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How to Use a Sewing Machine for Beginners: Master the Basics Easily (2024)

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how to use a sewing machine for beginnersAs a beginner, learning to use a sewing machine is easy! First, gather your materials – sewing machine, thread, fabric, and straight pins.

Plug in the machine, thread it, iron your fabric, pin it together, and set the stitch to straight.

To sew, lift the presser foot, place the fabric under it, lower the foot, and hold the threads as you slowly press the foot pedal. Let the feed dogs pull the fabric while steering it with your hands, keeping the stitches about 5/8 inch from the edge.

When you reach a pin, remove it. Read on to discover more advanced sewing techniques.

Table Of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • Gather materials, including a sewing machine, thread, fabric, and straight pins.
  • Clean and maintain the sewing machine regularly to ensure optimal performance.
  • Thread the machine with the appropriate thread weight and hue, and adjust the thread tension for a smooth stitch.
  • Use a presser foot to guide the fabric and maintain a consistent seam allowance while sewing.

How to Use a Sewing Machine for Beginners?

To use a sewing machine for beginners, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure your needle is raised and the presser foot is in its highest position.
  2. Place your fabric under the needle, with the bulk of the material to the left of the machine.
  3. Lower the presser foot onto the fabric, ensuring both ends of the thread are held.
  4. Gently push the foot pedal to start feeding the fabric through the machine.
  5. If necessary, use the reverse lever or button to secure the beginnings and ends of your seams.
  6. Adjust the tension settings according to the thickness or number of layers of fabric you’re working with.
  7. Press the foot pedal to make the needle move, adjusting the pressure for different speeds.

Remember to check the manual for your specific machine to determine the functions and locations of the buttons and settings. With practice, you’ll become more comfortable using your sewing machine and can tackle various sewing projects.

Gather Materials

Gather Materials
To get started with sewing, you’ll need a sewing machine, thread, fabric, straight pins, and fabric with straight lines printed on it. Having these materials on hand will allow you to practice basic sewing techniques and complete your first projects.

Sewing Machine

To guarantee your sewing machine remains in excellent condition, it’s imperative to clean and maintain it on a regular basis. A well-maintained machine will stitch perfectly for many years to come. Here are the basic steps for cleaning and maintaining your sewing machine:

  1. Cleaning: Brush away lint and dust from the machine each time you use it. Use the soft nylon brush that comes with the machine or a narrow paintbrush to dust away lint in the bobbin case, under the needle plate, and around the feed dog.
  2. Oiling: Oil your sewing machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Some machines are self-lubricating, while others require manual oiling. Check your machine’s manual or find an online guide for specific instructions.
  3. Lubricating: Apply a small amount of grease to all gears and lubricate the shaft with two drops of oil.
  4. Regular Maintenance: Clean and oil your sewing machine once for every 5-10 days of use. For heavy-duty use or specific fabric types, you may need to clean and oil more frequently.

Remember to consult your machine’s manual for specific instructions on cleaning and maintenance. Regular maintenance will help your sewing machine last longer and perform better.


After preparing your sewing machine, it’s time to explore the realm of thread.

Selecting the appropriate thread weight and hue can determine the outcome of your undertaking.

Ensure that your thread tension is optimal to prevent annoying thread interruptions.

Bear in mind that the needle and bobbin collaborate harmoniously with your thread, affecting the length of your stitches and the overall success of your sewing endeavor.

Organize your thread varieties for effortless access and seamless sewing experiences.


Begin by collecting the appropriate fabric for your project.

Consider the fabric types, grain, and weight, as these factors impact the stitching process.

Proper fabric maintenance is essential, so make certain it’s clean and wrinkle-free before sewing.

Obtaining your fabric from reliable suppliers can also guarantee quality.

When sewing, use a presser foot to guide the fabric, and maintain a consistent seam allowance.

The feed dogs facilitate the pulling of the fabric, while guiding with your hands keeps the stitch straight.

Don’t forget to remove pins as you sew and backstitch for added strength.

Straight Pins

Straight pins are an indispensable tool for sewing. They come in various types, including straight, specialty, and safety pins. The straight pins have three parts: the head, shaft, and point. The head can be flat or have ornamental designs like plastic flowers or hearts. The shaft diameter varies depending on the pin type and fabric thickness. The point can be sharp or rounded, depending on the pin type.

