Saturday, December 5, 2015

Non-Automatic Buttonhole Foot Tutorial

It really is not supposed to be complicated to use a buttonhole foot.  Most of the sewing machines nowadays come with an automatic buttonhole foot (like the one shown on the left--this came with my old sewing machine).  But since I got my sewing machine 2nd handed, I was left without any accessories besides the standard foot.  When I looked online, I was unable to find a buttonhole foot for my machine.  However, there was a set of sewing feet on sale that included a buttonhole foot (of course, the picture on eBay was too small to show what each foot looked like.)  It was after opening the package, I realized that the buttonhole foot in the set is not automatic--it does not have the button guide plate nor the bracket on the side.  How do I use this foot? I searched online with no avail.  Nope, I am obviously the only one who does not have an automatic buttonhole foot.  *sigh*.  If you are a proud owner of a non-automatic buttonhole sewing foot, please let me know!!
I rested the case for more than a year and I dared not sew anything that required a buttonhole...until today.  I spent the Thanksgiving week reorganizing my sewing room and just so happened to have both buttonhole feet side by side.  It was then that I had a chance to compare the 2. All I needed was to determine the buttonhole size and push the buttonhole lever at appropriate time.
 I selected the buttonhole stitch on the machine and pull down the lever and attached the sewing foot.
Typically, buttonholes are sewn from the front of the presser foot to the back, starting with the tag bar.  **Double check with your owner's manual for the exact steps of your buttonhole stitching.
 So I set the movable attachment to where I wanted the buttonhole to start its bar tag.  There is a red indicator on the foot (right next to where the foot is attached to the machine) that can line up with the ruler-like markings on the left.  The red indicator marks the needle position.  Once the the presser foot was lowered, the movable attachment was locked in place.  Press the foot control and the machine will start step #1 and #2. 

After the bar tag and the left bar of the buttonhole were sewn, and the movable attachment would not go back any further, it was time to push the lever back to let the machine know to go to step #3 (move the needle back to the front tag bar).
 When the red indicator lines up with the marking where the beginning needle position was (front tag bar), I pushed the lever so the machine would sew the right bar. (step #4)

After the right bar of the buttonhole was sewn, and the movable attachment would not go back any further, it was time to push the lever back to let the machine know to go to step #5 (sew the back tag bar).
And there's my buttonhole with the not-so-automatic buttonhole foot!  Woohoo!!
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