Day 8: Your secret sewing weapon

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Today is Day 8 of 31 Days of Sewing School.

It takes a while to get used to a sewing machine. Years spent on an old clunker that I only pulled out a few times a year taught me this lesson well. Unless we use our machine often, it’s going to be a long journey of learning the ins and outs of how she works best.

Until you’re totally honed in on your machine, I have one secret weapon that is an absolute must, even for the simplest of sewing projects.

Keep your owner’s manual close-by your sewing machine at all times.

When I bought my new machine, it took me a while to get used to threading it, because the spool had to be placed going the opposite direction of my old one. And the bobbin needed to be inserted the opposite way as well. For the longest time, I could not wrap my head around this simple thing.

So for a couple years, I kept my quick-start guide right with my machine. This is a smaller guide that came with the regular owner’s manual. I still go to my owner’s manual for specific details I don’t remember, but that quick-start guide was my go-to resource as I got used to my machine.

Your instruction book is your secret weapon to understanding and using your sewing machine.

If you received a hand-me-down without one, check online for a digital copy of the manual. I found a PDF for the serger I was given so that when I’m ready to dive into learning it I’ve got the owner’s manual handy. If a google search won’t find your manual, contact the manufacturer to see how you can get your hands on one.

Tomorrow I’ll give you an introduction to my sewing machine in hopes that it will help you get to know yours a little better. Are you best friends with your sewing machine owner’s manual yet?

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About Nicole

Nicole can be found blogging at her lifestyle blog, and is the editor of Simple Homemade. She loves to read, sew, make ice cream, take pictures, watch baseball and go for walks by the beach with her hubby and three little kiddos. She loves anything handmade and is affectionately known as a bit of a hippie among family and friends.


  1. Thank you for doing this series. I am really enjoying it and find it to be very useful.

  2. I went online and downloaded the pdf of my machine’s manual into a pdf reader on my iPad. That makes it pretty convenient.

  3. Thanks for this tip. I will find the online manual for my sewing machine since I lost the one with the package long time ago. But first, I have to see what model it is and if it has a serial number or specifications to make the search easy.

  4. Nice to be here and see your post!


  1. [...] hear about it! Leave us a comment and tell us what make and model you have and how you like it. Tomorrow, we’re talking about my secret weapon for sewing with a [...]

  2. [...] that you’ve got your owner’s manual handy, you should be able to find a machine overview section towards the beginning.  This will show you [...]

  3. [...] you figure out which type you have, grab your trusty owner’s manual to see exactly how yours is threaded and inserted. The direction the tail of extra thread is going [...]

  4. [...] 5: Basic sewing tools Day 6: More sewing equipment and useful tools Day 7: Buying a sewing machine Day 8: Your secret weapon Day 9: Getting to know your sewing machine Day 10: How to choose (and not break) your needles Day [...]

  5. [...] you know you have a secret weapon for your sewing journey? You won’t want to stash this one away in a file cabinet in the [...]

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