Sewing machines get all the glory, but there’s another tool that is just as important and ubiquitous in every seamster’s career: the sewing pin. These tiny needles are the underrated stars of any sewing project.Know When to Switch Your Pins
Before you sew any parts together, you will be holding the fabric down with sewing pins. They will allow you to keep things in place while you iron, sew, cut or measure. In other words, they’re essential in keeping things tidy and easy. That’s why you need to know which ones you should use for any given project because, naturally, they’re not all the same. There’s no universal pin that will be perfect for every project regardless of fabric. In this text is laid out what you need to know.
Stretchy fabrics (something like jersey) are more delicate than you might originally expect. If you use a sharp needle, in either your sewing machine or your pins, chances are you will end up breaking at least some of the threads. While it’s easy to take the precaution of using a rounded needle on your sewing machines, most of us forget to do the same with our pins. This results in a lot of headaches and partially destroyed garments. It’s really a pity, since something as easy as using ball-point pins truly saves you a lot of pain and might be the difference between ruining your fabric and having an excellent finished product.
Ball-point pins come in various sizes, so you have to take into account the size of your project before you head out to the store. They are generally strong and sturdy too, so you know they won’t bend or break when handling most materials or pinning down many layers of fabric.
Glass Head Pins
These are definitely the must-have pins in any sewing kit whether you’re starting out or have been sewing for decades. They’re widely used because they are super strong and rigid, so they don’t lose shape while pinning lots of fabrics, and more importantly, they don’t melt in the heat.
The head made out of glass can easily resist the heat of an iron, making these pins a beloved favourite. When using these, you can iron to your heart’s content before sewing. Keep in mind though, that there are a lot of different brands out there selling glass head pins, and each one has a specific composition. You’ll have to find your personal favourite based on ease of use and your specific tastes.
You can’t discuss delicate fabrics without bringing up silk. When working with this fabric you want to be extra careful. Even the smallest tear will diminish the look of your product. Silk threads can’t really accommodate most pins without causing stress to the material.
Luckily, you can use extra fine pins that allow you to work with silk without causing much -if any- damage. Traditional silk pins are entirely made of metal, there’s no plastic or glass ball in the head. If you know you’ll be working with silk a lot, don’t be afraid to splurge on rust proof nickel, they will last you a lifetime and you will get your money’s worth.