Posts tagged "sewing machine

Tag Archives: sewing machine

39 top sewing hacks, tips and how-tos

Goodies to make all sewists’ lives easier!

Forgive us if we look a little smug with this one: we’re rather proud of how much sewing usefulness with all these sewing hacks that we’ve managed to cram into one article!

The conversation here started off with a chance remark “what is that little knobbly bit on an unpicker for?”

It quickly developed into us seeking out a whole range of quick fix hacks, hints and tips from across the sewing globe.

And there really are some rippers here (as they say in Australia, the source of our first hack).

Have fun!


Life hack: What that little ball on your unpicker is really for!

We’re off down under for this excellent how-to. A big thank you to the Starts At Sixty lifestyle blog.

This beauty focuses on the small ball on one of the prongs on your unpicker (or seam ripper) – you may have wondered what it’s actually used for?

Enlightenment is at hand! “That’s to allow the unpicker to be slid along a garment in one swipe – no more fussing over individual stitches!”

There’s even an accompanying video that really help you get to grips with the whole concept.

Sobering thought: “We couldn’t help but feel silly when we saw this tutorial – it seems so obvious now!”


11 sewing hacks you need to know

This wonderful collection of goodies comes from Christine Haynes on the Bluprint blog.

Some are really simple, but can make such a difference! They include:-

  • “Add a seam allowance with a double pencil tracing tool
  • “Mark your seam allowance on your machine”
  • and the wonderfully simple “Leave notes with your fabric stash”.

We love: “Nobody wants their bobbins rolling around and unraveling all over the place. Keep them in place by storing in toe separators.”


15 sewing room hacks

Even more goodies for you here, courtesy of the wonderful Heather on her Heather Handmade blog.

A whole range of hot tips for you here – many of which will change the way you organise your sewing, from the really simple “Turn all your machines on with the button on a power strip”, to “Create a tiny ironing area next to your machine for quick pressing” and “Store hand needles in a bulletin board.”

There’s even an accompanying video that covers all the tips.

Top tip: “Use a glue stick to ‘pin'”. 


12 sewing hacks every seamstress should know!

Last and by no means least we have this collection of sensationalises from Kimberly Coffin on the Sweet Red Poppy website.

Some we’ve seen a few times before – but even the most experienced of us have been gobsmacked by some of these amazing how-tos.

Golf tees, pattern weights and perfect ruffles can all be found here.

Look out for: “…a quick and easy way to create beautiful ruffles without all the hassle!”


The Jaguar sewing range – making all your sewing projects more enjoyable!

Jaguar sewing machines »

The unique DQS (Digital Quick-threading System) has now been introduced to the UK. All current models come with a three year parts and labour guarantee and the 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Jaguar overlocker machines »

Exclusive to Jaguar overlocker sewing machines – the unique cutting system opens up 180 degrees giving easy access to the looper thread guides.

Jaguar sewing machine accessories »

Everything you’ll need for you Jaguar overlocker and sewing machines. The range includes foot control units, sewing feet, overlocker feet and overlocker spares.

So you have a sewing machine – what are you going to do with it?

A variety of exiting projects for sewists everywhere

It’s quite often the case that you have a sewing machine, but after a while your inspiration begins to wane. Sometimes all it needs is a little inspiration and you’ll rediscover the joys of sewing all over again!

So here are some rather nifty ideas to get you back to what is for many of us a real passion – sewing!

Here at Jaguar Sewing Machines, we’re often on the lookout for hints tips and tutorials. So we’ve put together five of our current favourites.

1) The high-low T-shirt

We really like this one by Mayra at So So Easy, which is subtitled “How to hide your panty line” – something that concerns a number of us from time to time.

It’s very well illustrated and the step by step instructions are a pure joy! We particularly like the fact that

“It will be loose around the hips and closer to your body at the shoulders. Perfect for the ladies who want to hide some extra pounds around the waistline and are looking for an easy going, comfortable top to walk around in.”

2) Cute things for the kitchen

Actually this isn’t one tutorial sewists – it’s actually nine! The beauty of these is that they make wonderful presents for friends and family.

This wonderful piece of work is by Caroline on the Sew Can She website and the tutorials include:-

  1. The classic tie on dish towel
  2. The one yard magic apron – with a pattern
  3. Cloth napkins
  4. Potholders with pockets
  5. Tea towels – and so on…

3) Basic zipper pouch tutorial

Short, simple – and to the point. The See Kate Sew website provides an excellent little tutorial aimed at beginners and early sewers.

Zipper pouches are so useful – you can’t have enough of them! Someone here at Jaguar (mentioning no names, Jane) got so carried away that she created eight of them – and now all her daughter’s friends want one as well.

So no chance of having an under-utilised sewing machine in this particular case then…

4) How to sew a mitred corner

Very useful advice on this blog article which deals with techniques rather than a specific project. 

