Today I would like to let you in on my favorite basic sewing kit and the tools I find most useful. To celebrate my new site I’ve handpicked some awesome beginner toolkits for sale in my online shop for both lefties and righties! Check ’em out.
Scissors~ I love the Gingher or Mundial 8” dressmaker sheers for fabric cutting only. These scissors can also be sharpened when they become dull, they save you money in the long run and stay out of our landfills. Tip~ get a second pair for crafts only and tie colored ribbons on the handles for quick identification.
Seam ripper~ You can’t sew without this tool! We can fix our mistakes with a good seam ripper. Get a good long one, I like Dritz and Seam Fix. Tip~ If you are using grandmas throw it out because they go dull.
Marking tools~ Mark where you need to sew. Add project notes in the seam lines and hem fold lines with removable marking tools. I like chalk pencils for dark colored fabrics and friction markers for lighter colored. Tip~ Some times the friction markers will come back and show in cold weather. Keep your marks and notes where no one can see them such as between the seams.
Seam Gauge~ I love these for alterations, marking pleats, tucks, button holes and many other things that are under 6”.
Hand stitching needles~ Grab an assortment pack for minor rips, mends, buttons and closing holes in projects. If you sew patches, work with leather or just sewing thick fabric get a thimble to help push that needle through with ease.
Pin cushions~ Any will do although the magnetic type save a lot of time and are easy to use. Tip~ Keep the magnetics away from scissors and seam rippers or they too become magnetic.
Thread~ First get your basic colors of all purpose polyester thread, including shades of black and white. Poly thread is strong, durable and will hold up. I like brands Coats and Clark, Guttermann or Metler. Tip~ Cheap and old thread can cause you a lot of problems. When in doubt throw it out!
Safety pins~ They are handy for all kinds of things! I mostly use mine to pull elastic and draw strings through casings.
Machine sewing~ Washi tape to put on your machine to help guide you with seam allowance, extra bobbins and lots of extra various size sewing machine needles. Tip~ Needles get old, dull and do break. It’s also good to have a little brush to clean the dust out of your machine.
Let me know if there is a tool you love to use or one I missed. I am always up for a new handy tool to make sewing easier!

I’m so happy my group classes are booking. My Kids class at Rosewood Art Centre fully booked and my Embroidery w/ endless tea and scones at Communitea Cafe booked full in 3 short days. Contact me if you would like your own private party. Private lessons are also still available.

March 9th at Proto BuildBar, teen and adult class, The Science of Embroidery (you pick your fav scientist)
March 25th at Proto Buildbar, parent/child class, Embroidery TBA
April 7th Demo and guest speaking at Dayton’s Craftycon
April 18th T-Skirt Party at Creative Communion (Pendleton Art Center)
April 21 Dayton Dress Makers Meet Up
April 29th 10am class and 1pm class Insta Dress Class at Sew to Speak
May 7th Make Your Own Sewing Kit at Trade (great for mothers day memories)
May 15th Japanese Knot Tying Bag at Rosewood Art Centre
June 17th Pillow Case Class at Rosewood Art Centre (more info coming soon)
June 26 Fashion Camp at Rosewood Art Centre (more info coming soon)
August 5th (my birthday) Makers Faire presentation and dress demo at Carillon Park

Behind the Scenes~

Last week I squeezed in 2 easy knit dresses!


Thank you for reading!

Tracy McElfresh

Tracy McElfresh is the owner of Tracy’s Sewing Studio LLC.
Tracy McElfresh