Tips for Choosing Sewing Pins | National Sewing Circle
How to Choose and Use Sewing Pins
Sewing pins are essential for sewing projects. You need them to hold patterns on while you cut your fabric, and to keep seams aligned when you sew. There are many different types of sewing pins to choose from, and the type you choose all depends on your project and fabric. Once you decide what pins to use for a project, you can follow some helpful sewing pin usage tips to help ensure the success of your project.
Choosing a Type of Pin
Opt for glass head straight pins for everyday projects.Glass (or plastic) straight head pins are the most common kind. These pins are great for everyday sewing projects, so it is useful to have a variety of them on hand.
- These pins come in many different widths and lengths. Choose thin, short pins for more delicate fabrics and thick, long pins for heavier fabrics and multiple layers.
- One downside of these pins is that they can damage delicate fabrics. If you decide to use these pins for something delicate, then be sure to use the thinnest size available.
Use ballpoint pins for knit and jersey fabrics.If you are working with knit fabrics or jersey, then using ballpoint pins is a great way to protect the fabric. These pins have rounded tips, so they do not pierce the fibers like sharp pins do. Instead, they push the fibers aside, and then the fibers can spring back into place after your remove the pins.
Go with silk pins for delicate fabrics.Silk pins are fine tipped pins that are meant for delicate fabrics. If you are working with a delicate fabric like silk or satin, then silk pins might be the best choice.
- Silk pins typically do not have a head on them, but you can find ones that do have a head if you prefer them this way.
Use a T-pin for upholstery and for items that require pressing.T-pins are completely made of metal. The top of the pin has a bend in it, which gives the T-pin its T-shape. These pins are useful if you need to press your fabric before you sew. There are no rounded balls on the end and nothing that will melt, so you can iron right over them if you need to.
Hold multiple layers together with a quilting pin.If you are working on a quilting project or just something with a lot of layers, then a quilting pin might be the best option. These types of pins are thicker and longer than most other pins, so they can easily hold multiple layers.
Use safety pins for checking the fit of a garment on a live model.Safety pins are those that have a closure that will cover up the point of the pin and keep the pin in place. If you need to place a garment on a live model to check the fit, then safety pins can be a good option.
- You can use safety pins to hold the seams in place and then put the garment onto your model without worrying as much about them getting poked.
Try fork pins for extra slippery fabrics.If you are working with an extra slippery fabric, then you might want to invest in some fork pins. These pins have two prongs that will help to keep your fabric from sliding all over the place.
- Try using fork pins with a satin or silk. Just make sure to choose thin sized fork pins to reduce the chances of damaging the fabric.
Using Pins Effectively
Discard old, dull, or damaged pins.Once a pin gets dull or bent, it will no longer be useful to you. Instead of keeping these pins around, throw them away right away so that they do not clutter your good pins.
- Check your pins after each sewing project to see if any of them were damaged. If any of your pins are damaged, toss them out.
Store your pins in separate tins or cushions.To keep you different types and sizes of pins separated, you will need to keep them in separate tins or pin cushions. Invest in a few containers or extra cushions to keep all of your different pins.
- You can also make your own pin cushion using some scrap fabric. Try making a cactus pincushion for something fun to hold your pins.
Pin along the seam allowances.Not all fabrics get damaged when you put pins into them, but some might. To play it safe, insert your pins along the seam allowances, which is the area on the edge of your fabric. This area will be hidden after you sew the seams. By placing your pins here, you will decrease the chances that any holes created by the pins will be visible.
Place pins perpendicular to seams.Placing pins perpendicular to your seams instead of parallel to them can help to prevent you from poking yourself. Placing the pins perpendicular to the seam will also create straighter lines for sewing and make it easier to remove the pins when you are done.
- To place pins perpendicular to the seams, line them up so that the point is going in towards the seam, rather than alongside it. Each pin should for a letter “T” shape with the seam.
Video: Sewing Over Pins: Tips and Techniques
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