How to Operate a Power Sewing Machine?

Those of us who don’t know how to use sewing machines may find them to be dangerously complex. Don’t let your fear of an unproven machine and limited skill set prevent you from producing beautiful textile wonders, though! Utilize this step-by-step manual to learn the anatomy, configuration, and operation of a sewing machine so that you may start making your own handmade products.

Steps to Setting Up the Machine

Following are the major steps to setting up the sewing machine −

  • Place the sewing machine − In front of you on a stable table, desk, counter, or sewing cabinet. Get comfortable on a chair that matches the height of the table. Place the machine so that the body is on the right and the needle end is to your left. Don’t connect it just yet; you need to verify a few items and get familiar with the device first.

  • Securely insert a needle − Needles can only move in one direction since they have a flat surface, which is typically the rear. When installing the needle, the groove must face the direction from which the needle is threaded because it runs down one side of the needle, typically opposing the flat side of the shank (the thread rides in this groove while going up and down through the fabric). Completely insert a needle into the post, then firmly tighten the thumbscrew. Consult the user manual for your system if you’re still having issues.

  • Put the bobbin in after winding it − A machine uses two thread sources: a top thread and a lower thread that are kept on a bobbin. Place the bobbin spool on the bobbin winder at the top to wind the bobbin. The thread from the spool should be wound around the guides and onto the bobbin as you follow the directions. When the bobbin is full, turn on the bobbin winder and wait for it to stop on its own.

  • Once wound, place the bobbin in the bobbin cage − That is located below the needle on the bottom portion of the sewing machine. The bobbin can occasionally just drop in (the bobbin case is built in). In this instance, it’s crucial to draw the thread to the left after passing it through a little notch in the case’s front. Leave the thread’s end outside. After threading the top thread, it needs to be brought up through the needle plate’s hole.

  • Thread the sewing machine − On the top of the sewing machine is a spool of thread that needs to be unwound and attached to the needle. Pull the thread through the thread guide at the top, down, and around the takeup lever to do this. The machine should be marked with little numerals and arrows that point in the right direction for threading.

    • The thread typically moves in the following manner: “left, down, up, down, into a hook, through the needle.” Spool pin, tension, take-up lever, and needle: using the thread guides given between these parts is another method for understanding how to thread the machine.

    • The needle can be threaded from the front to the back, from the left, or from the right. If it has already been threaded, that provides a hint as to the direction; otherwise, the last thread guide before the needle is the one that is situated closest to the direction from which the needle must be threaded.

  • Take out both threads − With your left hand, hold the needle thread taut and facing you. Turn the hand wheel toward you and move the needle down or up one full revolution with your right hand. Now use your left hand to draw up on the needle thread that you are still holding. The bobbin thread, which is now looped over the needle thread, was caught when the threaded needle descended and ascended. To remove the looped bobbin thread, simply cut the needle thread and insert a pair of scissors between the presser foot and the plate. The other option is to simply release the needle thread. Two thread ends, one coming from the needle and the other rising from the bobbin below, should be visible at this point.

  • Turn on the device by plugging it in − The built-in light on many sewing machines can be used to determine whether the machine is powered on. If there is a power switch, it is typically on the machine’s right side or the rear. Some devices turn on as soon as they are plugged in because they lack a separate switch. Additionally, connect the pedal to the device. Put the pedal in a convenient location beneath your feet.

    • Use some waste materials to practice. To practise sewing, pick a plain woven fabric rather than a knit one. Use a lightweight cloth for your first machine sewing projects. Because they become overly thick when multiple layers are stacked on them, denim and flannel can be challenging to sew.

    • Suspend the fabric in a straight line. When sewing, place the bulk of the material to the left of the machine. If you place the bulk to the right, your stitching may be clumsy.

    • The presser foot should be lowered onto the fabric. The presser foot can be raised or lowered using a lever that is either behind or to the side of the needle assembly.

    • Keep both threads’ loose ends in your hands. You’ll need to grasp these ends during the first few stitches to prevent them from retracting into the fabric.

    • Step on the pedal. Your speed is controlled by the foot pedal. Similar to a car’s gas pedal, the harder you press it, the faster you’ll go. Just enough pressure should be applied at first to start the machine.

    • Cut the thread. On the back of the post that supports the presser foot on many machines, there is a little notch. To cut the thread, hold both ends in place and bring it down over the notch.


To operate a sewing machine, all you need to do is become familiar with the presser foot, bobbin winder, stitch adjustment buttons, spool pin, tension guide, and other key components. Set a needle in the machine and lay it flat on a strong table. Thread the machine after winding and inserting the bobbin to remove both hazards. Initial settings should be for a straight stitch. Press the foot pedal after aligning the fabric with the needle and lowering the presser foot onto the material.

Updated on: 08-Feb-2023


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