Many of you do not know how to use or even wonder what the small plastic or metal parts supplied with your sewing machine are for.
Did you know that with the feet, your sewing machine will make complex seams such as buttonholes, gathers, hems but also allow you to put on a zipper? Indeed, your sewing accessories are not just a single foot and a single needle for sewing!
This article will teach you how to use the feet already supplied with your machine. But as we know that nothing stops you from your improvement, we will also tell you about the other feet and soles sold separately from your sewing machine. Forget the capricious machines with stretch fabrics, jersey type, or thicker like jeans! Start making pretty buttonholes or blind hemstitching, which is handy for finishing tops. Gather and put an invisible zipper on a dress like a pro! We will explain to you how to optimize your sewing machine and progress in your sewing.
Sewing machines come with a standard foot, which holds the fabric with even pressure.
It is used for sewing straight or zig-zag stitches, and in theory, you can sew anything with it.
But some jobs (thin hems, zippers) are easier by using feet specially created for these jobs.
Straight stitch foot
To sew straight stitches, you can use a specific foot, which is narrower than the standard foot.
The opening for the needle is reduced (be careful not to switch to zigzag mode with this foot, you will bend the needle)
This foot allows you to stitch as close as possible to the teeth of an edge-to-edge zipper.
It can also be used to sew as close as possible to a place too thick to fit under a standard foot: thus, it is used in the case of piping.
To use it, the piping or zip is sandwiched between the fabric and the lining, and the foot is positioned against the teeth or the piping.
This foot is narrow and symmetrical: it does not have a central hole but two notches on the sides so that you can sew on its left or on its right (don't forget to check the position of the needle!)
There are several kinds
Be careful with your fingers with this foot because the needle slips on one side!
Invisible zipper feet
This foot facilitates the installation of invisible zippers.
It has grooves on its base so that it slides over the teeth and holds them in place. The needle can thus prick right next to the teeth.
The result is precise and clean.
This foot makes it easy to sew buttonholes. To use it, follow the instructions given in your sewing machine!
With a basic sewing machine, you sew a 4-step buttonhole (by turning the stitch selector in each step) while with a more advanced machine the buttonhole is done in one step.
This foot has a larger needle clearance to allow for large horizontal stitches and to make it easier to see what's going on.
On some feet, there is a small lug at the back: this lug is used with stretch fabrics, just attach a string to the lug to support the buttonhole and prevent stretching. This lug can also be found in front (when the front of the foot has 3 fingers)
On the side of the sole, you can also find a small line, which marks the start of the buttonhole.
Blind Stitch Hem Foot
This foot is used to hem in an invisible or at least very discreet way: it is preferable to use a fine needle 70 or 80, according to the thickness and the quality of your fabric.
It is advisable to do a test beforehand and start sewing by turning the handwheel by hand until the needle deflects to the left and takes the minimum amount of fabric in the front part of your project. Train, it will become easy!
You can also use this foot to make a stitch along the edge (hair stitch), by positioning the fabric against the sole and the needle to the left if necessary.