It’s another installments of the Nice to Meet You series! The question for this one is: what are your six favorite tools?
As a seamstress and crocheter, I use several different tools. Here are six of my favorites – that I could not live without!
1. Sewing Machine
I <3 sewing machines. If it weren’t for them, I probably would have stopped sewing long ago. Hand-sewing can be such a time-consuming pain!
My awesome husband got me a Husqvarna Viking Topaz 20 sewing/embroidery machine for my birthday this year. I call it my “everything machine” because it can, in a nutshell, do just about anything! I just tell it what fabric I’m sewing and what type of stitch, and it adjusts everything itself and tells me what foot and needle to use. And it fills a bobbin from the needle – no un-threading required. How awesome is that?
I also have a Singer Confidence 7467 we got at Joann’s a few years ago when it first came out. It’s a good machine, has a drop-in bobbin, and several fun stitches. The needle always stops in the “up” position, which can be really useful for some sewists, though it drives me nuts!
2. Crochet Hook
I can’t knit for the life of me, but I crochet with a passion! All you need in order to crochet is a hook – that’s all. And I have several, of course. =0) I tend to crochet with worsted weight yarns, so my favorite hooks are sizes H/5.00 mm and G/4.25 mm. I’ve got teeny, tiny crochet hooks for thread to very large hooks for chunky yarns or crocheting with several strands at a time. I just got a size Q/16mm the other day, and I still want to go bigger! But it’s the Gs and Hs that get used the most - and thus purchased the most, as they end up lost in the car, in the couch cushions, in the middle of a skein of yarn…
You can’t do much in sewing, or crocheting either, without a way to cut fabric/yarn/thread. Enter scissors. An awesome invention, you’ll probably want a couple pairs. Or three. Or four. Or 10.
Besides trying to keep pairs of scissors (or “skizzors,” as they are often called in our house) in common areas where I might want them, I have several in my sewing room. And several different types. Sharp, pointed scissors are great for cutting threads and seam allowances on tiny hems. But for cutting material I prefer spring-loaded scissors. Much easier on the hands!
4. Iron and Ironing Board
I work a lot at my ironing board, so I have it permanently set up. I often pin and iron at the same time, so the ironing board sometimes gets used as a table. It’s also higher than a table, so it’s easier to work at while standing. I’m terrible about actually sitting down to work unless I’m at a sewing machine/serger! We’ve got a Shark Lightweight Professional that works really well and can also steam while upright. My husband loves it for his work uniforms, and I love that he irons his own uniforms. =0)
5. Disappearing Ink Pen
My mom originally taught me to use chalk to mark fabric. Chalk can work quite well on dark materials, but I tend to work with white satins and sheers and chalk just doesn’t cut it. (Not actually “cut it” of course. That was scissors back at number 3.)
I love my purple Pictogram Pen that came with my Viking embroidery machine. It makes my life so much easier! It shows up on just about any color, and it usually disappears within 24 hours without having to use any water. It’s the best I’ve ever used, and I’ve tried several. I’m not sure where to get another like it, however, so I am in great fear of its (inevitable) drying up!
6. Measuring Tape
I use flexible measuring tapes like crazy. I use them to measure pattern pieces, crochet squares, material, clothing. I use them to measure things while shopping to make sure they will fit where I would like. I use them to measure things around the house since I never know where my husband’s measuring tapes are. Yeah, I use them a lot. My favorite ones are retractable, and I even have a cute strawberry plush one. I love sewing gauges as well, but they tend to actually stay in the sewing room.