1-Sewing Machine Basics- Seen One, Seen Them All | Marcy Newman | Skillshare

1-Sewing Machine Basics- Seen One, Seen Them All

Marcy Newman, SewwwMuchMore!

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7 Lessons (43m) View My Notes
    • 1. Welcome!

    • 2. What's Where?

    • 3. My Discovery

    • 4. Filling Bobbins

    • 5. Platform

    • 6. Finally, Tips and Tricks

    • 7. Let's Save 100$

12 students are watching this class

About This Class

My classes are designed with the absolute beginner in mind, which is why they are a series in order.

1. Sewing Machine Basics - Seen one, you've Seen them all. An experience I had showed me that Sewing Machines have been designed the same way for years. My hope is to diminish anxiety about the Sewing Machine by revealing my Discovery. I compare two machines which I hope will show you how you can use this information in the future. At the end you will find added information about Needles, Tools and How to become A Relaxed and Happy Sewer, followed by the most common issue newbies have with the Sewing machine. This will save you spending $100 for unnecessary Maintenance fees. I welcome any feedback and am always willing to answer questions. 

2.  What Sewing Patterns DON'T Tell You--Will lead the Beginner from the Purchase of a Pattern to the Laying out of pieces and testing the pattern (called Making a Muslin) before cutting out fabric, filling in all the blanks I've discovered after years of Sewing and studying Fashion Design. . (This video is temporarily being fine tuned and will be available shortly)

3-All Sewing Patterns Start like This: (Pattern Drafting Basics Theory)- Background information of the Slash and Spread method showing where pieces may be adapted or changed as learning increases. 

4-Sewing Without Reading a Pattern - Because all my students asked me to teach them How to read a pattern, I teach using the process I learned in Fashion Design School. With this understanding of the Step by step process, the New Sewer will learn what must be done first, and what can be done later. 

The Easiest Sleeve Insertion (Couture) is for the experienced Sewer and is not in the series of Beginner Videos. 


