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How to Sew: Top 25 Sewing Tips and Tricks

If you've been searching for some beginner sewing tutorials, then you'll love our collection of sewing tips and techniques to master!

By: Sari Lesk, Editor, AllFreeSewing.com
How to Sew Top 25 Sewing Tips and Tricks

Whether you've just delved into the craft of sewing or you've been sewing since you were a child, everyone can benefit from tips and tricks. Look at sewing like a toolbox: Each skill is a tool, and the more tools you have, the more you can do as a sewist.

Learn with this page, How to Sew: Top 25 Sewing Tips and Tricks, that will surely help you out. The top 25 tutorials below are filled with sewing tips that you will inevitably need someday as you grow and progress as a sewist. Follow along with the step-by-step instructions in each tutorial to pick up a new tool you can apply to your future endeavors in sewing.

This collection is a fantastic resource for beginners, whether you know some things or are starting from scratch. This page has it all: video tutorials, beginner techniques to learn, must-knows like how to sew a zipper, symbols, and more. These sewing tips and tricks are not to be missed.


Plus! Don't miss our video on Parts of a Sewing Machine from guest blogger Angel Peterson! It's perfect for beginner sewists like yourself.
 

Beginner Applique Tutorials

Hit the Open Road Pillow Tutorial

Everyone loves a good applique project. Appliques are a favorite when it comes to sewing because they're so versatile and easy to create. Once you've learned how to sew an applique, you can quickly refashion something you already have for a nominal amount of money. Check out these applique tutorials to learn all you need to know about sewing applique designs.

  • Hit the Open Road Pillow TutorialSummer will be here soon, which means lots of fun family road trips and vacations. If you can't wait to show your love for the open road, then you'll fall head over heels for this fun DIY decorative pillow. This Hit the Open Road Pillow Tutorial is the best way to curb your wanderlust by creating some bright and cheerful home decor.
  • Applique BasicsWhen you're using free hand sewing patterns, you'll most likely have some appliqueing to do. It looks simple enough, but you should probably learn applique basics before you start.
  • Creating Applique CurvesCreating Applique Curves looks as easy as it sounds. Don't be concerned if you do not now how to make an applique letter or design, because you will learn the basic sewing techniques here. From now on, you don't have to sift through projects or limit yourself to sewing designs with straight lines.
  • Little Blue Bird Free Applique PatternYou love to sew. Within the last year it's become your go-to activity and you're pretty good at it. While you feel fairly confident in various techniques, you do still appreciate a free applique. Your latest project is for a child, and the Little Blue Bird Free Applique Pattern is the perfect addition to making your work ready for the little one.

Tutorials for Tucks, Seams, and Stitches

Sewing Machine Straight Stitch

When it comes to sewing, all the different tucks, seams, and stitches can seem quite daunting. Don't worry. Just slow down, take a breath, and check out the tutorials below to find easy instructions for a variety of sewing techniques you're bound to need as you complete more and more sewing projects.

  • Sewing Machine Straight Stitch TutorialBefore you learn anything else on a sewing machine, you need to learn how to sew a straight stitch. Once you know the straight stitch, you have the backbone for all of your sewing projects. If you are new to sewing, check out the Sewing Machine Straight Stitch before doing anything else.
  • Bound SeamsLearn to hand sew with bound seams, a sewing technique to make your projects easier and more professional-looking.
  • Creating PintucksCreating pintucks is a simple way to add some flair to your sewing projects and make them look more professional. Learn how to make them with this sewing tutorial and your clothing will look store bought.
  • Do the Stretch StitchSometimes even when you measure and cut a pattern to fit your custom shape, the seams still rip. The next time you make clothes you don't have to face that fear, as long as you Do the Stretch Stitch.
  • Fabric Gathering TutorialA few basic sewing skills can open the door to a variety of marvelous sewing projects. This Fabric Gathering Tutorial will show you the easy way to gather fabric using your sewing machine. Learning how to gather fabric allows you to try your hand at any number of projects.
  • Gathering FabricGathering fabric is such an easy way to make your homemade clothing look professional. These sewing pattern tutorials will be invaluable in your sewing endeavors.
  • Guide to Mastering Different Stitches [Infographic]Keeping track of all of the different stitch functions on your sewing machine can seem overwhelming, but with our free Guide to Mastering Different Stitches, you won't ever have to worry about not knowing the difference between a blend hem and a blind hem.
  • How to Create a French SeamThere are some basic techniques that lend themselves to a perfectly polished product. The French seam is one such technique. Learn How to Create a French Seam with this quick and easy sewing tutorial.

How to Thread a Sewing Machine

Threading Your Serger in a Snap

There's no need to fear that big hunk of equipment you just bought and don't know what to do with. Check out these tutorials to learn how to thread a sewing machine, as well as other skills you'll love to apply in all of your sewing adventures. These tips and tricks are just what you need to get off to a good start using your sewing machine.

  • Threading Your Serger in a SnapIt can be frustrating for a beginning sewer to figure out how to get that sewing machine set up. Check out this sewing tutorial to learn about Threading Your Serger in a Snap.
  • Threading Your MachineIf you're just learning how to sew, use this sewing tutorial to learn about threading your machine. After you learn this, you can learn how to make your own clothes!
  • Winding and Threading Your BobbinWinding and threading your bobbin is one of those essential sewing tips that you literally cannot sew without. Learn how with this sewing tutorial.

How to Sew a Zipper

Easy Way to Sew an Invisible Zipper

Several sewing projects include zippers, and these tutorials will show you how to work with zippers without a problem. Follow along with these sewing tips and tricks to learn how to sew a zipper, how to reduce a zipper, and more. With these easy tutorials, sewing a zipper will become an automatic process for you.