When using straight pins, consider the pin placement, removal, and size. Pin placement should be perpendicular to the seamline for the smoothest seam. Pin removal is typically done as you sew, moving the needle down to avoid striking the pin. Pin sizes range from 1/2 to 2 1/8 long, with longer pins helpful for those with dexterity issues or for thicker fabrics.

Pin storage is also important, with options like pin cushions or magnetic holders available. Practice is key to mastering the use of straight pins, especially in the context of backstitching, seam allowances, and stitch width. Remember to avoid sewing over pins, as it can damage the needle or machine, and always remove bent, rusted, or damaged pins.

Fabric With Straight Lines

Fabric with straight lines is a crucial element when learning how to use a sewing machine for beginners. The fabric patterns, fabric weight, fabric types, fabric prints, and fabric colors you choose can have a major impact on your sewing experience. Here are some tips for using a sewing machine with fabric that has straight lines:

  1. Choose the right fabric: Select fabrics with minimal texture, such as cotton or linen, for easier sewing. Avoid thick or bulky fabrics, as they can cause thread bunching and uneven stitches.
  2. Use a straight edge: If your fabric has straight lines, use them as a guide when sewing. Place the straight edge of the fabric against the edge of your presser foot to make sure your stitches are straight.
  3. Adjust your needle position: If your sewing machine has an adjustable needle position, move the needle to the left for a larger seam allowance. This can help you keep a straight seam line.
  4. Use a seam guide ruler: A seam guide ruler can help you keep a consistent seam allowance, making sure your stitches are straight.
  5. Practice sewing in short bursts: Sew a short segment, stop, readjust your hands on the fabric assembly, and then continue sewing. This helps you keep control of the fabric and prevents your stitching from going off course.
  6. Use a sewing guide: A sewing guide can help keep your stitches straight when sewing hems or other straight seams.
  7. Be patient and consistent: Sewing straight lines takes practice. Go slowly and keep a consistent speed to get better at it.

First Steps

First Steps
Before you start sewing, make sure to plug in your sewing machine and properly thread it with the desired color. After that, iron your fabric and pin the pieces together, then set the stitch control to a simple straight stitch.

Plug in Sewing Machine

Before you start sewing with your new machine, it’s essential to connect it safely.

Always connect the machine directly into the electrical outlet, without using an extension cord.

Make sure that the outlet is in good condition and has RCD (residual current device) protection, which can help protect against electric shocks and lessen the risk of electrical fires.

If you’re unsure about the outlet’s condition, consider using an RCD plug to provide extra protection.

Remember to disconnect the machine when not in use, and never drop or put any objects into the machine’s openings.

Thread Machine

Once your sewing machine is plugged in, it’s time to thread it.

Choose your thread type wisely—polyester is versatile, while cotton suits natural fibers.

Match needle sizes to your fabric’s weight for smooth sailing.

Before diving into pattern selection, make sure you’re familiar with fabric care to avoid any mishaps.

Now, let’s get that machine threaded and ready to roll!

Iron Fabric

Now that you’ve threaded your machine, it’s time to prepare your fabric. Start by ironing it to eliminate any wrinkles or creases. Adjust your iron to the suitable temperature for your fabric type. Bear in mind that ironing is essential for precise sewing and avoiding puckering. Once your fabric is smooth, you can proceed to pin it together for sewing.

Pin Fabric Together

Pinning fabric together is an essential step in sewing. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Choose the right pins for your fabric. Smaller pins work well for delicate fabrics, while larger pins are better for thicker materials.
  2. Pin your fabric along the seam line, making sure not to pin through the seam allowance.
  3. Use a pin every 1/2 inch or so, keeping the pins parallel to each other.
  4. When you’re ready to sew, remove the pins as you go, starting from the edge of the fabric and working your way in.

Set Stitch Control to Straight Stitch

Now that your fabric is pinned together, it’s time to set your stitch control to a straight stitch.

This is the most basic stitch and is perfect for beginners.