The source is the always excellent Tilly and the Buttons blog. As ever, the photos are clear and the text well written and informative.

“Mitred corners create a neat finish on exposed corners, without any flappy bits that you might get by folding one edge over the other.”

5) How to finish a knit neckline (3 ways)

One tip, three techniques – this blog article by on the Melly Sews website really is jam-packed with useful information!

Great step-by-step photos and instructions are complimented by a YouTube video detailing

“…two ways to sew knit neckbands (out of rib knit or self fabric) and another option to bind the neckline.”

Jaguar Novum Craft 590 sewing machine

Jaguar sewing machine focus

Our customary Jaguar Sewing Machine plug on this article features the excellent Novum Craft 590 sewing machine (see above) which can handle all types of fabric from silks to soft furnishing materials, it’s suitable for all levels of sewing from beginners to experienced can get the best out of this computerised machine.

And don’t forget, we stock a whole range of Jaguar sewing machine accessories!

Why Sew Magazine loves the Jaguar DQS 377 sewing machine

“Suitable for a wide range of techniques, offering 100 built-in stitches”

The review of our lovely Jaguar DQS 377 in the July edition of Sew – the UK’s best-selling sewing magazine – is a particularly enthusiastic one. 

We love Sew Magazine and their wonderful website – particularly their Sewing patterns and How to sew sections.

The forthcoming July edition of the magazine has a snap review of the Jaguar DQS 377 sewing machine.

“Jaguar’s revolutionary and unique digital quick- threading system lets you skip the headache of threading – it guides the thread directly from the spool to the needle, then you thread it simply by pressing a lever!”

And their conclusion?

“Want it, need it, BUY IT!”

All-round strengths of the sewing machine

The DQS 377 review on the Sew website is more comprehensive and highlights the fact that it is “A great all-rounder”.

“The DQS 377 is suitable for a wide range of techniques, offering 100 built-in stitches that include appliqué, embroidery, patchwork and 13 one-step buttonholes.

“This computerised model also features a digital quick threading system, an extra-high presser foot lifter and a free arm to sew hard-to-reach areas.

“The automatic bobbin winding clutch and top loading jam-proof bobbin also make sewing much easier.”

See the complete range of Jaguar sewing machines »


Good news on price!

Even better is the fact that the Jaguar DQS 377 is available for a limited time at a special price of £399 at GUR – the Sewing Superstore in Birmingham »

Overlocker sewing machine advantages

Between 2 and 4 spools of thread simultaneously!

Overlocker sewing machines have a number of key advantages, particularly when it comes to stopping the edges of cut fabric from fraying. They used to be professional level pieces of equipment, but these days overlockers are increasingly finding their way into the home market.

An overlocker by no means replaces a “traditional” sewing machine, but it does excel at joining two layers of cloth and trimming the edge of the fabric to stop fraying. According to The Sew in Brighton Sewing School

“Its primary function is to clean finish a raw edge, giving the project a professional appearance. Many overlocking stitches have built-in stretch, making them the perfect tool for seaming knit fabrics. Additionally, the eyes of the loopers are larger than the eyes of sewing needles and can therefore accommodate thicker decorative threads.”

Other overlocker advantages

An overlocker’s stitch pattern typically allows for a significant amount of stretch – useful when sewing elastic or stretchy fabrics. And being able to stitch a number of threads at a time can be a huge advantage. The Jaguar Supa Lock 486 for example can be set for two, three or four threads.

An overlocker doesn’t use bobbins but loopers to supply the lines of thread, making it easier to contain the materials edges within the seam.

It’s important to remember that an overlocker won’t completely replace a conventional sewing machine – inserting zips and buttonholes or topstitching will still require one of those.


Jaguar overlockers – super, easy threading

Exclusive to Jaguar overlocker sewing machines feature a unique cutting system which opens up by 180 degrees, giving easy access to the looper thread guides. Threading is quick and easy with no need for tweezers or specialist tools – it’s as quick and as simple as that!

  • The Jaguar 487 – an excellent choice for those looking for features and performance. Surprisingly easy to use.
  • The Jaguar Supa Lock 486 – a 2, 3 or 4 thread overlocker with differential feed.

“The Jaguar 487 is easy to thread as each route is colour coded, easy to access the the workings under the needle plate as this part can swing all the way open allowing a very clear view of all the mechanism housed here.”

Helen McGowan, Kildare, Ireland.

Overlocker / serger sewing tips

Sewing: overlockers are sometimes known as sergers

Some overlocker / serger sewing beginners aren’t aware of the difference between an overlocker and a standard sewing machine. So to get the ball rolling, we thought we’d tell you what an overlocker is…

Wendy Ward provides an excellent definition on her website where she also points out that the machines are also known as “sergers”. Get in touch if you know how this term came into use by the way – we’d love to know!

