12

thread: Tips, tricks and FAQs for Clueless Sewing Members

  1. #19
    Registered User

    Jan 2008
    SE suburbs, Vic
    1,377

    When was the last time you had it serviced? My old machine used to do that when it needed a service


  2. #20
    BellyBelly Member

    Jun 2005
    USA
    3,991

    Thanks so much for your thoughts and help!

    It's only a little cheapie machine. I've had it for almost 3 years, its had minimal use and never been serviced... how much does a service generally cost? I've never changed the needle- maybe I should try that? I am sewing PUL (and filling it with holes!!!)... but I'm repairing nappy covers and have done a few already with no problems so surely the fabric isn't an issue? How do I know what type of needle I need?

  3. #21
    BellyBelly Member

    Jul 2008
    summer street
    2,708

    You ARE sewing PUL? Arrgghh! Okay, here is what I found:

    *The best needles are leather needles, or ones that "spear" down (so not a ball point needle).
    *The stitching can muck up if you are sewing it shiny side down, because it doesn't seem to slide easily through the teeth. I have found a walking foot helps a lot with this (thus why I use my industrial because it is a walking foot, although I have a special adapter for my domestic, I just can't be arsed to change the feet all the time).
    *The stitching can also muck up if sewing lots of layers, because the plastic coating of the PUL makes it hard for a domestic machine (and motor capacity).

    So, after all that, I am not sure if I am helping. If you have done a few nappy covers already I would hazard a guess your needle might be blunt, because the PUL is tough stuff.

    Maybe just pop in another needle and see? Any one that's not ball point will do at this point.

    GL! I have found different brands of PUL are stickier/thicker than others and my machine reacts differently.

  4. #22
    BellyBelly Member

    Jun 2005
    USA
    3,991

    I'm actually sewing PUL pocket nappy covers- so the slippery side is contained within the cover and shouldn't effect the movement- thanks for the walking foot tip though.

    So a blunt needle can possibly cause this? Think I'll change the needlethen because it's very possibly blunt! I've had to sew some very thick parts of the cover with layers of elastic etc.

  5. #23
    BellyBelly Member

    Jul 2008
    summer street
    2,708

    Well it might just be that the fabric is too thick. I am thinking that perhaps the needle isn't feeding into the bobbin properly (when it goes down below the bed) and so is not making a stitch. A blunt needle would mean you're not piercing the fabric enough to reach the bobbin properly, but likewise really thick fabric might be the issue.

    Can you try going reaaaaally slowly, say using the hand wheel and see if you pick up the bobbin thread at all? How is if sewing on other parts of this garment? Or have you tried similar garments since this one?

  6. #24
    BellyBelly Member

    Jun 2005
    USA
    3,991

    I did find if I was sewing slowly it worked a little better. I'll change the needle this weekend and try again. Have to unpack the sewing machine now after putting everything away in frustration

  7. #25
    2014 BellyBelly RAK Recipient.

    Mar 2008
    Vic
    4,806

    I just picked up my sewing machine and am now looking at it like it's the most scary thing on earth

    I learned to sew in early high school, but other than the basics, we were only taught to make a stuffed animal and a sloppy joe top. I'm hoping it's going to come back to me. The machine came with an instructional dvd so here's hoping that will help! I want to make some very basic curtains, just with a hem at the top and bottom - that shouldn't be too hard right? I read Maz's instruction of ironing in a crease. Am I thinking that a crease would work here, to indicate where I need to sew?

    Clueless much!

  8. #26
    BellyBelly Member

    Jan 2007
    7,197

    Yay PRM! Ironing it does make it easier when hemming hun, and pinning it too will help. Have a go - worst thing that can happen is that you have to unpick and redo it! Enjoy it - you will love it and be hooked in no time! Check out the Ottobre mags and there a few great forums around too, I love crafty mamas for all things wonderful!

  9. #27
    2014 BellyBelly RAK Recipient.

    Mar 2008
    Vic
    4,806

    Thanks Tanstar! I found some material that I like so just want to get started now

  10. #28
    Registered User

    Jul 2011
    2

    well, here's the thing...my sister has never sewn in her life let alone threading a needle, then one day I told her to try my sewing machine and just play with it, she refused at first insisting that sewing is "not my cup of tea!" That was 3 years ago...today she designs, creates and sew handbags and selling them online and having fun!
    And me? I've been sewing since I was 12 but that's another story!

    I'm sure you too will enjoy sewing, just persevere...sewing is cool, it's no longer for nanas!
    ~ M xx

  11. #29
    Moderator

    Oct 2004
    In my Zombie proof fortress.
    6,449

    Re: Tips, tricks and FAQs for Clueless Sewing Members



    So what are your basic tips and tricks?? Worked out recently.

    • If the machine is not sewing properly, try re-threading. Had a terrible time with tension and feeding, popped in a fresh bobbin and all was better.
    • Get a seam gauge!!! Consistent measuring of folds, hems etc with one of these makes the project so much neater How I lived without one I do not know!
    • Get set-up for working! Yes it takes a bit longer to get going, but speeds up the whole process
    • Get out the ironing board. Not only for pressing as you go, but so much easier on the back when pinning and doing other work on the fabric.
    Last edited by Astrid; January 2nd, 2014 at 02:42 PM. : spelling

12