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The bobbin on your sewing machine provides the lower thread supply, allowing your machine to form stitches. Needless to say, if your bobbin isn’t set up properly, your machine won’t work.

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The bobbin on your sewing machine provides the lower thread supply, allowing your machine to form stitches. Needless to say, if your bobbin isn’t set up properly, your machine won’t work.

Rather than risk that, we thought we’d ask for some tips from a nationally recognized home décor sewing expert. Donna Babylon, creator of the More Splash Than Cash® brand and author of 15 books, including the recently published Decorating Sewlutions: Learn to Sew as You Decorate Your Home was happy to help.

Here are a few of Donna’s tips to keep your bobbins working properly.

Winding

When you’re winding thread onto a bobbin, always start with an empty bobbin. Never wind one color of thread over another color.

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Have several extra empty bobbins on hand. Don’t skimp. They’re cheap.

The thread on the bobbin has to be evenly wound across the bobbin spool for the machine to work properly. If your machine doesn’t appear to be winding smoothly, first check to see you have it correctly threaded for the bobbin winding process. If that appears to be fine, it may be time to service your machine.

For most projects, you’ll want your bobbin thread to match the thread in your spool. The exception is when the back of your fabric is a different color or you have a different colored lining. Then you’ll want to use a bobbin thread that best matches the color of the back or lining.

Before you start a project, wind at least two bobbins. That way, you’ll always have a spare at your fingertips.

Storage & Maintenance

Keep your filled bobbins together (and keep the threads from dangling) by storing them in a foam toe separator, the kind used for pedicures.

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Every time you change the bobbin, use a tiny brush to remove any lint that might have built up inside the bobbin case. For more handy care tips, see our tutorial: Taking Care Of Your Sewing Machine.

(Excerpted from Decorating Sewlutions by Donna Babylon.)

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