Sewing Must-Haves: Tools and Supplies

Virginia from Fynes Designs stops by to share her sewing must-haves for flawless projects. You’ll love these handy tools and supplies.

I started sewing when I was very young. We’re talking pillows and blankets for my barbie beds (which I happened to construct out of shoe boxes), hair scrunchies (they were an 80’s thing in case you don’t know) and, eventually, I worked up to pillows and curtains for my own bedroom. In our previous homes, I always had my sewing machine set up, ready to make something at the drop of a hat.

Sewing Machine

When we moved into this house almost 10 years ago, I sewed most of our window treatments and pillows. But, once those were all wrapped up, my sewing projects became few and far between. Eventually, my sewing machine started collecting dust.

All of that changed, recently, when I decided to get back to doing some of the things I enjoyed in the past. (Add being more physically active to that list as well!) Now, I’m pulling out my sewing machine more often and putting those skills I developed from a young age to use.

Sewing Must-Have Tools

If you’ve fallen off the sewing wagon and want to hop back on or, perhaps, you’d like to give it a try for the first time, I have Virginia from Fynes Designs sharing her sewing must-have tools. Virginia’s projects are always so impressive and I knew she must have some tricks up her sleeve. Here goes…

Favourite Sewing Tools and Supplies

Rotary Cutter

I thought back on my sewing projects previous to owing a quilting ruler, rotary cutter and self-healing mat, and it was a sad story. Nothing was straight and I spent forever trying to figure out how people did it!  I think after a sewing machine this has to be your big next purchase. Plus I use it for paper too!

Sewing Must-Have Tools - Rotary Cutter

Glass Head Straight Pins

I use a variety of pins. I prefer glass head pins so you can press right over top them. But more importantly, I need more than one pin cushion… 3 to be exact! I have one on my cutting table, one beside my sewing machine, and one on the ironing board. I always have pins in reach, and always a place to put them back.

Glass Head Straight Pins in Tomato Pin Cushions

Tailor’s Chalk

This handy tool looks like a tube of lipstick. It’s the best chalk I’ve used for sewing, as you never have to worry about the chalk breaking and it makes a fine line.

Tailor's Chalk in Tube

Thread Snips

Having a great pair of sharp shears is so important for sewing, but just as important is a small pair that snip at the tip. I love these Westcott ones. They are perfect for clipping corners and I love having a pair beside the sewing machine to snip threads.

Thread Snips

¼” Presser Foot

This is one of my favourites for my sewing machine. It has a ¼” guide, so as long as the fabric is rested against the edge of the foot, it sews a perfect seam without having to watch the line. It was very inexpensive, perfect for assembling a quilt.

¼" Foot for Sewing Machine

For a quick and easy sewing project, check out my 10 minute dish towel aprons.

Dish Towel Apron

Feeling a little more ambitious? Follow my tutorial for sewing a girl’s purse (free pattern included!).

Hand-Sewn Girl's Purse

Thanks, Virginia! I definitely need to get some of those glass-head pins since I’m always melting mine. And a foot where you don’t have to pay close attention- I’m in!

P.S. Your dish towel aprons are pinned on my Sewing Projects board for later!

Do you have any sewing must-haves? What tools do you use to create flawless projects?

One other thing before you head off… If you’re looking for more useful and pretty ideas in your life, make sure you’re on the email list! You can subscribe here.

Enjoy your day, 

Shauna at Satori Design for Living Blog - Home Decor, DIY, Vintage Finds, Recipes


  1. Thank you Virginia – really great tips here! I didn’t know about the ‘lipstick’ chalk and to this day still wrestle with the pencil version and their forever breaking tips! I also had no idea about the 1/4″ presser foot – I think that was made for me! ;-) I’m not an avid sewer, I know just enough to get by, so every little tip and tool to make the job easier is one I need!

    Shauna, I made Barbie beds out of shoe boxes too! And I know what a hair scrunchie is (eeeghads)! :-0 Can you see my scrunching face? ;-)

    1. Apparently they’re making a comeback of sorts. I guess leggings came back with a twist and now the scrunchies are, but in a different way. Perhaps I can start that little scruchie factory back up to make some cash on the side LOL!

      I think my mom held on to those Barbie beds and the bedding. Perhaps they can make their debut on the blog OR NOT! Fun times…

  2. I’m so tempted to start sewing… but I think back to an apron I made in grade seven and how horrible it was…LOL.

    I’m going to start very, VERY simple :)

  3. Great essentials. I love my stitch ripper too. The apron is a lovely project for a gift – have pinned :)

  4. I have to get myself some chalk!  I never liked the pencils and ended up using pens instead….  not a great alternative.  I have some sewing projects on my agenda (roman shades) so I will have to check out her blog!  Thanks for this post!

    1. I’ve made roman blinds before, but never shared the tutorial. I think I may sew one for my laundry room and I’ll put the details on the blog.

  5. Great tips and I really like those aprons – all of them!! Thanks Shauna and Virginia!

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