1. Welcome! : The depth. Hi there. My name is Marci. I've been sewing since I was ten years old. And I've always really enjoyed sharing with other people what I've learned through all these years that are sown. My videos are done in order with the expectation that you are a brand new solar. And of course, the most important thing is understanding your sewing machine. Many years ago I worked with someone who asked me if I could go over and see if I could figure out why her sewing machine wasn't working. I gladly agreed. And when I got there, I was quite surprised that for some reason I actually knew how to fix her sewing machine. It was on that visit that I realized that sewing machines or almost all the same. Nowadays of course, we have computers that can run some of the sewing machines. But generally speaking, the sewing machines are all basically the same. It's often a simple problem, like the threading of the bob in or the upper thread, that is causing an issue. So I'm going to show you how you can save a $100 on maintenance fees and solve the problem yourself by comparing an older machine I have and a newer machine I have and showing you how there are slightly different and yet basically the same. So let's get started. 2. What's Where?: Welcome back. I'm excited that we're about to learn all about sewing machines. If this is your first time learning about sewing, then I hope I'm going to take away any of the questions that you might have. Hi there. This is where I begin to explain the top off machines, front of the machines, the sides of the machines and the platform of the on these two machines. The most obvious style found on the front is the stitch length and stitch with dials. You will also want to find a needle position option on the reverse stitch, lever or button. Most often, the tension dial is found on the front, and I will explain the importance of its location. Very soon you can see the beauty of this style, where the straight stitch length is quite obvious. The zigzag with gets bigger and the buttonhole option is here. We have a Diallo here for the needle position. Let's talk about what's on the side of the sewing machine. You will see here we have the power source and on this one we have the light switch, the on off button and on both of them we have the hand wheel, which lifts the needle in the front of the sewing machine. On this one, it's here and on the other one, it's here, which also we loosen or disconnect during the bob and filling process so that the needle lifter doesn't go up and down while the bomb and is feeling because it feels so quickly on these two machines, the bob and filling mechanisms are on the top of the sewing machine. It could be that on more modern machines they may not be there. What you have to do is locate the place where the bombings are being filled. I know sometimes the top part flips up, and that sometimes the bobbin feeling part of the sewing machine is kind of inside that and hidden on the old singers. It's on the front of the sewing machine, but I'm going to talk about it as though it's on the top on these two machines because they're the same if you're using a sewing machine that is built into the sewing machine. So in other words, the top off the sore machine flips up. But then you might not find this little spring that I'm going to talk about. But on the on these two sort machines, as is on many sawing machines, there is a little spring that we're going to locate. The importance of finding this in the beginning is that it eliminates any part off the threading portion of the sewing machine. So it's separate from the threading portion of the swing. She it'll include the thread holder, the little spring and the Robin stopper. Right now we're trying to locate the way that we're going to threat the machine. So we've ruled out the bob and threatening portion of the machine. Next important part that we need to locate on the sewing machine is the tension Dia Li little flat metal plates that sit side by side. And so the tension dial is usually also right on the front of the soy mission. So as we can see here, this is a very common looking tension dial. And on the Pfaff machine, I'm going to show you that it isn't that easy. So I'm going to show you on a me Pfaff that from the top you can see just protrudes out the side. And if you've never seen this machine, this is what you'd be looking 3. My Discovery: Now that we found the tension dial using my diagrams seen here, I discovered that the threat always goes down and up and down again. They never go sideways. Goes from the spool holder than it goes right through the tension dial or in between the two discs some and then you can You're gonna naturally see that the hook goes through the little spring here spring. If you feed it through there, you're going to see that naturally goes through that spring, and then you're gonna also naturally see that there's a little hook under it, and then you're going to apply the up and down motion again. So it's not gonna go from this little hook to this little hook and then down. It's just not gonna work that way. So it goes up and down, then it also has kind of metal hook right above the needle. Okay, so I'm going to show you the other one. So now I'm going to show you specifically with this machine, how the threating mechanism works. Now, this machine, you might not realize that it would go in the scene between the bottom and the top of the sewing machine but the little disk that's going to tell you how to thread it. So it goes from the back of the machine through the little lever, and then it's guided over to the front. There's little like a ski jump piece of metal that's inside the machine at the top. That takes it to a place where it's gonna sit naturally. You can see it's there and it's gonna fall. It's no longer at the side, and now here comes the trick, where it goes down so it's gonna go down through little hook and then it's again, not gonna go down. It has to go up before it goes back down, so it's gonna go down, up in through there. Then it's going to go through The needle lifter, which is controlled by the hand wheel, was up and down. That's an important thing to know, as you start to so that it has to be at the very highest position. When you pull the thread out when you're finishing and then it goes through down so you see how we're creating that zigzag thing was through here, and then it always goes through a little hook right above the needle is always a little hook there that has an opening not easy to see, and you hold the the threat tight. And then you could hear that little click that it popped in through the metal thing, and then it goes in through the needle. 