How did I not know that???

I managed to get my hands on some sewing books recently, one of which is

Now I actually haven’t gotten very far into it because I am still reeling from this tip in the Sewing Equipment section
How did I not know that my tape measure was standard seam allowance width? (And yes, I did measure it to check). I know I’m just getting back into this sewing lark but surely I should have  remembered this (if I ever knew it).
Am I the only one that didn’t know this? Is this the best kept secret in the sewiverse or am I just woefully ignorant? What else don’t I know? (that apparently everyone else does) 
Did you realise/learn/discover something and think “How did I not know that?” Please save me from further embarrassment needless difficulties by sharing your sewiverse secrets in the comments below.
Thanks very much.

10 Responses

  1. Louise says:

    Yes I remember this pointer, I cant remember how I came to know it maybe from a sewing class in the 90s. I seem to be able to recognise 5/8″ by eye now, which is just a bit less than the width of my thumb nail that holds the fabric while I tack, it works for me anyway.

  2. becki-c says:

    Huh, I didn't know either. I think mine is non-standard and skinnier so I may have to go shopping! This would be really helpful, all the cool pattterns come without seam allowances.

  3. Gaye says:

    Now I'll look at my thumb in a whole new light:) Seriously, I will actually take the time to look closely as obviously that is a convenient measure.

  4. Gaye says:

    Just had a quick peek at your blog and am so gratified that an amazing sewist like yourself didn't know either – makes me feel better:)

    Seriously though, you are right it is really helpful. Happy tape measure shopping.

  5. Judith says:

    Don't you just love helpful tips like this! Another little piece in the sewing puzzle solved. I am now off to actually measure my tape measures … J

  6. Gaye says:

    I agree – if only there weren't quite so many pieces of the puzzle still to be solved! But I guess that's all part of the fun.

  7. Accordion3 says:

    Light bulb moment! I did not know the tape measure trick.

    I also use my thumb nail as a rough guide. And the top joint as a hem allowance guide.

    I need a new tape measure, definitely getting a proper standard one now!

  8. Hmm, like Judith, I will go and measure my tape measure as well. I didn't know this bit of sewing information. Could come in useful….I don't use my joints as a guide – I always measure 🙂

  9. Gaye says:

    So now I'm off to measure my top joint as well

  10. Gaye says:

    No, I've not used my thumb or joints either but I might start looking at them differently now.

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