Friday, July 9, 2010

Tips I've Learned from my Janome Sewing Machine Class


I'm sadly overtaken by events so I'm not sewing until July 30.  BUT, in the meantime . . .

I did want to post some pictures with regard to my machine class - and I have gotten some emails requesting that I do so.

This post is relevant to Janome Electronic Machines (I have a TB Threadbanger TB30) but can also be applied to their other electronic machines (The TB 30 is just a relabeled Home Decor 4030).

I guess the first thing to discuss is that I did read the brief and relatively unhelpful manual that came with the machine.  But, since I had a Singer 15 years ago - I thought "No biggie."   I thought I knew the best way to insert the bobbin and thread a needle.  Fail!

As the picture above illustrates, one must wrap the thread around the slight metal tab on the shank before the thread goes through the eye of the needle.  Duh!  BTW, it was in the manual (which is slight) and I missed it.

In addition, the bobbin should be placed in one direction ONLY - the illustration shows this but I didn't think it was mandatory, rather it was a suggestion!! Ok, that makes sense (NOW!)

The stitch number 3 to the right I'm pointing at  below- should be used for stretch knits, and other stretch materials, (and I always used the zig--zag!!).

In addition, the stitch I'm pointing to below (5 to the right), should be used for Elastics!!! According to my surly instructor, all my garments with elastics may now pull out.  We haven't experienced this but I warned Jonathan regarding his boxers:)

Finally, the button I'm pointing to below normally makes a knot in your stitch, eliminating the need for a back stitch - the instructor does not recommend it -  BUT I LOVE IT!

Behind the needle, on the back of the machine is the feed dog drop - I couldn't find it before, for some reason:)

And, Lastly, we were taught how to sew without using our legs and feet - it's the auto option for sewing.  I was skeptical at first but in reality it is very very easy . . . . I can control my pressure on the foot pedal and speed either by my feet or by hand. .  .Weird, huh?

In all, Janome should produce a user friendly manual, instead of the ridiculously brief materials they produce.  I mean, what about everyone buying on the internet.  I didn't but I live in the Los Angeles area, meaning I have a lot of choices.   And because some of the mechanical techniques are different  - if you've previously sewn on a different brand, the machine is not intuitive.

Dear Goodness, I was just browsing Theads and found this link
Unique Body Scans on body scan measurements!  I might do it if I could get a sloper out of it!


  1. Good tips! I have a Janome, and I didn't know about the elastic stitch thing - I always use a zigzag. I've never had elastic unravel, though... I do LOVE the lightning stitch for sewing knits! It's so much more smooth on the outside than a zigzag.

  2. I know - I feel like a big dorkorama. BTW, I am taking the Cal. Bar at the end of the month (don't have to - but what the hey). So boring studying. I can't WAIT to get back to sewing.

  3. Good to see you back! Hilarious about the boxers and their impending doom - good luck with that. I never knew what that elastic stitch was - I may have to pull the bathing suit out and try it again. I actually keep my Brother's manual within reach and have folded down pages that I look at repeatedly (because I have Mad Cow and can't remember). Thanks for the tips!

  4. Curious! a scanner measures! fun getting to know the sewing machine, it is an adventure