To do this, locate the stitch control on your sewing machine and set it to the straight stitch setting.

You can also adjust the stitch length and width to suit your needs.

Once you’ve set the stitch control, you’re ready to start sewing.

Remember to backstitch at the beginning and end of your seams for added strength.

How to Use the Sewing Machine

How to Use the Sewing Machine
To start sewing, lift the presser foot and place your fabric under it, ensuring it’s securely positioned. Then, lower the presser foot, hold the threads taut, and gently press down on the foot pedal to begin guiding the fabric through the machine.

Lift Presser Foot

Raise the presser foot before positioning your fabric beneath it. This guarantees that the needle doesn’t penetrate the fabric when you begin sewing. Modify the stitch speed with the foot pedal, and set the needle accurately to avoid any problems. Recall to keep the presser foot up when not in use to avert accidental stitching.

Place Fabric Under Presser Foot

To place fabric under the presser foot, start by aligning the fabric with the needle position.

Adjust the fabric tension and presser foot pressure to achieve a smooth stitch.

Different fabric types may require different needle sizes and stitch settings.

Remember to keep the stitch about 5/8 inch away from the edge of the fabric.

Always remove pins before sewing over them.

To guide the fabric, use your hands and maintain a steady speed.

Gently lift the foot pedal to reduce the speed or stop the machine.

Lower Presser Foot

To lower the presser foot on your sewing machine, follow these steps:

  1. Find the presser foot lever: Locate the lever or button on your sewing machine that controls the presser foot. It may be located on the side or top of the machine, and it might’ve a number or graduating scale associated with it, indicating the level of pressure.
  2. Press the lever: Press the lever down to lower the presser foot. The lower the lever is pressed, the more pressure the presser foot will apply to the fabric.
  3. Check the fabric: Make sure the fabric is properly positioned under the presser foot before lowering it. This will help make sure accurate stitching and prevent any issues with the fabric feeding.
  4. Lower the presser foot: Once the fabric is in position, lower the presser foot by pressing the lever or button. The presser foot should now be in contact with the fabric.

Hold Threads and Put Needle Down Into Fabric

Once you’ve lowered the presser foot, it’s time to get the show on the road. Here’s how to guarantee a smooth start:

  1. Hold both the top and bobbin threads gently to the side.
  2. Carefully position your fabric under the needle.
  3. Adjust the thread tension for a perfect stitch.
  4. With anticipation, lower the needle manually into the fabric, ready to create magic.

Slowly Press Down on Foot Pedal

Slowly press down on the foot pedal to control the speed of the needle as it sews through the fabric.

The foot pedal pressure determines how quickly the needle moves, which can affect the stitch length and the tension of the stitches.

As you press down on the pedal, the needle will move faster, creating a longer stitch.

Lifting the foot pedal will slow down the needle, resulting in a shorter stitch.

The presser foot height also plays a role in this process, as a higher foot can allow for more fabric to be fed through the machine, creating a longer stitch.

Drive the Fabric

Drive the Fabric
As you sew, the feed dogs underneath will pull the fabric away from you; guide the fabric with your hands, keeping the stitching line about 5/8 inch from the edge. When you approach pins, gently pull them out before sewing over them, and lift your foot off the pedal to slow down or stop as needed.

Feed Dogs Pull Fabric Away From You

As you start sewing, the feed dogs, located under the presser foot, will pull the fabric away from you at a consistent speed.

This helps maintain a steady stitch length and guarantees accurate seam allowances.

Keep your stitch about 5/8 inch away from the edge of the fabric to avoid puckering.

Remember to remove pins as you sew and gently lift off the foot pedal to slow down or stop.

Always prioritize finger safety when operating the sewing machine.

Steer Fabric With Hands

To steer your fabric while sewing, you’ll need to use your hands to guide it through the machine. Here are some tips:

  • Maintain fabric alignment: Keep the fabric straight and make sure it’s aligned correctly with the needle.
  • Control seam width: Adjust the width of your seam by moving the fabric under the presser foot.
  • Regulate stitch tension: Keep an eye on the stitch tension to make sure it’s the same throughout your project.
  • Monitor fabric tension: Make sure the fabric isn’t too tight or too loose as it passes through the machine.

