Basics + Techniques | Sewing

The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins

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Inside: The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins

When it comes to sewing pins, I prefer the It Takes a Village approach.

No, I don’t have a weird pin-fixation. All of these pins have a purpose in sewing. Use the wrong pin and it could ruin your project.

The thing with pins is they sort of all look alike and if you just throw them in a pin box you are likely to use the incorrect one when you get ready to sew.

So, to better keep up with my pins, I’ve devised an inexpensive system.

The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins Collection

Why You Need A System

When you purchase sewing pins, they usually come in a plastic box and look like this.

A disaster if your pin box gets knocked off your sewing table and falls onto the floor. I make no confessions, here!

The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins - Ball Point Pins

Ball Point Pins for Knits

There are 75 ball point pins in this box, each 1.5” long. These pins have a specific purpose. They are designed for sewing on knits.
 
If I were to use a Universal pin, it would leave a small hole in my knit fabric.
 
If I use a ball point pin, it doesn’t leave a hole. You always want to use ball points when sewing with knits.
 
But, these pins look just like my other pins, so I need a way to keep them separate.

To keep my ball points separate, but available for knit sewing, I purchased a purple tomato pin cushion for $1.00 at Joann’s (w/coupon).
 
I labeled it with a fine point Sharpy. That’s how easy it is.

Hint: Find out more about sewing with knits. 

The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins - Ball Point Pins

Universal Pins for Wovens

I use this cute little bird pin cushion to hold my round-head universal pins. These pins are 1.75” long and need something deep to stab them into.

The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins - Universal Pins

Flat Head Pins

I use my Universal pins for most wovens. I keep these pins separate because of the yellow head. It is plastic and would melt if I ironed over it. I have another set of Universal pins, but they have a flat, no-melt head. They also are 1.75” long and need something deep, as well. I keep these pins in a large tomato pin cushion which costs about $2 at Joann’s (with a coupon).

The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins - Flat Head Pins

Extra-Sharp Pins for Sheer Fabrics

Anytime you sew on sheer fabrics or silks you need to use extra sharp pins.  I keep these guys on a magnetic pin cushion. Since I don’t use them that often, they can stay put in a drawer or on the back of my sewing table.

OK, I wasn’t completely honest, here. These pins are S-H-A-R-P and I always draw blood when I over-handle them. The magnetic pin cushion is the best choice for a blood-free project.

It would be easier if all of my pins were on magnetic pin cushions, but I’m always a little concerned about having magnets close by my computerized sewing machines.

Since these aren’t used every day, they are fine on the magnetic pin holder.

The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins - Sharp Pins

Sewing Machine Needles

Let’s not forget sewing machine needles. If you use a heavy duty needle for something like hemming jeans, you don’t want to just toss it after one use.
 
Here’s my way of keeping up with barely used machine needles. An inexpensive pin cushion and a fine point Sharpy are all you need.

The Essential Guide to Sewing Pins - Sewing Machine Needle Storage

I really like the tomato pin cushions for keeping all of my pins organized. (affiliate)

For one, the little strawberry has a purpose. It is filled with emery sand and will sharpen your pins.

The best reason for using them is that they come in a variety of sizes and colors, making it easy to keep your pins separated.
 
This makes pin-a-holics, like myself, very happy.


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