clothing repair and how-to tips

All About Sewing Machines, Embroidery Machines, Sergers, Knitting and Quilting Supplies



Ultimate Sewing Guide

Guide to the Creative Art of Sewing

Sewing Machine FAQ

Sewing Machines for Dummies

  1. Your sewing machine (Introduction)

  2. Getting set up to sew

  3. All about seams

  4. All about hems

  5. Fastening and Fasteners: Zippers, Buttonholes, Ties, and Loops

  6. All about corners (coming soon)

  7. All about edges (coming soon)

  8. Fancy and fancier (coming soon)

  9. Gotta make it! (coming soon)

Ultimate Clothing Guide -- Fashion, Fabrics and Construction

Sewing and Serging

Professional Sewing Techniques for Designers

The A-Z Guide to Sewing Machines

Sewing Basics -- A Quick-start Guide:

  1. Fabric

  2. Basic sewing tools

  3. Beyond the basic tools

  4. Choosing a pattern

  5. Choosing fabric

  6. Layout and cutting

  7. Marking the pieces

  8. Introduction to the sewing machine

Ultimate Guide to Machine Embroidery

Part One: Techniques, Effects, and Materials

(more coming soon!)

Beyond Patterns: Optimal Sewing Techniques for Clothing

How to Test a Sewing Machine

The Successful Sewing Guide:

  1. CHOOSING YOUR EQUIPMENT: The right tools for dressmaking and needlework

  2. MODERN SEWING MACHINES: Their selection, use and care

  3. YOUR IMPORTANT CHOICE: Choice of pattern, style, pattern size, fabric and color

  4. SEWING COURSE FOR BEGINNERS: A twelve-point plan for professionalism




Basic, intermediate and advanced info about sewing machines, sergers, related equipment, and accessories:

Essentials of Serging: A How-to Guide to Using and Maintaining Sergers

Sew, Serge, Press: Speed Tailoring in the Ultimate Sewing Center

Shortcut Sewing:

Fitting and Pattern Alteration (Theory):

Sewing Machine Repair and Maintenance:

  • Introduction

  • Basic Sewing Machine Mechanisms: Straight-Stitch Sewing Machine—Basic Straight-Stitch Mechanisms—Stitch Variation of the Straight-Stitch Machine—Zig-Zag Stitch Sewing Machine—Basic Zig-Zag Stitch Mechanism—Stitch Variations of the Zig-Zag Machine—Summary

  • Sewing and Machine Adjustment Maintenance: Buying a New Sewing Machine—Buying a Used Sewing Machine—Readying the Machine for Service—Checking the Electrical Components—Adjusting the Drive Belt Tension—Cleaning and Oiling the Machine the First Time—Periodic Cleaning and Oiling—Needles, Threads and Materials—Regulating the Machine—Feed Dog Dropping—Presser Feet—Tension Regulation—Summary

  • Internal Repair and Adjustments: Disassembly Procedure-Tools—Adjustments

Owner's Guide to Sewing Machines, Sergers, and Knitting Machines:

Modern Sewing -- Our comprehensive "How-To" guides on the following topics:

Smart Sewing Guide

Click here or image below for full size...

Parts of a sewing machine

Recommended Books on Sewing, Making Clothes and related topics

How we select books:

In addition to buying and /or borrowing books from libraries (and reading these books), we go to Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble web sites, and read descriptions and reviews of all books related to sewing and clothes making. We also use Amazon's Listmania -- a service which lets experts or serious hobbyists select their top choices. Based on this research, here are out top picks:

Critical acclaim for our web site…

“Understanding the basic mechanics of equipment is essential for every sewer. Crhowto.org brings these mechanics to life with wit and humor, giving the layperson a clear understanding of the how’s and why’s of machine operation and the confidence to use any machine to its fullest potential.”

About us…

A commonsense guide to the workings of your machine: how threads and yarns are handled and what types are likely to cause trouble; how the machine forms its stitch; how its parts work together smoothly. Sound guidelines are given for buying the right sewing machine, serger, or knitting machine for your purposes; then, armed with the right tools and a basic understanding of why and how the machine does its job, you’ll find that glitches occur infrequently, and are easily isolated and fixed when they do.

