If you’re new to sewing, the prospect of using a sewing machine can be pretty daunting. But don’t worry – with this guide by The Sewing Studio, you’ll be sewing like a pro in no time! In this post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about setting up your machine, threading your needle and bobbin, and sewing your first stitch. Let’s get started!

Get to Know Your Sewing Machine

If it’s your first time using a sewing machine, it is important to know the name and functions of each accessory that comes with your machine. As you open the box, you’ll find your manual, your foot control, and your new sewing machine of course! 

Now let’s go over the parts shared by most sewing machines!

Baby Lock Joy Sewing Machine
  1. Accessory Bin

On this model, you’ll find an accessory bin that is filled with accessories your machine will come with. We’ll go over those accessories here shortly!

  1. Bobbin Case

The bobbin case is the heart of any sewing machine. It holds the bobbin that will make up the underside stitch.  Many different styles exist, including front loaders or drop-in units with top-loading bobbins.

  1. Presser Foot

This accessory is a removable foot that helps you sew more easily and efficiently.  It keeps the fabric you’re working on in place above the feed dogs. Feet can be replaced for different purposes such as a zipper foot being used to install a zipper and many more.

  1. Needle

Your sewing machine will come equipped with a needle, however, they can be removed and replaced if ever broken.  Different projects require different types of needles, so a replacement might be needed depending on the necessities of your project. 

  1. Presser Foot Lever 

This lever controls your presser foot. Lifting the lever up will allow you to slide your fabric into place, and lowering your lever to secure your fabric in place. It is important to always make sure your lever is down before you sew! It’s a very common beginner mistake! 

  1. Automatic Needle Threader

Automatic Needle Threaders are more common on newer machines and are on all Baby Lock machines. The function of this mechanism is in the name and helps to thread your needle!

  1. Tension Control

During a project, you may need to adjust the tension of the thread and this control will help you do that. 

  1. Thread Hook

This hook appears when you move your handwheel towards yourself when you begin threading your sewing machine.

  1. Tension Disk

The tension disk helps guide the thread between the spool and the winder.  It will also keep adequate tension on your tread as you sew.  If you notice that your tension is off, it is likely that you do not have your thread in the tension disk.  Try rethreading before stitching again.

  1. Spool Pin

This mechanism is there to hold your thread during the sewing process and will allow your thread to move seamlessly. You will use a spool cap to hold your thread on your spool pin.

  1. Bobbin Winder

This mechanism is there for you to place your empty bobbin and wind it with thread before you place it in the bobbin case. 

  1. Hand Wheel

This is a larger dial that allows you to move the needle up and down freely whenever you need to.  It is located on the right side of the machine.  Always rotate the hand wheel of your machine towards you.  It is not good for the health of your machine for you to rotate it away from you when adjusting your needle.

  1. Stitch Selector* 

This dial allows you to select what kind of stitch you want for your project.

  1. Stitch Length Selector*

This dial allows you to select the length of your stitch for your project.

  1. Stitch Width Selector*

This dial allows you to select the width of your project. 

  1. Stitch Menu

This menu shows you the available stitches on your sewing machine. In order to switch your stitches you’d move your dials to the corresponding letter on this menu.

*Sewing machines are different and not all have dials to switch stitches.

  1. Reverse Stitch

Sometimes you’ve got to go back! Pressing this button allows for backstitching to secure your stitches and keep seams from opening.

The Accessories

Now let’s open up that accessory bin and go over each accessory piece!

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  1. Spool Pin
  2. 3 Bobbins
  3. Extra Needles
  4. Seam Ripper
  5. Zipper Foot
  6. Blind Hem Foot
  7. Button Hole Foot
  8. Small Spool Cap
  9. Larger Spool Cap
  10. Small Screwdriver

Now that you are more familiar with your sewing machine, let’s move on to setting it up!

Setting Up Your Sewing Machine

Let’s set up your sewing machine and start stitching! The first includes putting the thread on the spool pin, threading and inserting the bobbin, and threading the needle. For a more detailed explanation of how to do this, check out this video. 

  • Insert video link here – 

Wind Your Bobbin

Once your machine is set up, it’s time to thread your bobbin and needle. To do this, you’ll need to follow these steps: 

1. Add your spool pin to the back of your sewing machine and add your thread, and complete this by adding the small spool cap to hold your thread in place.  It’s best to use a spool cap that is about the same size as the spool of thread.

