Unconventional Notions



I was sewing for 20 years before I ever got to design school and no matter how hard my instructors tried there were a few “bad habits” they couldn’t break. Being mainly a self taught seamstress, I have found that sometimes unconventional solutions are the best answers to mundane problems. If you are a sewing purist, please go ahead and skip this post to avoid potential heart palpations.

Some of My Favorite Notion Hacks

  • Black Sharpie  I have both a fine and an ultra fine tipped black sharpie in my sewing box.  Some fabrics, particularly those that are heavily textured or extremely light weight, mark best with this medium.  It’s not ethical, but nobody knows once the garment is cut.
  • Wooden Clothes Pins Sometimes when sewing several layers of heavy fabric, a pin just doesn’t do the job.  A couple of clothes pins at key points will make the job much easier.
  • Soap Scraps The slivers of bar soap that would otherwise be  thrown out are excellent for marking most cotton and cotton blend fabrics.  It shows up better than chalk and you can mark right sides (pocket/trim placement, etc)  with abandon because you KNOW the marking will come out with a little bit of water.
  • A Pair of Athletic Socks  When pressing darts, curves, and baby clothes a tailor’s ham is a life safer.  Since I don’t have one, I have discovered that balling up a pair of my husbands socks does the job quite well.  Making a ham in somewhere on my never ending to do list, but it never seems to find it’s way to the top.
  • Stiff Bristled Paintbrush and A Flat Head Screw Driver  Unless you have miniature fingers, I wouldn’t recommend messing around with the doll sized tools that came with your sewing machine.  Get some tools that fit your hands and you will be more inclined to keep your machine clean and in good running order.