No matter how good a designer you are, if your sewing machine skip a stitch, your creation would not look the way it should. While you work on your sewing machine, there would be times when you face sewing machine troubles and skipped stitches is one of those common little problems that you can fix pretty easily at home.
What Do You Mean By - Skip Stitch or Skipped Stitches?
SKIPPED STITCHES ARE GENERALLY SPEAKING – LOOPY TANGLING BOBBIN THREAD AT UNEVEN DISTANCE AT THE BOTTOM SIDE OF OUR FABRIC.
Last week, I had piled up a neat big bundle of dresses to be mended. A few stitches here and there and the work would have been done. I got everything in place. All my sewing supplies, my dresses, my mind and music in place.
Very neatly I oiled and cleaned my sewing machine and sat down to stitch my jacket with same color thread.
I was disappointed. My machine was not behaving the way it should have been. It was Skipping Stitches. That means, when I tried to stitch over a piece of fabric, the stitch was not coming the way it should have been.
Why Your Sewing Machine Skip a Stitch?
Before we jump to the solution, we need to understand the problem. If we understand the cause of the problem, we would be in a better position to fix our problem. When our sewing machine skip stitch, we need to look at the possible causes, which could be -
- Thread is inserted in wrong or improper way.
- Clamping is poor or there is insufficient pressure.
- The needle is worn out or bent and needs to be replaced.
- You are using wrong size needle.
- You are perhaps using wrong type of needle for the material. You need to use the right type of needle for the fabric. Generally speaking, a ballpoint is for knits, sharp for a woven. Yet, most sewing machine needles available in a fabric store are ballpoint or universal. So, you have to specifically ask them what purpose you want needle for.
- Sewing machine needs cleaning and oiling.
- You are using wrong thread for the fabric or material.
- Thread quality is poor. You can break tip of the thread with your fingers. If it breaks easily, then replace thread with a sturdier better quality.
- There are different needle sizes and thread weights which go in coordination. With experience you understand these things but you can also ask the seller at the time of purchasing.
- If your sewing machine is showing signs of old age, wearing out then take some time to replace the rusted or worn out parts. Check if there are worn thread guides, paths or eyelets.
SKIPPED STITCHES : PROBLEM AND SOLUTIONS
PROBLEM 1 : THE NEEDLE IS INCORRECTLY INSERTED.
How to Thread Needle Correctly.
If the needle is not inserted the way it should have been, then it’s surely going to give you trouble by skipped stitches.
If you are a seasonal Stitchr or stitch only when there is no dress to wear but to mend your existing ones, then some of you may face this trouble of how to insert your sewing machine needle correctly.
In this case, either check the Manual of your sewing machine and go to the section ‘How to insert a Needle’ or ‘How to Change a Needle.’
If you don’t find the Manual, don’t worry.
One thing you can do is – take your selfie with your sewing machine or make a video while taking out the broken or bent needle. This will help you when you would be inserting the new needle and when you would be confused about how did you take the needle out. In which direction the new one would go? You can go back to this picture or video for reference.
The second but important solution.
- Raise the needle by turning the hand wheel towards you & lower the presser foot.
- Loosen the needle clamp screw by turning it counter clockwise. Remove the needle from clamp.
- Insert a new needle into the clamp with the flat side away from you.
- When inserting a needle into clamp, push it up as far as it goes and tighten the clamp screw firmly with the screwdriver.
PROBLEM 2 : THE NEEDLE IS BENT OR BLUNT.
If you have worked on a rough or embroidered or thick fabric, then you know what caused the damage to your needle.
If you have done none of the above, you would agree that your needle has a tiny sharp point which is eroded with abrasion.
Working on different types of fabrics for a good long time damages and bend the tiny needle. Even though, it would not complain and would request you to change it, it’s your responsibility to keep a check regularly and change your needle with a shinier one.
So, how would you know if your needle is damaged?
To check the needle, place flat side of the needle on something flat like needle plate or glass etc. The clearance between the needle and flat surface would be consistent. If you feel that there is some inconsistency in the point of your needle as compared to a new one, then change it.
For good health of our sewing machine, beauty of our fabrics and dresses, we should never use bent or blunt needle.
PROBLEM 3 : THE NEEDLE AND THE THREADS ARE NOT SUITABLE FOR THE WORK BEING SEWN.
The suitability of needle and thread is not color combinations or contrasts but the number of your needle and threads.
There are different number of needles for different number of fabrics and so is the thread.
The general rule of thumb.
THINNER NEEDLE AND THREAD FOR THINNER OR FINER FABRICS, AND
THICKER NEEDLE AND THREAD FOR THICKER OR HEAVIER FABRICS.
If you are not sure about the thread and needle suitable to the fabric, then you can always test thread and needle size on a small piece of fabric which will be used for actual sewing. If your stitches are coming smooth and nice, then you are on the right stitching way.
- Make sure that you use same thread for needle and bobbin.
- A sharp, fine needle is used for sewing stretch, very fine fabrics and synthetics.
PROBLEM 4 :THE NEEDLE THREAD IS NOT THREADED PROPERLY.
Sometimes, our needle is not threaded properly and we face problem for not actual reason. Check with your machine how it is to be threaded and follow the instructions shown on the machine or manual to thread it.
I suggest a general threading guide of a sewing machine. You can check with your Sewing Machine and follow these steps :-
- Raise the take – up lever to its highest position by turning hand wheel towards you.
- Raise the presser foot.
- Place a spool on the spool pin with thread coming from back of the spool.
- Draw the thread into thread guide.
- While holding the thread near spool, draw thread down into the tension area & then around the check spring holder.
- Draw the thread up & through the take-up lever from right to left.
- Draw the thread down & slip it into the lower thread guide.
- Draw the thread down & slip it into needle bar thread guide on the left.
- Thread the needle eye from front to back or from one side to another, as your machine needle is positioned.
I hope your sorted out your sewing machine trouble of skipped stitches. Now, your machine would be giving your beautiful stitches and there would no longer be a skip stitch situation.
How do you fix your machine and what troubles do you face? Do share your experience with others like you so all of us could enjoy a trouble free sewing.
- When sewing very fine fabrics, place a thick paper under your fabric and sew over it to prevent seam puckering.
Do you want a trouble free sewing guide?