Top Product Picks for 2011

20 Jan 2011

It's January—2011 has arrived. Are you hard at work on your New Year's resolutions yet? If you're like me, at least one of your resolutions probably involves sewing—mine was to sew more, and to take on a couple more advanced projects. As I think about how to achieve my goals, I realize that proper sewing tools are essential to sewing success. Maybe it's my natural frugality, or just the fact that I taught myself to sew so I have had to figure things out along the way , but until recently I didn't own very many sewing tools. I've been living in a "Who needs extra gadgets lying around? I'll be fine with just my pair of scissors!" world, not realizing how much better and easier things could be.

I did a little post-Thanksgiving shopping last year, though, and it changed my sewing life. I splurged on a large cutting table and giant cutting mat, and it has revolutionized my sewing. I've also been living in the stone age and only recently purchased my first rotary cutter (I know, what is wrong with me?!) I'm amazed at how much more I've been sewing and how much more enjoyable that time is with the addition of a few simple tools.

I've come to realize that tools can be the key to happy sewing. Sure, there are some silly gadgets out there, but a set of genuinely useful tools will make your sewing more organized, more efficient, and more fun!

I've been reading through the back issues of Stitch, paying special attention to the products we feature in each issue. Here are five items that I think will be really helpful when it comes to organized, stress-free sewing this year:



top left: KP Mini Tote; bottom left: Fabric Requirement Cards; top right: Sidewinder bobbin winder; middle right: Fiskar's 12-in-1 Sewing Tool; bottom right: Tiny Rotary Cutter




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KP Mini Tote

With a central storage area, four exterior pockets, and a rotating base, this tote from Stone Creek Creations is perfect for keeping sewing notions close at hand. It measures only 5" tall, and is available in five colors.

Fabric Requirement Cards from GywnHug

Sometimes the perfect fabric catches your eye and demands to be bought, but you don't have a particular pattern in mind. How much should you buy? With these cards, you won't have to worry. Each set of wallet-size refernce cards includes common fabric requirements for skirts, pants, tops, dresses, and jackets based on outfit size and fabric width. A women's clothing set is currently available, and men's and children's sets are on the way.

SideWinder Bobbin Winder

A bobbin winder eliminates the annoyance of having to unthread and rethread your sewing machine every time you empty a bobbin. This tiny portable bobbin winder runs on two AA batteries or a power cord and fits most bobbins.

Fiskar's 12-in-1 Sewing Tool

This tool is the perfect fix-it kit for surviving sewing mishaps. A measuring tape, stuffing tool, thread cutter, and needle threaders are included to help you complete your sewing projects precisely. On the flip side you'll find a knit picker, seam ripper, tweezers, and safety pin at your fingertips. There's also a measuring tape build into the center of the tool.

Tiny Rotary Cutter

Clover's 18mm rotary cutter is ideal for cutting delicate or small pieces. The soft cushion handle is easy to hold and designed for both left- and right-handers.

Happy sewing!
Stefanie


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