Keep Stitch About 5/8 in Away From Edge

Maintain your stitch approximately 5/8 in away from the fabric’s border to ensure sewing precision and consistency.

This distance serves as a general reference point and may vary based on the particular fabric and sewing machine used. For delicate fabrics, a shorter stitch length can help prevent bunching and wrinkling. For thick fabrics, a longer stitch length may be required to penetrate multiple layers.

Adjusting the pressure of the presser foot can also impact the fabric’s movement through the machine, which in turn can affect the stitch’s length and consistency.

Experiment with various stitch lengths and foot pressure settings to identify the optimal combination for your project.

Pull Out Pins When You Get to Them

As you guide your fabric, keep an eye on pin placement. Here’s how to handle them safely:

  1. Approach pins slowly, maintaining control.
  2. Grasp each pin firmly near the point.
  3. Gently remove pins right before the needle.
  4. Store them immediately in a pin cushion.

Gently Lift Off Foot Pedal to Slow Down

Gently easing off the foot pedal is a vital technique for decelerating while guiding the fabric through the sewing machine.

This progressive reduction in speed enables stable control and a seamless change between stitches.

To master this technique, begin by lifting the foot pedal slightly to slow down.

Then gradually increase pressure to maintain a steady pace.


To backstitch, position the fabric where you want to begin sewing and put the needle down into the material. Then, press the reverse button on your sewing machine and stitch backwards 3-4 stitches to reinforce the start of your seam.

Set Up Fabric Where You Want to Begin Sewing

To begin sewing, set up your fabric where you want to start. Align the fabric with the needle placement and make sure the stitch tension is correct. Consider the seam direction and pattern marking for accuracy. Here’s a 3-step guide:

  1. Align fabric with needle placement.
  2. Check stitch tension for accuracy.
  3. Consider seam direction and pattern marking.

Put Needle Down

Now that you’ve set up your fabric where you want to begin sewing, it’s time to put the needle down.

Adjust the needle positioning and height to your preference.

For backstitching, you’ll need to position the needle in the fabric and make sure the thread tension is correct.

Once you’re ready, you can start sewing by pressing the reverse button on the machine.

Remember to keep the fabric steady and guide it with your hands as needed.

Press Reverse Button on Machine

Activating the reverse button on your sewing machine is essential for backstitching, which guarantees the sturdiness and longevity of your seams. Here’s how:

  1. Find the reverse button: It’s generally located near the stitch selection buttons or on the side of the machine.
  2. Grasp its purpose: When pressed, the machine sews backward, producing a locked stitch that won’t come undone.
  3. Utilize it for backstitching: After sewing forward, activate the reverse button to sew backward for a few stitches. This creates a locked stitch that strengthens the seam.
  4. Adjust stitch direction: Certain machines have a dial or button to alter the stitch direction. Ensure it’s set to stitch forward before commencing your project.

Stitch Backwards 3-4 Stitches

Once you’ve set up your fabric, it’s time to lock in your work with a backstitch. Simply put the needle down, sew forward 3-4 stitches, then hit the reverse. This backstitch seam isn’t just a stitch in time; it’s your seam’s bodyguard, ensuring backstitch strength that won’t let go. Experiment with backstitch width and techniques to perfect your pattern.

Threading the Sewing Machine

Threading the Sewing Machine
To thread your sewing machine, first place the spool of thread on the spool pin and guide the thread through the designated thread guides, looping it around the bottom and up the left side. Then, pass the thread through the take-up lever and finally through the eye of the needle.

Place Spool of Thread on Spindle

To begin threading your sewing machine, place the spool of thread on the spindle.

This is the small, cylindrical part at the top of the machine where the thread is wound.

Make sure the spool is in the correct position and that the thread is not tangled or twisted.

This is the first step in the threading process, which will help you control the stitch and prepare the machine for use.

Guide Thread Through Designated Nooks and Crannies

To guide the thread through designated nooks and crannies, follow these steps:

  1. Thread Tension: Adjust the tension dial to make sure the thread is neither too tight nor too loose.
  2. Needle Selection: Choose the appropriate needle for your fabric type to prevent damage.
  3. Fabric Compatibility: Check the fabric is compatible with the thread to avoid thread breakage.
  4. Troubleshooting Guide: Refer to the machine’s troubleshooting guide if you encounter any issues with threading.

