Sewing is more than just a hobby or a job. The sewing process can be dangerous as hell, and we’ve heard many horror stories about the dangers involved. There are three main areas you should focus on –sewing room safety, personal safety and equipment storage safety. Let’s cover all three, so that you know exactly what you should do to create a safety environment for sewing.
Sewing room safety
Declutter! All floors and open areas should be clean and free or unnecessary items. Make sure that nothing is handing from walls or shelves. Make sure that all items are secured so that they can’t roll over or fall from above.
Clean up as you go, and remove any unnecessary pieces away from the working space. As much as it is tempting to drink or eat while sewing, please refrain from that. Drinks can be spilt over machines or their cords. Plus, you can drop the food onto the material and stain it for good. It is always refreshing to take a break from work to have a quick snack or a cup of coffee.
Equipment storage safety
All sharp tools should be kept in a lockable compartment. That includes scissors, needles, pins, rotary cutters. If those need to be disposed of, hand them over to the local sewing supplies shop. Those items need to be safely put away in a glass jar with properly locking lid, that is difficult to open by small children. For broken needles and safety pins you can use an old medicine bottle as they have difficult to open caps – ones that need to be either squeezed hard or pushed down and then turned to open.
Keep all dangerous substances such as textile dies and bleaches in their containers, locked away in a designated compartment.
Sewing injuries happen all the time. Working with sharp tools and equipment is no joke and the basic sewing rules must be kept. Physical pain after many hours sewing is also possible, and include but are not limited to fatigue, headache, back pain, eyesight problems.
Keeping those simple safety rules can help you mostly avoid these.
- Keep your fingers away from the needle when you are sewing. Go slowly and keep your face as further away from the needle as possible, if you are sewing buttons, multiple layers of fabric or thick materials as the needle can break and the small pieces can injure your eyes.
- Be alert at all times, and especially when cutting materials. Keep your fingers clear from the points of the scissors. Never leave the scissors or cutters under the fabric, as they can easily be pulled to the ground and injure your feet. Let’s say you want to sew curtains. You will have big panels of fabric and a sewing machine for curtains. Be careful not to run into the power cord or to get entangled into the huge pieces of fabric.
- Wear shoes! Not slippers and definitely don’t go barefoot.
- Never put pins in your mouth. Use a pinning cushion or a jar with a magnet
- Take regular breaks, and don’t work if you are feeling sleepy or simply can’t focus on the work on hand. Change the activity, take a break or leave the project for the next day, if possible. Make it a point to never work absentmindedly on your sewing machine
- Don’t wear loose clothes, earrings, bracelets. Tie your hair. Remove anything that can be caught into the machine
- Take care of your environment. Good lighting is a must, and the lighting of the sewing machine is definitely not enough.
- Use proper work table with a proper height. Bending for long hours at a time can really take its toll from your back
Following those simple rules will ensure that hazards and incidents are reduced to the minimum. I would love to know what is your top rule you keep no matter what. Let me know in the comments below!