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Last May on the Podcast "Love to Sew" Helen Wilkinson and Caroline Somos, discussed different sewing topics using the famous game, This or That. After this, the sewing version of the game has continued on Instagram and YouTube. I started to think, and what are my sewing preferences? Believe it or not, it wasn't that easy for me!

Sewing Prep

  • Shopping new vs. stash busting: I confess that this year I am doing my best to lower my stash.  I’ve behaved well, but I’ve done some shopping, especially on the day of Tommie Hernandez’s fabric “chinchorreo”.  That day I took the ball out of the park.
  • PDFs vs. paper patterns: since I discovered the patterns in PDF’s I lean more towards them because I print them when I need them.  Also, because I entertain myself by assembling them, they remind me of puzzles.
  • Cutting vs. tracing: 95% of the time: cutting.  I only trace if I make a lot of pattern modifications. 
  • Muslin or just go for it: I just go for it, I don’t do muslins.  I can’t deny that sometimes it doesn’t fit me perfectly, but I was always able to learn something.  What I can say is that if it is something special, I sew a wearable muslin. 


  • In-store vs. online shopping: I do both.  I’ve been shopping online for over 20 years, more for convenience than anything else. There is nothing like feeling the texture of fabrics and observing their appearance.
  • Knit vs. woven: both!  I can’t say I have preferences for sewing, or for dressing.  All fabrics have their charm and challenges.
  • Tumble dry vs. hang to dry: 75% of the time I wash them in the machine and hang to dry.   It’s the same thing I do with my clothes. 
  • Rotary cutters vs. scissors: I prefer scissors and use them most of the time.  I use the rotary cutters when the pattern has many straight cuts, with slippery fabrics, vinyl, or leather.

Clothing construction

  • Follow the pattern or wing it?: both!  It depends on how complicated the pattern is. If the pattern is simple, I don’t follow the instructions.  If the pattern has a tutorial, I like to watch them before making the pattern.
  • Bias tape finish vs. facings: I use both.  I have no preferences; it depends a lot on what I am sewing and the type of fabric.
  • Serged seams vs. french seams: 95% of the time I use the serger (overlock).  I love the French seams finish, but I don’t have much time.  I use it only in the case of fine or transparent fabrics in which the seam can be noticed. 
  • Button fly vs. zip fly: I don’t like button fly, so I’ve never sewn them.   100% zipper fly.
  • Button by hand vs. machine sewn: 100% sewing the buttons by hand.  I love it. I do it while watching a series or YouTube.
  • Fusible vs. sew-in interfacing: I prefer the fusible, although I have used both types.
  • Snip as you go or all at once: I snip as I go.  If I have any left, I snip them while I am ironing and at the end, I review the project for if I miss one.
  • Press as you go or all at once: I press as I go and at the end too.  There are always exceptions where I haven’t. 

Sewing habits

  • Late night seamstress vs. daytime seamstress: on weekends I can be sewing all day and night.  During the week I am a late-night seamstress
  • Slow and steady vs. frantic sewing: frantic sewing all the way. When I start a project, I must finish it otherwise it is in danger of becoming an UFO (“Un-Finished Objects”)
  • Tidy as you go vs. one big cleaning session: most of the time both.  I admit that sometimes I leave a mess, especially if the next day I must go to the office.

These are my preferences when it comes to sewing, what are yours?

Remember that if you like sewing and every day you want to learn more about this beautiful art and craft, I invite you to the Sirena Elite Sewing Club. You get one free pattern of your choosing every month and other benefits when you become a member.  Join today and enjoy two weeks free here.

You won’t regret it! In the club you will learn a lot and meet people who, like you, are passionate about sewing.

Until next time!

Article written by

Isabel Hernández

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