1) First and foremost, the seam ripper. To err is human, to rip seams is… the story of my life. I have a love/hate relationship with the seam ripper. Much like calling an ex-boyfriend for help moving heavy furniture, using the seam ripper is sometimes unavoidable but leaves you with a sense of pouty, annoyed defeat. Plus, it’s sort of creepy looking.
2) An iron! I didn’t even own an iron before I started sewing. And middle-school-sewer Lindsay was usually too lazy to press seams which is probably why my sewing projects never looked very nice back then. I realized that when I’m told to press the seams, I should actually press the seams. So I bought an iron. Now my seams are happy!
3) A good vacuum. Tons of little thread clippings and fabric shavings tend to float around the entire house when there’s a big sewing project in the works. Right now I am not practicing what I preach – my vacuum is lousy and my carpet is full of clippings from past projects. I dream of getting one of those robot vacuums at some point in my life:
4) Tester fabric – like muslin, or fabric leftover from other projects. Don’t use the good stuff the first time around! You’ll end up teary-eyed when you have a pile of seam-ripped scraps that once was a beautiful, freshly folded square of carefully-chosen fabric. Make mistakes on the boring fabric first!
5) Rotary cutter and mat. I received mine as a gift from my mom when I bought my sewing machine. At first I thought it was a luxury item. It’s not… it’s a must-have. I shall never cut a clean, straight line on fabric without a rotary cutter again!