Loop Thread at Bottom and Go Up Left Side

To loop thread at the bottom and go up the left side when threading a sewing machine, you should follow these steps:

  1. Lower the presser foot: Before you start threading, make certain the presser foot is lowered to its lowest position. This will give you better access to the thread guides and tension discs.
  2. Guide the thread: Start by guiding the thread from the spool through the designated thread guide(s) on the machine. Make sure that the thread is properly positioned and secure as it moves in the direction of the needle. These guides help maintain tension on the thread and keep it aligned with the needle.
  3. Wrap the thread: Wrap the thread around the second thread guide, which is usually located near the needle. This will help you control the thread tension and prevent it from tangling.
  4. Bring the thread down to the needle: Bring the thread down to the needle, ensuring that it’s correctly placed and free from tangles. Some machines have additional guides or tension discs that the thread must pass through before reaching the needle. Be sure to check your manual for these details.
  5. Thread the needle: Thread the needle from the front to the back and pull the thread to make certain that there are no snags. Some machines have a thread take-up lever that you can use to thread the needle more easily.
  6. Check the tension: Test the tension by gently tugging on the thread. The tension should be firm but not too tight, allowing the thread to glide smoothly through the machine. If the tension is off, it can lead to problems like skipped stitches or fabric puckering.

Remember to follow your sewing machine’s manual for specific instructions on threading and tension adjustment. Proper threading and tension control are essential for achieving high-quality stitches and preventing common issues like tangled threads and uneven tension.

Thread Through Thread Take-up Lever

To thread your sewing machine, you’ll need to guide the thread through the take-up lever. This lever controls the thread tension, ensuring the right amount of tension on your stitches. You can choose the thread color, type, weight, and even brand according to your preference. To thread through the take-up lever, follow these steps:

  1. Loop the thread around the thread guide.
  2. Thread the end of the thread through the thread take-up lever.
  3. Adjust the thread tension if necessary.

Thread Through Needle

Now, let’s thread that needle! It’s simpler than it sounds:

  1. Hold the thread close to the needle’s eye; patience is key here.
  2. Gently push the thread through, avoiding any tangles or knots.
  3. Pull enough thread to work with, ensuring it’s free-flowing for smooth stitching.

Threading the Bobbin

Threading the Bobbin
To thread the bobbin, first insert the empty bobbin cartridge into the designated slot. Next, guide the thread end through the small hole in the bobbin cartridge, wrap the thread around the designated tension disc or guide on the machine, place the bobbin cartridge onto the bobbin winder, and press the foot pedal to wind the bobbin with thread.

Insert Empty Bobbin Cartridge

To insert an empty bobbin cartridge, start by removing the bobbin cover.

Place the bobbin in the designated slot, ensuring it turns in the correct direction.

Pull the thread through the slot and close the bobbin case.

The bobbin size, tension, needle size, thread type, and fabric type will all influence the performance of your sewing machine.

It’s imperative to choose the right combination for your project.

Thread End Through Hole in Bobbin Cartridge

To thread the bobbin, start by inserting an empty bobbin cartridge into the bobbin winder. Remember to choose the correct bobbin size for your sewing machine and use a thread that matches the color of your top thread.

Thread the end of your bobbin thread through the hole in the bobbin cartridge.

Once the bobbin is threaded, place it on the bobbin winder and wind it until it’s full.

Wrap Thread Around Designated Part on Machine

Wrap the thread around the designated part on the machine to thread the bobbin. This part is usually located near the bobbin winder or on the machine itself.

Make sure to wind the thread in the correct direction, following the arrow or markings on the bobbin cartridge.

Once the bobbin is threaded, you’re ready to move on to the next step: placing the bobbin on the bobbin winder.

Place Bobbin Cartridge on Bobbin Winder

To set a bobbin cartridge on your sewing machine’s bobbin winder, first make sure the machine is disconnected for safety.

Next, take off the bobbin cover.

Then, put the empty bobbin cartridge into the designated slot, making sure it turns in the correct direction.

