66 thoughts on “Hand Sewing Essentials”

  1. Number 10 sharps. Thankyou. I feel like I’ve won the lottery. Those were the sweetest words. I’ve been asking and searching for that perfect needle size for ages. Nobody ever says the number of the needle they are using. It’s so frustrating.

  2. Hahaha, yes the safety pins! One should always have some nearby wherever you travel! And I think I have one of those thread counters, I didn't know what it was for.

  3. I just thought of a tip for everyone, you can make nice leather thimbles out of old leather gloves, make sure the tips fit you snug. When you cut the tops off the glove fingers, just put a few stitches in so it doesn't come undone on the seams, you can also make them fit more snug here too. Different thicknesses of leather obviously are better for certain jobs. Keep the palms of the gloves, they are nice cut then stitched onto fingerless mittens, so when you're out hiking it's easier to grip things.

  4. I really love coil- less safety pins. I use them in KNITTING for a stitch marker, then I started using then in SEWING.
    Purchase them from Schoolhouse Press. Tell them Teri Adams referred you. They are a very very reasonable price.

  5. I have two thimbles that belonged to my great grandmother, whom I never met as she passed away when my grandmother was just 19 years old. One thimble is sterling silver engraved with her initials. The thimbles fit me perfectly! It’s as though great grandma is reaching out to me from all those years ago.🤗 And yes, using a thimble does speed and improve my hand stitching. I also have her antique bird embroidery scissors, which are loose and unusable, but I love them just the same.

  6. I don’t do a lot of sewing on the go, so my essentials are in a small basket that I carry everywhere. I literally just have needles on a handmade pin cushion, thread, scissors, seam ripper (that’s gone a little dull), safety pins, and leftover wool from crochet projects.
    I also did do some sewing this week; I made a skirt, blouse and traditional cheongsam for Chinese New Year 🙂

  7. my mom recently got me a sewing box from the thrift store filled with stuff (i imagine the staff didn’t want to sort through it), mainly notions but also some really useful little things, including a thread counter! all for the value of €5, haha
    seeing this really wants to make me reorganise my supplies

  8. Wonderful video! I need to get in the habit of using little snippy scissors to cut thread when I'm sewing… there is a noticeable dent in my front teeth from cutting my thread…. the wrong way!

  9. I keep a measuring tape rolled up in one of those plastic caps off the top of a medicine bottle. The cap is normally used to measure a dose of medicine eg: 1 teaspoon etc. I find it keeps the tape in one place instead of rolling itself around everything else in my sewing/old free makeup bag from Boots.

  10. There is a ripper in my handy stash as well. I don't like ripping, but I have accepted that it's an integral part of sewing

  11. i love hand sewing now and it was you who got me really into it. I finally made my first prodject for someone all by hand and she cried. I find it really relaxing (minus when i lose my thimble) and to have someone think oh you did that with a sewing machine and im like no i did it all by hand and people are amazed and i feel really proud of what i made. I just cant wait to watch your videos and feel like i have a sewing buddy >w< thank you Bernadette tell next time Amber ♥

  12. I don't sew, but I need to put this kind of kit together for the occasional escaped button and seam separation of beloved garments.

  13. TSA probably just wanted to read Harry Potter and was contemplating whether or not they could get away with taking it to read on break.

  14. I have cross-stitched a design for a needle holder. I just need to sew it all together. There'll be a piece of felt inside to hold the needles, and it'll look like a cute little book.

  15. I've traveled the world and yet to find sanity in the bottom of any of my bags. I'll keep looking but I'm pretty sure mine is permanently lost.

  16. I'd love to like sewing just to immerse on your tips and develop the necessary discipline and stuff, it's trully inspiring and motivational even when you don't touch these subjects necessarily.

  17. on my recent travels i had my food knife and tiny scissor taken from me:( the foodknife was over 6 cm of "blade" and the tiny scissor was apparently too stabbable….. they were fine the 4 flights prior….. im not upset..

  18. I found a zippered sewing case, probably leatherette from the 1950's, 8"x4" and all kitted out, including a built in velvet pincushion, in a thrift store…it's the best for travel! (failed at attaching photo).

