Sewing for scouts! How to sew badges, uniform tips, retired badges, keepsakes, and more. All projects and posts may contain affiliate links. Read our policies here.
I don't work alone! Here's my team:
1. A sewing machine
If this list consisted of only one item, this would be it. Currently I'm working on a Katherine by BabyLock. She was a pretty significant upgrade from my previous machine, which was a Brother CS-770. That machine did a lot of work for a long time, but I was ready to move on after about seven years. What I love about Katherine: auto-threader, auto-cutter, brightly lit work area, big flat work surface, and nearly two hundred stitch patters! I also really enjoy the programmable feature. It's a bit of coding thrown in for some authentic STEAM activity!
A machine like Katherine is definitely an investment. Start smaller - read more:
2. Lab Tape
This stuff is amazing. It's perfect for measuring straight lines across uniforms, getting patches to line up right, and holding patches in place while I sew. I love that it's reusable - sometimes I'll keep using the same piece for hours! It's similar to painters tape, but more sturdy.
One of the best uses - making straight lines so your patches don't come out all wonky!
Lab tape tears like masking tape, it's just the right amount of adhesiveness for fabric and patches, it's waterproof like electrical tape, can be written on and sewn through, and leaves ZERO sticky residue. It comes in different sizes, colors, and quantities. And, it's available on Amazon:
3. Ginger shears
I came across these by accident a few years ago when they were included in the cost of registration for a sewing course I took. These are by far the best sewing scissors ever made. They are available on Amazon:
4. An iron
Any iron will do, as long as it has a hot dry setting. That's all that's needed for sealing in sewn badges. It's also great for the finishing touches on a project. Pressing seams, and finishing pressing are key in making my stuff look more professionally made.
5. Transparent Thread
I prefer Coats brand, for no other reason than that it is easy to get. This is essential for fast and easy badge sewing, as I wrote about here. But, it's not always easy for beginners to work with. It's invisible, which makes it hard to thread properly and it's slick, which means it gets slippery and tangly pretty easily. Also on Amazon: