essential sewing tools for beginners

Unlock the Power of Sewing With These 6 Essential Sewing Tools for Beginners

Do you want to start sewing but feel a bit lost on what supplies you need? This guide has you covered by going over just 6 basic tools that every new sewer should have.

  • Sewing machine
  • Fabric scissors
  • Seam ripper
  • Measuring tape
  • Needle pack
  • Pin cushion with pins

With just these six inexpensive items, you’ll be all set to begin sewing and creating all kinds of fun projects! Ready to learn more?

What Exactly Does a Sewing Machine Do?

A sewing machine is the most important tool for sewing. It uses two threads (one on top and one on bottom) to stitch fabric together. There are many types, but beginner sewers should look for an easy-to-use model made for home use.

Most modern sewing machines can do zig-zag stitches, buttonholes, and other decorative patterns, too – not just straight stitches. They make sewing clothes, bags, home décor and more a total breeze!

Why Do I Need Special Fabric Scissors?

Using regular scissors from your desk to cut fabric is a big no-no. The blades are too dull and will fray the fabric edges. That’s why it’s crucial to get sewing shears made specifically for cutting cloth.

Look for scissors with extremely sharp blades around 8-10 inches long. They allow you to snip through multiple layers of most fabrics quickly and neatly. Always keep a separate pair just for sewing, and don’t use them on paper or anything else.

What’s a Seam Ripper?

What's a Seam Ripper?
Photo credit: freepik

Even experienced sewers make mistakes sometimes and need to remove stitches. That’s where a seam ripper comes in! This little tool has a pointed tip that lets you carefully unpick bad seams or stitching without damaging the fabric underneath.

Seam rippers are inexpensive but invaluable for fixing errors neatly. They allow you to easily take apart sections of your sewing and start over if needed. Trust me, you’ll be glad to have one on hand!

Measuring Tape 101

You need a soft measuring tape to accurately measure fabric lengths, body dimensions, and more when sewing. Look for a flexible tape made of plastic or fibreglass that is clearly marked in both inches and centimetres.

A retractable 60-inch tape is best, as it’s long enough for most sewing measuring needs but still portable. Just be sure to always keep it rewound when not in use so it doesn’t get bent or stretched out over time.

Stocking Up on Needles

Having a variety pack of sewing machine needles in different types and sizes is a must-have! You’ll want sturdy, sharp needles meant for the weight and fibre content of whatever fabric you’re working with.

Some examples are denim needles for thick materials, ballpoint for knits, and universal for basic woven fabrics. It’s wise to keep a few packs of assorted needles on hand so you always have the right ones for your project.

Pin Cushion with Straight Pins

Lastly, you’ll need a traditional pin cushion loaded up with long straight pins. These allow you to temporarily hold fabric layers, patterns, and  more together while cutting or sewing.

Look for pins that are at least 1 inch long and made of thin but sturdy metal that won’t easily bend. Glass head pins are great as they’re easy to grip. And get a cute printed or shaped pin cushion to store them neatly!


What are the most essential sewing tools for beginners?

The six most essential sewing tools for beginners are a sewing machine, fabric scissors, seam ripper, measuring tape, needle pack, and pin cushion with pins.

Why do I need special fabric scissors for sewing?

Regular scissors can fray and damage fabric edges. Specially crafted sewing scissors feature exceptionally sharp blades engineered to cleanly cut through numerous layers of fabric.

What is a seam ripper used for in sewing?

A seam ripper allows you to carefully unpick stitches or remove bad seams without damaging the fabric underneath. It’s an invaluable tool for fixing sewing mistakes.

How do I choose the right sewing machine needles?

Look for needles meant for the type and weight of fabric you’ll be sewing, like denim needles for thick materials, ballpoint for knits, and universal for basic woven fabrics.

Why is a measuring tape important for sewing?

A flexible measuring tape allows you to accurately measure fabric lengths, body dimensions, pattern sizes, and more when sewing projects and garments.

Start Stitching!

With this basic starter sewing kit of scissors, measuring tape, seam ripper, needles, pins, and a simple machine, you’re ready to begin creating all kinds of fun sewed projects and garments. Don’t be afraid to start small as you get the hang of these essential tools.

Once you’ve mastered using them, sewing can become a relaxing, rewarding hobby! What easy sewing craft would you like to try making first with your new supplies?


Main image: pexels

Priti Nandy
Priti Nandy
Articles: 249

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