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Click here to read more about the amazing Brother giveaway from the latest issue of BurdaStyle US!

We recently asked for your top hand-sewing tips for a chance to win a fabulous prize pack from Make It Coats. We received tons of amazing tips, and we’ll reveal which savvy sewer will be taking home the prize be in the upcoming Fall 2014 issue of BurdaStyle US… on newsstands August 27th!

We know winter is a few months away… but we just couldn’t wait to share our next Giveaway! One very lucky BurdaStyle member will win a Simplicity by Brother SB4138 Sewing Machine valued at $900!

To enter the contest, comment below tell us your most advanced sewing tip. Be sure to include your first name and last initial in your comment to qualify, and keep in mind to check the email address connected to your BurdaStyle profile for any messages from us requesting additional information!

More than one expert tip? Head over here to tell us more advanced sewing tips and tricks! We’ll be searching through all comments to find your best sewing secrets!

The deadline for entering the contest is September 20th, 2014. We’ll announce the winner this November in the winter issue of BurdaStyle US!

Good luck and Happy Sewing!

109 Comments

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    Today, 04.56 AMby deborahgraham5243

    I like to keep sheets of fine emery cloth (available at hardware stores) and a chalk pencil handy to hold small pieces when sewing (especially tiny doll clothing pieces). I mark what piece it is on the emery with chalk. Marked or labeled pieces are easy to locate and stay put so I don’t have to go searching for them on the floor. Works great when piecing together quilt blocks and applique too. If I have to stop midway through a project, several pieces of “loaded” emery can be stacked without the fear of missing pieces when I eventually return to my sewing. If I won’t be returning to the project soon (days) I use one of the flat plastic boxes typically used for scrap booking to store my emery sheets with the fabric pieces safe from a cat attack. Deb G.

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    Today, 02.52 AMby alexandriamccadden

    Pin, Pin, Pin! im a beginner sewer, on a second hand brother machine. I learned the hard way not to baste a quilt outside on a windy day! Alexandria M. Rochester, ny.

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    Today, 01.51 AMby disy

    Basting a slippery fabric of curvy seam or any seam really if you want to take the time insures great results.

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    Today, 01.26 AMby shanailromane

    I’ve learned several things when it comes to sewing, but the best advice I can give is to always hand sew/stitch the inside of the skirt or trouser waistband and liner that goes around the zipper closer to finish it off. It always gives it a classy and professional look. The stitch you want to use is called a slip-stitch. Do this along the inner fold of the waistband and also around the zipper close to the teeth, but not so close to where you are touching and obstructing the opening and closing of the zipper. Make sure you take your needle and go in towards the side of the inner fold and take a small piece of the bottom where you’ll connect the two pieces together, and repeat this process along the entire waistband and zipper closer. I hope this helps you with your final garment pieces. Happy sewing!

    Shanail, R Chesapeake, Va

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    Today, 01.20 AMby Kies239

    Take your time, mark all pieces prior to sewing, and take a break if you get frustrated. Renee’ K.

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    Yesterday, 10.11 PMby yslopez

    always use the correct needle size for your fabric type and use the best quality thread you can afford.

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    Yesterday, 09.09 PMby seapupp

    Never let the sewing machine manual gather dust—always keep it handy for reference! Also, it makes good occasional night time reading.

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    Yesterday, 08.58 PMby LindaGuza

    Make sure you are using the right needle for the fabric. It makes a big difference in the outcome and frustration level. Linda G.

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    Yesterday, 08.53 PMby Gwen Freeman

    I’m definitely a beginner sewer. I think my most advanced advice woule be to take your time and make sure to pin everything really well:)

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    Yesterday, 07.31 AMby Rebecca Brewer

    I am a very beginner so I read everything at least twice and do my best to keep my fingers out of the way!

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    Sep 13, 2014, 11.57 PMby sewmom4

    I pin at the top of the seam the bottom and the middle, then use my finger to ease the seam together keeping the layers even.

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    Sep 13, 2014, 11.38 AMby Michael Woods

    When using thicker fabrics: A heavier needle will help it go through the fabric. You can draw a seam line to follow, then do one stitch at a time and with the needle down lift the foot and help the fabric advance a little. Put the foot down, take another stitch. If the needle still doesn’t want to go in you can help it by turning the wheel by hand, but don’t force it. If it’s a short distance to go over a seam intersection it’s fine, but longer than that and it’s very time consuming.

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    Sep 12, 2014, 02.20 AMby DonnaFroese

    Quick Fitting Technique:

    When I am working on a simple dress, top, or tunic, I will mark my darts and sew them up. Sew all the stay stitching around arm holes, necklines and etc. I will pin the front and back shoulder seams together, and use the machine gathering stitch to sew up the sides. Then I check to make sure the horizontal line and vertical lines are correct. It is real easy to adjust at this point if they are not correct. Look for pulling and puckering around the bust and neck and back from waist up. Repining the shoulder seams can eliminate these fitting problems right away, and quickly. The side seams allow for the fitting around to be adjusted. If your pattern is not simple and you have an empire waist, princes seam or waist seam with darts, I prepare all that ahead and put the front pieces together and then the back pieces together including zippers so that I am left with only the side seams to put together. On most patterns (except tailoring) you can take this liberty. Most adjustments happen at shoulder seams and side seams. I find this way of sewing easier for fitting, faster for sewing, and more enjoyable. Once again, this is not a detailed instruction. I am assuming that you have researched a lot on your own, or know how to understand the unspoken instructions. I do my core body part first. then if I have a collar, I will work on that, and then the sleeves. These are interchangeable of course. I hope this helps you. Happy fitting and sewing.