2. Place your empty bobbin on the bobbin winder and push the bobbin winder to the left and you’ll hear a click. This sound is the motor changing positions to power the winder instead of the needle.

3. Take your thread and floss it around the outside of the tension disk. 

4. Take the end of your thread and wrap it around the bobbin several times to prevent a mess of thread under your bobbin.  

5. Now slowly press your foot control and begin to wind your bobbin.  If you notice your thread nesting under your bobbin, stop winding!  You will need to remove the thread and try again.  If a bobbin is not wound properly, you will notice that your machine does not produce nice stitches when sewing.

6. When the bobbin and the motor slows down, that is when you know your bobbin is ready.

7. Now it’s time to thread the bobbin. To do this, you’ll need to remove the plate at the bottom of your sewing machine (also known as the bobbin case cover). Once you’ve removed the plate, insert the bobbin into its case (it should go in easily – if it doesn’t, check that it’s inserted correctly). If you struggle to insert the bobbin correctly, make sure to check your manual for additional instructions.

For a more detailed look at winding and loading your bobbin, watch this video here to learn more.

-video link- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzpdEfqugRE

Threading Your Sewing Machine

  1. Ensure your bobbin winder has been pushed back to the right in order to have your motor run the needle and not the bobbin winder.
  1. You’ll grab the end of your thread and take it to the thread guide located on the upper back side of your sewing machine.
  1. Then you’ll take your thread down and follow the “U” shaped tracks located on the front of your sewing machine. 
  1. At this point you’ll have to ensure your thread hook is up, by turning your handwheel towards yourself, placing your thread through said hook, bring your thread back down.
  1. Now that your thread is close to your needle. You’ll want to make sure your presser foot is down.
  1. Place the thread behind the hook located above your needle.  Making sure that your needle is in the top most position before processing.  Bring down your automatic needle threader.
  1.  With your automatic needle threader down you’ll place your thread underneath the white guide on the threader on the left and bring your thread below the needle.
  1. Bring the automatic needle Threader back up and watch your needle get threaded!
  1. Holding on to your thread behind the presser foot, you’re going to lower the needle with the hand wheel.
  1. Allow your needle to go down and up and your needle will bring up the bobbin thread for you to grab.
  1. Pull your threads through and behind the presser foot.  Now you’re ready to start sewing!! 

For a closer look at this process check out this video: How to Thread the Joy

Sewing Your First Stitch 

  1. Make sure your dials are set to the correct stitch pattern, lengths, and width that you want. 
  1. Start by placing your fabric under the presser foot. 
  1.  Lower the presser foot lever to secure the fabric in place. 
  1. Turn the handwheel towards you to raise the needle. 
  1.  Put your foot on the pedal, and gently press down to start sewing. The machine will start sewing automatically. 
  1. To stop sewing, take your foot off the pedal. The needle will stop moving and remain in the fabric. 
  1. To raise the needle, turn the handwheel towards you until it stops moving. 
  1. To remove your fabric from the sewing machine, raise the presser foot lever and carefully pull the fabric towards the thread cutters on the left side. 

And that’s it! You’ve now successfully sewn your first stitch. Congratulations!

We at The Sewing Studio hope this blog helped you get started with your first few stitches! If you liked this blog or have any questions feel free to comment below, as well as stop by The Sewing Studio, we’d be more than happy to help you get started on your sewing machine. Thank you for letting us help you take your inspiration and turn it into a creation! 

The Sewing Studio Staff.

The Sewing Studio is proud to offer a wide variety of Baby Lock Sewing Machines!

The Sewing Studio is a full-service sewing store that has been serving the Lubbock, Texas area for nearly 40 years. We specialize in selling and servicing high-end sewing machines, but we also offer a wide range of classes for sewers of all levels. Give us a call at (806) 792-3863 or visit our store to learn more about what we can do for you! Thanks for reading! #SewingStudioTopTips #BabyLockEmbroideryMachines #SewWithBabyLock #IQTechnology #IQLaser #Sewing #SewingMachines #SewingStore #LubbockSewingStore #SewingStore #SewingClassesLubbock

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