Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My Favorite Sewing Tip - Scissors, Your Best Sewing Friend

When I read about the call out from the SewMamaSew gang looking for our tips tricks and "can't live withouts" of our sewing day I had to stop and think since my sewing room is just about busting at the seams with cool sewing stuff ( Yes I am a sewing freak... guilty as charged!)  but after a bit it became clear that the thing that is most important to me when it comes to my tools is my scissors.

Good scissors are a sewing gal's ( or guy's!) best friend and a bad pair.. well they are just like that girl in highschool who only pretended she was your friend in order to steal your boyfriend... they are just no good for anyone and will cause you many tears.

My scissor collection is large ( going on 10 pairs at last count) and my children live under the threat of a never-die curse if they use any of them since these are ~ mama's sewing tools~ and they are not to be used to cut open a bag of chips or help pry the top off a jar of pickels.  Woe is the child who would do such a thing!  ( But don't feel to bad for them I have tons of other scissors around the house for them to use!)

In my top 4 Scissor Hall of Fame are:

Pinking Shears -  These sawtoothed beauties are the workhorse of my sewing studio. Used mostly in clothing construction to deter fraying and remove builk from seams these darlings can be an expensive purchase for the new sewest. But never fear with a bit of hunting you can find a nice pair on sale so be saving your pennies since starting price (presale) is $30-$50 for a good pair!  ( You can see why I don't let my kid goof around with them!)  Of course Ginger is the holy grail when it comes to scissors and that is why mine are but I also have a pair of all metal Mundials that are very nice and I would not hesitate to get them again.

Micro-Toothed dressmaking shears - These not only have a bent handle making them much easier to use to cut out patterns and fabric they also have a tiny tiny little teeth on the blades and grab the fabric so it does not slip in the blades. This makes it really nice for slippery fabric.

Easy Grip Scissors - I know there must be a better name for these but they are made by Fiskers and they are spring loaded making them easier on your hands.  If you buy a pair ( and I think you should.. I personally cannot go on supporting the whole scissor industry by myself) go ahead and pick up a pack of the springs, in fact get two since if you found them you a one lucky pup!.. at some point the spring will ~spring~ off of your pair and shoot across the room never to be seen again. At this point you will love me with a deep purple  passion since you will have the little spring to fix your scissors since without the spring they are useless!

Wee Little Snips-  I can't even begin to tell you how many of these I own.  Sharp little scissors just right for getting into tiny places, little stitches and all the other places you big scissors will not go.  These tend to dull qicker than other scissors so when I see them I buy them and then don't feel bad and dumping others when they get dull.

BONUS - Duck Billed Applique Scissors-  You will not need these unless you do applique but when you do they are the only ones for the job.  With one blade larger and beveled in such a way as to protect your fabric these will save you a lot of heartache and snipped fabric.

To keep your fabric scissors in tip-top shape remember to NEVER use them on paper and to give them a small drop of oil on the screw if they start to get tight.  If your scissors do get damged consider sending them off to be resharpened, many fabric shops have this service and it can be well worth the $10ish dollars to have your best pair working again after an unfortunate incident where you were not paying attention and might have cut into a straight pin ( I'm just sayin....)


Robyn - Coffee and Cotton said...

I'm a Gingher girl myself. I have 3 pairs of the sewing shears...can only find 2 Ack! and the 4inch scissor and the embroidery scissor and the applique scissor. Guess I'm a scissor ho. I too blogged a tip for Sew Mama Sew

Kristy said...

I totally agree - bad sewing scissors can put you off a project in the first place. I'm still searching for my holy grail, I'm currently using Mundial shears which are super sharp but so tight to open and close. But my best bargain has been some pinking shears from Ikea of all places - less than $10 and still sharp after cutting through fabric of all thicknesses for the last few months

Sara said...

I pay $3 to get my Fiskars sharpened at a local quilt shop--love it!! They were so bad and I was sooo frustrated!!

Stacy said...

I've attempted to use Gingher scissors (my aunt's), and I hate them. They're too heavy for my hands. I do have specific sewing scissors though.

Fresh Thread's chief cook and bottle washer! said...

Stacy, You are right that some Gingher's are beefy to say the least and we all need something that fits our hand just right. But do look at some of the smaller Gingher's that might be more friendly to your hands! :)