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Topic: 10 Ways to Economize your Sewing  (Read 7795 times)
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NattyBee
« Reply #10 on: December 04, 2011 06:17:43 AM »

Tracing paper. I buy it in rolls at an art store.  Its the same paper that I use for making patterns.
It isn't always big enough for the pieces that I want to make/trace... but two pieces are very easily taped together  Cheesy
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JHall
« Reply #11 on: December 04, 2011 12:30:02 PM »

Good tips!
Mine:
Thrift stores are food for more than sheets!! I love buying bundles of vintage trims at thrift stores... It's something I like to have on hand in case I want to add that little detail, but it's too expensive to buy a bunch of it new (even with coupon!) I've also been able to buy some nice books on sewing from places like goodwill and mission thrift stores for only a few dollars. I love being able to to have a book to touch and look at for instructions and guides, but I have definitely never spent bookstore prices! I also have a favorite thrift store that sells a lot of patterns. I've probably purchased around 15 vintage patterns there (10 cents/each) and only one was missing any pieces (not important pieces, either!)
I've also found free fabric on craigslist and freecycle
Patterns: Except for one or two New Look patterns, I don't buy patterns full price (NL is like $3-4 anyways).  I always keep a running list on my phone of the patterns I saw and really like.  When the sales roll around at Joann, I buy them all. Better to spend $10 on 10 patterns and only end up using 2 of them in the near future than the go buy those two later at $16/each. Also, by spending so little on my patterns, i don't feel compelled to do time consuming, pattern saving extra steps such as copying patterns. 
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thingsivemade
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« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2011 12:41:32 PM »

I've been doing the thrift store shopping for years, it's one of my favourite ways to shop. Not only is it a challenge, but I'm also helping out various charities by doing so. Although, I found that getting the bus home from work instead of walking is cheaper because then I won't go into every single charity shop on the way home (there's LOADS on the route home!) Cheesy

 This might sound odd, but it's something I've been doing for a while. I use 3v cards if I'm buying anything online (it's a Visa card, but instead of credit, you top up the card. I still can't trust myself to have a credit card) and there's usually money left over. If there's remaining cash, I go onto ebay and find something. You can get loads of ribbons, zippers, trinkets, lace etc. for next to nothing, and you might find some notions and whatnot that are cheaper online than in your local craftatorium.
 I have a saved search that's free postage and packaging, in the category of crafts and includes whatever amount I have left over so I can go back to it. It's a fun little challenge too!
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« Reply #13 on: December 06, 2011 07:13:50 AM »

Those are all great tips!

I love mixing and matching pattern pieces...if you have a basic dress that fits well, you can add different sleeves or necklines pretty easily (I learned from experience and also a few good books!)...also, vintage patterns made in modern fabrics gives you a longer life for the pattern!

Thrift stores are a good source for a lot of sewing notions if you are willing to spend a bit of time...I like to snip out the labels as well to use in altered art pieces...and the buttons can be used for charms and not just sewing...

if you are ever at a social gathering with elderly people, sometimes if you mention that you sew, a lot of them have old sewing items that they no longer want!  Just recently, I was offered a vintage treadle sewing machine and table and all of the sewing items inside!  I am going to pick it up this weekend!  So, talk about your passion...another person who was once passionate about sewing might be listening! Cheesy
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JHall
« Reply #14 on: December 06, 2011 02:23:59 PM »

if you are ever at a social gathering with elderly people, sometimes if you mention that you sew, a lot of them have old sewing items that they no longer want!  Just recently, I was offered a vintage treadle sewing machine and table and all of the sewing items inside!  I am going to pick it up this weekend!  So, talk about your passion...another person who was once passionate about sewing might be listening! Cheesy

Oh my goodness, this is such a good idea hahaha

I love thrift stores. There is a store near me that has patterns for 10 cents. Most of them are icky 80-90s patterns, but I've found some really nice patterns there. Almost never missing pieces! I love using thrifted sheets for making muslins, too. so much cheaper than buying new fabric for it!!
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mom2garrett
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2012 06:44:58 PM »

I cannibalize clothing, too!  Shirts that are stained or torn?  No problem!  All the buttons go into my button jar, and the fabric goes into my scrap bins and eventually become quilts or part of some other small project.
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Crystal Mess
« Reply #16 on: January 30, 2012 10:36:18 PM »

Thanks for the great tips. I'm pretty thrifty myself, but extra ideas are always helpful  Smiley
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P31 Creative
« Reply #17 on: March 20, 2012 11:27:28 PM »

Sara thank you so much for taking the time to put these all down! I have been producing items for local shows and my bigcartel store and keeping costs low while $ is slow is very important. great suggestions!
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MurasakiB.
« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2012 01:01:20 PM »

Great tip on sharing. Thanks!
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Ophelia Love
« Reply #19 on: August 17, 2012 12:22:42 AM »

Tracing paper. I buy it in rolls at an art store.  Its the same paper that I use for making patterns.
It isn't always big enough for the pieces that I want to make/trace... but two pieces are very easily taped together  Cheesy
I get the leftover ends from newspaper from my local press.  They charge $2 a roll & I never need more than 1 a year & I have 2 draw-happy toddlers - so you get a LOT for that $2.  If I plan to use a pattern a LOT, I buy shower curtains from the dollar store (for $1).  They also make great drop cloths.  Just be aware they are stinky as all get out so they need to be opened & allowed to air out outside.  I also then run them through my washing machine once.  It helps.

I too cannibalize everything & with toddler boys - that gives me lots of damaged stuff to worth with - not sure whether to say "fortunately" or "unfortunately"  about that...LOL
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