Paragraph 164. As the sewing machine is a great time saver, every girl should know how to use it. Before trying to sew on the machine you should study the general directions that are given in the book which accompanies the machine. Do not try to learn to use any special attachments until you have learned to use the machine for ordinary work.

You should be able to thread the machine correctly, to oil it, to adjust the tensions and the length of the stitch. Learn to tread the machine evenly, turning the wheel in the right direction. Before stitching on a garment, it is advisable to practice stitching on a piece of striped material, using the stripes as a guide. Be very careful to keep the fingers from under the needle.

Hold the material which you are sewing smooth and flat, with the bulk of it on the table of the sewing machine. Do not pull the work under the presser foot, but let the feed of the machine work it through. If the feed of the machine does not do this properly, it probably needs to be raised. (It is sometimes necessary to pull the material slightly when sewing over a heavy seam.)

When stitching hems, the edges of bias tape, or bands, stitch very close to the edge. When stitching basted seams, sew just outside of the basting threads as it is difficult to remove the bastings after you have stitched through them.

Remember that a sewing machine, like any other machine, will last longer and do better work if it is kept clean and well oiled. If it becomes gummed, oil it with kerosene, run it rapidly, wipe off all the kerosene and oil it with sewing machine oil using only a drop in each place where it is needed (be careful to use a good grade of oil); then wipe the oil from the needle and sew through a piece of scrap material (without having the machine threaded) until the oil ceases to soil it.

Sewing On Machine 242