4. Filling Bobbins: Welcome back. We're going to feel a bobbin now. Bobbins never seemed to last long enough. If you're really into your sewing, one thing you can notice is that on every sewing machine you have to holders. Why do you think that would be? The reason that you have to holders is that if you're in the middle of your sewing and your bobbin runs out, you can use thesis condemned spool holder to refill a bobbin without having to completely unthreatened your sewing machine. If you're doing a project, it's really a good idea to fill a few of them before. And then you don't have to stop what you're doing just to refill a bobbin. So again, we have two different sewing machines. Bobbin case and the bottom sit in here and on the Jane. This little door flips down and then Bobbin case comes out like this, so I will teach you all about filling the bob, and it's done on the top of the soy machine. You're going to put it from the spool pin under the little lift off the metal bob and guide and over to where the bobbin sits. You can locate the place where the Bob and sits, because everybody in you can just see this is a little hole that's really important. It's on both sides of this bobbin, and it's because that little's rectangular spot matches up with on this little post. Here you can just see there's a little a little groove and the bobbin slips into that groove, and there's always a locking mechanism, so that pushes it closed and then I'll be able to fill the bomb. The process is the same goes under the lip, and then you always feed the thread from the inside of the bobbin to the outside of the bombing on top. Put it on. It's little holder till it sits in the groove and locks in place, and then you hold this threat very tight until it breaks off while you're threatening it. Another function off the hand wheel is that besides lifting the needle up and down, you have to disconnect it when you're filling bobbin so that it doesn't allow the needle to go very quickly up and down with this machine, there's, ah, locks, the ball been in place, and I don't have to adjust this, but on my Pfaff, which is the same as many machines. You have to hold the outer part of the wheel and turn the inner part towards you, and that prevents the hand wheel doesn't go up and down when you finished filling your bobbin. If you put it back into place, you'll see it clicks, and now you'll see that the needle goes up and down, and that is what the function of the hand wheel is. So I just want to also say that sometimes the wheel on the machine that's on the side pulls out to unlock the mechanism. Okay, so now there's a couple things you need to know about the Bob. This is a really nice close up that shows you that the thread goes clockwise over the top into the bobbin case, and with the opening at the top, the bobbin breaded clockwise it's going to fit into the could have fit in there like that. Okay, you're gonna turn it over outside. You're going to see that little V opening, right? Hair in the stretch. Gonna slide in there and then under that little metal plate can hold it like this and then pull it into that little opening right there, kind of. And that's the place where it ISS. You can leave yourself pull a little bit of threat out so that when you put it in the bottom, good amount to hold onto. So this little wheel that's here, you can see two little screws. They're going to tell you about those. So the screw on the left is not to be touched. It just holds that silver piece in place. Now the real with the little edges on it, you can see it's a wheel that is attention dialled for the bob so that the thread pulls through nice and easily if you feel it's too tight. Uh, you could maybe adjusted a little bit Counter clock wants, but you want to be ableto feel get used to knowing how to pull the thread out and have it be comfortable not sticking. That little wheel really should never be adjusted. So that's what I was told. I mean, I was kind of taught that you could you could sort of change it a little bit one way or the other. But years later, someone told me that it should never be touched another little tip That is really good to know Is that this little handle this little handle on the front of the bobbin? Well, actually, lock the bomb and in place while you're putting it into the sewing machine. If you hold it tightly with your finger and thumb. So so you're gonna put your bob and in and feed it through, and under the little metal peace and into the little space, the whole that's gonna be the same. Even if you're working on a sewing machine where you're putting the bobbing in on the top in hidden space, there will still be a little plate that had has to slide under. And then if you turn this over and you'll spot one is in there so that will be locked in. So now you go like this, your bobbin is actually locked in, and it will not fall out. So the little handle is also bit of ah, locking mechanism for the for the bobbin. Another question that people may have is what's the difference between a plastic bobbin and a metal bob. I think that the answer is really a question off the manufacturer. Some companies will sell plastic and metal bobbins and other companies will just have the plastic. And sometimes you can go to general store or a dollar store, and you can see bobbins four sewing machines. But most of the time they will not fit in your specific sewing machine. It may say on the back that these bobbins are good for specifically singer sewing machines or burning a sewing machines. But when you think about it, the manufacturer would wants you to go back to the store to buy things because they pull you in and get you to spend your money. So it makes sense. When they decided to make