Before starting a project, make sure you have this gear on hand.

By Jenny Brown
Updated May 28, 2014
Illo: sewing supplies
Credit: Joe McKendry

1. All-purpose polyester thread, especially in frequently used colors (black, white, navy, khaki, and gray).

2. Sharps (hand-sewing needles).

3. Tailor’s chalk (to mark measurements) and ruler.

4. Straight pins with ball heads (so you don’t get poked).

5. Iron, ironing board, and pressing cloth (a clean pillowcase works great).

6. Embroidery scissors.

7. Iron-on fusible interfacing (such as Heat’n Bond Iron-On Adhesive; $10,

8. Seam ripper (to remove errant stitches).