Sewing Machine Safety Tips
There are ‘sew’ many things to think about and remember when you are learning how to sew. These Sewing Machine Safety Tips for Beginners will help make learning how to sew with your machine easier.
When I have an activity I like to do, I usually have a mental ‘checklist’ of things to keep in mind. One of my favorite outdoor activities is golfing and some of my checklist items are: arms straight, elbows at my side, keep my eye on the ball, don’t lift my body up during my swing, etc; these are just a few and I hope you ‘get the picture’.
There is also a mental ‘checklist’ of things to commit to memory when using the sewing machine, I’m going to give you my ‘checklist’ of things I remember while I’m using my sewing machine. For the longest time I had my list pinned on the wall so I could refer to these tips while I was sewing. Now, these sewing machine tips are engrained in my brain as a ‘to-do’ checklist for when I get to my machine; just like my golfing checklist. 😉
Feel free to print this list out and keep it close to your machine.
Sewing Machine Safety Tips Checklist
- Before sewing, pull the threads UNDER and BEHIND the presser foot about 3 or 4 inches. Gently hold these threads when you start a new seam, otherwise the threads may get caught in the machine.
- The presser foot must always be in the down position for sewing. (Use the ‘take-up’ lever to move the presser foot up or down. The foot should be in the ‘up’ position to prepare your fabric for stitching. Set the presser foot ‘down’ before you start stitching and then lift back ‘up’ again when you are done stitching.)
- Keep your fingers away from the moving needle and flat on the machine to the sides of the presser foot, to help guide the fabric as you sew.
- Don’t force or pull the fabric. The sewing machine will move fabric automatically with the feed dogs. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule-sometimes you need to help the fabric if you get to a thick seam. (There is a cool widget to help with thick seams—-)
- Use the machine’s thread cutter to trim threads as you work or use a pair of short blade embroidery scissors for trimming. (Short blade scissors minimize the chance of accidentally snipping holes in your fabric-been there and done that!)
- Take pins out of the fabric as you sew; DO NOT sew over pins. I’ve had many broken sewing machine needles from forgetting to take out a pin. (In order to see pins easier, use pins with colored bead heads.)
- Maintain even speed with your foot control. Maintaining even speed will get better with practice.
- Watch the seam guide as you sew, NOT THE NEEDLE, to produce an even sewing line.
- When stopping in the middle of a line of sewing, keep the needle in the fabric to prevent the fabric from moving and causing loops of thread in the stitching. TIP-When sewing corners, keep the needle in the fabric and then lift the presser foot up to turn the fabric; put the presser foot back down after fabric is turned.
- If the thread in your machine keeps getting messed up- take your fabric out of the machine and fix the problem. Test your machine with a scrap piece of the fabric that you are using for your project to make sure machine is fixed. Letting your machine mess up too many times on your project fabric may cause the fabric to get a big hole or get snagged. Yep, been there done that! (If the thread is so messed up, you may find that pulling the fabric away from the machine is challenging. Sometimes I’ve had to carefully clip the knotted thread with my embroidery scissors.)
- Have someplace to keep your pins after you remove them from the fabric. I have a magnetic pin holder that I put my pins on so they are less likely to fall on the ground or get caught on other fabric.
The more you use your machine, the easier it will be to recall all these items without having to look at this list. Check out my other related post: Sewing Safety Tips
Thanks for reading and Happy Sewing!