I’ve been reading comments on message boards about this tool and there seems to be some mixed results. Some people love it, some people don’t. I thought I would lend my voice here and give you my honest opinion.
I was really excited when the Sew Easy tool was revealed at CHA this summer. W R Memory Keepers has come out with some great tools in recent years (like this one and this one). I purchased my Sew Easy from Scrapbook.com as soon as they got it in stock. I’ve been playing with mine for a few days. I will share some projects soon, to show my progress, but my verdict is: Two Thumbs Up.
I love to hand stitch on my layouts. I love the machine stitch look too, but I’ve never been one to use my sewing machine on paper. I tried once and couldn’t sew a straight line to save my life. I ruined three photos and I never tried it again. Hand stitching may take a little longer, but there is no heavy machine to lug out and I feel like I have a lot more control. Now, the Sew Easy will help me get the evenly spaced holes so that I can do a variety of stitches.
The tool is very easy to handle. It’s easy to roll, but I think it will take some practice to get straight lines all of the time. I found that straight lines were easier to acheive when I was rolling along a straight edge (like two seams of card stock coming together). If you just roll on cardstock, it’s not as easy to see where you are going and that is when I went off track.
There has been talk of the tool not piercing through thick cardstock. I was able to get the tool to pierce the Bazzill. It all depends on how much pressure you are putting on the roller as you roll. If you don’t use much pressure, the tool will just indent the paper. That being said, the harder you press on the tool, the more likely it will be that the tool will bend the paper as you roll. There is definitely a sweet spot between pressing too hard and not pressing enough. In my opinion, this is a practice issue. The more you use the tool, the better you will get at rolling with just the right pressure.
I personally don’t think either issue is enough of a reason to pass on the tool. If the rolling tool does not pierce every single hole all the way through, just follow up with a thumb tack, piercing tool or even your needle. What’s important is that the tool gives you evenly spaced holes to do your stitching. I had a very hard time achieving that with a ruler. If I have to go back over and re-pierce a few holes, I don’t mind.
The piercing attachment heads are very easy to change out. You just twist and they come right out. I love that they have several different stitch patterns. I purchased several and I hope they come out with more and expand the line in the future.
Tips and Tricks:
You do need to have a mouse pad or something similar under your paper when running the Sew Easy tool. I didn’t purchase the piercing mat at first and that was a mistake. I wanted to see if I could do without it and I’ve discovered that it really is necessary. I got great results with a generic mouse pad, but I don’t have a mouse pad that is at least 12 inches long. I did try to use an old Sizzix Coluzzle cutting mat and it did not work. I also tried cutting on foamcore and it also didn’t work. You really need to have some pliable material. The more pliable, the more pressure you can put on the tool to get it to pierce the paper.
When using the embroidery floss, I found that I liked the look of at least three strands of thread. When I was using two strands, I felt like I could see the holes more, but with three, the stitches just looked crisper. I’m sure everyone will have a different opinion on what they prefer but that was my experience.
My favorite feature is that there is a compartment at the bottom of the tool that you can open and store the needle. That was a genius idea!
I’m really glad to have something that will help me add stitches to my pages. I already loved the look and took the time to do it. But it sure will be nice to have something that will make the process that much easier.