Special education articles, higher education

Learning how to use a sewing machine

Posted on Nov 18, 2015 in Edu

Although using a sewing machine may sound like an obsolete hobby, it is actually very useful and, once you become a pro, you can save a lot of money because you will no longer need to pay a seamstress for adjustments or buy overpriced fashion items. Sewing machines might look like complicated, strange contraptions, but they’re actually easy to use. So easy, in fact, that many people learned to sew as kids. Here are some tips to get you started.


Benefits of knowing how to use a sewing machine


First of all, owning and using a sewing machine has a number of practical and financial benefits. For example, every time you see a nice sweater or a fluffy scarf in a shop, but don’t have the money to buy it, you can do it yourself at a fraction of the cost. There are various sewing machines that work with all sorts of fabrics and allow you to make different stitches, so there is no limit on creativity. If you’re willing to take sewing to the next level, you can turn your hobby into a business and make unique clothes for money. Given the advent of platforms such as Etsy, this can be a profitable idea.


Find the right model


When you’re learning the ropes of sewing, you should work on a model that’s good for beginners. Serger sewing machines are great because they offer plenty of features, yet they’re not confusing or difficult to operate. Ease of use should be the first thing to look at before you make a purchase. Unless you know someone who can teach you personally, try to avoid old, bulky classic models, not because they don’t work, but because they’re less intuitive.


Choose an appropriate fabric to practice straight stitches


The first sewing lesson is practicing straight stitches. Start with a medium-weight material and avoid synthetic fabrics, because they are difficult to handle. Something made of cotton or natural fibers should be fine. To make things easier, use a stripy fabric and follow the lines. This might seem a simple exercise, but it helps you to understand way different fabrics move and control the presser foot. Keep practicing until you can make perfectly straight stitches at a constant speed!


Check online tutorials and how to’s


Sometimes, the instructions on the sewing machine may seem too vague and packed with technical terms. To make the learning process more fun, check out online tutorials, because they are much more approachable. Image posts are great when you want to get accustomed to the various types of stitches and sewing machine components, whereas video tutorials teach you how to move your hands and hold the fabric. Look at tutorials until you feel comfortable enough to give sewing a try yourself!