Generally speaking, I can be more of a hand-sewer than a machine-sewer. Getting frustrated with a machine, to me, isn’t the most difficult task, so stepping back from one can be a fairly easy decision. What I’ve found in stepping away is that I actually like hand-sewing. Sure, the process might take longer, but there’s something relaxing about going one stitch at a time with my own hands.
And, believe it or not, I might actually be more likely to sew a straight-ish line by hand than I am with a machine! Weird? Maybe!
But stepping away from the machine has led to me trying to re-acquaint myself with my sewing machine, and what I found is that the time away caused me to potentially forget things—maybe keep me from fully learning all things—about my machine. Had I had (or kept) those things in mind, I suspect my sewing-machine-experiences might’ve gone a bit better—and a bit quicker.
Now, don’t get me wrong! I’ve completed projects on my sewing machine. But I was potentially setting myself up for frustration by not really understanding or memorizing the details of this machine (Brother LX2500):
Imagine how far I could be with machine-sewing if I would’ve taken the time to learn more details and commit them to memory! So, for today, I’m going to give you that bit of information: Get to know your sewing machine! Even something as simple as realizing the thread-holder lifts higher could prevent grief, since you might not have as much issue with the thread falling off while you’re sewing or threading your bobbin. And, yes! That happened to me!
For me, figuring out the need-to-know details and letting the rest go might’ve been tempting. Do yourself a favor, and don’t keep that thought process. There might be aspects of your machine that make for easier sewing, or that advance your capabilities in a way that a basic “Hey! I can thread the needle and bobbin!” don’t quite cover. Possible examples: Apparently, I have a reverse button on my machine I maybe never knew about, and a way to alter the tension. Who knew?! And if you don’t get to know your machine, by the way, don’t be surprised if you come out with stitches that look like these:
If you buy your sewing machine brand new, check out any instruction manual that comes with it. The reading might seem tedious, but that tedious task could be worth it when you don’t hate your sewing machine, like, twelve times per use (Am I exaggerating??? You decide!). If you buy yours used, don’t have a manual, or lose the manual, try looking online. I think I threw mine away (don’t do that!), but luckily there are videos available on Youtube that show the basics of running my model. I can’t encourage you enough to look into such information to learn what you can about your sewing machine! Doing so could extend your possibilities and preserve your nerves!
Your sewing machine is only as good as your ability to use it, so don’t hold yourself back by not learning about it properly.
And even if you did know all there is to know about your machine, forgetting details after a limited amount of use isn’t out of the realm of possibility. Think about all the math classes you had over the years. Even though you might’ve had formulas in your head for a time—like, for an exam—how many do you still remember? After a while, your sewing machine’s details might be so burrowed into your thought process that you can be away for a time and remember them, but don’t be too embarrassed to rediscover those details if you can’t bring them to mind. Something like which way your bobbin’s thread goes could be so small that you don’t remember it, but not knowing could complicate your sewing.
So that’s lesson number two, one I had to learn when I came back to my sewing machine after time away: Don’t be afraid to admit you don’t remember, or be too proud to look into how to do these things again. Your sewing machine is only as good as your ability to use it, so don’t hold yourself back by not learning about it properly—even if it isn’t the first time you’re learning about it! Don’t stop until you know what every button, knob, or contraption does!