  • Easy Way to Sew an Invisible ZipperDoes your project require sewing an invisible zipper? No need to feel intimidated! Here you’ll learn the best and easiest way to sew one! Invisible zippers are a lot nicer than regular zippers, since they make any sewing project look neat, clean and professional.
  • Adding a Recessed ZipperYou can make a bag that has everything going for it, but the zipper ends up disappointing you. By Adding a Recessed Zipper to your patterns you can include that final finesse otherwise lacking in your projects. Learn how to sew a zipper that remains fashionably unseen by checking out this simple tutorial.
  • How to Sew an Invisible ZipperAdding an invisible zipper to a garment can give it a really professional look. Learn How to Sew an Invisible Zipper that will make your projects look sleek and finished. This easy and fast tutorial will give you all the tips and tricks for sewing an invisible zipper that you could ever need.
  • Zipper ReductionThis sewing tutorial shows you how to do a zipper reduction so that every zipper can be made into the right length for your particular project. No more hunting for odd zipper lengths again!
  • All Knowing Zipper TutorialIf you have any questions on how to sew a zipper, this All Knowing Zipper Tutorial is the resource you're after. From the anatomy of the fastener to tips on sewing a reduced zipper, this set of instructions is exactly what you need. Get the skinny on details such as the zipper tape, bottom stop, teeth and more.

Sewing Techniques for Beginners

Fabulous Fabrics for Summer

Check out all the tips and tricks below for even more skills you can put in your sewing toolbox. You'll love how many sewing doors these tools open for you.

  • Fabulous Fabrics for SummerIndeed, the summer season means sun, sand, and sea, and after the long autumn and winter months, it is also (finally!) a time to sew and wear colorful clothes that are comfortable.
  • How to Attach Bias TapeIn this sewing tutorial, you will learn how to attach bias tape, a very useful technique in many sewing projects. Adding extra decoration to simple patterns is made easy with this free sewing pattern for bias tape.
  • How to Dye ElasticElastic is a commonly used material in many DIY crafting projects. This tutorial shows you How to Dye Elastic in under an hour. With hot water, store-bought dye and your two crafty hands, you can learn how to dye fabric.
  • Sew On PaperThe next time you scrounge for some simple sewing projects, switch out your fabric for paper. Whether you're teaching a beginner the basics of sewing or seeking an easy pattern for yourself, these Sew on Paper instructions will provide you with a handy alternative to the traditional skill.
  • How to Sharpen ScissorsAs a sewist, you know how invaluable your scissors are. Given that these tools work for you through thick and thin, they need to be sharp. Use this simple tutorial on How to Sharpen Scissors to your advantage.
  • Sewing Needle Organizing TipSewing machine needles are small and easily misplaced or mixed up. Try this Sewing Needle Organizing Tip to keep your collection of sewing needles in order.
  • Tips on Decorative StitchesOne of the basic elements of sewing is the stitch. Basic stitches are necessary for joining pieces of fabric together and finishing off seams, but sometimes you want your stitches to be visible and pretty. These Tips on Decorative Stitches are words of advice on experimenting with decorative stitches.

Sewing Video Tutorials for Visual Learners

How to Read a Sewing Pattern

If you learn better hands on, then you'll love our list of beginner-friendly sewing videos, straight from our craft studio! From videos on the different parts of a sewing machine to learning how to use a seam ripper, you'll love these sewing video tutorials for visual learners.

  • How to Read a Sewing PatternOne of the biggest challenge you will come across as a brand new sewist is figuring out How to Read a Sewing Pattern. Unlike many other beginner tutorials, sewing patterns come with a whole new set of symbols and words that can throw a newbie off.
  • List of Basic Sewing ToolsIf you are wondering what you need to start sewing, this free sewing video and tutorial will provide you will all of the answers you are looking for. This List of Basic Sewing Tools outlines the top sewing essentials you will need to start sewing and exactly why these tools are important for a first time sewist.
  • In this free how to sew tutorial, you will learn How to Use a Seam Ripper properly. While using this essential tool may seem like a no-brainer, this sewing video shows you how to properly unpick a stitch safely. Following the sewing tips and tricks in this video will allow you to take apart a seam safely, keeping your fabric safe and sound.
  • Fabric Terms ExplainedSewing has its own language. Fabric Terms Explained gives you the insight into this sewing vocabulary that any new sewing enthusiast might need. Brand new sewists picking up a pattern for the first time may be shocked to find a lot of terms they have never heard before.
  • Sewing Tips for BeginnersLearning to sew is a thrilling endeavor. It can also be very difficult, frustrating, and downright exhausting. In the end, however, exploring this fabulous art is worth the effort. Check out this video on learning to sew that highlights some very basic Sewing Tips for Beginners.
  • How to Use a Sewing MachineYou can read all the articles you want on sewing with a sewing machine or read your sewing machine manual cover to cover, but it can be impossible to actually learn How to Use a Sewing Machine without watching someone do it. 
  • How to Choose a Sewing MachineChoosing a sewing machine can be a difficult decision. Sewing machines are expensive and a true investment of your time and money. It can be hard to know How to Choose a Sewing Machine, especially if you are brand new to the craft. It is almost impossible to figure out what makes a good sewing machine as a beginner.

What's your best sewing tip? Let us know below in the comments!

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The most important thing for me to remember is to have enough fabric for the project and then some. It doesn't happen often but mistakes can be made and you need more fabric than you thought.

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