“…it’s a separate machine that sews with 3, 4 or 5 threads to join seams, neaten edges and cut off the excess fabric all in one go. It’s the neat professional looking finish you find inside ready made clothing.”

Adding a neckline

A useful tip for overlocker serger sewing beginners from the Makers website. After sewing side seams the next step is something that you definitely need to get to grips with: adding a neckline – and this also applies to hems and cuffs. There are some great step by step photos on this article.

Finishing your seams

The Scruffy Badger Time website is compiled by Winnie from Bath in the UK – and we love it!

In her article Overlocking / serger tips: finishing your seams she suggests three practical ways of obtaining a tidy finish on a project. It’s worth paying close attention to her third tip – the most complicated but long term we think the best – which involves getting to know your overlocker’s “stitch fingers”. It’s tricky but worth persevering with – and again the photos are a real help.

Also worth checking out is Winnie’s excellent article Overlocker tips: unpicking seams.

Matching up fabrics

The What Katy Sews website has a really interesting focus – “…matching up all my stashed-away fabrics to appropriate patterns and getting them sewn up”.

The article mixes knits and an overlocker – a really useful combination.

Threading an overlocker / serger

An excellent video by Denise Wild shows how to thread a serger, which will be particularly useful if you’re new to overlockers, your serger keeps unthreading – or you just keep forgetting how to do it.

And now the bit we REALLY love…

We’re trying very hard not to look smug here, but if you’re fortunate enough to own a Jaguar overlocker – it self threads!

The Jaguar Supa Lock 486 overlocker for example, is an excellent choice if you are looking for features and performance. Surprisingly easy to use … this is probably the reason why it is Jaguar’s number one overlocker.

Super easy threading

Exclusive to Jaguar overlocker sewing machines  – the unique cutting system opens up 180 degrees giving easy access to the looper thread guides. Threading is quick and easy with no need for tweezers or specialist tools.

It’s as quick and as simple as that!

Jaguar 486 overlocker serger sewing machines

Quilting: not everything you need to know, but…

Making the most of your sewing machine for quilting

We love quilting here at Jaguar Sewing Machine Central, so we’re always on the look out for some useful, tips, tricks and techniques to share with our colleagues and sewing groups.

Get in touch if you’d like us to cover a specific topic in a forthcoming article by the way…

Spinning seams

Right – to kick things off, we liked the simplicity and excellent photos of the blog entry How to ‘Spin’ Seams from the Cooking Up Quilts website.   Beth, a quilter and pattern designer, recently added this really useful tutorial.

“This is a helpful technique to use in a block where there are lots of seams coming together in one place – it can help to flatten the block and reduce bulk.”

She’s helpfully used a dark thread on the seams so that you can see what’s going on really clearly.

Perfect your quilting – without needle and thread!

One of the biggest challenges for the developing quilter is to be able to reproduce consistent, accurate shapes at will – training your “muscle memory” as it’s sometimes called.

We love Quilting Daily (why wouldn’t we?) and Tweeted a coupe of days ago about an outstanding piece by Brenna Riley Gates called Longarm Quilting: Making Muscle Memories.

Don’t panic by the way when you see the word “Longarm” – these methods are just as relevant if you have a conventional sewing machine!

We were intrigued by this idea – and by trying it ourselves have come to realise that you can improve your quilting techniques far more quickly by NOT using  a needle and thread. Sounds weird? Actually, it’s remarkably straightforward – one of those “Why didn’t we think of that?” type things…

Brenna quotes Dawn Cavanaugh’s lesson – muscle memory – from the APQS Longarm Certification (Sponsored by Fons & Porter) course she teaches.

This technique is something that you can practice watching TV – never a bad thing! Although it now looks as though you won’t be able to do it whilst watching the Great British Sewing Bee(Don’t get us started on that – it’s just too sad!).

Brenna observes that “To be a successful quilter, you must make your muscles remember what it feels like to make smooth curves, flowing lines, and graceful shapes over and over again.”

Make the most of those leftovers!

We’ve always got a lot of those of course – and were wondering whether we really need to bin them all. So we had a little look around and found a wonderful article by the redoubtable Sherri on the A Quilting Life blog.

Her excellent article How To: Scrappy Quilt Binding Tutorial shows that some really engaging results can result from reusing those leftover bits and pieces. It’s a clever piece, enabling the reader to imagine themselves sorting through scraps, colours and patterns, showing how to respond by what they have to hand.

“I was pretty happy with the look…so glad I went with scrappy for this quilt instead of with just one color or even with a scrappy version of one color.”

We’re definitely scrappy binding converts now!

Sewing machines for the new and experienced quilter

Featuring the wonderful quick threading system. The unique DQS (Digital Quick-threading System) has now been introduced to the UK. All current models come with a three year parts and labour guarantee and the 100% satisfaction guarantee.

The Jaguar sewing machine range »

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