how do you work with them? Learn with this guide!
- How Do You Pin a Pattern? - This important step will keep you from making errors when working with patterns. A popular question with an easy answer!
- How to Alter a Sewing Pattern - So many people ask this since patterns aren't made for your specifics. Get all the answers on how to adjust them here.
- How to Reuse Sewing Patterns - Patterns can be pricey (or one-of-a-kind) so this a popular question. Find out how with this resource.
- How Do You Make a Sewing Pattern? - Forget storebought patterns; did you know you can make your own? Find out how with this helpful tutorial.
- How Do You Make a Dress Without a Pattern? - This page answers in depth this popular question. Make your own perfectly-fitting dress without a pattern!
--- Sewing Machine and Serger Q&As ---
- Are Sewing Machines Easy to Use? - If you've never used a sewing machine, you may be wondering if they are easy enough for you. Our guide will help you!
- How to Choose a Sewing Machine - This may be the most important question in regards to sewing machines. Don't buy one until you read this.
- How Do You Use a Sewing Machine? - Once you've purchased your machine, learn how to use it with this helpful page on the basics.
- How Do You Clean a Sewing Machine? - If you don't clean your machine, it can malfunction, so this is an essential skill to learn. Questions about cleaning are answered here!
- How Do You Thread a Sewing Machine? - Not understanding this can lead to lots of issues and anger, which is why many machine owners ask this. Follow along with us and learn!
- What is a Serger? - This is a specific type of sewing machine and it may or may not be something you want to learn about. Even if you don't want one, it's important to learn about them.
- What is Sewing Machine Oil? - Lots of people ask this because many think any oil can be used in machines. Not the case! Learn what it is and why it's important.
- What Are Sewing Machine Feet + Types? - On this page, we discuss the different types of sewing machine feet, from the most common to the less used specialty machine feet.
- How Do You Troubleshoot Sewing Machine Thread Tension Problems? - Learn how to fix sewing machine tension and more with our sewing machine guide that covers the most common projects.
- Why is My Sewing Machine Not Moving the Fabric? - Is your sewing machine not feeding the fabric? This guide will go over problems and solutions for your machine.
--- FAQs for Stitching and Hemming ---
- Machine Stitching Basics - Sewing machines have so many stitches, it's important to know what they are and when to use them. This page has the answers.
- How to Start a Hand Stitch - If you want to learn how to stitch by hand, then this page is going to be your go-to guide.
- How to Hand Sew a Seam - With this guide, learn how to hand sew a seam shut on pants, shirts, skirts, and any other garment or seamed project.
- How to Sew a Straight Line by Hand - Ok, so you've learned how to start a hand stitch. Now how do you sew straight? This popular question gets the answers you seek and more.
- How to Sew a Ripped Seam - Finding rips in your clothing? Learn how to sew rips in shirts, shorts, jeans, and more with this tutorial.
- What is Topstitching? - Even if you sew, you may not be familiar with this term OR you may not know how to do it. Learn the different topstitches and when to use them.
- What Can Be Embroidered? - If you need to know what to embroider, you're in the right place! Create home decor, clothing, and accessories with delicate elegance.
- How to Paper Stitch - Ever stitch on paper? It's a technique that's gaining in popularity. This tutorial will show you how so you can impress with your cards or paper art.
- How to Blanket Stitch by Hand - The blanket stitch is one of the most popular stitches which is why this is one of the most popular questions. Find the tutorial on this page.
- How to Sew a French Knot - The French knot is perfect for creating small textured circles. Get the easy-to-follow tutorial on this page.
- How to Lazy Daisy Stitch - Into floral embroidery? Then you may be asking this question. We will show you this hand stitch in detail.
- How to Stem Stitch - The stem stitch is another popular stitch that hand sewists are clamoring to learn. You can by clicking to our tutorial.
- How Do You Paper Piece Diamonds? - The English paper piecing technique is a must-learn for quilters. This tutorial walks you through the process for diamonds.
- How Do You Paper Piece Hexagons? - This tutorial walks you through the process of English paper piecing hexagons.
- How Do You Sew a Rolled Hem? - A rolled hem is one of the most beautiful ways to finish a garment or project. Learn what it is and how to do it on this page.
- How Do You Sew a Basic Double Fold Hem? - This full tutorial will go over the basics and how to do it, so check it out!
- How to Hem a Skirt by Hand - If you don't have a machine or want to be extra careful, this tutorial will help you hem by hand.
- How to Hem a Skirt by Machine - And for you machine users out there, find out the best way to hem a skirt with this tutorial.
