How to Use a Singer Sewing Machine

Sewing machines can look frighteningly complex to those of us who don’t know how to use them. But don’t let the fear of an unknown machine and skill keep you from sewing. While we won’t cover every feature your sewing machine might have, we will go over the basics you need to get started: threading the machine, winding and inserting a bobbin, and selecting straight and zigzag stitches. So how to use a singer sewing machine.

Singer sewing machines are also known for their simplicity. Beginners can easily learn to use them as well as more advanced sewers. They are easy to use, durable and affordable.

how to use a singer sewing machine

Here are some of our best Singer sewing machines for beginners

Also read: What To Look For When Choosing A Sewing Machine

What Are the 3 Main Types of Sewing Machines?

There are three main types of sewing machines: mechanical, electronic, and computerized. Each type has its own unique features, advantages, and disadvantages.

1. Mechanical Sewing Machines

Mechanical sewing machines are the most basic type of machine available on the market today. They have a limited range of features and stitch patterns, but are easy to use and are better for learning how to sew. These machines are good for basic sewing projects, such as clothing alterations and repairs or making simple crafts or home decor items.

2. Electronic Sewing Machines

Electronic sewing machines generally have more stitches than mechanical ones do and they may also offer additional features like automatic buttonholes, needle threaders, adjustable presser foot pressure, and extra needle positions to help you sew a wider variety of fabrics.

3. Computerized Sewing Machines

Computerized or digital sewing machines offer the most stitch options and functions, available in-home models, today. These machines have LCD screens where you can edit stitches and make custom designs. Most computerized models include built-in memory storage so you can save your custom designs for later use.

Familiarize With the Singer Sewing Machine

If you’re new to sewing and don’t know how to use a sewing machine, that’s okay. The first step is to familiarize yourself with some of the important parts of your machine, which can be a little intimidating when you look at all the knobs, buttons, and dials for the first time.

Let’s take a look at some of the basic parts of a sewing machine.

how to use a singer sewing machine

Tension Dial 

The tension dial is one of the most important parts of your machine. It controls the amount of tension placed on your thread as it passes through the needle, which in turn affects how your stitches look when they’re sewn. 

The lower the number, the less tension placed on your thread, and vice versa. Start with a middle setting and adjust as needed for your sewing project.

How to Adjust Tension on Singer Sewing Machine

Presser Foot Lever

Located on the side of your machine near where you place your feet while sitting, this lever raises and lowers the presser foot — a tool that holds the fabric in place as it feeds through your machine. You will need to lower it when starting to sew, then raise it up when you want to remove the fabric.

The presser foot

This holds the fabric in place as it moves through your machine. The foot can also be raised or lowered depending on what you are sewing. When it is lowered, it applies pressure to keep your fabric in place as you sew.

Spool pin

This is located in front of your sewing machine, on the left side, near the needle plate, or on top. The spool pin holds your thread while you’re stitching. It’s usually located beneath a metal plate that lifts up and away from your fabric when you’re using this part of your sewing machine.

The needle plate

This is where the thread goes when preparing to sew. It holds the bobbin, which is threaded onto a metal spindle that attaches to a needle bar and then inserted into the fabric.

The needle bar

The needle bar is responsible for inserting and removing needles — as you sew — from their holes in a specialized area on either side of the device.

The bobbin-winder

If you’re using a pre-wound bobbin, skip this step. However, if you’re winding your own bobbin, this is where you start. Once you’ve put your thread on the spindle, wind it around the bobbin and press “start.” When it’s full, cut off the end and pull out about six inches of thread to get started sewing.

Locate the thread guide

You’ll find this helpful tool near where the thread comes out of the spool. The thread guide is there to ensure that your thread is properly running through all parts of your machine before being inserted into the needle.

Stitch adjustment buttons

Many machines have stitch adjustment buttons that allow you to lengthen or shorten stitches. Some machines also have a speed control button (slow/fast) and a reverse stitching button for locking stitches when you are finished stitching.

The thread take-up lever

The thread take-up lever is located on the needle bar area of your machine and moves up and down as you sew. It carries the thread from the spool to the needle area.

