This post was originally published on DIY Network’s blog Made + Remade in July 2014.
Suffering from sewing machine phobia? There are plenty of technical nuances to consider when it comes to your DIY sewing projects, but I can tell you from experience that practice-practice-practice is the perfect way to hone your skills. Before you know it, you might find that operating the sewing machine is actually as Zen as relaxing with your feet in the sand, a retreat from laborious projects that still enables you quiet time to create beautiful things.
From custom pillowcases to baby and doll clothes, and homemade quilts to that will be handed down between generations, there are lots of easy sewing machine projects that you can try to get a feel for how this powerful (and powerfully awesome) tool is.
If you don’t yet own a sewing machine, remember that there are plenty of different models in stores in a range of prices. You may want to start with a modest but well-reviewed machine to get your bearings (I own that model!)before upgrading to something more technical for either detail or heavy-duty work (I aspire!).
A few ideas to get you started:
Something for the pets? Sew a custom pet safety hammock for the car using outdoor fabric and old towels, and a sweet dog bed for man’s best friend. (Psst, once upon a time I upcycled an old comforter to make a dog bed… it was really cute!)
Use your sewing machine to create an unique cake topper: Sew through little strips of paper to create a pretty garland to adorn a wedding or party cake. (Psst, that was my wedding cake!)
Bookmark this for the holiday season: A DIY tree skirt.
Store all of your new sewing gadgets in a clever sewing kit with built-in pin cushion: All you’ll need is a mason jar, a piece of fabric, and a handful of polyester batting.
Make a DIY corset dress.
If you have more project ideas for beginners, or links to share, please leave them in the comments!