Pull the thread through the slot and shut the bobbin case.

Remember to store your bobbins properly to keep tension and avoid tangles.

Press Foot Pedal to Wind Bobbin

Once you’ve got your bobbin cartridge threaded, it’s showtime. Gently press the foot pedal and watch as the bobbin winder spins the thread neatly onto the bobbin. Keep an eye on the fill level; you don’t want an overfilled bobbin.

When it’s just right, snip the thread, and voilà, you’re set to pop it into the bobbin slot under the bobbin cover.

Inserting the Bobbin

Inserting the Bobbin
To insert the bobbin, first remove the bobbin cover. Then, place the bobbin in the designated slot, ensuring it turns in the correct direction, pull the thread through the slot, and close the bobbin case.

Remove Bobbin Cover

To remove the bobbin cover, locate the bobbin cover on the back of your sewing machine. It may be a small door or a flip-up cover. Open it by pressing the release button or flipping it up.

Once open, you can access the bobbin case. Be sure to check the bobbin size, tension, and type to make certain it fits properly in the bobbin case.

Place Bobbin in Designated Slot

To put a bobbin in the designated slot, follow these steps:

  1. Remove the bobbin cover: Depending on your sewing machine, you may need to remove the bobbin cover before you can access the bobbin case. Consult your machine’s manual for specific instructions on how to do this.
  2. Locate the bobbin slot: Once the bobbin cover is removed, you should see the bobbin case. The bobbin slot is typically located in the center of the case.
  3. Place the bobbin in the slot: Carefully place the bobbin in the slot, making sure that the bobbin spindle is facing the correct direction. The spindle should be pointing in the direction of the needle.
  4. Make sure the bobbin turns in the correct direction: After placing the bobbin in the slot, it should turn freely. If the bobbin doesn’t turn, it may be inserted incorrectly. Remove the bobbin and try again.
  5. Close the bobbin case: Once the bobbin is in place and turning correctly, you can close the bobbin case. Make sure the bobbin case is securely fastened to the machine.

Remember to always consult your machine’s manual for specific instructions on bobbin placement and thread tension. Different machines may have slightly different procedures, and following the manufacturer’s guidelines will make sure that your sewing machine functions properly.

Ensure Bobbin Turns in Correct Direction

To make sure your bobbin spins in the right direction, it’s important to wind it correctly. First, put the bobbin in the special spot on your sewing machine.

Next, check the arrow on the bobbin to make sure it’s spinning in the right direction. If the arrow points toward the back of the machine, the bobbin is wound correctly. If it points toward the front, you’ll need to rewind it.

The bobbin needs to be in the right direction for the thread to be tight enough and for the bobbin to line up correctly.

Pull Thread Through Slot

To insert the bobbin, you’ll first need to remove the bobbin cover. Then, place the bobbin in the designated slot, ensuring it turns in the correct direction. Next, pull the thread through the slot and close the bobbin case. Remember to set the stitch length and tension dial to your desired settings before sewing.

Close Bobbin Case

Once you’ve got your bobbin thread neatly wound on the bobbin winder, it’s time to tuck it into its cozy home. Slide the bobbin into the bobbin case, ensuring it spins in the right direction—think of it as setting the table for a flawless meal.

Pull the thread through the slot, then snap the bobbin cover shut. Voilà, you’re all set for sewing success!

Using a Computerized Sewing Machine

Using a Computerized Sewing Machine
Computerized sewing machines offer a trove of cutting-edge capabilities to streamline your sewing journey. From a touchscreen for seamless stitch selection to an automatic needle inserter, these contemporary machines are engineered to boost your sewing effectiveness and accuracy.

Touchscreen for Stitch Selection

Using a computerized sewing machine, you’ll find a touchscreen interface that makes stitch selection a breeze. This user-friendly design allows you to choose from a variety of stitches with ease. Here are three key benefits of this automated feature:

  1. Stitch Variety: The touchscreen interface gives you access to a wide range of stitches, ensuring you have the perfect one for your project.
  2. Beginner-Friendly: With clear icons and simple navigation, even beginners can easily select the stitch they need.
  3. Quick Stitch Selection: The touchscreen interface allows you to quickly switch between stitches, saving you time and hassle.

