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Machine Minute: Button Hole Basics

These tips will help you get perfect button holes with your sewing machine.

TRANSCRIPT:

Hi, I'm Jennifer here with today's Machine Minute brought to you by Baby Lock and the Symphony machine. Today's topic is buttonhole basics. If you haven't made buttonholes on some of the newer machines, you're in for a surprise. They do great things and make making buttonholes super easy. Start by selecting your buttons. Once you've selected the button for your project, attach the buttonhole foot to your machine. There's a place on the back of the buttonhole foot where you put your button and lock it into place. The machine then determines how large the buttonhole needs to be. Once that's done you'll notice a little metal bracket on the back of the foot. You'll pull down the buttonhole lever so that it's behind the bracket. On my sample I've already stitched one buttonhole and I placed dots where I wanted the front end of my buttonhole to be so they were evenly spaced. Those dots are the front of the buttonhole the machine is going to sew front to back. So I don't have to mark the whole line if I just mark the fronts and line those up -- the machine will do the rest of the figuring for me. There's a hole in the foot where I can see the dot that I've placed, and I want the needle to come down right at that point, once I've lined it up and lowered the presser foot I'm ready to start stitching -- the machine does the rest. And while it's stitching and going back and forth, I'll show you a sample I've made. When I was trying to determine which buttonhole style I wanted to use, I stitched out several of the dozen different types of buttonholes that are available on this machine. Most often the type of buttonhole that you choose is going to be based on the thickness (whether it's a light weight or heavy weight fabric of your fabric choice), and also based on the thickness of your button (whether it's a heavy outer wear button or a lighter weight shirt button for example). But you can see all the different choices you have. Sometimes if you're using it for purely decorative purposes, it might be just a style that you prefer. Once the machine is done stitching, raise the presser foot. I'll trim off this little thread here and then you can use a buttonhole chisel to cut out the center of your buttonhole, or one trick that I like to use is to place a pin through the end of my buttonhole because you don't want to cut through the bartex on the end. Then take a seam ripper and very gently place it in the opposite end, guide your seam ripper down the center of your button hole and slowly cut away the center until you get to that pin. Remove the pin. And your buttonhole is ready to go. With these basics, making buttonholes is easy.