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justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

I recently purchased a 1930's Singer (lovely table, and the machine is in immaculate condition). I've only worked with a machine this old once before, which means I've been having a bit of a hard time figuring everything out. Once I finally figured out how to wind the bobbin and thread the machine properly, I was super excited to get started...only my machine won't sew properly. When I try to stitch, the threads don't form stitches; when I pull the fabric out from the machine after sewing, I am left with fabric and the top thread on top, bobbin thread on bottom. I am completely lost as to what is keeping my machine from stitching properly. I tried adjusting the tension, I rechecked how to thread the machine, and the bobbin seems to be threading through just fine. I also replaced the needle in case that was the issue. Any ideas on how to make my machine sew properly?

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justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

boscokitty posted:

It sounds like the bobbin isn't completely in the right place, and it's not catching the top thread and pulling it down. Do you have a manual for it? I know that on the Singer website, if you have the model number (which is probably printed or engraved on the side), you can order a manual for $10-15 dollars. It might be something to consider.

I downloaded the manual when I got the machine, but no luck in fixing the problem. In attempting to fix it, I've noticed a few other things. Namely, the machine will go a couple stitches before the top thread will de-thread itself from the needle. The thread doesn't break, and everything keeps feeding fine. It's almost as if it slips out of the needle's eye (but the needle is completely intact, so it's not possible for it to slip out).

I'm very confused as to what is going wrong with this. It's an older machine (1930's), so I understand it may have some issues, but I was really hoping to fix this without having to pay a ton to take it in. Does anyone else have any suggestions? I've tried adjusting the tension with no luck. I just want to be able to sew!

justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

I figured out how to make my machine work (and feel terribly stupid)! I was threading right to left, instead of left to right. At least it was an easy fix.

My first project on my new (old) machine was a set of pillowcases. Next up are an apron and finishing a jumper I started in June. I'm a little concerned about this jumper, since the pattern ended up being too big and baggy. I started tailoring it, but I got busy and haven't touched it since. It's my first significant off-pattern project (aside from easy things like pillowcases and aprons).

I know people listed some websites earlier, but are there any other reputable sites that offer affordable fabrics? There aren't any fabric stores in the town my college is located in, and I'd love to be able to have fabric delivered instead of having to drive to the Cities for new projects.

justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

I just received some awesome fabric from fabric.com --some super soft jersey knit in a pretty aqua, and a lightweight grey/blue plaid suiting. I'm working on designing my first big items (dress, skirt, maybe a top?), which is pretty exciting for me!

A question for those with older machines, though: when your machine doesn't have the handy 'reverse' function, do you simply turn the fabric around and sew backwards against the seam, or is there another easy way to 'lock' the stitch?

justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

TinuvielDancing posted:

I have been browsing some of the websites that sell fabric that are linked in the OP. The only fabric store that I am familiar with in my area is Hancocks, and I know their stuff is not the highest quality. I am a little nervous buying fabric online though since I won't be able to see or feel it. Any suggestions for judging the quality of fabric online? Is price a sufficient indicator?

I haven't ordered a lot of fabric online, but the fabric I've ordered from fabric.com has been of good quality. They do a good job of describing the fabric, as well, and list the appropriate care methods (which I appreciate cause I have a tendency to accidentally destroy fabric through ironing or drying).

justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

My friend just made a plaster cast of me for a dress form:


It's currently suspended from a plant hanger and scaring people who randomly walk into my apartment. We sewed the back together (cause we had to cut it off), and I'm almost a little sad about the prospect of putting a covering on it because it looks so cool. On the other hand, I finally have a dress form! I still need to figure out how to fill it to help it maintain its shape and not fall apart. Any ideas?

justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

I just stopped by the fabric store and am putting together my first completely-by-scratch dress. This dress form my friend cast for me is amazing! Hopefully I'll have this finished soon so I can get images up for critique :)

justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

I got a new Singer Confidence a few months back and so far have really enjoyed working with it. Until today. I'm attempting to make a lacy garter belt, but my machine keeps on eating/destroying my lace! It looks (on the backside of the lace) like the bobbin is bunching up, but I'm guessing it's actually threads from the lace that are getting bunched.

I made sure the needle is meant for light-weight materials and have tried putting the guides down with no success. I also tried attaching it to another light-weight fabric, but that didn't make a difference. What am I doing wrong? Is it possible to sew with lace on a machine (I guess I never did it on my old machine, either)?

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justasmile
Aug 22, 2006

Everybody's free to feel good...

Lace and...lace, ideally. I also tried piecing it together with a light-weight knit (very stretchy), but it didn't make a difference. Changing the tension helped to some degree, so maybe that combined with the stabilizer will do the trick. Or maybe I just need to make this out of different fabric!

Also to be completed this week: a car booster seat for my cat, so he'll hopefully be less annoying on road trips.

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