Long ago I read that the way to master a craft is to learn the rule book – and then throw it out! I’m all for that, when the occasion demands.
One of the rules I often bend is:
Thou shalt not sew over pins.
Yeah, whatevs. After I saw Susan Khalje sewing over pins in her Craftsy class, my own dirty secret came out into the open. I sew over pins, too!
Here are some of the times I’ll sew over a pin:
- Sewing a gathered seam.
- Basting in sleeves. (One rule I will follow religiously is to always baste a sleeve in first. It’s guaranteed tears and a seam ripper otherwise.)
- Any section of sewing where accurate seam placement is an issue ie where seam lines meet.
- Any sewing at all where accuracy is needed.
The combination of pins and a walking foot, as above, means that fabric has less desire to shift out of position. I’m all for it.
Tips for sewing over pins:
- Use long, fine pins if you have them.
- Insert pins horizontally.
- Slow down. This isn’t the Grand Prix.
- When you arrive at a pin you could take your foot off the pedal and turn the needle by hand. (I don’t.)
- Be prepared for blunt or broken needles. Yes, this activity comes with risks. Meh. Ain’t lost an eye yet!
Most of the time, I avoid sewing over pins. But sometimes I purposefully leave them in when it suits the needs of construction. There’s a logic there, I promise. And when you see me wearing an eye patch in blog photos, I’ll swear that eye patches are the new Hasbeens. (Seriously. There are a lot of Hasbeens out in the sewing blogosphere right now!)
Is there a rule you are happy to break for a good reason?