A year ago today we wrote our viral post 15 Bad Sewing Habits You Need to Quit Doing. That post has had over 170 comments at the time of this writing. It was so popular that we thought we would follow it up with another post. So without further ado…
12 MORE Bad Sewing Habits You Need to Quit Doing
1. Using your teeth to cut your thread
Broken teeth, appendicitis, dentist trips. Holy smokes! This was the number one thing people commented and said was a bad sewing habit of theirs that they had to break.
2. Not ironing your fabric before you cut your pattern
OK this may only apply to those of us that prewash and put the fabric away as a wrinkly mess. (Please tell me I’m not the only one!) I once cut out a dress from lining without ironing the fabric first and ended up with a dress an entire size too big. Whoops!
3. Getting in too much of a sewing groove (AKA not paying attention)
This totally happened to me the other day. You would think a fashion designer would know better, but I was listing to music, enjoying some kid-free time, and cutting away. And then I realized I had completely laid out the fabric wrong and not paid attention to the grainline. Have you ever cut two left pant legs because you were in a groove? Yep, me too.
4. Knowingly using the wrong needle for a project
Admit it. You do this. You do this more often than you care to admit. Ok maybe I’m just talking to myself here, but I have totally used a stretch needle on woven because, eh, I don’t care that much and I’m in a hurry. Please let me know I’m not the only one that’s done this. I do normally regret it later when my seam looks terrible.
5. Thinking, “I’ll just hem this later”
And there is sits for 6 months (or more!). This bad sewing habit is also a cousin to, “I’ll finish this hand stitching tomorrow.”
6. Setting anything on your cutting table that does not directly relate to the project you are working on
This is by far the quickest way to turn your cutting table into something that slightly resembles that tv show Hoarders. Seriously, how does all that “stuff” pile up so quickly?
7. Not changing your rotary blades often enough.
This is one of the bad sewing habits that I am the most guilty of! You know what happens. You get a tiny knick in the blade, but it still works 50% of the time. And that knick is small. It just misses one thread or two and if you press harder it works fine. Before you know it every inch you blade isn’t cutting and you know it needs to be replaced, but you just keep using it and you don’t know why. When you finally do replace it you wonder what in the world took you so long and remember how nice it is to have a nice fresh blade on your rotary cutter.
8. Sewing Over Pins
Now this is a topic that is much debated in the sewing world. But if you’ve ever hit a pin just right and had it go flying at your face, you will understand exactly why this is a bad sewing habit. One perk is that it normally only takes this happening once or twice before you decide that this is a habit you must break (you know, next time you sit down to sew something.)
9. Taking too many sewing short cuts
Understitching? Eh, topstitching is close enough. Grading those seams? I’d rather keep sewing. Basting? I’m sure if I put enough pins, it will turn out fine. And then you look at what you just did and all you can think is, “Why didn’t I take the extra step?” For the record this is the point in the project that you and your seam ripper become BFF’s.
10. Letting those little threads/ fabric scraps go everywhere but the trash can
Does your dog wear thread in his fur like its an accessory? Does your daughter hoard little pieces of scraps she finds randomly all over the floor? When you are at the grocery store, does the person behind you say, “Ma’am, there’s little pieces of red thread all over your back.” Just me? Ok moving on.
11. Not snipping your threads after every seam
In my head, its easier to just wait until the end of a project and snip everything all at once. As I’m sewing I actually repeat this to myself in my head as I see all those loose threads. But you know what happens at the end of a project? I forget spots. Then later when my daughter is wearing the garment I notice all these threads randomly hanging. My New Year Resolution for last year was to cut these threads after every seam. I would love to tell you I succeeded, but…
12. Trying to take on too many projects at once
OK this might just be a me thing, but I tend to think I can make no less than 75 things any given week. And I’m not talking about 15 minute projects. No, I mean dresses with 1.5 miles of ruffles with more pin tucks than you can count. Oh and did I mention I need to drive to the fabric store to get materials too? Then before I know it I have a million half used supplies and a ton of unfinished projects. I have sewing ADHD.
So tell me, did you fair better this time? How many of these are you guilty of? Let me know in the comments. And if you have anymore bad sewing habits that are not on the list, tell them to me!