their bombing specific to their company, I think that's a pretty good shot of the bobbin space. I have a hold of the ball and you see it's held with my thumb and my finger so that it opened and evolve and won't follow, and I'm gonna put it with the top opening at the top and slide it in inside. So it's natural that it doesn't end up exactly sideways. It's It's almost between the three and the four o'clock spot on oclock rights. Not it's not gonna be exactly even so, that's good to know. And the next thing that you're going to do is you're gonna hold the top thread with your finger and your other hand on the hand wheel, and you're gonna turn one rotation so that it stays there, right? And then you turn the needle, one rotation towards you. So the needles up the needle lifters at the top when you begin, and at the top when you end and then you'll see that the thread has been lifted up from the bobbin. So here we have my black threat, which is the bobbin thread, right? They're gonna have a slot in my dresser foot, see a little opening there. There you go. And when the top thread pulls the bobbin thread up through the little hole in the plate, then you condone it out a little bit and pull it to the back and then pull the top thread to the back and then you're ready to. So how exciting is that? I love sewing, so So I think it's always really exciting 5. Platform : I like to now talk about what's on what I call the platform off the sewing machine. So you're going to remove the needle, which is removed by turning this little knob, and then the needle will slide down. The needle you can see has a flat part on the back, so it's always rounded at the front, flat on the back. And whichever way that flat part fits in will be how the manufacturer me made it for your sewing machine. For example, on this one, the needle is threatened from the front to the back and on the Jane. The needle is threated from the left to the right, so it just uses the same kind of needle. But it will only go in one way. You're going to remove the presser feet from the machine. You can also remove the shank. Shank is the holder off the presser feet again. I'm not very familiar with the terms. I must apologize that they're not exactly what they should be, but this other little knob on the other side. This is the one for the needle. This is the one for the I think it's called the Shank and it holds all the presser feet, so this one will undo as well. So you can remove all of these little pieces that will get in the way because you're going to use the little screwdriver and undo these little screws. And you're gonna lift this plate up to expose dust and dirt and possibly threat. Uh, these are the feed dogs. I believe they're called with my machine. I had, ah, little screwdriver that came. It's a short screwdriver that's got a flat head on, and it's to undo the screw this silver plate here. Then just lift the plate off and you can get your handy little brush that they give you with the machine. Get rid of all the dust that's in there. Sometimes I go in there to look for a little piece of threat, and then I start cleaning it up because, of course, it's been gathering some dust, and I haven't had the time to go in or reason to go in. So I can't actually show you how it looks when there's a piece of threat in there. But what I do sometimes, if it's got threat in there, possibly your upper tension was too loose, and you have lots of different threat in there. So what you do is just hang on to the piece of thread that you confined, even if it's small. And if it's just up here, it's gonna be around where the plates are and just hang on to it and take the hand wheel on the other side of the sewing machine and turn it back and forth, pulling the thread at the same time, and it eventually will come out. 6. Finally, Tips and Tricks: way, come to the end of this lesson. I hope that if you're a beginner, that I have instilled a little bit of confidence in you and shown you that generally all sewing machines are basically the same. I hope that, like myself, who was able to help my friend with her sewing machine that you now have the confidence to understand what I've taught and that if your friends feel challenged about their son machine that you will also be able to help them. Because often the only thing that's wrong with sewing machine is that it's not threaded correctly. Or there's thread caught in the bottom part of the sewing machine, which you can get out. Or it's possible that your tension is too loose and creating large loops on the bottom of your fabric, which can be very alarming but is actually not really a very big deal. So if you continue to so that way, though you can, the threats can get jammed out. So so basically you've seen one. You've seen them all. Theme. Welcome back. The first tip I would like to teach you about is how to become relaxed with your sewing machine I remember when I first started to drive and the driving instructor noticed that my hands were very tight on the wheel and he reminded me that that happened in the beginning and that, you know, if I adjusted my peripheral vision that in time I would stop holding on so tight. So when I teach people sewing, I've also discovered that sometimes they pull the fabric and they're very intense with their hands right up close to the feet and the needle. And what I teach them is to let go Take a large piece of fabric if you have a scrap. If you don't have a scrap, you can use maybe just a old sheet that you cut up or something and just quit your needle in the fabric. Put your presser foot down, and then just hold the very bottom of the fabric and mile yourself to Seoul. Let it go. No, your eyes yourself with me. See if you can turn it way over here. Draw circles acid. Just do some free soloing to familiarize yourself, even let your hands go so that you can see that machine does the work. If you want to change direction. You keep your needle in, lift up your presser foot. Turn it where you want to go. Put the pressure foot down. And so again, when you're gonna back stitch, you're gonna back stitch just with three stitches. Pressing your crack stitch button three or fours. All you need letting it go. Lifting up your