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    Sep 10, 2014, 02.32 AMby Coker

    When cutting out your pattern, make sure to cut out your notches and mark all of the dots on your fabric. I also place a pin on the right side of the fabric ,when it is difficult to tell the difference between the right side and wrong side of the fabric. This helps to prevent having to rip it out and starting over. I also sew an overcast stitch over the seams to prevent fraying. Patricia C.

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    Sep 9, 2014, 05.05 AMby Marcie Fancey

    Pay very close attention to words like “loose fitting” in pattern descriptions and use them to help you decide what size to cut out. I have a tendency to always cut out the same size, then I wind up taking the “loose fitting” garment in by several inches because it’s so big. I now make the decision on how to cut it out by comparing the pattern pieces to my body or checking the finished length and width to see how much ease is included. Marcie F.

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    Sep 7, 2014, 08.14 AMby Kathy Luehrs

    organization is the key for me – I use plastic shoe bins to store my cut out quilt pieces

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    Sep 4, 2014, 11.43 AMby Karen Propes

    I make a copy of my pattern instructions so I can use it to mark steps I’ve finished and other notes to help me understand. Afterwards I can note anything I need to know for the next time I use the pattern. it also keeps the original from getting damaged. Thanks for the chance. ncjeepster@aol.com

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    Sep 2, 2014, 01.02 AMby Jenny Wisdom Ha

    Take your time and don’t forget to press press press.

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    Sep 1, 2014, 07.54 PMby darcie

    I commented on the linked tips post a couple weeks ago because no one had commented here yet and I thought I was in the wrong place. But I totally want to enter to win too! Here’s what I said:

    “We all know not to backstitch at dart points. But I recently started doing something else to create clean points. I use a 2-2.5 length stitch for most of the dart, up until the last inch. Then I turn down the stitch length to only 1, and I run the stitches off the garment. It creates a precise dart point, and the stitches will not easily come out. Darcie G. Davis, CA”

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    Sep 1, 2014, 07.14 PMby Rosie Gainza

    My best advised is, always to do a test on muslim or some cheap fabric and leave enough seams allowance before sewing on the fabric chosen for the project, it is good to know this tip because you save time, money and the project looks more professional. Rosie G.

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    Sep 1, 2014, 03.34 PMby Bookbabe56

    always read your pattern completely before you do anything. then keep a seam ripper close by

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    Aug 31, 2014, 06.44 PMby pippirose

    Read the pattern or instructions from start to finish. I can’t even count how many times I began to read, then thought I knew what I was doing, so stopped reading—only to flub the sewing bit. Piroska B

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    Aug 31, 2014, 04.59 AMby mncieslik

    When sewing the inseam and outseam of the front and back half of pants together, to keep the two parts from twisting, I always sew from the bottom to the top. For the inseam, I sew from the bottom to the top on both sides instead of going up and down in one run. – Miky C.

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    Aug 30, 2014, 01.15 AMby mad14kt

    Always start a project with patience and end with patience :) Monica D

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    Aug 29, 2014, 06.10 PMby sascott4

    I sew clothing, home dec items, crochet, embroidery, counted cross- stitch and in the last two years have ventured into quilting, and just recently doing my own free motion quilting. Without any former lessons. Only advance tip I can say is don’t be afraid to try……… nothing ventured, nothing gained…… you only succeed when you TRY. Shirley S

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    Aug 29, 2014, 03.54 PMby Judy Juhl

    It’s not advanced, but in the quilting world – measure twice, cut once! Is that a thread cutter button I see on that machine? WANT!!!! Judy J.

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    Aug 29, 2014, 05.08 AMby GranChris

    Ask for help if you don’t know what you are doing. There are so many talented seamstresses that would love to teach you for little to nothing if you would just ask. You can of course find small classes at Community Colleges, Fabric Stores or Senior Centers. Even You Tube has videos. Nothing beats a perfectly tailored dress or suit. I learned how to do a dart once from someone,large to tiny stitches at the tip, no back stitching and it stuck with me. Now my darts are perfect. You can’t beat a great teacher in a small class.

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    Aug 28, 2014, 08.42 PMby paobossh

    Learning to sew stretch fabrics.

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    Aug 28, 2014, 07.54 PMby J McCombs

    Measure twice!!!! Janie M.

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    Aug 28, 2014, 12.40 AMby SewistaInc

    My great grandmother (my yia-yia) who sewed until she passed at the age of 104 (and didn’t speak one word English) was an incredible seamstress, self taught at 9 in Greece. The most advanced and important tip she handed down to me, and did it without every saying it (in English or Greek!). YOUR IRON – KEEP IT ON AND KEEP IT CLOSE, and press, press well and press again. Press with the right temperature, with the right tools. Invest the time and patience to do it right, and the return will be more than ten fold. Nothing looks tailored, well made, or beautiful without proper pressing. The right press can change any piece of fabric that you’ve added few seams to into a garment that looks like it came straight off the run way. Is yours on now?? Laura S

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