Buttons for Reverse, Needle Up/down, and Knot

On your computerized sewing machine, there are several essential buttons for various functions. The reverse stitch button aids you in reversing your stitch when you need to rectify a mistake.

The needle up/down button enables you to regulate the needle’s position, either raising it up or lowering it down.

Finally, the knot button aids in creating the ideal knot at the conclusion of your stitch. These computerized controls render sewing more efficient and precise.

Slide for Stitch Speed

To adjust the stitch speed on a computerized sewing machine, locate the slide control on the machine. This slide control allows you to increase or decrease the stitch speed, which can greatly impact the quality of your stitch. Remember, the needle type, thread tension, and fabric type can also affect stitch speed, so always consider these factors when making adjustments. Here are five tips for adjusting stitch speed:

  1. Start with a slower speed and gradually increase as you become more comfortable.
  2. Adjust the speed based on the thickness and type of fabric.
  3. Experiment with different stitch settings to find the best speed for each.
  4. Use the stitch length guide to maintain consistent stitch length.
  5. Keep in mind that higher speeds may require more pressure on the foot pedal.

Automatic Needle Threader

Using an automatic needle threader on a computerized sewing machine is a convenient feature for beginners, saving time and effort. Simply follow these steps:

  1. Turn on your machine.
  2. Load a thread spool onto the spindle.
  3. Press the threading button on the machine.
  4. Guide the thread through the designated holes.
  5. Once threaded, pull the thread to the back of the machine and secure it.

This feature eases the process of needle threading, making it more accessible and friendly for those new to sewing.

Seam Guides for Accurate Seam Allowances

Seam guides on your computerized sewing machine are your secret weapon for mastering seam allowances. Think of them as your fabric’s GPS, guiding you to the ideal seam width every time.

  • Guarantee fabric alignment with the guides.
  • Adjust for varying seam allowances.
  • Monitor seam width for constancy.
  • Enhance seam accuracy without effort.
  • Practice makes perfect; use guides as your training wheels.


Now that you’ve mastered the basics, it’s time to start practicing. Sew straight and curved lines on paper and fabric, stitch long folds, and try turning 45 or 90 degrees – all while keeping safety top of mind and experimenting with your machine’s settings.

Sew on Paper

Sewing on paper is a great way to practice your sewing skills before you start working with fabric. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Choose the right paper type: Use lightweight paper that won’t bunch up or wrinkle easily.
  2. Select the right fabric weight: If you’re practicing with a computerized sewing machine, choose a paper that closely mimics the weight of the fabric you’ll be sewing.
  3. Practice techniques: Try different stitch settings, stitch lengths, and seam allowances to get a feel for how your machine works.
  4. Use different threads: Experiment with different types of thread to see how they handle and how they look when stitched.
  5. Keep it straight: Stick to sewing straight lines on the paper to avoid any complications that might arise when sewing curves or corners.

Sew Curved and Straight Lines on Fabric

To sew curved and straight lines on fabric, start by setting the stitch control to the proper setting.

For curved seams, use a longer stitch length and a smaller seam allowance.

For straight lines, use a shorter stitch length and a larger seam allowance.

Adjust the fabric tension to achieve a smooth stitch.

Use invisible stitches for a clean finish.

Remember to backstitch at the beginning and end of each seam to hold the thread.

Practice on scraps of fabric before sewing your project to achieve accuracy.

Stitch Long Folds

To stitch long folds, start by choosing the right fabric and stitch length. A straight stitch and appropriate needle size are essential.

For thicker fabrics, adjust the seam allowance. Iron the fold before sewing, then pin it in place.

Lower the presser foot and guide the fabric under it. Hold the threads and place the needle down into the fabric. Slowly press down on the foot pedal to start sewing.

Keep the stitch about 5/8 inch away from the edge. Remove pins as you sew and gently lift off the foot pedal to slow down. Backstitch to secure the end of your stitch.