We are licensed to sell and repair every brand of machine. Our unusual perspective of analyzing operator technique in combination with machine function led us to a long teaching career, traveling widely to give seminars and workshops. We own and operate several sewing machine shops in Southern California.



Sewing Machine Maintenance (a guide from New Mexico State Univ.)

How to Clean a Sewing Machine

How to Buy a Used (or eBay) Home Sewing / Embroidery Machine -- First, consider the Brand. The European-made machines are the best quality. For a sewer or embroiderer, you will spend more time sewing / embroidering, and less time struggling with your machine. The following are the best three brands on the market for quality, reliability, available options, and local dealer support for service: Husqvarna Viking, Pfaff, Bernina. (more ...)

International Sewing Machine Collectors' Society -- Whether you have three machines or three hundred, or simply an urge to know more about those wonderful old sewing machines and the men who made, and more often lost, fortunes bringing them to reality, you will find fascinating reading on this site.

Fix Your Sewing Machine in Five Steps -- Includes discussion on "Cleaning/Oiling", "Feed Dogs", "Upper Tension", "Bottom Bobbin", and "A Sewing Test". (from eBay)

Conquering the Gremlins In Your Home Sewing Machine (from eBay)

How to Use Your Sewing Machine Attachments -- Many attachments come with modern sewing machine. Usually, they are laying in the accessory box for years. All these attachments can save you a precious time when using them properly.

How to Overhaul a Sewing Machine Motor in 30 minutes -- most sewing machines use "universal" motors. They can be overhauled in less than an hour by following a a few simple steps. Carbon accumulation and brushes sparkling are the main causes of motors performing poorly. All you need is some sandpaper, machine oil and an electric drill.

Change Serger Threads the Quick and Easy -- The big challenge for beginning serger users is when you have to change the thread color...

PatternReview.com -- online forum used by tens of thousands of sewers to collaborate, share and discuss the projects they have been working on, or are planning to work on. It catalogs and describes sewers experiences and opinions in a structured way so that you can quickly and easily find the information they are looking for. The value of this site keeps increasing as more and more sewers start using it.

SewForum.com -- information and advice about embroidery, sewing, serging, knitting and quilting. Also includes industrial sewing topics.

Sewing Machine Scam! For those who have seen flyers in the mail that say something like: TRUCK LOAD SALE! 2006 Singer Commercial Grade/School Model America's Sewing Machine Co. Placed large orders of the 2006 model school sewing machine. These machines remain UNSOLD! THEY MUST BE SOLD!

Wikipedia's Sewing Glossary -- including: Backstitch, Chain stitch, Darning mushroom, Seam ripper, and more.

Wikiversity--Sewing: articles about basic skills in the field of sewing.

Start Your Own Sewing Business In 5 Easy Steps -- If you have any sewing experience from high school, after making some basic skirts, drapes, Halloween costumes or any sewing projects around the house, it might be time to put your skills and that sewing machine to good use -- and start making some extra money.


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About Us

People who knit, sew, quilt and embroider all concur: it's a challenging, yet fun and rewarding hobby. The quality and durability of homemade clothing simply can't be beat, regardless of cost.

We are committed to helping you choose the best Sewing Machines, Embroidery Machines, Sergers, and Knitting and Quilting Supplies. Along with clothing equipment, we offer helpful tips and information to help you make informed purchasing choices. Our goal isn't to clutter your shopping experience with useless junk. From the beginner to the serious sewing, knitting and quilting enthusiast, we have a selection of products to suit a person's level, goal, and experience. We have partnered with some of the Internet's largest sewing machine and fabric vendors to to bring you the very best equipment and supplies, which is also affordably priced and backed by solid customer service.

Please note: sewing machine quality isn't ubiquitous: the best brand of sewing machine at $200 isn't necessarily the best at $3000. That’s why we offer so many brands, to give you quality options no matter your budget.

Updated: Sunday, 2023-11-12 18:07

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