Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Did you say read the user manual? Tidbits learned after 8 yrs with my machine…….

I have no idea what possessed me, but after sewing on my Babylock Ellageo for almost 9 years, I decided to break out the user manual and see what it had to say about achieving a perfect ¼” seam allowance.  I tend to be a doer, rather than an instruction reader, so obviously the thought of opening the user manual never crossed my mind. So imagine my surprise when I opened it tonight and learned that my machine actually has some special features just for quilt piecing! Who would of thunk it?!?

Here is what it has to offer:

First, there is a specific presser foot provided that is recommended for piecing. What do you mean I don’t need a specially purchased ¼” presser foot?? 

Second, there are two specific straight stitches set aside on this machine for piecing. They are even names with a "P" for piecing.  They are both designed to align the edge of the prescribed presser foot with the edge of the fabric and provide a perfect ¼” seam allowance.  One stitch is for use with the right edge of the presser foot, the other is for the left edge of the presser foot. 

Lastly, there is even away to adjust the stitch, to account for your thread size and to achieve that evasive “scant” ¼” seam allowance. You simply use the stitch width to move the needle slightly left or right. I would never have even thought about the stitch WIDTH button on a straight stitch!

So the moral of the story is, at least once every 8 years, pull out your sewing machine manual and see what it has to say about what you do EVERY day!

Michele Hester
P.S. – For sale: One specialty ¼" presser foot ;-)


  1. Why is it we wait years until we break out the manual???? I just got a new machine two weeks ago and I started witht the manual this time. I had to fight myself but I did.

    I like this blog.. The colors are great....Chris

  2. I accidentally deleted this comment from Gail, so I am posting it for her....oops!

    I think you wrote that post for me, Michele, LOL.

    I Have a Babylock Quilter's Choice and I also went out and bought the 1/4" foot--Duh! I since found out that I have the same settings on my machine that you do for 1/4 inch piecing.

    Do you think that's why they include a book with each sewing machine purchase??

  3. There is two positions for a straight stitch because it is used to attach a Zipper. You can move the needle left and right but you do have to think about it. If you move the needle to the left one for getting a 1/4 inch. You have to remember to do it every time you turn the machine back on. A quarter inch foot is useful because the ridge helps to keep fabric straight and you are using the needle in the Same Position for the whole project. Keep your Speciality 1/4 inch foot it won't allow you any other needle position!


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