needle to the heights position with the hand wheel and looking up the presser foot and pulling the fabric out behind the sewing machine, Cutting it off. There's often a little place on the sewing machine where it's a little razor that cuts the thread for you. Hello, Welcome back. I also thought it would be a really good idea to talk about needles because I sold for many years before I realized that the needles are specific to certain fabrics that you're sewing . I mean, I think I really understood that when I was sewing the blue Jean, um, that I needed a blue Jean needle. It was heavier and stronger to go through all of the layers, but it was when I was sewing a metallic fiber gold, you know, with gold threads in it and the threads kept pulling that I was really I didn't understand why that was happening. So I took my needle to to the Pfaff Sewing Machine store, where I bought the sewing machine and they said, Oh, you need a metallic needle And I just was kind of floored because I had sewn for many years , but I never knew how specific needles would be to the fabric that you are sowing. So I wanted to just say that when I went to the store recently, it gave me a little booklet that explains the new color coding on the top of the needles. So these tiny little needles used to have numbers on them, and you need a magnifying glass to figure out what was the size of the needle that you're using. So you can see I have pieces of paper here where now I still have some older needles that are not color coded specifically, So I write it down a little note for myself. You know what the size of it is and what I used it for and how many times I used it. You can get a little ball in the end, it gets dull and you'll hear as it punctures the fabric. That's something that's really important to know that it's you probably need a new needle. Also, it's really important to not freak out when you break a needle because it happens all the time and you just need to have a good supply off needles that on hand. So if you go to, um, you know, a sewing machine store, they will help you with some needles that you might use for most of your projects. So but now they're color coded. They got smart because I knew nobody could read the little numbers so they have a book now that they might give you. They might not, But you can actually find it, even if you google it all about Needles tells you what they're what they're good for, what they're used for and that kind of thing. So just remember that needles can be specific for the fabric that you're using. For example, you're not going to use a blue jean needle if you're sewing on silk. And if you're using polyester, it's different than if you're using cotton. So just learn a little bit about needles. And don't wait 20 years through your selling to realize what I did. You can also buy a stretch needle, so we have a lot of like, er in our fabric nowadays, and so you might want to have a good supply of stretch needles on hand. So again, happy sewing. Now, I'd like to talk a little bit about some of the equipment. If you do any other hobby, you'll know that there's a tool for everything and that using the proper tool is not only beneficial, but also it's probably best practice. So it's really difficult if you begin to so you don't know if you're going to be a lifetime . So where or if you're going to just have a hobby and do it, you know, in between your full time jobs, that's difficult, right? If you have Children, you might not really be able to have time to to. So So I know you don't want to spend a lot of money on like a very good Paris ISMs, but I say that the hankel scissor is a very good heavy duty scissors. I think that these scissors that have a long arm for cutting up lies flat against the table so it doesn't lift the fabric up while you're cutting it, and they're very sharp. It's a good investment to purchase good equipment. So without breaking the bank, there are some things that you really should invest in that no one else uses except you for fabric you never use. You never cut paper with the more you never let your Children play with them, so they're just used for sewing and a good pair off small scissors that really have the tiniest point that you could get on the end are my favorite scissors, because sometimes liken, use a seam ripper to remove a stitch. But sometimes I can also with these scissors, because they're so small at the end, I can actually put it right underneath a stitch and lifted out, which is great marking tools. So there are wonderful marking tools. This is a powdered chalk marking to it with a wheel. It's a really fine line, and it just, you know, it's just like dust. So these air, that's a wonderful thing to invest in. And then there's another marking tool that that disappears. So it has that skinny and and a thicker INGE, and you could write on you can write on your shirt. It's white. It's not a problem. If it doesn't come out right away, it will come out when you read it, so those are really good to. And then I found a piece of wood, and instead of buying a new instrument that pushes the corners out off your caller or whatever, when you turn something inside out and you have toe pull, push out the try angle to make it really sharp. I just found a piece of wood and sanded it, and I've had this for years. It's got two different shapes on the end, and I use it again and again so you can save money, too. Be creative, and last, I would just like to leave you with this little bit of encouragement. If you use a seam ripper, you cut a hole in your fabric. How creatively can you fix that? It can be done. There's such a thing as invisible mending. And if you lose two pieces of fabric together, so they've come up with this method because you're not the only person that's ever done that. There are so many people who have sold for years that still make these mistakes. It can happen to anyone. So don't be hard on yourself and think about stop for a little while. That's what I do. So I stopped and I think about it for a day. Just put it away. Don't let your mood make it worse. Go away and contemplate it, visualize it and see if you can't figure out how to do it. Now we have Google. You can find anything but use the resources that are there in the community. Asks experience. People, I think, like myself that everybody wants you to succeed. See you in another video. 