6 Tips for Sewing with Cotton Denim

Posted by Reanell Hill on

If you love creating handmade apparel pieces, then there’s probably a good chance that you’ve looked at making your own jeans or other wearables from denim. The thing that scares most people off is that the fabric itself can be a little difficult for newbies. It’s generally super thick, which makes many people immediately dismiss the idea.

The truth? Sewing jeans, skirts, and other items out of denim is actually a lot easier than you might think. While it does take a bit of practice, you won’t be able to stop once you get the hang of it. Here are six of our top tips for using cotton denim fabric in your sewing projects.

1. Use Sharp Tools for Cutting

When it comes to working with denim, you want to make sure that you’re using the sharpest tools possible. So, get out those sewing scissors that you hide from your family to keep them from being used on paper, and buy a new rotary cutter. Trust us, you’ll understand why.

2. Purchase Specific Thread for Denim

Cotton denim is a lot thicker than many other materials. For that reason, it is important to purchase the right thread. Choose a special type that’s specifically designed for jeans instead of your normal organic cotton.

3. Choose the Right Needle

Again, denim is much heftier than most cotton fabrics. In order to prevent skipped stitches or broken needles, you’ll need to choose needles that are specifically rated for this type of material. Generally, any size 90/14 or 100/16 sewing machine needles designed for your particular model should work.

4. Keep an Iron and Canned Starch Nearby

 It isn’t hard to work with cotton denim, but unlike other natural fabrics it can be difficult to create seams. Thus, you want to keep your iron and canned starch nearby. The flatter you can get the material before starting to sew, the easier the process will be.

5. Start Smaller in the Beginning

If you’re just starting out sewing with denim, don’t feel like you immediately have to jump into making jeans or other large projects. Small handbags, totes, and even scarves come out wonderful when you use this type of fabric. Need a little practice? Consider hemming up a pair of old denim pants to get the feel of it.

6. Don’t Give Up

We know that learning to sew with cotton denim isn’t easy. That’s why most people head to the local department store to buy jeans, rather than attempt the project themselves. Instead of getting discouraged, keep practicing on scraps or by using a seam ripper. Like most good things in life, a little practice goes a long way.

Your Source for Eco-Friendly Cotton Denim Fabrics

Nature’s Fabrics is proud to be your favorite online fabric store. We offer a wide range of eco-friendly fabrics including stretch cotton denim in both solids and prints. Please take a look at our inventory now to find the right choice for your next sewing project.