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Tips and Technique for Your Sewing Projects

Tips

Fleece is a non ravel fabric and does not shrink. Anti-Pil fleece means fleece that has been processed to reduce pilling (or little white fuzz balls) on the surface. To determine the right side of the fleece by pulling the edge opposite to the straight edge, it will curl to the wrong side.  Sewing tip: use a size 14 sewing machine needle and longer stitch length.

Sewing Tips

  • What size sewing machine needle is in your sewing machine? Can’t read the size? Easy determination is use a tomato pin cushion and write the sizes on the top then put all your needles in the sections. It will keep the life usage of your needles.
  • Tissue patterns always tear and sometimes can’t be used again. Purchase a roll of freezer paper from the grocery store and iron the pattern on it. It will stay adhere for awhile.

“What to Look for in purchasing a Sewing Machine"

Questions to ask yourself: -“The last time I sewed was in high school  back then or my mother or grandmother taught me and now I want my own sewing machine”

  • “I inherited a sewing machine from someone and now I want a new one with the extras.
  • “I would like to learn to sew but I do not have a sewing machine”
  • “I have a sewing machine but want the bells and whistles”
  • “I want a machine to sew heavy duty fabrics, or do clothing repairs, or sew wearables or sew home decorating projects”

Which one of these questions fall into your wanting a sewing machine?

Before you head out into the shopping market here is a recommended basic checklist of must have also a second list that can be helpful and fit into your budget.

What to look for:
There are endless choices of sewing machine brands and can be purchased at many different stores. Choose wisely as you are going to have a long relationship with your machine.

Must Haves:

  • Drop in Bobbin = A bobbin is a little plastic or metal wheel that fits underneath the needle plate of a sewing machine. Thread runs off the bobbin, gets picked up by the needle’s thread and forms the bottom part of the stitches or seam. The bobbin is an essential part of a sewing machine. It enables the machine to form a seam (two fabric stitched together) from two threads, which makes a stronger, smoother neater seam.
  • Stitch Length Control = This determines the length of the stitch. Stitch length for normal sewing is 2.5 and 4, 4 being the longer stitches. It contributes to the decorative stitches, zigzag or appliqué, the closer the length the tighter the design.
  • Stitch Width Control = Contributes to the placement of the needle when stitching straight or decorative designs.  The width is customized according to the effect of the design.
  • 1-step button hole = This feature allows you to complete a buttonhole in one easy step or following the steps by turning the dial  or a drop down lever to set the machine to stitch a buttonhole.  To assist in the stitching the buttonhole a foot attachment is included with your machine, by attaching to the machine will automatically calculate the size hole for you.
  • Free Arm = A removable or drop down plate on the bed of the machine allows you to sew in the around such as pant leg, arm holes or cuffs.
  • Decorative stitches = such as the stretch stitch (used on stretch fabrics), blind hem stitch (used in appliqués)

Extra Luxury Features or Machine

  • Self Needle threader = built into the machine used to push the thread through the eye of the needle.
  • Speed Control = A switch coded used to adjust the speed while sewing.
  • Built in walking feet = A lever that drops down by the needle. Idea if you are planning to learn quilting or using mixed fabrics that will tend to be bulky.
  • Combined sewing/embroidery machine = Usually computerized that can be hooked up to your desk top computer to create embroidery designs.
  • Computerized = Instead of dials and knobs the screen panel provides you with settings.

Heading out to Shop

  • Look for the list of accessories that comes with the machine. Idea to  have extra accessories foot attachments like the zipper foot.
  • Recommended if you are serious about developing your skills and want all the bells and whistles.  Find a dealership store to test out the machines. Take scrap of fabrics that you plan on using the sewing machine for and YOU sit down in front of the machine and ask the sales person to set the machine up.

Shopping Online:

  • Warrantee.
  • For used machine: make sure the foot pedal works, last service date, the bobbin case is there, instructional manual (although you can order one through the website accordingly to the model and make of the machine).

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