Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Product Review: Sewline Mechanical Fabric Pencil Lives Up to Its Reputation

I kept hearing that the Sewline Mechanical Fabric Pencil is the best tool ever for making beautifully readable, completely removable marks on dark colored fabrics, so I decided to pick one up and see for myself.  At around $16 per pencil, it's a bit of a pricey impulse purchase, but I hoped I would find it to be the perfect tool. The Sewline pencil comes in a few different colors, and I decided to go with basic white lead. 
The Sewline pencil has a nice rubbery grip and operates just like any mechanical pencil.
Essentially, what I found is that this product lives up to its hype!  
Lead is advanced by clicking on eraser.
The "lead is nice and fine, advances easily, and writes very cleanly as long as your fabric is fairly smooth.  The white stands out brightly on dark fabrics, though it can be a bit difficult to see on fabrics with prints that include light values.
It is extremely easily to create straight lines, or to draw any shape you like.
One of the big questions with any fabric marking implement is, how easy is it to remove the marks once you no longer need them. The Sewline pencil does include a built in eraser, but I think I will probably not use it a whole lot because, while it does seem to work, it's extremely inefficient to use if you want to erase marks from any decent area of fabric. 
Twist metal end to advance eraser. 
If the fabric is extremely smooth, I've found the pencil marks can be removed simply by rubbing with a paper towel or another piece of dry fabric, but for fabric with any texture to it, a damp cloth seems to be effective. 
Lines after being erased with damp cloth
The lines appear very slightly after being scoured with a damp cloth, but I find that after a few days of additional handling, they disappear pretty completely.
PROS: The Sewline does seem to be a solid, easy to use marking tool!  I love the clean, smooth, fine marks it makes which are both super visible and quite easy to remove.
CONS: The only issue I can see with this product is that the lead gets used up extremely quickly, so refills may need to be purchased often.


  1. Ooh, fancy! I am super excited to read this because this is something I might actually use myself. I never thought about it because I only use them for sewing but I guess you use a pencil like this to help you confine part of your design to a particular area, too?

    1. That's actually a good reminder to see how this pencil works when incorporated with painting techniques - does the paint make the lines harder to erase? This question will be answered!


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