- How Do You Remove Stitch Marks From Fabric? - Learn how to remove sewing stitch marks with as little damage as possible with this helpful guide.
The world is going digital and sewing is on its way, too. Check out these helpful apps for sewing organization, patterns, and more: 10 Sewing Apps to Keep You in Stitches
--- More Sewing Questions and Problems ...Solved ---
- How to Cover Up Sewing Mistakes - Sewing is hard sometimes and we all make mistakes. Learn how to avoid, cover up, or fix sewing mistakes with these tips!
- What is Applique? - If you've seen this word around in the sewing world, you are not alone. This popular question gets a detailed answer here.
- What is Basting in Sewing? - This question is so popular and often left unanswered. Not anymore! Find all you ever wanted to know about basting inside this resource.
- What is Tacking in Sewing? - What does it mean to tack down in sewing and how is tacking used? Find out with this guide.
- What Does Nap Mean in Sewing? - Naps are important but so is nap, especially in sewing. This sewing term question is answered with lots of other helpful information, too.
- What Are Darts in Sewing? - Darts are in many sewing patterns but what are they? Find the answers to all of your dart-related questions here.
- What is a Placket in Sewing? - Used in clothing and accessories, learn all about the types of plackets you'll encounter in sewing with this guide.
- How to Gather Fabric - Gathering fabric garners lots of questions. See what it looks like and how to do it with a video and written tutorial with pictures! So helpful.
- How Do You Design a Quilt? - If you want to get into quilting, then you may be interested in learning the answer to this FAQ.
- How Do You Make a T-Shirt Quilt? - This DIY t-shirt quilt video tutorial walks you through making a t-shirt quilt, easy!
- How to Sew a Patch - This question is so popular, not just amongst sewists. Nearly everyone has needed to sew on a patch at some point in their lives. This tutorial shows you how.
- How to Sew a Zipper - Wondering how to insert zipper in a bag? With this step-by-step tutorial, learn how to sew zipper pouches and other items.
- What Causes Puckering When Sewing? - Few things are more frustrating than sewing something and getting the pucker. Learn what causes it and how to prevent it with this page.
- How Do You Fix a Run in Tights? - Tights are so thin that runs are super common. This popular question gets answered on this page.
- How to Fix a Hole in Pants Without Sewing - Need a quick fix for a hole in your pants but not sure about sewing? Learn how to repair pants without it.
- How Do You Sew with Elastic? - From headbands to skirts and everything in between, elastic is a common material in sewing. This page fills you in on all you need to know about elastic.
- What is a Mug Rug? - Learn all about mug rugs, from what they are used for, to sizes, to how to make one, and more!
- How to Sew a Flag - Learn how to make your own US flag with our guide. Plus, check out the free flag patterns for clothing and decor.
- How to Sew Leggings - Make your own leggings! With this page, find how-tos, tips, and free patterns to create your new favorite pair of leggings.
- How Do You Tie a Long Scarf? - Learn how to wear a long scarf in the hottest possible ways with this gorgeous collection of trendy tying tutorials.
- How to Sew for Charity - This page offers sewing for charity projects, along with info on where and what else to donate!
- How to Teach Children to Sew - On this page, we're going over helpful tips, advice, and providing the best starting projects to get kids into this life skill.
- How to Sew With Yarn - This page goes over how to sew with yarn for beginners! Learn everything you will ever need to know here.
- Is Hand Sewing as Strong as Machine Sewing? - Sewing machine vs hand sewing: what's stronger? Find out with this interesting resource.
- What are Sewing Hacks? - From sewing needle alternatives to simple sewing hacks that will save your time and effort and more, this page is full of ideas!
About the Author:
Krista Childers is the Senior Content Editor for AllFreeSewing. She has a passion for creative writing and trying every craft at least once. Find more of her work here: Krista Childers
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Nov 22, 2018
What a great list of sewing related questions and the answers given are so detailed and easy to understand - thank you! I have learnt so much useful stuff from reading all the QA's and picked up quite a few tips as well. I have printed out the entire list and put it up at my work table!
Sep 30, 2018
You answered a lot of great questions and I learned a lot. I guess I could ask "When is the best time to start a child to use a machine and feel safe about it?" Most other questions were answred. Thanks for this great information. # National Sewing Month
Jan 12, 2017
This is a really good article filled with valued information for beginning to sew. There are several different areas of sewing from learning the basics of sewing on paper to making a project. Going through each area has important steps to learn about the sewing machine and the parts of the machine as well. Very good information.
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