Can’t believe…

How much equipment I’ve gathered over the last couple of years. Here’s a little run down of my most used items.


Clockwise from the top.  Janome 525s sewing machine, Obviously need a sewing machine. Tape measure, shears of which I have two pairs. The red pair are from Merchant & Mills , the grey pair, I can’t remember the make but I know they weren’t cheap, but for some reason they don’t cut nicely. They seem to have a nick in one of the blades and therefore I can’t do a nice long cut in any fabric as they stick. I think they were about £20ish, but the M&M pair were over £50 and well worth the money. Its so worth spending the extra pounds if you can afford too. I had some birthday money which is how I justified it. Then there’s the tiny black scissors, I love these. Endlessly useful and sit on my sewing machine to snip threads whenever I need them to, and you can get really close to the fabric so you can snip threads nice and close.

It can be useful to have multiples of things. I have my ironing board down stairs so am often up and down stairs whilst making things and I find having a pair of scissors by the ironing board useful for snipping threads that I’ve forgotten to snip whilst upstairs.

close up of the scissors/shears.

close up of the scissors/shears.

Then there’s the seam ripper, or as I prefer to call it thread unpicker, I sometimes don’t feel like I’ve done a proper job till I’ve unpicked at least one seam. Tailors chalk, and this funny little gadget, can’t remember what its called, but you use it to create perforations in the fabric, with coloured carbon paper underneath to mark out darts and suchlike. Pins, I love the coloured plastic head ones. You can never have too many pins. And of course a pin cushion.

I never ever thought I’d own so many ironing accessories, never ever thought I’d enjoy ironing so much. I call it creative ironing.


Sleeve board, who knew you could get a little ironing board just for your sleeves. Love this though. Really makes a difference to your garments. Tailors ham, which I’ve yet to learn how to use properly. And the iron, this ones OK but I think I need a new one. The ironing board that they are all standing on was new last year. My old ironing board was about 100 years old and was really tired and sad. But until I started this sewing lark I didn’t iron anything if I could avoid it. My new one is huge compared to the old one. And often reminds me of a surf board. Its really long and quite wide too. And has lots of different height settings.


And then last but not least is Gertie. So so useful, I really urge you if you are thinking about a dressmakers dummy to get one. Though it is a little scary when you see what your figure apparently looks like! Especially from the side.


Weird shape or what?

If you’re new to sewing I hope this has been a little bit useful. When I first started sewing I had no idea how much equipment I would need. Thankfully not all of it is expensive. The biggest outlay should most likely be your sewing machine.


  1. most impressed at your ham and sleeve board! I’ve never used a ham, do you use it much? Love the M&M sheers!

  2. I haven’t used the ham much and when I do I’m not sure I’m using it right. So not really sure if its a useful thing to have or not! However the sleeve board is the best thing ever! Very useful indeed.