How to Use Pinking Shears

Pinking shears are a fantastic tool to add to your sewing kit. They are not something you will need right away, but once you get all the basics stocked and are ready to add on some of the extras, pinking shears should be at the top of the list. (Especially if you are making garments.) You can also get a pinking blade for your rotary cutter!


Quick Tips for Using Pinking Shears

When you don’t want to hem or bind a seam allowance, but you are worried about fraying, pinking shears come to the rescue. Once you have finished sewing your seam, iron open the seams and then use your pinking shears on just the very edge of the seam allowance.

If you are using a less stable fabric that frays very easily, it can help to sew a straight seam just inside the pinking cuts (but still in the seam allowance). This will just help guarantee that there is no fraying.

If you are cutting a lot of pieces for a project that are going to be handled a lot before sewing (think charm packs), you can also use your pinking blade or shears.


Do you have any favorite tips or tricks for using pinking shears? Leave us a comment below or share with us on Facebook!

Related video: How to Hold Scissors to Reduce Hand Fatigue

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19 Responses to “How to Use Pinking Shears”

  1. Caroline

    could you explain how to line up the blade so that there is a continuous hills and valley cut? thank you

  2. Lorelei Hall


  3. Pat H.

    No one ever says where to focus the blades to be on the seam line. Centered? To the side? How do you know?

  4. Tina Hinton

    Always looking for sewing hints. Pinking Sheers was a good hint!

  5. Barbara Wegley

    My hands are not strong (rheumatoid arthritis) but I sew often, need a pinking shears. I have purchased one online but it is to hard to open and shut. Any recommendations?

  6. Bianca

    I seriously love your blog.. Very nice colors & theme. Did you build this site yourself? Please reply back as I'm trying to create my own blog and would like to learn where you got this from or exactly what the theme is named. Thanks!

  7. Kathryn Osmond

    I don’t seem to be able to get a line of “v’s” that are even. My pinking shears are old (59 yes) but still in good shape, plus they are for left-handed people. I just can’t get that nice v-cut so I don’t really use them. Any hints are welcome!

  8. Marian Hillyer

    Is there an easy way to sharpen pinking shears?

  9. Donna

    <strong>Ticket 38644 I love pinking shears I just bought a new pair. BUT I find they are hard on my hands. Is it ok to use WD-40 to loosen them up?

  10. Gavin

    You can sharpen them with a fine file just like normal knives or scissors but you'd have to patiently go back and forth over every blade segment. If you aren't used to sharpening normal knives, I wouldn't start with pinking shears...