Find the needle clamp screw

This is where you will insert your sewing needle and tighten it in place with a screwdriver to hold it in position.

Bobbin cover and bobbin release

The bobbin cover hides your bobbin, which holds thread for making stitches. This cover will be removed so that you can insert your bobbin in order to load it with thread. The bobbin release button allows for easy removal of your bobbin from inside the machine.

How to Fix Bobbin Case in Singer Sewing Machine

Feed dog 

These two small teeth are just under where you place your material when sewing. The feed dog moves back and forth as you sew and moves your material through your sewing machine so that you don’t have to move it yourself. It is usually covered by a removable plate that you can take off when threading your bobbin and changing your needle.

Power switch

Find the power switch on your sewing machine. This is usually on the right side of your machine near the power cord.

Setting Up Your Singer Sewing Machine

Setting up a sewing machine properly is an important first step towards learning how to sew. If you’ve just taken the plunge and bought your very first sewing machine, or maybe you’ve inherited one from a relative, it can be intimidating to figure out all the pieces and parts. Here’s a quick overview of the process, which varies depending on the model.

How to Set Up a Singer Sewing Machine – 10 Simple Steps 

Remove the accessory box. 

This will contain various feet, needles, and bobbins. Some of the feet are for sewing on buttons and zippers, others are for decorative stitches and hems. The needles come in different sizes depending on the thickness of your fabric. Any extra bobbins can be kept in this box for later use.

Find a sturdy table to put your machine on. 

It should be high enough for your arms to move freely above it as you work, but low enough for you to see what you’re doing comfortably.

Insert the needle

The needle is what punctures the fabric and creates stitches. For most sewing machines, you’ll need to raise the presser foot (the foot that holds your fabric down) to release the needle clamp screw. Then insert the needle.

Thread the machine

Once you have the needle in place, thread the machine. This sounds simple enough, but it is a little tricky. There are a lot of places for the thread to get caught, and if it does you will end up with a huge mess. Be sure the thread goes through all of the guides and that none of it gets stuck anywhere.

Wind and insert the bobbin

Many new Singer models come with pre-wound bobbins, so if yours is already wound, you can skip this step. If not, wind your bobbin by threading it around all of its tension discs, then place it onto your sewing machine.

Attach your power cord

Attach your power cord to the back of the machine, then plug it into an outlet. For most machines, it is necessary to flip a switch at the back or front of the sewing machine to turn it on (this may also control whether or not it is plugged in).

How to Use a Singer Sewing Machine

Now that you’ve set up your sewing machine, you’re ready to begin sewing. Here’s a quick step-by-step of what you can expect:

  1. Decide on the project you’ll be making.  Pick out your pattern and fabric, and make sure you have any other supplies needed (such as thread and buttons). Here are the easy Sewing Projects for Beginners.
  2. Set your stitch. Consult your manual to find out the right settings for the type of stitch you want, or take a look at our guide to different stitches.
  3. Place the fabric under the presser foot. aligning the edge of the fabric with the seam allowance marked on the presser foot. (If you don’t have a seam allowance marked on your presser foot, you can use a ruler to measure ⅜” from the edge of the fabric.)
  4. Lower the needle. Lower your needle into your fabric and make sure it is centered over your seam line by pressing down on your reverse stitch button while holding the back of the fabric taut.
  5. Wrap the threads. Hold both threads out at an equal length so they don’t get tangled in your sewing machine or around your needle as you begin sewing. You can wrap them around two fingers or clip them so they stay together throughout.
  6. Turn on your sewing machine and begin to sew slowly. Guiding the fabric with both hands as well as any fingers needed to sew a straight line. When you reach the end of a seam or need to turn a corner, stop with your needle in the down position and raise up your presser foot before turning or pivoting your work.

Also Read: 36 Tips to Improve Your Sewing Skills to a Professional Level

Final Words

In the end, Singer sewing machines are a great tool to have around. They’re easy to use and capable of performing some fairly advanced functions for basic sewing tasks. Keep your machine tight, oil it periodically, and take care of it over the years, and you shouldn’t have any difficulties with it at all.


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