If I set up my newly donated sewing machine today and use it for the first time...

(10 Posts)
parrotonmyshoulder Sat 02-Apr-16 08:39:21

What shall I make? Or is it best just to practise stitching? I've never used it before, never used a machine since school (and even then I wasn't very good at it). But I was given this a year ago and haven't dared get it out of the box!

It's fairly old but serviceable. Nothing fancy. I'd like to make cushion covers. They look simple. But are probably not!

I can get to a fabric stall today, even a cushion pad stall I imagine. Too ambitious?

OP’s posts: |
SunnyL Sat 02-Apr-16 08:42:06

Cushions are a great place to start. I'd suggest you try looking for patterns online that don't require zips. Envelope style or tie with ribbons etc should be a great starting point.

I started out making things like simple tote bags or makeup bags. Lots of free patterns online for these as well

SoupDragon Sat 02-Apr-16 09:59:36

I think a cushion cover would be perfect. There are envelope styles that require nothing fancy or complicated smile

PreemptiveSalvageEngineer Sat 02-Apr-16 10:15:43

Can I break from the crowd and highly recommend you do practice stitches? It seems boring, but really helps you get into the swing if things.

My sewing teacher back in school was a real drill sergeant: she made us do curves and darts and etc, over and over. And that really paid off, I think. If you haven't machine-sewn for a long time, might help to job your "muscle memory".

And I'd recommend it for any new machine, to help get familiar with it.

Good luck & have fun! smile

MummySparkle Sat 02-Apr-16 10:22:42

I would get two bits of fabric, lay them on top of each other (a4 ish) and test out all of your stitches along the short side of the fabric so you end up with stripes. Try out the straight stitch first in a variety of stitch lengths, then the zig zag in a variety of widths and lengths. Then try any fancy stitches the machine might have. I would recommend fitting a new needle as the one that's in there is probably blunt. And check that the stitches look the same from the front and back of the fabric. You may have to fiddle with the tension a bit to get them even. This will help with foot control and getting to know the machine. Should only take 15 - 20mins and then making a cushion cover sounds like a great idea

Floppityflop Sat 02-Apr-16 10:23:28

Practise stitches on that calico fabric you use for a toile, to get used to the tension. Then progress to envelope cushion cover. Then I'd suggest you try a sleeveless shell top, then a simple shift dress without sleeves, then a simple shift with sleeves. Press, press, press your work! See if there are any short classes in your area too.

MummySparkle Sat 02-Apr-16 10:23:36

Oh yes, also try a few corners. Stop with the needle in the fabric, lift the foot and turn the fabric 90 degrees. Put the foot back down and carry on x

lljkk Sat 02-Apr-16 10:41:34

Practice for sure. do you understand what all the knobs & dials do? Or how to service it (where to add oil?)

PreemptiveSalvageEngineer Sat 02-Apr-16 11:36:33

MummySparkle you just triggered!

Pivot! PIVOT! (when Ross was telling that in Friends, it triggered as well grin )


DON'T slam the presser foot!

Aahhh, such memories...

MummySparkle Sat 02-Apr-16 12:29:44

'Lower that black love GENTLY!' Is something I say a lot! I work in an art department and I'm the one who teaches everyone how to use the sewing machines

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