  19. I have a little sand pouch in my travel kit to sharpen pins. I'm still not entirely sure if that actually works but I'm not about to start questioning grandmas wisdom now

  20. I started watching your videos in December as they just popped up in YouTube. I have been occupied with ball dress that I wanted to add little bit more as it has been used twice before me and there wasn't any shoulder traps. It's made from delicate fabric and the front is full of blings so hand-sewing was the only choice. And I could never imagine that I could enjoy more of it! And because of that I have watched way too many of your videos and just love to see how you progress. I am assuming that falling into your videos caused today, maybe a majure problem/project for me for this coming year. I was today avoiding my homework from history and ended up sketching graduation dress for my self. Now I am so in love with the sketch that I really want to do it! And I want to do atleast some of it by hand-sewing! I have no patterns for it, just ideas which patterns to use so it will be a long process. You have got one person more into hand-sewing. You should be proud of yourself!

  21. I treated myself with a little box with a magnetic bottom to store needles in. I have really big hands for a woman and am constantly struggling with picking needles out of little boxes. This one made my life a lot easier. Looks like a lipstick, you can screw it and it will lift and fan out your needles. Love it!

  22. Hi Bernadette! I was just thinking that it would be cool to see if you could challenge yourself to use your cabbage to create historical dolls fashion. It could be very interesting to try a new style of sewing and test your skills to a new extreme. Thank you for your amazing videos!

  23. I don't sew very often anymore (I would like to pick up the habit again, its something I very much enjoy when I have the time for it), but I'm working on a very small project this week, altering the sleeves on a blouse for a friend of mine. My work isn't as neat as I would like it to be yet, but your videos inspire me to be better, and I hope someday I'll be able to sew much more frequently and take on bigger projects with confidence.

  24. I do not stitch or anything I cant make clothes I have never tried. I found these and they are very inspiring very nice to watch. So thank you for being super nice and I think I'll give it a try!

  25. Seam ripper? And how do you feel about needle threaders? You probably don't need them, but I'm old, so . . . And re: loose stuff in the bottom of a bag – that is one thing I am absolutely obsessive about not doing. It drives me crazy.

  26. Me: has perfected the art of the hand sewing bag, does not need any advice on how to maintain one, personally

    Also me: pumped to watch Bernadette tell me all the basics I already know

  27. I cannot sew by hand without a thimble. I have hardly ever seen any other sewers using a thimble! You have taken your sewing bag contents to a new level!

  28. Recently I visited a friend in bavaria and took my essential sewing supplies with me. My most loved scissors had to stay at home because if I would lose them I would not be complete. The shape of the outside edge of the blades is rounded and they are a bit longer than my hand is wide. I was shown in fashion school how to hold the blades close to the tip of the scissors with your tumb and two fingers to slide it open without using those "loops". It's difficult to explain because I have never seen anyone else use this technique. I can only do it with those scissors.
    Regarding sewing pins, I also use those basic steel ones. Mine are fine and extra hardened steel from Prym. I mostly buy my sewing supplies from them. I also always have a roll of magic tape and the magic water erasable pen from Prym with me. I know it's not historically accurate but I don't sew historical dresses so I am not ashamed to confess that I use whatever works for me to make a neat and accurate work.

  29. Dear, Dear Bernadette, how can you possibly consider a sewing kit that doesn't have a NEEDLE THREADER???? I'd never get anything done without one. I can't see the @#$% needle eye and the thread gets very fussy about going through a needle I can't see. Oh no, needle threader. Essential! I don't carry a sewing bag. Mine is a plastic box that opens on both sides so supplies have their own slots. It's about 9 x 7 inches and fits nicely in the pocket on the side of my carryon.

  30. Before the video about leather thimble, I didn't realise how to use it. But now I do, and it made a huge difference! (Although I wear it on the non-dominant hand. Maybe that's not correct, I just don't see my fingers when I hold fabriс and tend to stab them all the time…)

  31. Hi Bernadette I guess it may sound silly but you inspired me to fix a sweater! The whole side seam came undone from wrist to hip last year and I honestly wouldn't have fixed it myself without your encouragement for us newbies to try anyway (I would probably have taken it to my auntie otherwise) and it came out good! Like wearable! There aren't any holes in between stitches though I must admit that knit was rather forgiving as I am pretty sure I made quite a few mistakes. Regardless, thank you for the inspiration 🙂 I did a whip/whisp stitch (not sure how it is called, it is the really really tiny one) and I wouldn't even have known it existed without you! Now fixing clothes by hand isn't nearly as scary. Thank you so much. Please have a wonderful 2020.