7. Let's Save 100$: Now, let's learn how to save some money on unnecessary sewing machine maintenance charges by learning what the most common and alarming problem that will arise for you as a beginner is, and I'll show you how to fix it. Let's get started. This is a regular stitch. This is the way it's supposed to look that shows the blue thread which is upper threat, and the white which is the bobbin thread, we are evenly the same. And now I'm going to show you what it's like when it's going to make you crazy. Here you can see the tension is around just over a three and I'm going to loosen it to all the way to hopefully create the issue for you. So I'm I'm loosening the tension, taking it to a very low number of Lois. I can, I've tried it a few times before this video, and it still didn't create the big loops that I wanted to create on the bottom. So I'm actually going as low as I possibly can and we'll try it again. All right. Let's try it this time. I hear it. Oh, something's wrong. Alright. Let's see. Oh my goodness, you see that? Look at this. Something majors wrong with the sewing machine. But you know what I did, I just loosened the tension. So when that happens, now we're going to tighten attention backup and watch it go back to normal. You see how crazy that looks. It's very stressful, quite stressful when you get to look like that, you have no idea what it is and you think I have to take it in for them to fix it. Before I go to fix it, what I will do is I'm just going to double-check under the bottom to make sure that some of those loops didn't get caught in the bottom and cause any thread to get stuck in there. I'm going to pull the bottom case out. Double-check. It seems okay, I'm just gonna put it back in here, the little click. And then do the one rotation towards you to lift up the needle lifter and pull up the white thread, the bobbin thread. Now, I did get a little bit of blue thread in there. A couple of pieces did break off. So that's another thing that may happen. I even see another one. You can see this. I'm not sure if you can see dot but no remotes foot for a second. This is a really good experience because I did remove the foot, should also remove the needle if I'm going to be sticking my fingers in there. But I do see that there are some threats seriously that got caught with the loops, right. And this one's not stuck. It's easy to just pull it out. And I can see one more little piece in here, which just right here through the whole, i'm going to pull those two out as well. Fortunately, they're not stuck either. The white one is the one I just pulled up though, so that's good. But the other three pieces so I had a few little pieces in here that got stuck and broken off when I made the big loops. It's not a really big deal. They came out quite well. If they were tight, you could just hold the hand wheel up and down and kind of easily give them a little tug, pull them out. And they'll come up quite nicely. And of course, you can just remove the plate with by removing the two little screws and taking it off in order to be able to clearly see if there are threads stuck under there. And by turning the hand we'll towards you back and forth, removing the needle, of course. And the presser feet. In order to have full access. You'll be able to have a good view. Then. I'll just put the foot back in. And then I will retry those sewing to see that the loops are gone. Now let's try that line of sewing again and double-check what the loops look like. I can kind of hear that it's sewing. Okay. And let's just double-check. Okay, look at that completely back to normal. Ok. So that is the only thing that will kinda stress you out when you're a beginner because you don't understand why it's happening, but it's really quite simple. And I'm telling you this because recently on my skill share class, one of my students was she took my sewing machine Basics class, and then this happened. She had two new sewing machine she was working with at work. And the same thing happened where she had she said, oh, it's making all these loops on the bottom. And so I'm going to have to take it in and I said No, no, don't take it in. Just looking at the video again and double-check. And so I wasn't sure that I had actually clarified it well enough on my class, what I was thinking was I should have shown an example of how it looks on the bottom because it is alarming when you see the loops, but I don't think I actually showed you that in I should. So I hope that prevents you from having any stress in the future. If that happens, you don't really have to take your sewing machine in for maintenance to a place where they fix them. It's a very rare thing that, that will ever be necessary. It's usually just the tension, so happy solely. Sewing machine mechanics are the same as they were from the time they were created. When something seems to be going wrong, most likely you can figure it out. But let's see what's inside micro snot usual to have too little screws like this. This is a very old sewing machine. It's not the way that they're made nowadays. But it made it easy and fun for me to be able to say what's inside this thing? What does it look like? Is there anything in there I need to deal with or change or whatever? And oh my goodness, look at how wonderful is that. I think this is so amazing. See, it's kinda cool element inside of that. But not going to usually have this kind of fun with your sewing machine. You won't be able to find a place where you can take it apart. But I was very lucky since I'd love to take things apart. I think we all love to take things apart. Sometimes I like to fix things and not have to take them to somebody else to do. If you take good care of your sewing machine, you won't have to do that because most likely the only thing that you're going to find wrong is the tension that will make big loops and scare you and make noise, which you should practice listening for. Who make you think I have to take my sewing machine in, but you don't. And that's proof. Hi.