Here is a guide to Sewing Scissors and Cutting Tools.
Buying quality-cutting tools is essential. If the cutting tools you are using are not quality, or sharp, you will not get the precision you're going to need to complete a quality garment. Any project will rely on sharp sewing scissors and rotary blades. I highly recommend have a number of pairs of sharp quality made scissors available at all times. As well as utility scissors for cutting, so you won't be tempted to use your good scissors.
Change the blades in your rotary cutter, when you detect the blade is getting dull and have your cutting shears sharpened by a professional when they are not cutting through your fabric smoothly.
Dressmaker's Shears: are primarily used for cutting pattern pieces. The bottom blade is designed to angle slightly; this allows the fabric to lie flat while cutting. The result is, it limits the fabric from shifting.
Sewing Shears: come in standard blade lengths of 7"(18cm) and 8"(20.5cm). Larger blades are available up to 12"(30cm).
Your choice will depend on the size of your hand. Use larger blades for larger hands, and use smaller blades for smaller hands.
If you are left handed, left-handed scissors are also available.
Smaller serrated edged blades are great for slippery knits such as jersey knits and t-shirt knits. This pair of dressmaker's scissor gives more control when cutting.
These finishing shears were first invented and patented in 1843 by Louis Austin. Many sewers still use them for creating a finished seam that prevents unraveling.
The blade has a zigzag edge and when a
straight stitch is sewn a 1/4 inch from the zigzag, it gives a good
alternative to using a
I like to have them handy for cutting and trimming as you're creating your project. This size of sewing scissor is easier to handle, but still large enough to cut through layers of fabric.
I use my sewing scissors a lot. Yes, taking them in for sharpening is recommended, but I find it can be costly. Especially when you have a number of pairs.
As an alternative, try using a desktop version scissor sharpener to sharpen your scissors at home. If you find you’re doing a lot of sewing and your scissors are getting dull more often, for only a few dollars you can save on taking your scissors in a few times per year.
Below are a few options to review and consider. There are more expensive versions available, but I suggest trying an economic version to try.
If you are doing some finer cutting, embroidery scissors are a good idea.
This tool can replace the seam ripper and comes in handy for clipping threads and trimming corners of fabric. This tool is designed with a spring-loaded joint, so one-handed use is possible.
They are quite sharp and I have learn that lesson the hard way. Not much fun to tear into the garment let me tell you.
Originally, rotary cutters were used on a larger scale, for industrial purposes. The factories use electric cutters to cut through multiple layers of fabric, that sewing scissors could never cut through.
However, since the late 1970's, the OLFA Company came up with a rotary cutter for home use. Of course, this tool has many uses for crafters and quilters alike. To use this cutting tool, however you must have a special plastic mat to protect your cutting surface as well as protecting the rotary blade.
Some sewers prefer rotary cutters to sewing scissors, but it is apersonal preference.
Rotary cutters work the same as a pizza cutter. They are very sharp and take time to get used to, so take care when in use and maybe give practice on scraps if you have never used one.
The mats, as you can see in the photo, do come in different sizes, and the larger the mat, the more costly they are.
Rotary cutting mats are great for measuring as well as giving a surface to cut on. The mats come in many different sizes. This is just one example of how they look.
Lately I have noticed the cutting machines available are becoming digital. This can make light work of tedious cutting around small intricate pieces. I wanted to add these machines as an option for sewing enthusiasts who want to save time and create beyond the imagination. If you were looking to start your own t-shirt business, these cutting machines could be your best friend.
One of these cutting machines will be in my sewing inventory very soon. Below are some examples that are currently available, have a look and see if this is something you would find useful.