  32. Scissors on planes warning: Australian airports are not forgiving. My sister and I have both lost tiny scissors to Australian airports. Me about 20 mins ago, so I'm still salty. If they had rounded tips I might have been able to keep them.

  33. The one time TSA searched my bag was also for a book. Apparently anything over 400pages is hard for the X-ray machine to penetrate. It was Outlander btw lol super thick book. I love watching your YouTube videos!

  34. I'm a Patternmaker, primarily in 1/2 scale, so I carry a case instead of a bag. Inside is some cardstock, 1/2 a clear plastic ruler, various pens, pencils, and erasers. Non reflective tape thet takes to pencil or pen, and the cases of it's discarded relations who come in handy when working cuves. Also, a pin or awl, and whatever loose paperwork I need. Actual paper, even 1/2 scale is carried separately. Completed patterns are stored in files, with the directions and smaller pieces kept in an envelope, usually with the pattern name, size, and pieces on it.

  35. "Safety pins strewn about my room…" my life, the air I breathe…

    Also, one of my cats likes to pull safety pins off of things. I..
    I don't understand why. He's a weird cat who does weird things.

  36. I like to use an old pill bottle for my emergency stitch kit, since it's sturdy, can be seen into, fits in my pocket, and needles have no way of sneaking out. Plus, it can be used as an a makeshift darning egg, and the cap can be a little bowl if screwed in upside down. One odd item I usually have is a hairpin or bobby pin. The latter functions well as a clip when I don't want to use a pin, and you never know when it will be useful, if you're willing to get creative.

  37. My mum made me a really sweet little needlebook and I keep an assortment of needles of different lengths in there. It's just pieces of cabbage that were large enough to be sewn together to create doubles and then a mid seam was sewn in to make a 'spine'? It's a really lovely piece in my sewing supplies even if I only do embroidery and not garment work… yet 😀

  38. Judging by the wear on your leather thimble you might want to try a coin thimble. Very similar to yours but it has a metal pad under an additional retainer piece. Very comfy to use and last an age I can assure you. Nice to see a Printers Loupe being utilized too! I've made leather pouches from the sleeves of leather jackets, waste not, want not and made good use of the already in situ chunky brass zipper. They also make for great camera lens covers if anyone needs a project idea.

  39. Considering the knife violence that’s happening in London, I find it surprising that they didn’t give a toss about your pointy things, probably just because you’re a women and like 99% of all knife crimes are committed by men, but still….

  40. I’ve flown my sewing machine in a hard sided backpack many many times and the TSA is always completely baffled as to what it even is- 9 times out of 10 after explaining its a sewing machine they tell me how their grandma sews. 😂

  41. I found the EXACT same Singer sewing machine that you used in some of your videos in my local charity shop but it was just for DECORATION!

  42. My hand sewing bag is an old holographic ouija board makeup bag I was given years ago- it's hilariously unaesthetic and I love it so much. I'll be pulling my fabric out of my bag and everyone will be like wow what a serious person with somber fabric choices and then…the bag. (Also, for fellow UK sewers, I have found that The Tudor Tailor on Etsy has very nice linen thread for historical hand sewing that comes with beeswax. I'm about to dye some green with spinach dye for the Ridiculous Medieval Project That Will Never End so I'm hoping it goes well.)

  43. For some reason I was unsubbed 😕 thank goodness I’ve binged watched recently you still showed up on my recommended page 💕 resubbed right away! Anyway….

    Bernadette, I found a pattern for a walking skirt online. I’m not sure if it’s historically accurate but it seems easy enough for a slightly confident beginner like myself 🙈 we are going to Scotland this summer and I’m convinced I need to make a Wool walking skirt to stay warm. And keep it for winters and fall..even though in Southern California we don’t get as many seasons..this year we had a pretty shocking low. & by that I mean we got to 50 degrees in the day time 🥶 looking at wool is so satisfying 💕

  44. So my purse contains my sanity?! Thats where it went? Well then…It has passed on to another dimension because thats what the bottom of my purse leads to. I hope someone is using it well. lol

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