Your A-Z of Sewing

Your A-Z of Sewing

Welcome to the wonderful world of sewing! Whether you're just starting out or a seasoned crafter, we're here to help make your lessons in stitches even more fun and exciting.

For our newest feature, we've compiled an A-Z dictionary of all things sewing so that you can brush up on terms, techniques, and styles anytime - without leaving home!

Each month we will release a new letter. You'll find endless facts about fabrics and fibres from around the world as well as top tips on how to sew patterns with ease. Ready to delve into this adventure? Let's get started!




A shiny fabric that is not very strong, dries quickly and rarely shrinks but it can be melted with nail polish remover. Triacetate is a newer acetate that doesn't seem to melt in the same way. Acetate may be combined with other fabrics or used alone to make a silk-look fabric. It is often used for linings and has a wonderful drape to it.


A fabric made from petroleum products. Its’ colourfast, washable and can be tumble dried. It’s wrinkle resistant, with a wool-like texture, though does not take heat well so be really careful when pressing. It has good wicking properties so ideal for outerwear.


A skirt term which describes a garment smaller at the waist than the hem, flaring out in the shape of an A.

All-in-one facing

An All-in-One facing uses the same techniques and serves the same purpose as a regular facing but has one piece for the entire front, including the neckline and the armhole, and a separate piece for the entire back, and is often used in sleeveless garments. It is also usually tacked down to the bodice or attached to a lining. It can be sewn either entirely by machine, or can be finished with hand-sewing.

Amber Makes

Our favourite sewing kit company and a great place to learn new skills, techniques and make lovely projects.

Anchoring Stitch

A small stitch worked at the beginning or end of a seam to secure it. This is often worked as a reverse stitch or a lock stitch on the machine or by working several stitches on top of each other by hand


This is a method where a small piece of fabric is stitched on top of another, usually for decoration. This can be done by hand often using blanket stitch or by machine using a zig zag stitch.


This is a dressmaking term for an armhole, where the sleeve is attached. It’s also the tailoring term for the pattern shape used when creating the armhole.


A pointed tipped tool which has a thin, tapered metal shaft. It can be used for pushing out corners and curves when a project is turned right sides out. It can also be used for punching holes into fabrics when adding metal hardware or holes into leather.

Now that you’ve completed the first edition of Amber Makes A-Z dictionary of sewing terms, you should feel confident tackling any sewing project that comes your way. What would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments below!

Stay tuned for 'B' next month! From basting to bias binding and everything in between, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge to successfully sew anything you desire.