Sew Seams

To sew seams, start by selecting the right fabric and needle size for your project. Adjust the seam allowance and thread tension to match your fabric and desired look. Apply presser foot pressure to control the stitching process. Follow these steps to sew a seam:

  1. Pin fabric together at seam allowance lines.
  2. Set stitch control to straight stitch.
  3. Lift presser foot and place fabric under foot.
  4. Lower foot and hold threads, then put needle down into fabric.
  5. Press foot pedal slowly to sew the seam.
  6. Remove pins as you sew and gently lift off foot pedal to slow down.

Taking a 45 or 90 Degree Turn

Taking a 45 or 90 degree turn involves making sharp corners in your sewing project. For mitered corners, you’ll need to cut the fabric at a 45-degree angle.

Curved corners can be achieved by using bias tape or piping. When turning a corner, make sure the needle is down and the fabric is pinned correctly.

With practice, you’ll master these turns and create professional-looking seams.

Finger Safety

Keep your fingers clear of the needle; it’s a dance, not a duel. Adjust the machine speed like you’re learning to drive—slow and steady wins the race. Lighter fabric is your best friend when starting out, as it’s more forgiving. Remember, stitch control is your steering wheel, guiding you to a safe and snag-free sewing experience.

Avoiding Thick Fabric

To avoid thick fabric, choose the right needle and thread for your project. Use a universal needle for most fabrics, but opt for a denim needle for thicker materials. Adjust the bobbin tension to match the fabric’s thickness.

Select the appropriate stitch type for your fabric, and consider using a longer stitch length.

For seam finishes, press the seams open or use a serger for a professional look.

Avoiding Pins

Now that you’ve learned about avoiding thick fabric, it’s time to tackle another common issue: pins. Instead of pinning, try pinless sewing techniques. Adjust thread tension and fabric selection for better results. Regular machine maintenance can also help prevent pin problems. Remember, needle safety is essential, so always be aware of where your needle is.

Seeking Assistance

When you’re just starting out with a sewing machine, it’s important to remember that you’re not alone. Seek help when you need it. Ask questions, get feedback, and seek expert advice. Troubleshooting can be a challenge, but don’t be afraid to ask for help. Here are three tips to help you get started:

  1. Join a local sewing group or club.
  2. Watch online tutorials and videos.
  3. Visit a fabric store or craft store for advice and guidance.

Experimenting With Stitch Settings

Experimenting with stitch settings is an exciting part of mastering your sewing machine. Try out different stitches like zigzag, stretch, blind hem, buttonhole, and decorative stitches to suit your project’s needs. Don’t be afraid to adjust stitch length and width for unique effects. Remember, practice makes perfect, so sew on paper or scrap fabric before tackling your project. Happy sewing!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I select the correct needle size?

Choosing the right needle is like finding the perfect partner – not too loose, not too tight. Consult the thread and fabric types to unleash the sewing machine’s full potential. Trust your instincts, and the seams will flow beautifully.

What maintenance routines should I follow?

Regularly clean the machine with a soft brush, change the needle every few projects, and oil key parts per the manufacturer’s instructions. This keeps your sewing machine running smoothly for years.

How do I troubleshoot thread tension issues?

Tweak your tension if thread tangles or puckers. Check your top and bobbin threads – they should move smoothly without excess tightness. Consult your machine’s manual for specific tension adjustment steps.

Can I sew all fabric types with any machine?

While most sewing machines can manage a diverse range of fabrics, certain specialized models are more suitable for handling thicker textiles. Refer to your machine’s manual to guarantee that you use the appropriate needle and settings for the best possible results.

What are the safety risks when sewing?

Be mindful when sewing – watch for loose threads, keep fingers away from the needle, and avoid sewing over pins. Stay focused to prevent accidents and enjoy a safe, successful sewing experience.


With practice, using a sewing machine becomes second nature. Remember, progress comes through patience and persistence.

Once you’ve mastered the basics of how to use a sewing machine for beginners, the creative possibilities are endless. So, keep those fingers nimble, your focus sharp, and get to sewing – the more you put into it, the more you’ll get out.

The key to becoming a sewing machine pro? Master the basics, then let your creativity shine.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is the founder and editor-in-chief of, a site dedicated to those passionate about crafting. With years of experience and research under his belt, he sought to create a platform where he could share his knowledge and skills with others who shared his interests.